President’s Symposium, October 2019

The subject of this year’s symposium is Exeter Cathedral.

To be held at Petroc College, Tiverton on Saturday 5 October, and hosted by our 2019–20 President John Allan.

Nowadays, after many generations of study, the international importance of Exeter Cathedral is widely appreciated, but it might be thought that such a richly documented and intensively-studied building has received so much attention that there is little fresh to say about it. In fact the opposite is the case: a remarkable range of scholars in Britain and abroad continue to make exciting progress in understanding this familiar structure.

The symposium will present five papers illustrating a range of current work on historical aspects of the building, its artistic connections, monuments, patrons and music. The cathedral is also, of course, a living community and in the afternoon session we will look at aspects of its modern life, focussing on its traditional masoncraft and the care of its outstanding library and archive.


9:30–10:00 am Registration and coffee

Welcome and brief introduction
– John Allan, DA President

‘A Petite Cloche, Grand Son’: Bishop John Grandisson and Exeter Cathedral
– Brian & Moira Gittos, Centre for Medieval Studies, University of York

Interregnum to restoration: Music at Exeter Cathedral in the context of the Civil War, focussing on the life of Matthew Locke
– David Davies, freelance classical musician and organist at the University of Exeter

11:30-11:40 am Break

Some episcopal enigmas from Exeter Cathedral
– Diane Walker, independent scholar, Exeter Cathedral

Archaeology and the study of Exeter Cathedral
– John Allan, DA President

1:00–2:00 pm Lunch

The Courtenays and Exeter Cathedral (an addition to the printed programme)
– Charles Courtenay, Earl of Devon

To be followed by:

Demonstrations of modern masoncraft at the Cathedral
– Chris Sampson, Clerk of Works, and members of the team of masons

The care and use of the Cathedral’s ancient manuscripts
– Ellie Jones, Cathedral Archivist

3:30–4:00 pm Tea


For members of the DA the price of a ticket is £25. For non-members £35.

You can now purchase tickets for the Symposium online via WebCollect. For details, go to our booking page.

For applications by post, a booking form is included in the Spring issue of our DA News magazine; alternatively a printable copy of the form can be downloaded here.