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by Mandy Barrow

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St Paul's Cathedral

Where is St Paul's Cathedral?

St Paul’s Cathedral is located within the City of London on Ludgate Hill, the City’s highest point.

image: St Pauls
St Paul's Cathedral, London

When was St Paul's Cathedral built? Who built it?

St Paul's Cathedral seen today – the fourth, was built between 1675 and 1711 by Sir Christopher Wren. The foundation stone was laid in 1675 when Wren was 43 years old, and the last stone was put in lace by his son 35 years later.

image: St ails Cathedral

A Cathedral dedicated to St Paul has overlooked the City of London since 604 AD. The first cathedral was made from wood and was built for Mellitus, Bishop of the East Saxons. It was destroyed by a fire in 675 AD and was rebuilt ten years later. It was destroyed again by Vikings in 962 AD and rebuilt in stone by the Normans. This third building was destoyed in the Great Fire of London of 1666 and was larger than Wren's present building. It must have dwarfed the medieval city.

image: St Paulsimage: St Pauls
The photo on the left shows the main entrance to St Pauls.

Wren also designed over 50 other London churches.

What can your see inside St Paul's Cathedral?

St. Paul's is packed with memorials to notable Britons including Christopher Wren, Duke of Wellington and Admiral Lord Nelson, who died at the Battle of Trafalgar on 21 October 1804.

Christopher Wren died in 1723 at the age of 91. The Latin epitaph on his tomb is translated as "Reader, if you seek his memorial look around you".

The cathedral’s largest monument is that to the Duke of Wellington, depicting the Duke riding a horse.

The cathedral’s crypt is the largest in Western Europe and extends the entire length of the building. There are over 200 monuments and memorials in the crypt.

Burials are no longer held in St. Paul's.

How high do you need to climb to the Golden Gallery?

For the fit or ambitious, you can climb 530 steps to the Golden Gallery, an observation platform atop the dome of the cathedral.

What can you see from the observation platform (big balcony)?

From the observation balcony you can look out over the modern skyline of the city of London.

image: St Paul's Domeimag; St Paul's Dome
You can see the distinctive dome of St Paul's from miles away.

The Dome

The dome of St Paul's Cathedral is the second biggest dome in the world, after St Peter's in Rome.

image: St Pauls Dome

The Whispering Gallery

At the dome's base is the Whispering Gallery, a circular walkway halfway up the inside of the dome. Due to the acoustics of the curved surface, a phrase whispered against one wall can be heard against the far wall 112 feet away.

image: Queen Vcitoriaimage: Front of S Pauls
Staute of Queen Victoria stands in front of St Paul's

Important Events

  • Funeral of Admiral Nelson in 1806
  • Funeral of Winston Churchill in 1965.
  • Wedding of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer in 1981.

Opening Times

Open Monday – Saturday 8:30 – 16:00 Special events may close the Cathedral so check before visiting

St. Paul's on the web:

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All the materials on these pages are free for homework and classroom use only. You may not redistribute, sell or place the content of this page on any other website or blog without written permission from the Mandy Barrow.

© Copyright Mandy Barrow 2013

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Mandy is the creator of the Woodlands Resources section of the Woodlands Junior website. 
The two websites and are the new homes for the Woodlands Resources.

Mandy left Woodlands in 2003 to work in Kent schools as an ICT Consulatant. 
She now teaches computers at The Granville School and St. John's Primary School in Sevenoaks Kent.

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