The first church on this site was built in the 11th Century, with the first Bishop of Waterford,known as Malchus, in 1096.
in 1170 having become a Cathedral was the setting for the famous wedding of English knight, Strongbow and Irish Princess, Aoife in 1170. This political union was to change the course of Irish History forever.
By 1210 the Normans had taken over Waterford and they built a new Gothic Cathedral in 1210. This expanded over the years to include side chapels dedicated to people such as James Rice who was a leading figure in Waterford at the time.
By the 18th Century, the City authorities of the time regarded this Gothic Cathedral as being very old fashioned and recommended to the Bishop that a new one should be constructed.
In 1773 the Norman Gothic Cathedral came down, but so strongly was it built that gunpowder had to be used in its demolition. The present Cathedral was begun in 1773 and was completed in 1779
The present building has been described the finest 18th Century ecclesiastical building in Ireland (by Mark Girouard, a noted architectural historian).