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News: MAKE YOUR MARK campaign launched

Gu/images/Make your mark logo FINAL.jpgildford Cathedral is today launching its major fundraising campaign, MAKE YOUR MARK, to help save the iconic Grade 2* listed building.  People of all ages are invited to make their mark on the future of the Cathedral by making a donation or organising a fundraising event.

MAKE YOUR MARK follows a remarkable fundraising achievement over half a century ago when more than 200,000 people, the Brick-givers, became a part of the Cathedral’s story through helping to fund its construction.

TV presenter Pam Rhodes, who is supporting MAKE YOUR MARK, encouraged everyone to continue the story of the People’s Cathedral by helping to fund urgently needed repairs and improvements. “The race is on to raise £1.3 million by August so an application can be submitted to the Heritage Lottery Fund for a significant grant towards the total £7 million needed,” she said.

The most urgent requirement for funds is to remove and replace crumbling plaster in the vaults which contains asbestos.  At the same time improvements will be made to access, lighting and sound systems, bringing them up to 21st Century standards.

Plans also include an oral history project recording the memories of the Brick-givers and the development of new visitor resources so that the Cathedral is able to expand the range of cultural and educational activities on offer.

MAKE YOUR MARK calls on Surrey residents and supporters from all over the world to make their mark and support the Cathedral at this crucial crossroads in the building’s history. Making their mark in their own way will be the Dean of Guildford, the Very Reverend Dianna Gwilliams who will abseil down the Cathedral’s tower on April 26, original Brick-giver Mrs Frances Dawson who will organise a Teddy’s Birthday fundraiser and Year 6 leavers from Church primary schools who will build a cairn of bricks at their school leavers service, each brick representing a school’s donation.

Pam explains: “MAKE YOUR MARK comes not a moment too soon and is an exciting project for Guildford Cathedral. Everyone in Surrey and further afield has a role to play. From the Dean’s daredevil abseil through to a simple donation and leaving a virtual message on the Cathedral’s specially created webpage (

 “Every single donation is going to be critical to reach the goal. The Cathedral is currently running at a deficit and large-scale repairs are beyond its scope.

 “Over half a century ago, residents and friends were given an opportunity to be part of this Cathedral’s remarkable tale when they bought a brick. Now we all have an opportunity to make sure that this striking Cathedral and landmark can continue to serve its community into the future. Please give as generously as you can!””

 Messages left as part of the ‘MAKE YOUR MARK campaign will be added to a MAKE YOUR MARK Manuscript, which will be kept in the Treasury and available for future generations.  Appeal funds will also be used to develop visitor resources, in particular sharing the individual stories of the Brick-givers and other people who have made their mark in the building’s colourful history.

The Dean of Guildford, the Very Reverend Dianna Gwilliams, said: “Between 1952 and 1961 a truly impressive range of people from schools and streets to couples on their wedding day and families remembering loved ones all came together to help complete the People’s Cathedral. Now we are hoping to mobilise a new generation to make their mark in support of this landmark building.

“At the same time we want to engage with this generation so it is known not only for its remarkable and distinctive architecture but as a cathedral which truly serves its community. Come and see us – it is your cathedral!”

A new fundraising pack full of ideas is now available on the website.

For further information, images and interviews, please contact:

Siân Newton, Fundraising Director at Guildford Cathedral on 01483 547 878, mobile: 0775 2144565 and

Added Tuesday 25th February 2014