Rochester Cathedral (Rochester)
Rochester was the second Bishopric to be established in England, the first having been a short distance away at Canterbury, at the start of St. Augustine's mission. For a short period in the Anglo-Saxon period, Rochester was the seat of an Archbishop.
Rochester Cathedral was founded in 604, and the foundations of the Anglo-Saxon building have been discovered near the West Front.
The present cathedral was begun in 1076 by Bishop Gundulph, who is also credited with the building of Rochester Castle and Colchester Castle. Gundulph's Tower survives, and was once used as a bell tower, and other remaining fragments from this time include part of the crypt.
The West Front is magnificent, and dates almost entirely from the Norman period. The Front is dominated by Christ in Majesty, with a pair of angels and the symbols of the Evangelists, flanked by Solomon and Sheba.
Former Bishops of Rochester include St. John Fisher, beheaded during Henry VIII's reign; and Nicholas Ridley, who was burned at the stake with Hugh Latimer at Oxford, in the reign of Mary I.
St. William of Rochester, otherwise known as St. William of Perth, was murdered outside the cathedral while on the early stages of a pilgrimage to the Holy Land.