In June 2011, one of the largest and most impressive restoration projects ever undertaken in the UK is formally completed. The St Pauls Cathedral
programme of cleaning and repair has cost £40m, taken 15 years, and is the first time in its history that the building has been comprehensively restored inside and out.
The culmination of the cleaning project coincides with the tercentenary of St Pauls Cathedral being declared complete by Parliament.
Since the project of cleaning and repair commenced, the exterior and interior of the cathedral have been beautifully restored. Once blackened and damaged, the west front now rises majestically at the top of Ludgate Hill. The interior of the cathedral has been transformed by state of the art conservation techniques and the light that now floods the space highlights the Portland stone used in the cathedrals construction and brings mosaics, carvings and sculpture to life.
The Right Reverend Graeme Knowles, Dean of St Pauls said: "We are thrilled that in the year that we celebrate the 300th anniversary of Wrens masterpiece, we can also mark the successful completion of this extraordinary restoration project. The two million worshippers, pilgrims and visitors who come to St Pauls each year can now witness Wrens original vision and see the cathedral as fresh as the day it was completed.
Martin Stancliffe, Surveyor to the Fabric, who has overseen the restoration project, said: "It has been a privilege and an extraordinary experience - to have led the team of professionals, craftsmen and conservators who have contributed so much to this transforming project. This great building is now in a sound state, and probably looks better than at any time since its completion in 1711.