List entry

List entry Summary

This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.


List entry Number: 1086423



The building may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County District District Type Parish
MedwayUnitary Authority

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: I

Date first listed: 24-Oct-1950

Date of most recent amendment: 02-Dec-1991

Legacy System Information

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System: LBS

UID: 173125

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Building

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Reasons for Designation

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.


Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.


ROCHESTER THE PRECINCT TQ 7468 NW, TQ 7468 SW 7/193, 9/193 Cathedral Church of Christ and the Blessed Virgin Mary of Rochester (formerly Priory of St Andrew was included) 24-10-50 GV I Cathedral Church. (For cloister buildings see refs 9/188 and 9/189; for associated medieval buildings, see 7/187, 7 and 9/199, 7 and 9/200, 9/201). C7 origins (reverted in excavations). Re- established as a cathedral-priory by Bishop Gandulf and rebuilt by him (1078-1108); parts of his cathedral survive within the present walling of the nave aisles along with the formerly detached Gandulf's tower and parts of the crypt. Mid-C12 rebuilding (W front no earlier than the late-1140s). E end (including E 2 bays of nave) c.1210-40. Alterations (mainly refenestration) in C14 and C15. Early C16 Lady Chapel. Major restorations by Cottingham (1825), Scott (1870s, mainly E end repairs and internal refurbishing), Pearson (1888, especially the W front), and C Hodgson-Fowler (1904-5 rebuilding of central tower). Ragstone with limestone ashlar and dressings; slate and lead roofs. Nave and aisles of 8 bays; Lady Chapel in angle formed by S aisle and transept, central crossing (with tower), aisled choir (with Gandulf's Tower to N), E transepts, aisleless presbytery with library and chapter room to S. Crypt. The cathedral is fully described and evaluated in Newham (1980, pp 470-88); detailed descriptions given there are not duplicated in this account which is cross-referenced to Newman throughout. Of particular importance note Gandulf's Tower (p 473): the original ashlar lining has been replaced in brick but enough survives at 2nd-floor level to confirm the existence of a doorway that must have led by way of a wooden bridge into the N transept. The nave gallery (p 475) is unusual in that it possesses no floor. W front (carefully restored by Pearson) retains important carving to the central portal (left untouched by Pearson) influenced by St Denys of the 1140s. The design of the E parts is of great interest and quality: the presbytery has no aisles and its elevation is of 2 storeys (unique in an English cathedral, Newman p 478); the choir is unusual in having solid walls dividing it from the N and S aisles (p 479). Not mentioned in Newman is the library, entered through the Decorated doorway in the SE transept (p 479): C15 with wall plate (wavy and oncave moulding), C17 (possibly re-worked) doorcase to S, C18 panelled shutters with HL hinges; fireplace with eared architrave with cyma moulding. Fittings and Furnishings. Nave. Font, by Earp, 1893: stone, circular bowl on clustered shafts; figures under arcade with larger baptismal scenes at cardinal points. Glass. W window (8 lights), 1880s, Clayton & Bell, upper tier of OT figures (Joshua, David, Jeptha etc) with scenes from their lives in lower lights. This, with the mosaic tablets below, form a monument to the Royal Engineers who fell in the Italian and South African campaigns. Aisles. Monuments: Francis Barrell (1676), Francis Barrell (1724), Ann Spice (1795), all N (see Newman, P 485), with minor C19 tablets, many to military men. Richard Somer (1682), An Henniker (1792), John Lord Henniker (1806), all S (see Newman, p 485) with , in addition, an early C18 pedimented tablet to Daniel and Francis Hill (1729) and a substantial mural war memorial (dated 1903) to the fallen of the South Africa War, foliated marble frame frame with raised script epitaph. Glass: interesting Romanesque Revival glass (1880s) and Christian Warriors, to W end of N and S aisles; N aisle, NE, by Kempe, signed. One S aisle window with a fiture of St Luke in the C17 manner, not dated or signed. Pulpit: woden, large, polygonal, with canopied facets, on a stem with open arcaded stair. Lady Chapel. Glass. An interesting and large-scale sequence of Flemish-style windows, C.1910-18, possibly by Burlison & Grylls, scenes from the Life of Christ with various saints. S transect. Jacobethan revival screen, c.1928, into Lady Chapel. Monuments: Sir Richard Head (1689), Richard Watts (1736), Sir Edward Head (1798), Sir William Franklin (1833), James Forbes (1836), all mural, and effigy of Dean Hole (1905), see Newman, p 484. Glass: clerestory windows, Kempe, 1898; S window, 1888, Clayton & Bell, various saints, a memorial to Royal Engineers who fell in Egypt and Sudan Wars. N transept. Monuments to Augustine Caesar (1677) and John Parr (1792), Newman, p 484. N and S choir aisles. Bishop John de Bradfield (1283) and Hamo de Heth (1352) described by Newman, p 484. Choir: pulpitum, organ frontal, stalls, Bishop's throne all by Scott; pulpitum figures by Pearson. Medieval furnishings survived in part and were incorporated in the new work and provided the model for Scott's designs. The mural decoration is a copy of the medieval scheme which had also survived concealed behind later panelling. E end. The important C13 and C14 tombs are described and assessed in Newman pp 481-3, as are the monuments to Bishops Lowe (1467), and Warner (1666), Archdeacon Warner (1679) and Lee Warner (1698). Altar with reredos (Last Supper in relief) Caen stone; openwork wooden pulpit; mosaic on E wall to rear of altar (possibly modelled on medieval decoration uncovered in 1825), and the entire titled floor design, al by Scott. Glass. Presbytery windows by Clayton & Bell (1873); NE transept also by Clayton & Bell, but later (1880s); SE transept glass by Gibbs and Hardman (transept aisle) and Clayton & Bell (transept proper); details of glass from Palmer (1897). References. John Newman, West Kent and the Weald, Buildings of England (2nd ed, reprinted with corrections, 1980), pp 470-88. Much extra detail in G H Palmer, The Cathedral Church of Rochester (Bell's Cathedral Series, 1897).

Listing NGR: TQ7427368521

Selected Sources

Books and journals
Newman, J, The Buildings of England: West Kent and the Weald, (1980), 470-88
Palmer, G H, 'Bells Cathederal Series' in The Cathedral Church of Rochester, (1897)

National Grid Reference: TQ 74273 68521


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This copy shows the entry on 03-Sep-2015 at 08:17:21.