St Paul’s Cathedral was designed by goldfields architect, Robert A. Love. The nave was dedicated in November 1868. The 30-metre high tower housing a peal of eight bells was completed in 1873. The chancel and transepts were added in 1927, completing Love’s original design vision.
The Cathedral boasts many beautiful features. Its splendid ceiling rises to almost 20 metres with its ornamented semi-circular cusps. Outstanding stained glass windows fill the space with the light of God. Several beautiful wooden sculptures adorn the Cathedral: Madonna and Child by Leopoldine Mimevich in the MacCullagh Chapel, St Peter and St Paul by Ola Cohn in the niches of the sanctuary panelling, and The Crucified Jesus with Mary and John, which is high on the west wall. Below the east window is an opus-sectile (mosaic) reredos of the Last Supper. The organ case, with its colourful pipes, was re-built in 1957.
St Paul’s became the Cathedral of the Diocese of Bendigo in 1981.
St Paul’s bells arrived on the Cutty Sark on 27th March 1873. They were first rung on Good Friday, 10th April 1873.
Because of safety issues with the tower, from 1880 the bells were not able to be rung, but only chimed. In 1963 they were returned to London for recasting and on return in 1964 were replaced in the tower at a lower level. On Sunday 20th December the tower was re-hallowed and the bells re-dedicated by the Bishop of Bendigo, the Rt. Reverend Ronald Richards and the Rector of St Paul’s, Canon David Anthony.
St Paul's has had many ringers over the years, some of whom have given long and faithful service. Visiting ringers from all over the world have also rung at St Paul’s Bendigo. Unfortunately the bells are now silent due to structural concerns.