St John's Cathedral, Salford, is dedicated to St John the Evangelist and was opened on 9 August 1848.
It was the first Catholic church to be built in cruciform shape since the Reformation. The foundation stone of this Cathedral, the Mother Church of the Diocese of Salford, was laid on Whit Thursday, May 1844, by Bishop James Sharples, Vicar Apostolic of the Lancashire District.
The Cathedral architect was Matthew Ellison Hadfield of Weightman, Hadfield and Goldie of Sheffield. Hadfield greatly admired the style of architecture favoured by Gothic builders of the 13th and 14th centuries.
For the Cathedral’s West Front and nave, he looked to Howden Church, Yorkshire, and for the choir and sanctuary to the Benedictine Abbey of Selby, also in Yorkshire.
For the lofty spire he emulated the 15th-century (and currently Anglican) church of St Mary Magdalene in Newark-on-Trent and his designed for the groined roof was inspired by that of the Church of St James at Liège, Belgium.