The great peat slip of 1886, a landslide which killed two people and damaged numerous buildings, wiped out Stanley’s Holy Trinity Church. The foundation stone for its replacement was laid in 1890 and the new, massive brick-and-stone Christ Church Cathedral opened in 1892. With its brightly painted, corrugated-metal roof and attractive stained-glass windows, the cathedral is the town’s most distinguished landmark.
Plaques on its walls honor the memory of local men who served in the British Forces in WWI and WWII, as well as the great and good of the Falklands.
The stained-glass windows are the church’s most vivid feature. As you enter from the main door you face the Post Liberation Memorial Window, with the Falklands crest and the islands’ motto, ‘Desire the Right.’ Below are the crests of the various British forces involved in the 1982 conflict and, below that, illustrations of three features of the Falklands and South Georgia: the Cathedral and Whalebone Arch represent Stanley; a typical farm settlement represents Camp; and Grytviken’s church and surrounding mountains represent South Georgia. At the other end of the same wall is the charming Mary Watson window, dedicated to a much-loved district nurse standing with her bicycle at the ready.
For the cathedral’s centenary in 1992, members of the congregation stitched pictorial hassocks. The collection, picturing many aspects of life in the Falklands, has grown to more than 50 of the cushioned ‘kneelers.’