Thank you for visiting Coventry’s Peace Trail. The trail consists of around 30 sites associated with peace in Coventry city centre, but you can visit as many locations as you wish. It begins in the Old Cathedral, the bombing of which was the tragic spark which led to Coventry becoming a city of Peace and Reconciliation.
During this tour you will live through the horrific bombing of Coventry in 1940 and see how the vision of one man, Provost Richard Howard who fought the fire that destroyed the original Cathedral, eventually led to building of a new Cathedral.
His successor as the boss of the Cathedral was Provost Williams who took over in 1958. From his first days in the job, standing in sight of the rising new Cathedral, he became convinced that the purpose of the resurrection of the Cathedral is that the risen new Cathedral should become a powerful instrument in the hands of God for the reconciliation of man with God and of man with man. Reconciliation is at the heart of the Christian Gospel and Provost Williams believed it should be the chief mission of the Cathedral.
The City Council was also keen to set aside the past and hold out the hand of friendship after the Second World War. This has given Coventry an international reputation as a city of Peace and Reconciliation.
For example, you will learn about the strong links between Coventry and the Russian city of Stalingrad (now renamed Volgograd) which led to the declaration of a formal link of friendship between these two war-devastated cities. Now 26 towns and cities around the world are twinned with Coventry.
Coventry University has a Centre for Trust, Peace and Social Relations and this, together with the Cathedral’s mission and the establishment of the Lord Mayor’s Committee, has continued this work on Peace and Reconciliation down to the present day. For example, the City Council runs the annual peace festival in the days leading up to the anniversary of the bombing each November.
Coventry Lord Mayor’s Committee for Peace and Reconciliation, which created this Peace Trail, hope you will enjoy your tour and your visit to our wonderful city.