The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester visited Lichfield Cathedral on Thursday, March 16 for a tour of the Cathedral.
Upon arrival, The Duke and Duchess were greeted by the Dean of Lichfield, Rev. Adrian Dorber, who will retiring at the end of the month, along with the Chair of Lichfield District Council, the Mayor of Lichfield, the Sherriff of Lichfield and the Bishop of Lichfield.
After an organ fanfare, children from the MusicShare schools singing programme treated the visitors to a short performance as a welcome to Lichfield.
During their visit, the Duke and Duchess were given an overview of the Cathedral’s work to reach the whole community and enable participation and active engagement.
The Duke who has a particular interest in art, architecture and pilgrimage was introduced to Robert Kilgour, the architect who designed the new Shrine of St Chad and a team of craftspeople involved in its creation.
The Duchess, who is patron of the Cathedral Music Trust, was introduced to some of the choristers from Lichfield Cathedral Choir, who later sang at a short service of prayer to bring the tour inside the Cathedral to a fitting close.
On their way to a private reception at the Deanery, The Duke and Duchess were introduced to members of the cathedral staff team and two of the younger choristers Quinn Foster & Henry Keay presented the Duke and Duchess with a posy and memento of their visit.
The Dean of Lichfield said: “It was a great pleasure to welcome TRH The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester to Lichfield Cathedral.
"The Duke has been a great supporter of the Cathedral, having served as our Royal Patron for the campaign to repair and conserve the Lady Chapel windows and the surrounding stonework.
"He has also supported the national programme to enable Cathedrals to develop new patterns of pilgrimage and spiritual engagement.
"The Duchess is the current patron of the national Cathedrals’ Music Trust.
"The Trust promotes everything that enables our rich music tradition to attract new singers, develop musical talent and help music education and performance.
"The visit was a real encouragement to all of us.
"We appreciate the warmth, knowledge and friendliness of the Duke and Duchess and we were honoured to be the first Cathedral to receive them on their new round of visits to other Cathedrals across the English regions."