Archive Item of the Week: An Illustrator’s View

Welcome to Archive item of the week:  where we delve into Guildford Cathedral Archives to highlight some of the unique items within the collection

This week: Fundraising.  Our People’s Cathedral Archivist shares with you an interesting part of the Cathedral Archives demonstrating the interesting links for the Cathedral in the great fundraising appeal.

  It is a well-known that the building of Guildford Cathedral became quite an epic task, although building work was begun in 1936 it was not until 1961 when the Cathedral was actually consecrated.

Why the delay?  Well firstly construction on the building was halted during World War Two and it was not until 1954 when the building work was restarted again.

The great effort to get the building completed was a huge undertaking in terms of fundraising and there are records suggesting that even before the outbreak of War Prudence Maufe suggested a way of raising money by selling bricks for 2/6d.

It was not until 1954 that the brick givers scheme really started in earnest and bricks were soon on sale at Pilgrims at the Cathedral.

Although the Brickgivers scheme is a well-known aspect of the Cathedral history and well known amongst our community – with many having bought a brick themselves. But it is not so widely known the connection to E.H.Shepard.

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This cartoon was first used in 1954 at a Flag Day in Guildford town and was drawn by the illustrator E.H.Shepard, known best of course for illustrating Winnie-the-Pooh and The Wind in the Willows.  E.H.Shepard had moved to Shamley Green in 1904 and was fond of Surrey from holidays to Guildford and Farnham when young and in fact during the Second World War he joined the Surrey Home Guard.

This cartoon demonstrates further the attachment he had to Guildford and Surrey and reflects the great effort that was involved in building the Cathedral which you see today.