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St Andrew's Cathedral

We are told that the site occupied by the Cathedral was expressly reserved in 1823 for a church by Sir Stamford Raffles, the founder of Singapore. At that time, the few members of the Church of England were ministered to by the chaplains of the East India Company ships or by missionaries of other denominations. The first Anglican priest appointed to Singapore was the Revd Robert Burn who arrived in 1826. Services were then conducted in the Mission Chapel of the London Missionary Society which stood at the junction of Bras Basah and North Bridge Roads.

On 4 Mar 1856, Bishop Daniel Wilson of Calcutta laid the foundation stone of the present building. The building was designed by Colonel Macpherson, to whose memory a cross was erected which stands on the South lawn of the Cathedral compound. The window over the West Door also commemorates this designer who, though unqualified, produced such a fine and dignified building. The building operations were in the hands of Captain McNair of the Royal Artillery. He was in charge of the convict labour and the supply of materials.The use of convict labour for the building of a Cathedral is often a subject of comment. In fact much building in Singapore at this time was carried out in this way.

 

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St Andrews

The style of the Cathedral is Early Gothic and stands out against a backdrop of modern skyscrapers.