Blessing the River

Blessing the river in 2023

The 2024 Blessing the River from London Bridge will be on Sunday 14 January at 12.15pm.

This year’s slightly later date is due to The Epiphany (6 January) falling at a weekend resulting in church calendars moving ‘Twelfth Night’ on a day to Sunday 7 January. This displaced the Baptism of Christ Sunday which is the usual blessing of river day.

Next Sunday 14 January processions will set out simultaneously shortly before 12.30pm from Southwark Cathedral on the south bank and St Magnus the Martyr Church in the City to the north.

Charles Dickens had these two churches in mind when he wrote ‘the tower of old Saint Saviour’s Church, and the spire of Saint Magnus, so long the giant-warders of the ancient bridge’.

The stone London Bridge begun in 1176 was dedicated to St Thomas Becket and had a chapel in the middle of the downstream side. The pavement ran under the tower of St Magnus.

Prayers will be offered for those working on the river.

The Cross before being hurled into the water in 2023

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