Duke of Gloucester sees Project Pilgrim progress at Gloucester cathedral

The Duke of Gloucester visited the cathedral of his Dukedom yesterday (Gloucester Cathedral) to see progress on phase two of its Project Pilgrim, in autumnal drizzle.

The project was embarked upon to bring the Cathedral’s history and religious purpose to life, encouraging people from all walks of life, regardless of age or faith to learn about and be involved with the Cathedral.

Some may recognise some of the interiors of the church as the location for filming in the ‘Harry Potter’ franchise.

The 10-year programme of development, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, as well as trusts and individuals, is developing the ancient building and focusing on community engagement. The first phase of building is now drawing to a close.

The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester are patrons of phase two of the project, and Prince Richard visited to view progress so far. Taking to the scaffolding surrounding the Lady Chapel, which is also undergoing conservation work, the Duke also saw how the former car park is being transformed into a landscaped public space at the heart of the city, in his blue hard hat.

Amongst the project workers the Prince met, was one of the Cathedral’s trainee stonemasons who was recently Highly Commended in ‘The Duke of Gloucester Award for Excellence in Stonemasonry’.

The Queen’s cousin was a practising architect for a number of years, until the death of his older brother in 1972, saw him become heir to the Dukedom; he inherited the title and took on royal duties for Her Majesty in 1974.

the duke of gloucester at gloucester cathedral, viewing the progress of restoration work (tony hickley)

The Very Reverend Stephen Lake, Dean of Gloucester said: “We are honoured to have the support of Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester both for their interest in Project Pilgrim and especially their patronage of Phase 2.

“Our plans for the future include developing the Cathedral’s educational reach and offer of hospitality, as well as conserving the historic Parliament Rooms and deepening our community engagement.

“These are exciting times at Gloucester Cathedral and we are proud to have received Royal acknowledgment for this once-in-a-generation opportunity.”

Prince Richard attended other engagements in the Gloucester area, which included presenting The Queen’s Award for Enterprise International Trade to Advanced Insulation Limited, and Hardwicke and visiting Flexmort Limited.

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