Above: The Cathedral’s Education Centre before refurbishment, as well as The Undercroft following addressing damp issues and the new Learning Centre under construction.
The Cathedral’s existing Education Centre (at 10a The Close) was in desperate need of refurbishment and expansion. Disabled access was severely restricted and the facilities were old, cramped and unwelcoming.
Despite this, the centre sees around 16,000 children visit us every year.
The Centre has now been re-furbished—the first milestone in the overall capital development. There is now level access as much as possible throughout, a platform lift enabling people with disabilities to use the whole building, and the damp and other issues have been addressed. We are building a new auditorium behind the Centre which will be a multi-functional, fully accessible space with the capacity to accommodate a whole school year group and will enable us to provide a much greater range of activities.
In addition to the new building, there will be an ‘Apothecary garden’, where herbs and medicinal plants will be grown to reflect the area’s monastic history. We will also create a sensory garden which will use the scents and textures of plants to enhance the experience of our disabled visitors.