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St George's Cathedral

St. George's Cathedral © dvdmerwe
St. George's Cathedral © dvdmerwe

Founded in 1901 and situated on Wale Street, Cape Town's Victorian Gothic style Anglican Cathedral is historically significant for hosting the enthronement of South Africa's first black archbishop, Nobel Peace Prize winner Desmond Tutu. The Cathedral is unique in that it became a political powerhouse in the struggle against Apartheid. Known as 'the people's cathedral', it began openly welcoming people of all races in the 1950s. This was a brave stand in the racially segregated society of the time. In subsequent years, the cathedral became the venue for many protest gatherings and vigils and, on occasion, the building was surrounded by police, water cannons, and barbed wire. Victims of forced removals were even accommodated in the cathedral at times. As far as architectural merit goes, the cathedral does feature some fine Gabriel Loire windows, including a magnificent Rose Window above the south transept. It is an imposing church, well integrated into the community and well cared for, and the profoundly inspirational legacy of Desmond Tutu is palpable.

Address: Wale Street