Southwark Cathedral cat Doorkins Magnificat dies after 11 years at church

Doorkins Magnificat has snared her last rodent.

The Southwark Cathedral cat, who kept the hallowed place of worship mouse-free for 11 years, ran out of her nine lives on Wednesday.

She had been living in retirement with one of the cathedral vergers since the end of 2019, and died in his arms following a stroke.

Her remains will be brought back to the cathedral in due course, and the Dean will give thanks for the pleasure and affection she showed to so many at a ceremony on October 28.

Doorkins – named after the campaigning atheist Richard Dawkins – had been feral until arriving at Southwark Cathedral in 2008.

She gradually began to trust those who fed and looked after her. Her only expulsion came amid a cathedral lockdown in the aftermath of the London Bridge terror attack in 2017.

A statement from Southwark Diocese said: “She remained an active and fearless cat, wandering around the cathedral and outside during her time with us, until the London Bridge terrorist attack.

“At that time she was shut out of the cathedral for a number of days and once
inside again she did not leave the warmth of the place which she had come to think of as home and where she knew she was safe.”

Doorkins went into retirement when she could no longer see.

The mice in the area around London Bridge breathed a sigh of relief. But the cathedral was then not a safe place for her, as she could not navigate it without bumping into the pillars – and the worshippers.

The statement added: “Her last months were very happy and she was well loved in her place of retirement.”

The Dean of Southwark, The Very Revd Andrew Nunn, said: “The community at Southwark Cathedral is saddened by the death of Doorkins.

“Like many people before her she found her way to us and was welcomed and made us her family and this place her home.

“She brought us so much pleasure and much joy to her many fans and followers. She met Her Majesty The Queen and was present at more services than most of us.

Further details of the thanksgiving service to be held on October 28 will be on the cathedral website.

There was no claws in her will dictating what form it should take.

But if there is any justice, she will be now be in the loving arms of Jesus, purring loud enough for even Beethoven to hear (the deaf composer, not the dog).

A book of memories for people to leave pictures and stories about Doorkins can be found here.

Pictured top: Doorkins Magnificat


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