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“extremely moving experience”
Review of Coventry Cathedral

Coventry Cathedral
Ranked #3 of 84 things to do in Coventry
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Celebrated as the UK's favourite 20th century building, Coventry Cathedral is known all over the world as a beautiful and unique venue. Designed by architect Sir Basil Spence following the bombing of the city in 1940 it was opened in 1962, and contains some of the finest examples of 1950's and 60's art and architecture in the country.
Useful Information: Stairs / elevator
Reviewed June 19, 2013

This is a place I would recommend that everyone visiting Coventry should visit.The stark ruins of the bomb damaged cathedral were a very moving place where one could be lost in quiet contemplation.Really worth a visit!

Thank Ruth M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"stained glass"
in 87 reviews
"side by side"
in 42 reviews
"basil spence"
in 29 reviews
"bell tower"
in 26 reviews
"moving experience"
in 24 reviews
"modern architecture"
in 25 reviews
"new building"
in 34 reviews
"second world war"
in 60 reviews
"graham sutherland"
in 28 reviews
"awe inspiring"
in 23 reviews
"entrance fee"
in 57 reviews
"well worth a visit"
in 119 reviews
"guided tour"
in 44 reviews
"beautiful building"
in 34 reviews
"post war"
in 21 reviews
"next door"
in 35 reviews
"visiting coventry"
in 33 reviews
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1,353 - 1,357 of 1,792 reviews

Reviewed June 18, 2013

The ruins of the Old Cathedral really resonate with the futility and desolation of war! What a fantastic building it must have been before the Nazi bombs crashed through the roof! The spire and the walls still stand and Peregrine Falcons nest in the spire.
However, the New Cathedral is quite amazing in its design and it is brilliantly juxtaposed with the ruins.
I was born in Coventry and I am proud of these two cathedrals - they are a "Must-see" if you are in the area. There are many things of note and interest to see - take the "Cross of Nails" a symbol for world peace - and the enormous sculpture of St.Michael vanquishing the Devil. If you have never stood near to it, you will not have realised just how big this bronze actually is. It is a truly awe-inspiring depiction - the best I have ever seen!
There are many facets of the old and new - but I will leave them for you to discover.
Also, if you are visiting Coventry's Cathedrals, it is worth bearing in mind their close proximity to St.Mary's Hall and Crypt (A medieval gem that survived the Nazi blitz) and the Herbert Art Gallery and Museum - which is always interesting. Just a 5 minute walk away you will find the Coventry Transport Museum which is large and houses one of the finest historic vehicle collections in the UK!
Just two minutes walk, from the Cathedrals into Broadgate and you will find the exquisite (just bigger than life-size) statue of the naked Lady Godiva riding her horse. From this point can be seen the famous mechanical automatic clock-figures of Lady Godiva and Peeping Tom who both, for 59 minutes, remain unseen behind closed doors, but when the clock approaches the hour - the doors open and Peeping Tom leans out whilst Godiva rides by below him. The Clock chimes and she disappears through another door as the doors close on both figures. This is always a great favourite with young children.

2  Thank PickNick1951
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 11, 2013

I visited this Cathedral one afternoon together with a visiting African Bishop who was dressed in full Episcopal dress. Custom has it that, in Cathedrals where a charge is made, clergy and religious are nearly always exempt. The lady on the door was rude "he's not one of our Bishops", (he was!) "how do I know he's a Bishop?" The Bishop was, of course, polite but seriously offended - and we decided not to go into the Cathedral.

A few days afterwards I was there for the free Monday organ recital. I commented to the recitalist, a close friend, about the hostility previously experienced and also, again, that experienced on the day of the recital. It appeared that he had experienced the same when he arrived that morning to practice.

I wrote to the then Dean, John Irvine. His reply contained what I expected, comments about how difficult it was balancing the books - but no apology for the rudeness my Episcopal friend and I had experienced.

The week before we had visited Norwich Cathedral - what a difference! There they addressed my visitor as "Excellency", "Could they provide him with a guide?" - rather 'over the top' and perhaps not necessary - but so welcoming!

I'm well aware of the "difficulty in balancing the books" in a great building such as this. I did not expect the rudeness and hostility we received from the Cathedral staff - not the lack of an apology from the Dean.

1  Thank DrSL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 4, 2013

Although Coventry gets an (undeserved) bad rap, none of its many excellent features come close to the Cathedral. An amazing mix of medieval and post-War, the whole experience is one of peace and reconciliation. Despite its £8 entry fee, going int the new Cathedral is a real treat. If you can, keep your eyes focused on the giant tapestry of Christ as you walk in and only turn around when you're by the altar -- the view back towards the ruins is spectacular. The ruin itself is free to enter and a great place to spend time contemplating, people watching, or just being still. The whole cathedral quarter, including the Guildhall and Holy Trinity, is really an undiscovered gem in the centre of Coventry.

Thank Radish_Spirit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed June 2, 2013

Great to see old and new together but still having something special in both.
Architecture amazing and the large window at the entrance of the new cathedral is stunning.
Worth a visit - the original cathedral ruins are a peaceful and reflective place to be in the middle of a very busy city centre no graffiti and well preserved.

Thank rattyhaggis
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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