Friends’ Events

The Friends of Llandaff Cathedral organise a number of events throughout the year. See below for some of our past and future events.

Future

Friday 3rd - Sunday 5th July 2020 - Friends Festival Weekend

The programme for the weekend is currently in abeyance because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The programme would have included a Summer Supper on the Friday evening, a Guided Tour of the Cathedral concentrating on the detail of the exterior, the AGM, the Annual Lecture by Dr Malcolm Thurlby, Professor of Architectural History and Medieval Art at York University, Toronto, on "Bishop Urban and the Romanesque Cathedral at Llandaff: Reconstruction and Associations", and Choral Evensong on the Saturday, and the Festival Eucharist on the Sunday.

Sunday 27th September - Annual Pilgrimage

Provided restrictions on movement have been lifted, the Annual Pilgrimage will visit churches in Neath, St Illtyd, St Thomas and St David.


Past

Fri–Sat 14-15th September 2018 - Friends Open Doors Day

On Saturday September 15th, the Friends once more hosted an Open Doors Day in the Cathedral from 12 noon. This included a guided tour, bell tower visits, opportunity to view the archives and a contribution from the music department.

On Friday 14th September, local primary schools visited for the Friends Drawing Event, where children were able to walk around, ask questions and draw. This event has proved very popular with both children and teachers.

These events were part of Open Doors Llandaff and the Cadw Open Doors programme.

Tuesday 2nd October 2018 - Annual Pilgrimage

25 pilgrims from the Friends travelled to Gower and Swansea ‘in the footsteps of the Saints’. Christian worship has taken place on Gower for at least fifteen hundred years, and in many cases, churches stand where simpler structures of the Celtic period stood. A great number of carved and lettered stones and other remains connect to the ancient past, and to the faith of those who worshipped there.

Four very different and interesting churches were visited, and the pilgrims had a warm welcome at each one. After starting at St Mary’s Pennard, and lunch at Mumbles, the pilgrimage moved to St Nicholas, Nicholaston, known locally as the “Cathedral of Gower”, and then to St Teilo’s, Bishopston.

Our final church was St Mary’s, the civic church in Swansea city centre, where we had tea before Choral Evensong.

We were sent on our way from Llandaff by Fr Edward and spent a thoughtful and enriching day with pilgrim prayers and hymns, as we were guided around.

Tuesday 1st January 2019 - New Year's Day - Guided Tour of the Cathedral

As in previous years, the Friends have offered a guided tour of the Cathedral on New Years Day. We have found that there are those who appreciate something quiet and interesting to do after the celebrations of the night before and this year was no exception.

Friday 8th February 2019 - Friends' Annual Lunch

This year's Annual Lunch was held in the refurbished Great Hall at Howell's School, Llandaff, attended by 55 members and guests. After an excellent meal, Richard Read, the School's Director of Finance and Operations, gave us an enthusiastic talk about the refurbishment of the Grade 2 listed building and the many hurdles which had to be overcome. The hall is decorated with the Staniforth "Shakespeare" murals which had been restored by Rachel Howell, who is currently working on the cathedral's Bishop Marshall panel. Rachel will speak at our Annual Lecture.

Monday 22nd April 2019 - Easter Monday - Guided Tour of the Cathedral

Members, families, friends and the general public were invited to join in one of the Friends' regular Guided Tours of the cathedral.

5th - 7th July 2019 - Friends' Festival Weekend

The Friends celebrated their Festival Weekend, starting with the Festival Dinner on Friday evening. Held in the Llandaff Rowing Club on a beautiful summer's evening, with views over the river, we were entertained after the meal by our recently appointed Canon Precentor Mark Preece, who, amongst other topics, gave us an overview of his cathedral responsibilities .

Saturday afternoon's programme started with a guided Tour of the cathedral, concentrating on the Victorian restoration of the building, completed 150 years ago. This was followed by the AGM, and then we moved to the Lady Chapel to hear Rachel Howells talk about the work she is undertaking to restore the cathedral's medieval panel from Bishop Marshall's throne. Then, after a cup of tea, we attended Choral Evensong sung by the full Cathedral Choir.

The weekend ended with a Festival Choral Eucharist on Sunday morning, during which a certificate was presented to Conrad Thorndike, who had been nominated as this year's Friends' Chorister.

6th October 2019 - Friends' Annual Pilgrimage

This year's Annual Pilgrimage was a visit to the Shrine of the Blessed Virgin Mary at Penrhys (at the top of the Rhondda valley). After prayers at the shrine led by Archdeacon Christopher Smith we moved on to St Peter's Church, Pentre (known as the cathedral of the Rhondda), for a guided tour of this magnificent building, followed by a sumptuous tea and Evensong, which was sung by the Cathedral Choir which was also visiting.

13th - 14th September 2019 - Open Doors

The Friends have participated in European Heritage Open Days, now organised by CADW, for many years.

On the Friday, the Friends hosted a Schools' Drawing Event, enabling pupils and their teachers to explore the Cathedral and record their thoughts and feelings in drawings. About 180 children and staff from the four primary schools in the parish came to explore the cathedral and draw the things they liked best.

On the Saturday, the Friends organised an Open Day at the Cathedral, with music, open archives, and guided tours of the Cathedral and the bell tower. Over 130 people participated.

Wednesday 1st January 2020 - New Year's Day - Guided Tour of the Cathedral

With 2020 marking the 900th anniversary of the commencement of the building of the Norman Cathedral, the year began by the Friends of the Cathedral organizing one of its regular series of guided tours of the Cathedral, on New Year’s Day

Thursday 20th February 2020 - Annual Lunch

The Annual Lunch was held in the Management School of Cardiff Metropolitan University, Western Avenue, Llandaff, and was attended by over 50 members. Canon Precentor Mark Preece presided, and grace was said by Canon Chancellor Jan van de Lely. After an excellent two-course lunch, we were treated to a lively talk by Revd Dr Paul Fitzpatrick, who was the Coordinating Chaplain to the University. He talked about the structure of the chaplaincy team and the variety of ways in which it related to both the students and the staff, in a university where a multitude of religions is represented.