The present building dates from the 13th-century when it was an Augustinian Priory within the Diocese of Winchester. Surrendered to King Henry VIII in 1539, it subsequently became the parish church of St Saviour’s, administering to actors and playwrights including William Shakespeare. There are many interesting memorials and tombs, including that of Bishop Lancelot Andrewes, one of the leading collaborators on the King James Bible. There is a chapel to the memory of US University benefactor John Harvard who was baptized in this church in 1607. The building received cathedral status when the Anglican diocese of Southwark was formed in 1905.
Five daily acts of worship are open to all. There are regular music and organ recitals. The Refectory Restaurant and Shop are open seven days per week. Meeting and conference rooms are available for hire. Admission is by donation; tour groups are strongly encouraged to pre-book their visit.