St Paul's is the seat of the Bishop of London and mother church of the Diocese of London. As part of an ongoing arts project, a two specially commissioned video installations by Bill Viola are currently on display inside the cathedral.

For more than 1400 years, a cathedral dedicated to St Paul has stood at the highest point in the city. The present incarnation is the masterpiece of British architect Sir Christopher Wren, and was built between 1675 and 1710 after its predecessor was destroyed in the Great Fire of London. Services began here in 1697.

This was the first cathedral to be built after the English Reformation, when Henry VIII removed the Church of England from the jurisdiction of the Pope and the crown took control of the life of the church.

Permanent collection

The St Paul’s Cathedral Arts Project is an ongoing programme which seeks to explore the encounter between art and faith. Projects have included installations by Gerry Judah, Antony Gormley, Rebecca Horn, Yoko Ono and Martin Firrell.

Visitors can see two large-scale permanent video installations by artist Bill Viola – Martyrs (Earth, Air, Fire, Water) and Mary, the two first moving-image works to be installed in a British cathedral or church on a long-term basis.

The two pieces together symbolise some of the profound mysteries of human existence. As Bill Viola himself explained: 'One is concerned with birth and the other death; one with comfort and creation, the other with suffering and sacrifice. If I am successful, the final pieces will function both as aesthetic objects of contemporary art and as practical objects of traditional contemplation and devotion.'

Your ticket allows access to visit the Bill Viola installation, the whole of the cathedral floor and crypt, an audio guide and/or guided tour and access to the three gallery levels.

St Paul's Cathedral

St Paul's Churchyard, London, Greater London, EC4M 8AD

020 7246 8350


Opening times

Mon – Sat, 12 – 4.30pm (last entry at 4pm). As a busy working church, there are occasions when the Cathedral has special closures. Please check the website or call 020 7246 8350 for details. Please note the Bill Viola installations cannot be viewed on Sundays or during services on Saturdays.

Sightseeing opening days and times may vary. The 50% National Art Pass discount is available in conjunction with walk-up ticket purchases only. A proportion of each entry timeslot's capacity is always made available for onsite customer service on the day but a free timeslot reservation can be made in advance if you prefer. The Cathedral accepts card payment only on the day. The latest safety information, and details of the visitor experience available, are on the website.

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50% off entry

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