I am posting the message from the Dean in its entirety
A Message from The Very Revd David Monteith, Dean of Leicester
Dear friends and colleagues,
As the Leicester Cathedral Revealed project progresses, the last service in the building will be held on Sunday 2 January 2022. After that, the building will close its doors until autumn 2023, for long awaited major repair and restoration works and the construction of a new visitor and learning centre, to be known as the Chapter House.
The Cathedral congregation and community will retain a base in the city centre, at St Martins House for Sunday morning worship and the nearby St Nicholas Church for weekday services.
On Sunday afternoons, the Cathedral choirs, clergy and members of the community will collaborate with parishes and their worshipping communities throughout Leicester and Leicestershire in a project known as Together with Leicester Cathedral. More than 50 local churches have already invited the Cathedral to work with them to plan a service, event or occasion and others that are interested are asked to make an approach – more info here. The first of these will be a Choral Evensong at St Dionysius Church in Market Harborough on 16 January. You will be able to find out more about where the Cathedral will be going on the Cathedral website in 2022.
The Cathedral would usually welcome over 100,000 visitors each year and whilst its website and social media will advertise the building closure and plans for reshaped worship, some tourists and visitors may arrive expecting to enter the building. Signs outside the Cathedral and on the construction site hoardings in Cathedral Gardens will direct them to a Cathedral Welcome Desk in the adjacent St Martins House – within the reception area. Volunteers at the Welcome Desk will explain the closure, provide information about the building, its history and share updates on the Leicester Cathedral Revealed project, signpost to the King Richard III Visitor Centre, and also offer chaplaincy services and a prayer space, as appropriate.
The King Richard III Visitor Centre (opposite the Cathedral) will display the coffin pall created for the reburial of the King Richard III, which would normally be on display in the Cathedral, and show video footage of the tomb of King Richard. The Cathedral is pleased that these will continue to be enjoyed during restoration works.
A programme of hard hat tours to look at the archaeology and key aspects of the conservation works, and also view the tomb of King Richard will be arranged during 2022. These will be advertised in advance, dependent on the access available at various stages of building works.
We look forward to seeing you.
The Very Revd David Monteith,
Dean of Leicester