St John the Baptist Cathedral, Norwich

The Cathedral Church of St John the Baptist is the Roman Catholic cathedral of the city of Norwich, Norfolk, England.

St John the Baptist Cathedral, Norwich
Cathedral Church of St John the Baptist
Norwich RC Cathedral.jpg
St John the Baptist Cathedral, Norwich is located in Norwich
St John the Baptist Cathedral, Norwich
St John the Baptist Cathedral, Norwich
Shown within Norwich
Coordinates: 52°37′45″N 1°17′02″E / 52.6292°N 1.2840°E / 52.6292; 1.2840
OS grid referenceTG2233508547
LocationNorwich, Norfolk
DenominationRoman Catholic
Functional statusCathedral
Heritage designationGrade I Listed
Designated26 February 1954[1]
Architect(s)George Gilbert Scott, Jr.
StyleGothic Revival
Years built1882-1910
Construction costApproximately £230,000
Number of towers1
Tower height38m (125ft)
DioceseEast Anglia (since 1976)
Bishop(s)Alan Hopes
DeanThe Very Rev Provost David Paul
Deacon(s)Rev. Patrick Limacher
Director of musicDaniel Justin


The cathedral, located on Unthank Road, was constructed between 1882 and 1910 to designs by George Gilbert Scott, Jr. as a parish church dedicated to John the Baptist, on the site of the Norwich City Gaol. The funds for its construction were provided by Henry Fitzalan-Howard, 15th Duke of Norfolk. He funded it as a generous gift to the Catholics of Norwich as a sign of thanksgiving for his first marriage to Lady Flora Abney-Hastings.[2]

In 1976, it was consecrated as the cathedral church for the newly erected Diocese of East Anglia and the seat of the Bishop of East Anglia.[3] In 2014, for the first time since 1558, a Pontifical High Mass was celebrated in this episcopal see's cathedral.[4]

It is the second largest Roman Catholic cathedral in England, the largest being Westminster Cathedral. It is one of two cathedrals in the city of Norwich, the other being the Church of England Cathedral Church of the Holy and Undivided Trinity, begun in the Norman style in 1096.


Just off the south aisle of the cathedral is the Duckett Library. It was named after Canon Richard Duckett who was rector of the church from 1876 to 1910. It was opened on 22 February 2012.[5] People need to become a member of the library to join, and that membership is available to all the cathedral's congregation. It has 3,000 religious publications and is staffed by volunteers.[6]

Also, within the cathedral ground is the Narthex. It opened in March 2010 and is the cathedral's visitor centre. It comprises an Education and Interpretation Gallery, a shop, a refectory with outdoor patio, a function hall, licensed bar and community garden.[7]


The cathedral's parish also covers Holy Apostles Church, West Earlham, in a suburb of Norwich and it also offers a Sunday evening Mass at St Mark's, the Church of England parish church of Lakenham.



  1. ^ British Listed Buildings
  2. ^ Cathedral about page Retrieved 15 January 2013
  3. ^ Cathedral History Archived 2010-04-12 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved 17 March 2010
  4. ^ "Historic: First Pontifical High Mass at the Throne in England since the advent of the new rite". Rorate Caeli. Published: 4 November 2014.
  5. ^ Cathedral Library Background Retrieved 15 January 2013
  6. ^ Cathedral Library Retrieved 15 January 2013
  7. ^ Cathedral Narthex Retrieved 15 January 2013

External linksEdit