Newcastle cathedral starts next phase of £2.1m refurbishment
A service in the Cathedral Church of St Nicholas in Newcastle has marked the start of the next stage in its £2.1m refurbishment programme.
Stage one saw the installation of a new sound system and lighting scheme, the first in the country to use only low energy LED lighting.
The cathedral hopes the new lighting will reduce its energy costs and carbon footprint by as much as eighty per cent.
The Very Reverend Christopher Dalliston, Dean of Newcastle said: "The new lighting scheme is designed to highlight the architecture of this magnificent medieval building and to enable its fine details to be readily seen.
"The use of LED lighting means that we won't have to touch any of the lighting for at least 20 years."
The service was held on Candlemass Day, the Christian festival of light commemorating the presentation of Jesus to God in the Temple, forty days after his birth.
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Candlemass also signifies the midpoint of winter and is celebrated in Churches across the country.
"The service marked the completion of phase one of work at the Cathedral to bring it up-to-date with the needs of a worshipping community in the 21st century," said Rev Dalliston.
Cathedral staff are looking forward to the next phase, which will include work on flooring, heating, the toilets and the refurbishment of St Margaret's Chapel.
The sermon at the dedication service was preached by the Right Reverend Martin Wharton, Bishop of Newcastle.
The service was attended by local clergy and dignitaries, including the Lord Mayor of Newcastle.