Durham Cathedral St Cuthbert Celebrations

21st March 2023

The annual celebrations for the North East’s most famous saint, St Cuthbert, took place over the weekend at Durham Cathedral – his final resting place.

St Cuthbert’s annual celebrations at Durham Cathedral

It started with a special Evensong on Friday led by the Dean of York, The Very Revd Dominic Brington, followed by a procession to St Cuthbert’s Shrine.

On Saturday the cathedral was transformed into a place of festival and celebration with a range of special activities and events for young and old with storytelling, craft activities and a reading nook inside the cathedral.

The cathedral’s Museum opened its doors for free on Saturday too so visitors could explore the treasures of St Cuthbert, including his coffin and the Pectoral Cross.

The annual pilgrimage from Finchale Priory to Durham Cathedral set off on Saturday lunchtime to arrive at the cathedral in time for a special Eucharist service at 4pm, with performances from both Durham and Newcastle Cathedral Choirs.

The Reverend Canon Charlie Allen, Canon Chancellor at Durham Cathedral, said:

“Cuthbert loved God and God’s love shone through him to the world. He glimpsed the divine in all creation, whether that be the ‘cuddy duck’ sharing his monastic life on Inner Farne, or the person encountered on the road as he journeyed from Lindisfarne in his duties as bishop. 

“Pilgrims have been travelling to Durham since the year 995 to give thanks for the life of this humble and inspiring man.” 

St Cuthbert was known for his religious leadership and for living a simple life as a hermit to be closer to God.

Andrew Usher, Chief Officer: Visitor Experience and Enterprise said:

“St Cuthbert is special to the people of Durham and the North East so we hope this fantastic celebration of our Northern saint had something for everyone, whether people wanted to join the pilgrimage, stop by for family activities, join a service or simply light a candle.”