His­tory made at cen­tre open­ing

TV his­to­rian Dr David Starkey cuts the rib­bon to open vis­i­tor cen­tre at Peter­bor­ough Cathe­dral

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - Event - By Stephen Briggs stephen.briggs@peter­bor­oughto­day.co.uk Twit­ter: @PTstephenB

Hun­dreds of peo­ple joined his­to­rian David Starkey at the open­ing of the new vis­i­tor cen­tre at Peter­bor­ough Cathe­dral.

Fol­low­ing a preview for fun­ders and those who had been work­ing on the pro­ject, the his­to­rian and broad­caster Dr Starkey per­formed the pub­lic open­ing on Satur­day, cut­ting a rib­bon above the en­trance as re-en­ac­tors dressed as knights looked on.

De­spite pour­ing rain, around 300 vis­i­tors crossed the thresh­old to look at the dis­plays about the cathe­dral’s his­tory. Amongst the price­less arte­facts ex­hib­ited are the orig­i­nal let­ter from King James I, writ­ten in 1613, ask­ing for the mor­tal re­mains of his mother, Mary Queen of Scots, to be re­moved from Peter­bor­ough to West­min­ster Abbey.

There are also hands-on ex­hibits and a dig­i­tal touchtable for vis­i­tors to fol­low the Cathe­dral story through pic­tures and dis­cover some amaz­ing facts. There is also an au­dio pre­sen­ta­tion for those who pre­fer to lis­ten rather than to look.

Dean of Peter­bor­ough, the Very Rev Charles Tay­lor said the cen­tre “ex­pressed a cor­po­rate vi­sion of what a cathe­dral com­mu­nity should be and how it can bet­ter reach out to, en­gage with and serve its city, dio­cese and wider re­gion as an open and in­clu­sive re­source.”

He also paid trib­ute to the gen­eros­ity of those trusts and in­di­vid­u­als whose do­na­tions had pro­duced the match fund­ing re­quired to com­plete the pro­ject. He praised the Pro­ject Board un­der the chair­man­ship of Canon Jonathan Baker, the Pro­ject Man­ager Stephen Crane, the fundrais­ing team and the Cathe­dral De­vel­op­ment and Preser­va­tion Trust un­der the chair­man­ship of Si­mon Schan­schi­eff, as well as those whose prac­ti­cal skills had made the cen­tre a re­al­ity.

The cen­tre will be open to the pub­lic daily from 10am to 5pm, Mon­day to Satur­day, and from 11am to 4pm on Sun­days. There is no charge for en­try but do­na­tions are en­cour­aged to help with cathe­dral run­ning costs.

His­to­rian David Starkey cuts the rib­bon

Knights from the Deads of Arms per­form a re-en­act­ment

Dean Charles Tay­lor with David Starkey at the open­ing of the newvis­i­tors cen­tre at Peter­bor­ough Cathe­dral

Dean Charles Tay­lor with David Starkey and Canon Jonathan Baker in the new cen­tre

Dean Charles Tay­lor with David Starkey and cllr John Holdich

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