The caring Cathedral

Southwark Cathedral is the oldest cathedral church building in London. It was completely destroyed in 1212 by the Great Fire of Southwark, but was rebuilt a few years later. It only became a cathedral in 1905.

As well as a striking outside there’s a lot of history inside including a memorial to people who died in August 1989 when a riverboat called Marchioness was hit by a dredger on the Thames.

There’s statue of Shakespeare inside the cathedral and his brother Edmund, who was also an actor, is buried here.

The Knights Templar

These special knights formed a group in 1118 for the purpose of protecting pilgrims – people who are travelling to a holy place. You may know them as the knights who wore white tunics with red crosses on them. In 1162, the group built their first church and house on the banks of the Thames. After the knights stopped working together, lawyers used the buildings as a hostel.

In 1608, the King of England gave these buildings to lawyers on the condition that they took care of them forever. Today, lawyers continue to have their offices (known as chambers) here, in addition to training and working in the area.