Over 50 vergers from across the UK came together for the annual Festival Service for the Church of England’s Guild of Vergers, held this year in Lancaster Priory.
Several of England’s great cathedrals were represented on May 14 with vergers attending from St Paul’s Cathedral in London, as well as the cathedrals in Carlisle, Manchester, Salisbury, and Worcester, together with many large parish churches across the UK.
Vergers are the “behind the scenes people” who keep the nation’s cathedrals and churches in pristine order to welcome the many thousands of visitors who pass through every day.
On grand ceremonial occasions, they lead the processions wearing their robes, and carrying a “virge” which gives them their name.
Coun Susie Charles, the newly elected Mayor of Lancaster joined them for the day, and was able to meet the many representatives who had travelled to Lancaster for their annual gathering, and attend the Festival Service.
The day ended with a service of Choral Evensong which was sung by the Chapel Choir of Ripley St Thomas Academy assisted by men of the Priory Choir.