St Paul’s Cathedral: Everything you need to know

Every day throughout Advent, we'll be introducing a different cathedral from around the UK and occasionally beyond. We begin with St Paul's…

St Paul's Cathedral (Credit: Getty)

Denomination: Anglican


Built: 1675

About the cathedral:

A great London landmark, St Paul’s is also one of the largest cathedrals in England. The current building – designed by Sir Christopher Wren after the Fire of London had devastated the city in 1666 – is the fourth cathedral to stand on this site, with the original dating back to 604. Circling the base of the cathedral’s magnificent dome is the Whispering Gallery, which visitors today can pay to go up to. For music-lovers, the dome is also home to one of the most spectacular acoustics around – when a choir sings in the Whispering Gallery, it is almost impossible to hear where the sound is coming from…

Did you know?


The list of famous former St Paul’s choristers is an impressive one, including the composer William Boyce (1711-79), actor Simon Russell Beale and current England cricket captain Alastair Cook. Cook, who was born on Christmas Day itself, sang in the stalls in the early 1990s, and later said that the concentration required to be a chorister helped him in his career as a world-class batsman. See if you can spot him singing happily away in the clip below…