The Cathedral, 1983 to the present
in Manchester Cathedral
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Bringing the story of Manchester Cathedral into the early twenty-first century, this chapter explores the contradictions in the city’s changing fortunes – resurgence and rebuilding coupled with persistent poverty and social deprivation. It explores how the role of the Cathedral evolved through this period, asking whether the institution adapted successfully to the rapidly changing world around it. In doing so, it considers the 2007 furore surrounding the use of the Cathedral in the video game Resistance: Fall of Man, the picketing of the Cathedral in 2009 by the British National Party, and the Cathedral’s role in the city’s mourning in the wake of the 2017 Manchester Arena bomb. It is arguable that, amongst English cathedrals, Manchester has been particularly successful in offering itself as an example of a historic ‘great’ church which has been able to maintain a broad, representative function for the city alongside its more strictly religious function. It can function not just geographically and socially as the historic centre of the city, but as a resource for the Manchester city and region. At the same time, it has not ceased to develop its spiritual life and mission.

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Manchester Cathedral

A history of the Collegiate Church and Cathedral, 1421 to the present



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