BRADFORD Cathedral is celebrating its centenary year with a programme of concerts by international musicians, talks by renowned speakers, events and exhibitions.

There has been a parish church on the site for centuries but St Peter’s Church only became a cathedral in 1919 when the Bradford Diocese was formed out of the ancient see of Ripon.

The Bishop of Leeds, the Rt Rev Nick Baines, will get the celebrations underway this weekend with an Epiphany Sunday service at 10.15am.

The Choral Eucharist will be sung by the Full Foundation of the Cathedral Choir, with Bishop Nick preaching. Within the service Una Barry sings Psalm 100: Make a Joyful Noise unto the Lord for operatic soprano and organ, specially composed for the occasion by Colin Mawby. The service will be followed by celebratory refreshments.

Bishop Nick will then give an address and host a discussion on 'Going back a different way - being Christian in a populist world' at 2.30pm followed by Festal Choral Evensong and the Launch of the Centenary Year at 4pm.

Among the big names contributing to the centenary celebrations over the year are the Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, violinist Tasmin Little, clarinettist Emma Johnson and composer John Rutter.

The cathedral will also have a ‘poet in residence’ throughout the centenary year. Diane Pacitti has been commissioned to produce a collection of poems based on the city and cathedral.

The Dean of Bradford, the Very Rev Jerry Lepine writes in a forward to the Centenary Programme: “On Tuesday 25th November 1919 King George V decreed that the parish church of St Peter Bradford was to become one of England’s parish cathedrals, as the new Diocese of Bradford was formed out of the ancient see of Ripon.

"Today we are still in the newest diocese in the Church of England, now the Diocese of Leeds, which includes three cathedrals at Bradford, Ripon and Wakefield.

“This year we shall be celebrating the Centenary with a programme emphasising faith, heritage, music, the arts and partnership.

“It is perhaps worth reflecting on the last century. It has been a traumatic time in Europe, Bradford has changed hugely and faced new challenges as well. The Christian church is in a very different place than in 1919. Ponder the social, economic and lifestyle changes. It leaves you breathless.

“As Christians we are called to make our witness to God and serve our community, just as previous generations have done. Let us pray that this year will not only be a great celebration for this deeply loved cathedral but also a time for spiritual renewal. I encourage you to make the most of this special year’s events and invite others along to join with us.”

For more details about events go to