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Rochester Cathedral

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The original cathedral established in Rochester was founded by the Roman missionary Justus who was granted the consent of King Æthelberht of Kent to establish a church dedicated to Andrew the Apostle.

This was consecrated in AD604. Ithamar, the first English born bishop, was consecrated at Rochester cathedral in 644 AD. The current building was initiated by Bishop Gundulf, the first Norman (French) Bishop of Rochester, in 1080 AD and is a combination of Norman, Gothic and Early-English Perpendicular architecture. The cathedral is a Grade I listed building. The cathedral has been a seat of worship for more than 1400 years and during that time it has been visited by millions of people as pilgrims, worshippers and tourists.

Rochester Cathedral is the second oldest in England after Canterbury Cathedral and features exceptional medieval wall paintings, a magnificent Norman entrance door with detailed carvings and concentric patterned arches, a fine crypt and one of the loveliest Romanesque facades in all of England. It also includes the first genuine fresco to be created in an English cathedral for nearly 800 years and depicts, amongst other things, the baptism of Jesus Christ and the baptism of Ethelbert, the King of Kent at the time of St. Augustine’s arrival in 597 A.D. The fresco was painted by the Russian iconographer Sergei Fyodorov and dedicated on St John the Baptist’s Day 2004.

This history of the Cathedral spans well over a millennium and is far too extensive to do justice here. For those that are interested in this magnificent structure and focus of Christian worship it is strongly advised that you should give yourself enough time to absorb all there is to see and learn. Information panels are displayed at key locations throughout the Cathedral and provide a broad overview of the historic site. Audio tours are available in several languages and often supported by presentations projected onto the cathedral walls.


For many years Rochester Cathedral was a destination for pilgrims wishing to visit the shrine of Saint William of Perth, a Scottish saint who was martyred in England around 1201 AD. On the very date of his murder miracles of healing started to occur. Sadly, very little of this shrine has survived through the ages.


oldbury-hill-campsiteOldbury Hill

Camping and Caravanning Club Site
Styants Bottom Road, Seal, Sevenoaks
Kent, England, TN15 0ET
+44 (0)1732 762 728

Contact Details

  • Address: College Yard Lane, (off) Boley Hill Rd, Rochester, Kent, England, UK, ME1 1SN
  • GPS: 51.38928845837698,0.5027732656067201
  • Phone: 0044 (0)1634 843 366
  • Part of UK: England
  • Sat Nav Postcode: ME1 1SN
  • Entrance Fees: Free Access
  • Disabled Access: Good
  • Visibility from Road: Excellent
  • Image Credits: Header Image: Mark A Bond

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