A Pageant of Bristol Cathedral
Organised by the Guild of Cathedral Players and the Choir of Bristol Cathedral
Place: Nave of Bristol Cathedral (Bristol) (Bristol, Gloucestershire, England)
Number of performances: 3
7, 8 and 9 July 1965 at 7.30pm
Name of pageant master and other named staff
- Assistant Producer and Pageant Master: Peters, Robert
- Producer: Freda Hullcoop
- Stage Managers: Ernest Hullcoop and Albert Jukes
- Property Manager: Gus Williams
- Lighting: Rowland White and Stephen Pritchard
- Music Director: Clifford Harker
- Assistant Organist: Michael Dyer
- Narrators: The Very Rev. the Dean of Bristol and the Rev. Canon J.R. Peacey
Names of executive committee or equivalent
Names of script-writer(s) and other credited author(s)
- Hullcoop, Freda
- Sabin, Arthur
- Martin, Edward
Names of composers
- Mundy, William
- Redford, John
- Bevin, Elway
- Child, William
- Handel, George Frideric
- Wesley, Samuel Sebastian
- Harker, Clifford
Numbers of performers
Object of any funds raised
800th anniversary of the cathedral
- Grandstand: Not Known
- Grandstand capacity: n/a
- Total audience: n/a
Prices of admission and seats: highest–lowest
Scene I. Bristol Castle, 1140
Robert FitzHarding acquires the site of the Abbey.
Scene 2. The Abbey of St. Augustine, Bristol, 1148
The Introduction of the first Canons. Abbot Richard presents the authority of the Abbot of St. Victor of Paris. Robert FitzHarding received into the order.
Scene 3. The Abbey of St. Augustine, 1216
The Great Council of the Realm re-issues the great charter.
Scene 4. The Choir of the Abbey, 1350
Thomas de Berkeley discusses the glass for his great Crecy window in the Eastern Lady Chapel, with Abbot Ralph, and attends Vespers in the Abbey Church.
Scene 5. The Abbey Church, 1496
A visitation to the Abbey of Archbishop Morton’s Commissary, Dr Church, checking the wealth of the Abbey and the Order.
Scene 6. The Abbey Church, 1539
The Abbey surrenders to the King’s Commissioners.
Scene 7. The Cathedral Church of the Holy and Undivided Trinity, 1544.
The Statutes are handed to the Dean and Chapter and the School is founded.
Scene 8. The Cathedral Church
Queen Elizabeth attends a Service in the Cathedral, and hears a hymn sung by a ‘fine boy’.
Scene 9. The Same, 1589
The enthronement of Bishop Fletcher and the presentation of Hakluyt’s ‘Principles of Navigation’.
Scene 10. The Unquiet Years, 1617-1681
1617. Nicholas Felton, Bishop of Bristol translates the Authorised version of the Bible.
1649. The Dean and Chapter are abolished by the Commonwealth.
1681. [should be 1661?] The Dean and Chapter are re-established at the Restoration of the Monarchy.
Scene 11. The Cathedral Nave 1703
The Great Storm. The Scholars of Queen Elizabeth’s Hospital take shelter in the cathedderal.
Scene 12. A Quiet Spot in the Nave, 1774
John Wesley, passing through Bristol listens to the singing of the Cathedral Choir.
Scene 13. The Nave of the Cathedral, Evening, 1831
The Cathedral saved by the Sub-sacrist during the Bristol riots.
Scene 14. The Dedication of the New Nave, 1877
Scene 15. The Cathedral Today, 1965
The Procession of the Dean and Chapter to the High Altar, accompanied by representatives of the many corporate bodies and Schools of the City and of the Diocese, who recognise the Cathedral Church as the Mother Church of Bristol.
Key historical figures mentioned
- Robert fitz Harding (d. 1171) burgess and merchant
- Henry III (1207–1272) king of England and lord of Ireland, and duke of Aquitaine
- Marshal, William (I) [called the Marshal], fourth earl of Pembroke (c.1146–1219) soldier and administrator
- Henry VIII (1491–1547) king of England and Ireland
- Elizabeth I (1533–1603) queen of England and Ireland
- Hakluyt, Richard (1552?–1616) geographer
- Fletcher, Richard (1544/5–1596) bishop of London
- Charles II (1630–1685) king of England, Scotland, and Ireland
- Felton, Nicholas (1556–1626) bishop of Ely
- Wesley [Westley], John (1703–1791) Church of England clergyman and a founder of Methodism
Musical productionOrgan and choir of Bristol Cathedral. Music included:
- Scene 2. Hymn for the Dedication of a Church, Urbs beata Jerusalem (7 Century)
- Scene 4. Psalm 130. De Profundis
- Scene 5. Introit from the Mass of St. Stephen (copy of c.14th MS in Bristol Cathedral Library)
- Scene 6. O Lord the maker of all things, Music William Mundy
- Scene 7. Rejoice in the Lord Always, Music John Redford
- Scene 8. Organ Voluntary, Glorificamus, John Redford and Hymn, Psalm 100
- Scene 9. The Magnificat, Elway Bevin
- Scene 10. Nunc Dimitis, William Child
- Scene 11. Metrical Version of Psalm 23
- Scene 12. And the Glory of the Lord, from Handel’s Messiah
- Scene 14. ‘And sorrow and sighing shall flee away’, S.S. Wesley
- Scene 15. Te Deum, Clifford Harker
Newspaper coverage of pageant
Book of words
Other primary published materials
The Cathedral Church of The Holy and Undivided Trinity, Bristol in Celebration of the 800 Years of its History Present A Pageant of Bristol. Bristol, 1965. [Price 3s.6d.]
References in secondary literature
Archival holdings connected to pageant
- Copy of programme in Bristol City Archives, reference P.SMbed/PM/4/29.
Sources used in preparation of pageant
A pageant was held to mark the 800th anniversary of Bristol Cathedral. Three performances were given in the nave of the cathedral. The focus of the pageant on the history of the cathedral, from its twelfth-century origins to 1965.
How to cite this entry
Angela Bartie, Linda Fleming, Mark Freeman, Tom Hulme, Alex Hutton, Paul Readman, ‘A Pageant of Bristol Cathedral’, The Redress of the Past, http://www.historicalpageants.ac.uk/pageants/1004/