Today, Sat 25th May Open 10:00am–4:00pm
Coventry Cathedral is open as normal today
General visiting times for the New Cathedral & Ruins Mon-Sat 10:00am–4:00pm
Sun 12:00pm–3:30pm
These opening times apply to the New Cathedral & Ruins. Other Cathedral locations' times differ.

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New Cathedral

Step inside the New Cathedral, our magnificent ‘casket of jewels’

Standing in unity next to the old cathedral, radiating both continuity and creativity

“Cathedrals are usually impressive – it’s part of their purpose - but entering the new cathedral at Coventry from the shell of the old one produced a “Wow!” moment. Over the years, I had heard several stories about it, but the reality exceeded my expectations.”
— Written by visitor John Mcmurtrie

The New Cathedral: embodying transformation

The New Cathedral is almost shockingly modern - and designed to reveal its charms only slowly. On entering via the "West" window (it actually faces south), your attention will be drawn towards the huge tapestry, filling the wall at the opposite end of the nave. The tapestry is usually bathed in light, yet almost no windows are visible: just tall, grey walls. With your back to the entrance, only one window can be seen - but it is big, beautifully colourful, especially at the start of each day, when sunlight shines directly through it. At its foot, for baptisms which mark new life and beginnings, is the Bethlehem font, carved from a rock brought here from the birthplace of Christ.

The position of the Baptismal window and font at this end of the nave, is a clue. As you make your way along its length, the side windows, each symbolising the trials of life, reveal themselves. Eventually, you reach the altar and the Cross of Nails: death. Yet you can go further still, to the Lady Chapel and the great Sutherland Tapestry depicting Christ in Glory, after death. And from this 'Resurrection perspective', the New Cathedral looks very different, indeed.

Learn more about The New Cathedral

Five Chapels, works of art and more

The New Cathedral also holds many works of art, featuring works by some of the greatest artists of the 1950s and 60s including Einar Forseth, Ralph Beyer, Elisabeth Frink, Graham Sutherland and many more. You can find out more about our works of art here.

Some of these are within the nave, but many are in one of the five separate chapels, accessed via the nave. You can see where they are and find out all about them via the floorplan below.

Interactive floorplan

1. The Ruins

The Ruins are the remains of a medieval parish church. Hit directly by several incendiary bombs, the Cathedral burned with the city on the 14th November 1940.

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2. Tower Climb and Shop

Soaring over 100 metres high, this Gothic masterpiece survived the bombing and is now the third-tallest in England.

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3. The New Cathedral

Sir Basil Spence’s 1962 masterpiece embodies both the stark and the beautiful, to powerful effect.

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4. Tapestry of Christ in Glory

Designed by Graham Sutherland, this impressive tapestry was woven by hand on a 500 year old loom and was at one point the largest continuously woven tapestry in the world.

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5. Chapel of Unity

The principle of a Chapel of Unity binding the Church of England and the Free Churches together for Christian service in Coventry was born out of the sufferings of war and the ecumenical enthusiasm of the church leaders.

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6. Chapel of Christ in Gethsemane

This quiet, small chapel serves as a reminder of suffering and a place of prayer and contemplation, away from the focal point of the Cathedral.

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7. Baptistery Window

The masterpiece created by John Piper is made of 198 brightly coloured glass panels and measures 26 metres high.

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8. West Screen

The impressive large glass ‘west’ screen was designed and hand engraved by John Hutton over the course of 10 years, and features 66 figures depicting saints and angels.

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9. Chapel of Christ the Servant

Also known as the Chapel of Industry, because the surrounding buildings used all to be industrial

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10. The Nave

As well as housing the stunning Baptistery window, the Nave features five pairs of 25 metre high windows which reflect man's journey through life.

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11. John Laing Centre

Recently opened the John Laing Centre is primarily used for educational purposes.

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12. Chapter House

Not normally open to visitors, the Chapter House is used for film screenings.

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13. St. Michael's House

St. Michael's House is an early 18th. century townhouse which was rebuilt and restored after extensive bomb damage.

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14. Millennium Chapel

Home to a replica of the poignant Stalingrad Madonna, this chapel was created in 1990 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Coventry Blitz.

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15. St. Michael's Gallery

A treasure trove of Cathedral history, with fascinating artefacts from both the old and new Cathedrals.

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16. Unity Lawn

Providing a place to pause and be still, right in the heart of the city, for the public and visitors alike.

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17. Queen's Steps

The Queen's steps follow the route that the Queen took in 1956 when she laid the foundation stone of the New Cathedral.

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18. Lady Chapel

Nestled at the foot of Christ in Glory, the Lady Chapel provides a more intimate space for prayer and reflection.

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19. Provost Vestry

The Provost Vestry is used by clergy to robe, and for private meetings, and is not normally open to the public.

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20. Cathedral Organ

We have a whole page dedicated to our amazing organ including its history and how and when to hear it played.

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21. Live & Dye Garden

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22. Blitz Museum

Travel back to wartime Coventry and learn all about life in the 1940s in our Blitz Museum. Located in the corner of the Cathedral Ruins, the Blitz Museum is a treasure trove of 1940's memorabilia and artefacts. Visitors will learn more about the Coventry Blitz on 14th November 1940 in our period school room, and will then travel through a typical house of the time and learn more about life in this era from one of our friendly and knowledgeable volunteers. Find out more about visiting the Blitz Museum

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Explore our Cathedral

The Ruins

The original Cathedral of St Michael was built between the late 14th and 15th centuries and was destroyed in the 1940 blitz on Coventry.

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Tower Climb

180 steps to magnificent views of Coventry and the surrounding area.

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Blitz Museum

Transport yourself back to 1940's Coventry in our Blitz Museum.

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Peace Trail

Coventry Cathedral is recognised internationally as a centre of peace and reconciliation, we thank the Coventry Lord Mayor's Committee for Peace and Reconciliation for creating the Peace Trail guide for Coventry, with 13 of the destinations featured right here at the Cathedral.

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Gift Shop

Visit our Gift Shop for a special memento of your visit!

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Transformation
stories
Sci-Fi Horror to the Triumph of Good
Jacob Epstein's grand finale at Coventry Cathedral

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