Wakefield Cathedral sells historic pews

Canon Michael Rawson sits in the pews at Wakefield Cathedral that are being sold to help raise money.

Canon Michael Rawson sits in the pews at Wakefield Cathedral that are being sold to help raise money.

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IT is the last few days of a January furniture sale never to be repeated.

Wakefield Cathedral is selling off its Victorian oak pews to make way for the refurbishment of the iconic building and to raise funds for a £5m redevelopment project.

And the pews are selling like hot cakes.

There are just six of the 36 cathedral pews originally on offer left for sale.

Buyers have paid between £150 and £300 to get hold of a piece of Wakefield’s history.

The pews have been cleared out to create a more flexible open space for worship, public gatherings, concerts, celebrations and other community uses.

They were designed by leading Victorian architect George Gilbert Scott and installed at the Cathedral in 1874.

Scott – the most prolific architect of his era – famously designed St Pancras hotel, the Foreign Office and the Albert Memorial.

The Dean of Wakefield, the Very Rev Jonathan Greener, said: “This is an exciting opportunity for people of this region to buy a piece of history and help us renew our cathedral.

“While we are on the way with our funding for Project 2013 we would like to raise another £300,000 as soon as possible to ensure the whole project can happen.”

Project 2013 includes essential repairs and conservation work to the grade one listed building.

It is planned to showcase the Cathedral’s heritage and breathe new life into the historic building, make it fit for the 21st century and develop it as a thriving visitor attraction.

The project has already won support from the Heritage Lottery Fund with a successful bid of £1.58m.

Work is expected to start on Phase One of the scheme in the near future when the nave will be transformed with improved lighting, flooring, heating and sound systems.

To buy a pew, visit: www.wakefield-cathedral.org.uk or call 01924 373923 or email: karn.dyson@wakefield-cathedral.org.uk

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