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Step back in time for Lent and Easter heritage events at St Asaph Cathedral

Visitors of all ages to St Asaph Cathedral will be able to step back in time to discover the history of some well-known traditions associated with Lent and Easter.

A series of free, drop-in craft events will take place in March and April to give visitors a hands-on opportunity to find out about Lent and Easter in Tudor and Victorian Times.

The first event, a Time Traveller’s Pancake Day will take place on Shrove Tuesday (5 March) from 3pm – 5pm at St Asaph Cathedral.  Visitors will be able to make a pancake bell, play a Tudor food game and follow the pancake trail.  The Cathedral’s Activities Coordinator, Lorna Kernahan said: “The seasons of Lent and Easter are rich in traditions and it’s fascinating to understand the history and heritage of so much that underpins our expectations of this time of year.

“The pancake bell dates back centuries to when a bell was rung reminding people to use up all their eggs and fats before Lent.  Even today, the pancake bell is still rung in some communities, and we’ll be making our own here.

“In the lead up to Good Friday, on 17 April, we’ll be thinking about the traditions associated with hot cross buns and making our own from clay.  After Easter weekend, on 25 April, we’ll be focusing on Victorian traditions, making Easter bonnets and Easter cards.

“And of course, we’ll be having an Easter Egg hunt.”

Last December, St Asaph Cathedral ran a heritage craft day, offering visitors the chance to experience a Tudor or Victorian Christmas.

St Asaph Cathedral dates from 1239 with the present structure completed in the 15th century.  It is home to an original copy of the William Morgan Welsh Bible, dating from 1588. In addition, the Cathedral also has copies of:

  • the first translation of the New Testament into Welsh dating from 1567, made by the Denbighshire scholar William Salesbury
  • the revision of the William Morgan Bible from 1620 made by Bishop Richard Parry – also Bishop of St Asaph
  • a Book of Common Prayer from 1621 containing The Edmund Prys Psalter which allowed Psalms to be sung in Welsh in church for the first time.

All these books are on display as part of the Cathedral’s interactive heritage display.  This, along with the post of Activities Coordinator was funded by a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund.  Last year the Cathedral opened the Translators’ Tearoom which serves lunches along with a fine selection of hot and cold drinks, cakes and ice-creams.  It is open every day, except Sunday, from 10am – 4pm.

The Lent and Easter events take place on Tuesday 5 March, 3pm – 5pm, Wednesday 17 April, 1pm – 3pm and Thursday 25 April, 1pm – 3pm.

To find out more visit St Asaph Cathedral’s website or email Lorna.