Pronounced "Suth-uck," this is the oldest Gothic church in London, with parts dating back to the 12th century. It remains off the beaten track, despite being the site of some remarkable memorials and a concert program that offers regular organ recitals at lunchtime on Mondays (except in August and December) and classical music at 3:15 on Tuesdays (except in December). Originally the priory church of St. Mary Overie (as in "over the water"—on the South Bank), it became
a palace church under Henry VIII and was only promoted to cathedral status in 1905. Look for the gaudily renovated 1408 tomb of the poet John Gower, England's first poet and a friend of Chaucer's, and for the Harvard Chapel, where the founder of the eponymous university, a local butcher's son, was baptized. Another notable buried here is Edmund Shakespeare, brother of William. The Refectory serves full English breakfasts, light lunches, and tea 9–6 Monday–Friday, 10–6 weekends.
Apr 6, 2008
Not in the same league as St. Paul's or Westminster Abbey, but of the second-tier London churches, this is probably the most interesting to visit. Has some intriguing stained glass, side chapels (John Harvard's especially), and statuary/memorials.