Chester Cathedral has been successful in securing a £1.4m grant to develop the Cathedral at Heights tourist attraction.

Cheshire West and Chester Council has provided generous financial support to deliver the Cathedral at Heights project as part of the early stages of the One City Plan. The Cathedral in return will remove the controversial admission charge becoming a free to enter tourist attraction in the city centre.

The plans involve opening the central tower, but furthermore a tour will consist of exploring the gallery levels, walking through the ceilings of the north choir aisle and getting a view from the east end which gives a truly unique and spectacular viewpoint of Chester Cathedral.

Many other Cathedrals undertake similar tours and they prove to be very successful.

Tours will accommodate up to 20 people at a time and during the peak summer season the Cathedral will be able to accommodate five to six tours a day. Plans are also being developed to provide themed tours, such as Christmas, evening and special events.

Delivery will be around the Chester Mystery Plays and therefore anticipated opening will be late July/August when the Cathedral will also remove the admission charge.

Quote: Dean – “The Cathedral is proud to be supporting the One City Plan with delivery of this early win for the city. We thank the Council for their support and look forward to an interesting 2013 at the Cathedral with free to enter, Cathedral at Heights and the Chester Mystery Play!”

Councillor Herbert Manley, Executive Member for Prosperity, said: “We believe that opening the Cathedral tower will bring economic benefit to the city centre because of the expected increase in visitor numbers.

“The new tour at this world renowned Cathedral will, I am sure, be enjoyed by local people and also tourists because not only will they be able to enjoy views of the city, but also gain a different insight of inside the Cathedral.”