Westminster Abbey celebrates 750th anniversary of Henry III’s masterpiece
Tuesday, 15th October 2019
Her Majesty The Queen and HRH The Duchess of Cornwall attended a service to celebrate the 750th anniversary of the re-building of Westminster Abbey, at 11.30am on Tuesday 15th October 2019.
The service was led by the Dean of Westminster, the Very Reverend Dr John Hall, who said in his Bidding:
750 years ago, on 13th October 1269, this third Abbey Church was consecrated in the presence of Henry III. The King had decided a quarter of a century earlier to replace the second Church, which had been built at the command of Edward the Confessor and had been consecrated on 28th December 1065.
St Edward, who died on 5th January 1066, was canonised in 1161 and re-buried above ground on 13th October 1163, rests still in his Shrine and Tomb behind the High Altar [...]. We give thanks for the integrity of Henry III, whose imagination and commitment made this Abbey Church in the French Gothic style strikingly beautiful and fitted for its royal and monastic purpose.
Today we celebrate the history of this Abbey and its Church and mark its continuing significance as a place of worship and memorial, standing firmly for faith at the heart of our nation and Commonwealth and of the wider world.
At the start of the service, The Queen’s gift of roses was placed by Abigail Wallace, the Captain of The Queen’s Scholars of St Peter’s College, Westminster School, on the altar in the Shrine of St Edward.