The Cathedral of St Andrew was built in 1158 and became the centre of the Medieval Catholic Church in Scotland as the seat of the Archdiocese of St Andrews and the Bishops and Archbishops of St Andrews. It fell into disuse and ruin after Catholic mass was outlawed during the 16th-century Scottish Reformation. It is currently a monument in the custody of Historic Environment Scotland. The ruins indicate that the building was approximately 119 m long, and is the largest church to have been built in Scotland.

The west end was blown down in a storm and rebuilt between 1272 and 1279. The cathedral was finally completed in 1318 and featured a central tower and six turrets; of these remain two at the east and one of the two at the western extremity, rising to a height of 30 metres. On the 5th of July it was consecrated in the presence of King Robert I, who, according to legend, rode up the aisle on his horse.

A fire partly destroyed the building in 1378; restoration and further embellishment were completed in 1440.

In June 1559 during the Reformation, a Protestant mob incited by the preaching of John Knox ransacked the cathedral; the interior of the building was destroyed. The cathedral fell into decline following the attack and became a source of building material for the town. By 1561 it had been abandoned and left to fall into ruin.

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Founded: 1158
Category: Religious sites in United Kingdom

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en.wikipedia.org

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User Reviews

Graham Aitken (2 years ago)
Greatly enjoyed visiting St Andrews Cathedral today. Stunning setting and very knowledgeable staff who went out of their way to help and inform. The grounds, including what would have been the interior of the main part of the cathedral are free to explore but some areas fenced off for safety/covid reasons. Well worth paying the small fee to access the visitor centre which has the pick of fascinating remnants of the many ages and uses of the Cathedral over the centuries. Normally this would also entitle you to access the St Rules tower but this is currently closed. I would really like to thank the superb staff on site (really wish I got your names!) for making this such a memorable visit. I will definitely be back with my family one day.
Graham Aitken (2 years ago)
Greatly enjoyed visiting St Andrews Cathedral today. Stunning setting and very knowledgeable staff who went out of their way to help and inform. The grounds, including what would have been the interior of the main part of the cathedral are free to explore but some areas fenced off for safety/covid reasons. Well worth paying the small fee to access the visitor centre which has the pick of fascinating remnants of the many ages and uses of the Cathedral over the centuries. Normally this would also entitle you to access the St Rules tower but this is currently closed. I would really like to thank the superb staff on site (really wish I got your names!) for making this such a memorable visit. I will definitely be back with my family one day.
macedonboy (2 years ago)
Visited back in September. Once Scotland's greatest church building. Now it's a ruin, but what a postcard picture perfect ruin. The east and west towers are two of the greatest structures still standing and the isolated remains served to magnify the brilliance of the Gothic architecture. The ground of cathedral are free to enter, you only have to pay if you want to visit the museum. The ticket would normally get you into St Rule's Tower as well, but that's not possible right now due to social distancing rules. The museum is not extensive, but does exhibit some of the best preserved elements from the ruin, history of the building and local history. Some of the best exhibits in the museum are the coffins which for me was the bizarre fascination with displaying death.
Paul Roach (2 years ago)
Pretty good but not able to achieve all the answers to the kids trail due to areas being closed off. Staff were very helpful.
Alex Freeman (2 years ago)
Beautiful Cathedral. Found some clues as to where Captain Avery's treasure is. Turns out he was working with Thomas Tew on something. Not sure what. Couple of hired mercenaries about the place called shoreline though. Not nice guys. Just make sure to avoid them. Brilliant piece of Scottish history.
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