Hereford Cathedral Close Project
Between 2009 and 2011 Hereford Cathedral Close underwent a dramatic £5 million project to restore Cathedral Close as an important public space and setting for the Cathedral, after more than a century of heavy use and natural decay.
This exciting project has been completed and has re-established the beauty and dignity of the Close at the heart of our historic city and diocese. This new space can now be used to stimulate the development of tourism, business, culture, learning and access for future generations.
Elements of the project have included:
Improved design and access
The scheme clearly defines the thresholds to the Close, with improved pathways, surface paving and controlled access for vehicles and parking. Physical improvements include pruning existing trees and planting new trees where they have been lost. The new railings along the Broad Street frontage define the natural boundaries of the Close, emphasising the distinction between the secular and sacred.
The improved lighting scheme in the Close and Cathedral complements the new landscape and illuminates pathways and architectural features and details. Fundamental improvements and repairs havel also take place to drainage systems and local power supplies.
There have been extensive excavations of the area and the recording and analysis of the finds is continuing.
With its earliest parts dating from 1253 the Cathedral Barn is one of the most significant early buildings in Hereford city. Its conservation as part of this project has bought it back into use as a vital educational and storage space for the cathedral andit has been removed from the English Heritage At Risk register.
The New Workshop
The New Workshop is an integral part of the ongoing life of the cathedral and continues to support our long tradition of onsite stonework and decorative carving.
The project presented a unique opportunity for learning and interpretation through the ‘Close Connections’ learning project. ‘Close Connections’ explored the history and heritage of the Close and its relationship with the city and wider community of Herefordshire. It included a wide ranging programme of walks, events and projects designed for schools, family groups and lifelong learners. A DVD of this project has been made is available from the Cathedral shop.
The Hereford Cathedral Close project is supported by the National Lottery, together with
The Jordan Foundation, Albert & Monique Heijn, English Heritage, Herefordshire Council Garfield Weston Foundation, Hereford City Council, Mark & Elaine Ellis, Lawrence & Elizabeth Banks, Bob & Bea Tabor, The Rowlands Trust and The Headley Trust,
in partnership with the Chapter of Hereford Cathedral, The Friends of Hereford Cathedral,
Hereford Cathedral Perpetual Trust and the Mappa Mundi Trust