Podcast: Stories from St Paul's

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Today at the Cathedral View More
8:00am Morning Prayer
8:30am Doors open for sightseeing
8:30am Eucharist
12:30pm Eucharist
4:00pm Last entry for sightseeing
5:00pm Choral Evensong
5:30pm Cathedral closes

Podcast: Stories from St Paul's

In our new podcast series, Stories from St Paul’s, discover stories from the life, history and work of the Cathedral in a new light.

Listen to episodes below or subscribe to our podcast channel on Apple Podcasts or SoundCloud to hear future episodes. Produced and presented by Douglas Anderson.

Season 2 

Episode 1: Billy Fiske, the American citizen who died that England might live

In this first episode of Season 2, discover more about American pilot Billy Fiske, who died in the Battle of Britain and is memorialised at St Paul's. Billy Fiske claimed to be Canadian so he could join the Royal Air Force, and became one of the first American pilots killed in action during World War II during the Battle of Britain. He is buried in the churchyard of St Mary and St Blaise in Boxgrove, Sussex. He is remembered with a memorial in the Crypt at St Paul's, unveiled in 1941, which reads "An American citizen who died that England might live.".


Episode 2: The Canadian Connection

Have you ever heard the strange architectural tale which connects St Paul’s Cathedral with Colborne Lodge in High Park, Toronto? Discover the story of shipwreck, salvage and the re-purposing of railings in this Stories from St Paul’s podcast episode. 


Episode 3: St Paul's and Sightseeing

St Paul’s Cathedral: a place of worship and a major world tourist attraction, but also a building with substantial running costs. Sightseeing ticket income is vital to the upkeep of the Cathedral, but it might surprise you to learn that sightseeing tickets are not a recent occurrence – but in fact, 1709, whilst the Cathedral was still in its final stages of construction. Find out more about the history of tourism at St Paul’s, and how it has long been a part of our story.


Season 1

Episode 1: The Other Royal Wedding 

In the first episode of Stories from St Paul’s, learn about the ‘other’ Royal wedding to take place at the Cathedral and the events that followed which changed the course of English history. 


Episode 2: The St Paul's Watch 

Whilst many believe St Paul's emerged from the Blitz unscathed, this was not quite the case. Discover the story of the skilled and dedicated volunteers behind its survival and how their legacy continues today.


Episode 3: Ghosts of St Paul's

Unsurprisingly, for a place with such a long history, St Paul's Cathedral is no stranger to mysterious and unexplained sights and sounds. In this Stories from St Paul's podcast episode, discover some of the Cathedral's spectral stories and sightings.


Episode 4: Wren's Secret Genius

St Paul’s Cathedral is considered to be Christopher Wren’s masterpiece. But what of his lesser known genius? Discover the work of the Cathedral’s Collections team in association with the London Metropolitan Archives, who together delved into Wren’s working practices at St Paul’s with architectural historian Dr Gordon Higgott, and the ways in which Wren’s designs evolved through the hundreds of drawings he produced.


Episode 5: Martin Luther King's Visit to St Paul's

In 1964, Martin Luther King travelled from the USA to Norway to collect the Nobel Peace Prize – with one important stop en-route – accepting an invitation to preach at St Paul’s Cathedral by Canon John Collins. On the 6 December 1964, Dr King delivered his sermon – 'The Three Dimensions of a Complete Life' – to 4,000 people, and afterwards held a press conference at St Paul’s, where he answered questions on race relations in the UK.


Episode 6: St Paul's in the Movies

Of all the cathedrals in all the towns in all the world, have any been depicted as many times on the big screen as St Paul’s? Grab your tickets and popcorn and come with us to the movies for this latest podcast episode in our Stories from St Paul’s series. Excerpts from Paddington 2 courtesy of STUDIOCANAL.


Episode 7: England's Greatest Artist and the Final Resting Place of JMW Turner

JMW Turner’s works are etched in the national psyche, and a great number can be viewed in public collections such as Tate Britain and the National Gallery. Turner is buried in the Artist’s Corner of St Paul’s Cathedral, and a statue of the artist gazes out over the South Transept of the Cathedral floor, with palette and paintbrushes in hand. In this podcast episode, discover more about Turner’s extraordinary artistic output and enduring legacy, including paintings depicting St Paul’s itself.


Episode 8: Who was St Paul?

Who was St Paul? Find out more about the saint to which our iconic Cathedral is dedicated: his life, ministry and legacy, in this latest episode in our Stories from St Paul’s podcast.


Episode 9: The Extraordinary Paul Robeson

Actor, singer and political activist Paul Robeson’s career spanned over 40 years, in theatre and film. On 12 October 1958, he sang and read the Lesson at St Paul’s Cathedral to huge crowds – the first Black person to do so – to raise funds for the defence in the South Africa Treason Trials, which included Nelson Mandela among the wrongfully accused. Find out more about Robeson’s activism and artistry in this episode.


Episode 10: Wellington and Nelson - Military Masters

Admiral Horatio Nelson and Arthur Wellesley, Duke of Wellington are forever associated with their most famous military battles. For Nelson, at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805, in which he lost his life, and for Wellington, in 1815 at the Battle of Waterloo. Perhaps surprisingly, the two men only met once, briefly in 1805, but in death they have lain at rest beside each other for over 150 years in the Crypt of St Paul's. 


Episode 11: The Art of St Paul's

St Paul’s Cathedral is a place of worship and a tourist destination, but it’s also a place to experience and enjoy art in many mediums from different time periods, created by an array of talented artists and craftspeople like Grinling Gibbons, Sir James Thornhill and Henry Moore, to name just a few. More recently, contemporary interventions from Yoko Ono, Rebecca Horn, Antony Gormley, Gerry Judah and Bill Viola have enriched the pattern of worship in the Cathedral. Discover the many facets to the art on display in St Paul’s in this latest podcast episode. 

*Please note that as of June 2021, William Holman Hunt’s ‘The Light of the World’ painting is not on display due to ongoing building works in the North Transept. It will return for display in Spring 2022.

Episode 12: The American Memorial Chapel

St Paul’s has a long association with the American people, formed largely after the Second World War, a conflict in which thousands of Americans based in the UK were to give their lives. The most striking reminder of this sacrifice can be found at the very East end of the Cathedral: The American Memorial Chapel – a space rebuilt after being destroyed in the Blitz, and dedicated in its entirety to the American dead of World War Two. Find out about this beautiful Chapel and the American Roll of Honour in this Stories from St Paul’s episode.


Episode 13: Churchill and St Paul's

The state funeral of former Prime Minister and wartime leader Sir Winston Churchill took place at St Paul’s on the 30th January 1965. Churchill’s connection to the Cathedral began some years earlier, however, when he wrote of his admiration for Sir Christopher Wren’s designs in his book, History of the English Speaking Peoples – and became intrinsically linked as symbols of resilience and resistance during the Second World War.