The Shrine of St Thomas

The refurbished shrine of St Thomas of Hereford has been a focus of pilgramage since the end of the 13th century. Born in 1218, Thomas Cantilupe went on to be a much-loved Bishop of Hereford. The coloured hanging either side of the tomb tell the story of his life.

The stone and marble tomb base is one of the best preserved medieval shrines in England and one of only a few that escaped destruction during during the reformation. Thomas’ body rested here from 1287-1349. Many miracles of healing were reported to have taken place.  Pilgrims still journey to the site to light candles and leave prayers.

More information about St Thomas can be found here.

The Shrine of St Thomas

13 Comments CherryPie on Jan 11th 2014

13 Responses to “Hereford Cathedral – The Shrine of St Thomas”

  1. Lisl says:

    I am amazed that this escaped the Restoration destruction. I know of another, simpler shrine, at Whitchurch Canonicorum in Dorset – to St. Candida (or St. Wita)

  2. Claude says:

    Great photo. Beautiful decor. But a saint doesn’t need this on Earth. And even less in Heaven. Thomas of Hereford might agree. If he has the right stuff!

  3. Steve Hayes says:

    Interesting. I like the novels of Phil Rickman, and several of them are set in Herefordshire and mention the cathedral, though I can’t recall any of them mentioning this shrine.

    • CherryPie says:

      I have not read any Phil Rickman novels, what genre are they?

      The shrine as these photos show looks rather new and shiny, so perhaps the base wasn’t all that significant until they reinvigorated it?

      • Steve Hayes says:

        Cherie, Phil Rickman’s novels were originally of the horror genre, a kind of British Stephen King. They are mostly set in the west of England — Glastonbury and the Welsh Marches (isn’t that where you are?) He usually carries over some characters from one novel to another, but most of his recent ones feature a priest, Merrily Watkins, who took over the post of diocesan exorcist (rather tweely renamed “deliverance consultant”), and they have been moving from the horror genre to the whodunit. Hereford Cathedral features in several of them, which is why I find your photos especially interesting. If you’d like to try his books a good one to start with might be “The wine of angels” — see here:

  4. J_on_tour says:

    Colourful piece that would attract both ancient and modern pilgrims for different reasons. Most unusual and interesting.