What to see when you leave The Lich
On leaving The Lich, if you turn left and walk to the end of Church Street, you will come to the Cathedral close and Hereford Cathedral. (The Close is home to a statue of Edward Elgar and his trusty bicycle.)
The first Hereford Cathedral was a stone building dating from the 7th century. It was burnt down in 1056 by Welsh and Irish soldiers. Rebuilding started in 1079 and was finished around 1140. Many changes have been made since that time. The cathedral originally had Norman architecture, but not much of that has survived. By the end of the 13th century most of it had been changed and these changes continued in the 14th century when the central tower was rebuilt. Many other parts were added, with the last major change being the addition of the main north entrance, which was finished in 1535, resulting in the cathedral we see today.
There has been a choir at Hereford Cathedral from at least as far back as the 13th century and the Cathedral is one of the three which host the Three Choirs Festival.
The famous Hereford Mappa Mundi (Map of the World) dates from the 13th century. It is the second largest map from that period drawn on a single sheet of vellum. After being ignored for many years, in 1855 it was cleaned and repaired at the British Museum. It shows the world as round, with the ocean all around it. It was nearly sold in the 1980s, but money was found to build a library where it is now on view. Another famous document in the Cathedral is one of only four surviving copies of the Magna Carta which is sometimes on view to the public.
Alternatively, if you turn right on leaving the Lich, cross East Street and walk down the adjoining passageway. You will find yourself in High Town - Hereford’s main square and the location of a street market on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Directly opposite is the Butter Market with a variety of stalls and small cafés. To the left is All Saints church and to the right is St Peter's Square with its eponymous church.
To your right you will also see an imposing half-timbered house. Known as The Black and White House, it is a remarkably well-preserved example of a 17th Century timber-framed building and is situated in the heart of Hereford, surrounded by the commercial centre of the city. It is a startling sight, stands as the sole reminder of bygone times.
Built in 1621, the house has been used for many purposes over the years, starting life as a butcher's home and shop and finishing its commercial life in the hands of Lloyds Bank in the late 1920s. Since 1929 it has been a fascinating museum giving an insight into daily life in Jacobean times. It is furnished in period style with an internationally important collection of English oak furniture - with interesting pieces in every room. Of particular interest to many visitors are the rare wall-paintings, the four-poster bed, and the baby-walkers.
A little further afield there is a wealth of living history with The Lich at its heart - making it the perfect base for some gentle exploration.
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