St Paul’s Cathedral in London has been financially crippled by falling revenues since being closed during the Covid Pandemic.
In an interview with the Telegraph, the Dean of St Paul’s, The Very Revd Dr David Ison said;
“If we can’t get money and resources in the long term, then we would have to close. What else can you do [in terms of having a building that is empty]? “Obviously we’re working as hard as we can to make sure we do have the money and we’re reasonably stable for the next couple of years – depending on what happens with the recovery in the tourism market, which is where our income has come from for the last 40 years.
“The reality is that as church incomes fall and the number of worshippers reduces, then their ability to maintain thousands of Grade I-listed buildings decreases. There needs to be a much wider social discussion about how we’re going to maintain these buildings. In the years to come, the ability of the Church of England to do it is going to be more and more stretched.”
It is estimated that it costs £8,000,000/year for running costs of the Grade I listed building. In 2019, the cathedral had income of £13,400,000. Most of that income came from tourists. In 2020, tourist income was down to £2,250,000 and even with the £3,300,000 received from the government’s cultural recovery fund, well short of the amount needed to keep up operations. It is reported that cash reserves have been exhausted during the various lockdowns.