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Westminster Abbey and Coronavirus (COVID-19)

The Abbey remains open for worship and you are welcome to join us at our daily Eucharist service if you are able to travel here safely within current government guidelines.

However, for the time being we are unable to open the Abbey and St Margaret’s Church for general visiting.

The Queen presents Dean with KCVO

Wednesday, 30th October 2019

The Very Reverend Dr John Hall, Dean of Westminster

Her Majesty The Queen presented the Very Reverend Dr John Hall, Dean of Westminster, with the award of Knight Commander of the Royal Victorian Order at his farewell audience at Buckingham Palace today, Wednesday 30th October 2019.

Dr Hall retires this Friday, All Saints’ Day, after 13 years as Dean and will preach at his final Eucharist in the Abbey at 5:00pm.

During his time as Dean, Dr Hall has presided at a number of major services including the wedding of HRH Prince William of Wales and Miss Catherine Middleton in April 2011.

Amongst other heads of state, he has welcomed two Presidents of the United States of America to lay wreaths at the Grave of the Unknown Warrior – President Obama in May 2011 and President Trump in June this year.

He has also initiated an ambitious development programme embracing the establishment of an education centre at No1 Deans Yard, the fitting-out of the new Cellarium restaurant in the medieval undercroft next to the Cloisters, and the creation of the new Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Galleries in the triforium of the Abbey church with access provided by a new tower in Poets’ Corner Yard.


A farewell reception for Abbey staff was held in the East Cloister on Tuesday 22nd October. The Receiver General, Paul Baumann, on behalf of the Abbey staff presented the Dean with a leather-bound copy of the score of In the midst of thy temple - a new anthem by Matthew Martin commissioned for this month’s service celebrating the 750th anniversary of the re-building of Westminster Abbey.

A dinner was also held in the Dean’s honour on Tuesday 29th October, attended by members of the College of Westminster Abbey and other guests.


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I’ve worked here for over thirty years and have seen many of the major services - it’s strange to realise that you are in a small way part of history.

Pamela - Rector's Secretary

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