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Prince Charles and Camilla

The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall celebrate the 800th anniversary of Salisbury Cathedral

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall
Stephen Lock/ i-Images

The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall visited Salisbury Cathedral to mark the 800th anniversary of the founding of the cathedral.

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The Prince of Wales spoke during the socially distanced service: “As we gather here, we are profoundly aware of all those who have gone before us, who have bequeathed us the magnificent legacy of this glorious building, and who have maintained the spiritual community which has kept the flame of faith alive here for so many centuries.

“Over the years, that faith has sustained this city and this land through many trials and has done so through the many months of the pandemic we are currently experiencing. Over the years, each challenge in turn has been overcome, and that is the case today when, thanks to the inspiring work of all those who have been involved in providing vaccines, we can now look forward with renewed hope. In your response to the pandemic too, it is clear from all I have seen and heard that you have met every hardship with an even greater resolve.”

Talking about Salisbury Cathedral, Prince Charles said: “No one who contemplates this almost impossibly beautiful building can be in any doubt that those who raised it, in the face of every difficulty, have found successors who are their equal in determination.

“That continuity, it seems to me, is crucial. There is a sense in which this cathedral was not completed in 1258 – and has never been completed. Work on it has continued ever since. Visitors who believe their view is marred by scaffolding are experiencing what every age has experienced. The work of building, of maintaining and of protecting for the future is for us all to take forward, in each generation – as you have done so splendidly here. This is a living building; these are living stones, just as the Church of Christ, whose coming we remember at this Advent time, is always meant to be.”

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The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall signed the visitors’ book to mark the occasion.