St Edmund's

About Canterbury

Canterbury – Cathedral City of Culture

Look from the grounds of St Edmund’s towards the city of Canterbury, and the eye is immediately drawn to the famous cathedral. Canterbury is key to the story of Christianity in this part of the country: when Augustine was sent by the Pope in 597 AD to reestablish the religion in southern England, he came here. Ruins of the monastery he built still remain, and he founded the first cathedral in England on the site of the current Norman building. This and other parts of Canterbury enjoy UNESCO world heritage status.

Morning - John Kincaid Image

The city has long been an important European pilgrimage site, and the city remains attractive to the many visitors that fill its picturesque streets and explore the river Stour by punt during the warmer months. There is much to see and do in Canterbury.


The medieval centre is home to a long pedestrianised high street with famous name stores, whilst side streets tend more towards the quirky and eclectic. Followers of sport are well served, with the city being home to Kent County Cricket Club. Theatre lovers make good use of the recently refurbished Marlowe Theatre – named after the dramatist Christopher Marlowe, who was born and educated here. Today, Canterbury benefits culturally from being home to three universities – the University of Kent, Canterbury Christ Church University and the University for the Creative Arts Canterbury. There is a particular energy that comes with a large student population, and the city has a strong local music scene.

Beyond the city walls can be found charming villages and glorious Kent countryside, and within easy reach are the picturesque coastal town of Whitstable with its working harbour and fishermen’s cottages and neighbouring Herne Bay with its traditional seaside promenade. Canterbury is well connected by road and public transport, with London a little over an hour away by rail.


By rail from London St Pancras 56 minutes
By road from
Central London 1 hour
Ashford International (Eurostar) 25 minutes
London Heathrow 1.5 hours
London Gatwick 1.25 hours