Cathedrals at Night : Sheffield and Peterborough

Candlelight will transform Sheffield and Peterborough Cathedrals when visitors are invited in to experience these sacred spaces as Cathedrals At Night.

The Cathedrals at Night project takes place at Peterborough and Sheffield Cathedrals

Peterborough Cathedral will be bathed in candlelight this Saturday (11 September) from 18:30 to 22:00 and visitors invited to drop in to enjoy the very special atmosphere of the building ‘after hours’.

Cathedral musicians will play quiet piano and organ music, and guides will be on hand to answer questions about the Cathedral history and help visitors discover hidden places by candlelight. At 9.00pm the Choir will sing the traditional service of Compline to end the day.

On Tuesday (14 September) a large cross will be created in tea lights in the centre of the nave floor in Sheffield Cathedral, which will be lit entirely by candles.

A spokesperson for the Cathedral said:

“Our beautiful building is seldom open to the public in the evening, other than for concerts or events so this is a unique opportunity for people to come along and enjoy the peace and tranquillity of this sacred space, offering them time for contemplation, relaxation, meditation and prayer. 

“It’s a chance to take some time for themselves just to be, and to explore the benefits of ‘spiritual food,” he added.

Gentle organ music will be played at 19:30, 20:30 and 21.30 for approx. 20 minutes.

There will be areas of seating but people are welcome to sit or lie on the floor. More details can be found here.

Both Cathedrals at Night events are part of Sheffield and Peterborough Cathedrals’ Heritage Open Day offerings and you can find out more about all their events by visiting their websites or visit the heritage Open Day website and search their directory here.

Heritage Open Days runs from 10th-19th September 2021 and all our cathedrals are getting ready to open their doors to take part in this, England’s largest festival of history and culture with behind the scenes tours and events, treasures from their archives, family activities and other heritage inspired talks and discussions. All absolutely FREE.

Cathedrals At Night was a campaign co-ordinated by the Association of English Cathedrals (AEC) for 2020 Year of Cathedrals Year of Pilgrimage that would have seen each of the 42 Church of England cathedrals – plus Westminster Abbey, Cathedral Isle of Man, and St Davids and St Asaph from the Church in Wales – open their doors after hours and invite visitors in to explore these sacred spaces by night.

It was the first nationwide project to united cathedrals around a single, simple campaign; an opportunity for cathedrals to reach new audiences and re-engage with those more familiar with cathedral life, by offering a mix of cultural, heritage and spiritual activities some of which will go on until late – and all of them for free.

The first Cathedrals At Night event took place in Rochester Cathedral in February 2020 under Luke Jerram’s Museum of the Moon installation in the Nave before lockdown and the coronavirus pandemic meant many cathedrals had to postpone or cancel their Cathedrals At Night plans for 2020.

As restrictions relax and people feel more confident about going out, more of our cathedrals are bringing back their Cathedrals At Night events. St Albans has already held two Cathedrals at Night events this summer already and is getting ready to launch this project for the autumn.

And plans are afoot for as many cathedrals that are able,  to open their doors for Cathedrals At Night on the second Saturday in May every year – starting in 2022.

Watch this space!!