On Friday 18 January 2013, Sheffield Cathedral began its Gateway Project with a short service concluding with the breaking of the ground on its forecourt.
The Gateway Project is an ambitious programme of refurbishment and redevelopment, comprising:
- a Cathedral interior renewed for worship and mission, accessible to all, and with its many treasures fully revealed in preparation for the 100th anniversary of the Diocese of Sheffield;
- an expansion of the Cathedral’s learning activities programme for children, young people, and adults;
- a vigorous community engagement programme.
The project includes renewed under-floor heating and flooring, new seating, a lighting scheme, a new entrance, a retail area, and interpretation resources throughout the Cathedral.
The Bishop of Sheffield, the Rt Revd Dr Steven Croft, the Bishop of Doncaster, the Rt Revd Peter Burrows, Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant for South Yorkshire, the Master Cutler, and the Lord Mayor of Sheffield, were all present, and the Lord Mayor performed the ceremonial digging.
The Bishop of Sheffield said, “It’s very good indeed to witness the beginning of the Gateway project. The Cathedral’s vision is to be at the heart of the life of the city and region and to be a place for all people. The Gateway project will provide ways of welcoming many more people into the building and its history, into the story of this city and into Christian faith”
The Dean of Sheffield said, “We have been waiting for many, many years for today. We are very grateful to all the donors and partners who have made today possible. The Gateway Project will open up the Cathedral so that we can welcome the whole community here.”
The construction phase of the Gateway Project should begin in early February 2013and building work will be at the practical completion stage by Spring 2014, in time for celebrations for the centenary of the Diocese of Sheffield in June 2014.