|Chapter title||Reaching Out - Engagement through Events and Festivals - the Cathedrals of England|
|Editors||Butler, R. and Suntikul, W.|
All religions are characterised by a focus around a calendar of events yet the degree to which religion permeates the event and festival sector is much overlooked and frequently misunderstood. Traditionally, religious events closely follow the cycle of sacred beliefs which underpin the faiths but there has also been a strong link with the celebration of the seasons and harvests. In Christianity, Easter and Christmas have formed the backbone of the event calendar for centuries and Lent is preceded by the busy Carnival season, especially in Catholic countries. These religious festivals have become ever more elongated, commercialised and exploited by wider society. This in itself is an interesting and long standing trend but this chapter will concentrate its analytical eye on the link between the Christian church and the burgeoning event sector of the early twenty first century. It will focus on (Anglican) Cathedrals in England and investigate the extent to which these great institutions and buildings have harnessed their centuries-old skills and knowledge in the staging of events to explore new ways of reaching out to diverse audiences, whether local residents, tourists or pilgrims. It will reflect on the challenges and tensions which cathedrals must overcome to diversify their event portfolios and consider why events have become a much more significant aspect of their activity and mission. This review is underpinned by the author’s professional interest in events and festivals and his own experience in managing a cathedral city destination (Rochester, in the south-east of England). This has been supported by secondary research and through a series of interviews and discussions with senior cathedral representative during the summer of 2015. While the case studies are drawn from Anglican cathedrals, the trends and issues revealed have implications for cathedrals in Europe and beyond.
|Keywords||Events; Festivals; Tourism; Attractions; Religion; Cathedrals|
|Book title||Tourism and Religion: Issues and Implications|
|Publisher||Channel View Publications|
|Published||30 Jan 2018|
|Place of publication||Bristol|