St John is situated at the top of Lemon Street in Truro, built in 1828 as a simple rectangular block with a whitewashed interior and balconies on the north and south sides.
It is known for its 'catholic' style of worship and for one of the premier cathedral choirs in the country. We welcome all visitors and worshippers and hope that you enjoy everything we have to offer.
Truro Cathedral was one of the first 'new' Anglican cathedrals to be built in Britain since Salisbury Cathedral was started in 1220. It is built in the Gothic Revival architectural style fashionable during much of the 19th century. It is situated in Cornwall's only city, Truro, one of the smallest in the United Kingdom.
Construction began in 1880 on the site of the 16th century parish church (St Mary the Virgin) to a design by noted church architect, John Loughborough Pearson.
Pearson was heavily influenced by French Gothic architecture, as indicated by the cathedral's three massive towers and spires. The central tower and spire is 76m (250 feet) tall, while the western towers reach 61m (200 feet).
One particularly unusual feature of the cathedral is the fact that part of the original St Mary's Church was incorporated into it and now serves as the cathedral's Lady Chapel. A copper spire (from Copper mined in Cornwall) is a feature of the cathedral's southeastern aspect.
Standing at the back of the nave shows another unusual feature. By looking up to the east end you’ll notice that the nave and quire are out of allignment (by about 6ft). This was due to site constraints; the cathedral is built in a densely populated central site with houses and shops packed closely about on all sides, in a manner more reminiscent of a continental rather than an English cathedral.
Foundation stones were laid in 1880 and the first section of the cathedral was consecrated in 1887. The central tower was completed by 1905 and the building was completed with the opening of the two western towers in 1910. JL Pearson died in 1897 and the work of his architectural practice was continued by his son, Frank Loughborough Pearson.
The cathedral attracts over 200,000 visitors a year and was the location for the first ever service of Nine Lessons and Carols, devised by EW Benson for Christmas Eve, 1880.