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A Brief History

The spirit of the Metropolitan Cathedral is deeply embedded in its fascinating history – a tale of determination, tenacity and conviction that, despite the odds, saw architects, builders, craftsmen, residents and church elders work together to fulfill their holy ambition. To create a place of special, deeply spiritual resonance for all who use it.

The striking design of the present Cathedral is actually the fourth attempt by the Catholic Church in the North West of England to build a mother church for the Liverpool diocese – and the culmination of a story that stretches back over a century.

The intriguing tale of each attempt can be explored below, including a section about the former workhouse, the largest in Europe, on whose site the cathedral now rises.

A Cathedral is not just bricks and mortar, concrete, steel, stone and glass. It lives as a home for activities which centre upon God, and as the focus of the communities which draw spiritual sustenance from the building, and the worship which takes place here.

Today, this spirit is brought to life by the local residents of the parish, our hard working volunteers, the choirs and their families, the students from the university residences which wrap around the church, the Merseyside Polish community and the countless individuals who slip in to pray in peace and quiet.

Each in their way make the fabric of our wonderful building come alive to the glory of God – and we extend our welcome to you, for an hour, an afternoon or longer. We hope you find our Cathedral as special, and as spiritually nurturing, as we do.