A little bit of Wakefield in Texas

25 May 2021

hat do Texas, Johnny Cash and Wakefield Cathedral all have in common?

When Wakefield Cathedral underwent its extensive renovations in the 2010's, one of the features to be removed from the cathedral were the pews (designed by Victorian architect George Gilbert Scott and installed in the cathedral back in 1874), replaced by movable seating to allow more space for events within the nave and the cathedral itself.

The pews were sold to a variety of people and businesses across the area, with funds raised going towards the regeneration project. Indeed we often wonder where some of the pews are living now...

From Wakefield to Texas...

We were delighted to have recently received a message from Angela Reader who, along with husband Mark, daughter Emily and son Charlie, were very involved with the cathedral for several years in the early noughties, before emigrating to League City, Houston, Texas in 2008.

Although living at the 'other side of the pond', the family's connection with Wakefield Cathedral lived on, and when the opportunity to own a little bit of Wakefield Cathedral came along, Angela knew she wasn't going to let the chance slip by.

Angela: "When we heard about the pews being sold... I contacted my old friends at the cathedral and told them I have to buy one, the next step was just to figure out how to get it over to America!

"My father, who still lives in the UK in Retford, Nottinghamshire, drove to the cathedral to pick up the pew and arranged the shipping over to our home in Texas.

"The pew has been standing in my hallway, taking pride of place ever since, and is a huge talking point among our American friends."

The connection continues...

As well as owning one of the cathedral's original pews (modelled below by the family cat - Johnny Cash), Angela also shared with us a wonderful painting (see below) which her friend Linda Young painted of the cathedral. The painting takes pride of place above the pew and Angela said: "this picture, along with our pew, are such wonderful mementos of our wonderful years in the Cathedral family and will no doubt be passed down through future generations - to this day we still often sit on the pew and reminisce."

Linda donates the proceeds from her sales to Breast Cancer Now and has so far raised over £1000.

Did you also purchase a cathedral pew? We would love for you to share with us your story and where the pew lives today. Click here to email us for more information.

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