The Cathedral Church of the Holy Spirit, Guildford is the Anglican cathedral at Guildford, Surrey, England. It is claimed to be the only Anglican cathedral "to be built on a new site in the southern Province of England since the Reformation".

Guildford was made a diocese in its own right in 1927, and work on its new cathedral, designed by Sir Edward Maufe, began nine years later, with the foundation stone being laid by Dr Cosmo Gordon Lang, Archbishop of Canterbury in 1936. Its building was interrupted by the Second World War between 1939 and 1952, and the cathedral was not consecrated until 17 May 1961. In the intervening period Holy Trinity Church served as pro-cathedral.

It stands in a commanding spot on Stag Hill - so named because the Kings of England used to hunt here - and its solid red brick outline is visible for miles around; it immediately overlooks the University of Surrey beneath it. Its bricks are made from clay taken from the hill on which it stands.

The tower is 160 feet (49 m) high, and contains twelve bells, ten of which were cast by Mears and Stainbank in 1965. The bells were augmented to 12 with two Whitechapel trebles in 1975. The largest bell weighs 30cwt and is tuned to the key of D. At the top of the tower stands a 15-foot (4.6 m) gilded angel, which turns in the wind. Inside, the cathedral appears to be filled with light, with pale Somerset limestone pillars and white Italian marble floors. Writing in 1932, Sir Edward Maufe said: ‘The ideal has been to produce a design, definitely of our own time, yet in the line of the great English Cathedrals; to build anew on tradition, to rely on proportion, mass, volume and line rather than on elaboration and ornament.' Pevsner described the building as 'sweet-tempered, undramatic Curvilinear Gothic', and that the interior was 'noble and subtle.' The Angel on the top of the tower was given in memory of Reginald Adgey-Edgar of the Intelligence Corps, who died on active service on 5 January 1944. The supporting pole for the Angel houses mobile phone antennas for T-Mobile and 3, at a height of 49m.


The organ
The cathedral organ was installed in 1961 by the Liverpool firm of Rushworth and Dreaper. It is a reconstruction of an organ dating from circa 1866, which was previously installed at the Rosse Street Baptist Church in Shipley, West Yorkshire.

  • 1961 Barry Rose
  • 1974 Philip Moore
  • 1983 Andrew Millington
  • 1998 Stephen Farr
  • 2008 Katherine Dienes-Williams

  • Walter William Lionel Baker 1927 - 1940
  • Harry Taylor 1954 - ????
  • Gavin Williams 1965(?) - 1970
  • James Anthony Froggatt 1970 - 1977 (afterwards organist of Portsmouth Cathedral)
  • Peter Wright 1977 - 1989
  • Geoffrey Morgan 1989 - 2002
  • Louise Reid 2002 - 2003
  • David Davies 2003 - 2009
  • Paul Provost 2009 -
See also the List of Organ Scholars at Guildford Cathedral.

On Thursday April 13, 2006, Queen Elizabeth II visited Guildford Cathedral as part of the Maundy Thursday celebrations before going for lunch with the Mayor of Guildford in the Guildhall. The nearby University of Surrey holds graduation ceremonies for its students at the Cathedral, its location makes this ideal as the students can walk from the campus to the Cathedral. During the graduation services the Cathedral is treated as a secular building. In September 2007, the Cathedral was granted Fairtrade Church status by the Fairtrade Foundation. The Cathedral participated in Earth Hour 2008 by switching off its floodlights. Scenes from the classic horror film The Omen were filmed at the Cathedral. At around 15:00 on Sunday 30 November 2008, an armed man, David Sycamore aged 39, was shot dead by police in the Cathedral grounds. The Cathedral had to cancel an Advent carol service for which over 500 people were expected.

Building Activity

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