Coventry Cathedral being rebuilt after the Blitz

These photographs are from my family collection.

They were mostly taken in the 1950s, and show the early stages of the rebuilding of Coventry Cathedral following the devastation caused by enemy bombs on night of November 14th, 1940. Click on the photos to view larger versions of these images.

To read more about the bombing of Coventry Cathedral during the Blitz, see my page about Operation Moonlight Sonata.

To view the full size versions of the photographs on this page, simply click them.


Coventry Cathedral 1952

Coventry Cathedral 1952


This first photograph is labelled by the photographer as having been taken in 1952. It shows the ruins of Coventry Cathedral in the background, fenced off from the area where the 'New Cathedral' would be built.

Note that twelve years had passed since the actual bombing took place. Men, women and children can be seen in the foreground.

Coventry Cathedral foundations, 1955

Coventry Cathedral foundations, 1955.

By 1955, fifteen years after the night of the Coventry blitz, you can see from the photograph to the right that the rebuilding of Coventry Cathedral was still progressing.

The foundations of the Cathedral are now in place, and you can clearly make out the altar cross in the background.

Aerial photo of Coventry Cathedral site, 1955

Aerial photo Coventry Cathedral site, 1955.

The rare aerial photo to the left, also taken in 1955, depicts the construction work in progress.

You can clearly make out trenches and scaffolding as the new Cathedral begins to rise up out of the ashes of destruction. The Cathedral became a symbol of hope for peace.

Coventry Cathedral, 1956

Coventry Cathedral reconstruction, 1956.

The 1956 photo to the right shows that construction of Coventry cathedral was still progressing.

Members of the public can be seen walking about the site, and an awning has been erected, under which tables and chairs are just visible. The awning was erected in preparation for the Queen's visit in 1956 to lay the Foundation Stone.

Coventry Cathedral, circa 1980s

Coventry Cathedral, circa 1980s.

This final image is undated, but believed to be taken in the 1980s. It shows the steps leading up to Coventry Cathedral, and the statue of St. Michael standing over the Devil.

Coventry: Hidden in Plain Sight by Clare Selley

Containing over 300 photographs of the 'hidden' Coventry and highly illustrated throughout, this book takes you on a visual tour of the City.

"Coventry: Hidden in Plain Sight" is a book showcasing the hidden side of Coventry - the side that people walk past every day and don't see, or have tuned out of sight.

From the splendour of the new St. Michael's Cathedral, to the undercroft of the original St Mary's Priory, from modern sculpture to worn stonework and more.