Saturday, 3 September 2011

St Albans Cathedral

One afternoon while we were in the UK visiting family we went to visit St Albans, a town about 30km north of central London. We were sans enfants so decided to go and visit St Albans Cathedral. It was a luxury to be able to stroll around at our own pace.

St Albans Cathedral is quite something I discovered.

Many parts of the current structure were built in Norman times. In 1250 an earthquake damaged parts of the structure. The collapsed walls were later rebuilt in the Gothic style. In these two photo you can see the round Norman arches on the left and Gothic pointed arches on the right.

The church became a Cathedral in 1877. It apparently has the longest nave of any cathedral in England. The ceiling is beautifully decorated...

...in different ways along the length of the nave.

I love the Norman arches with their delicately painted vaults.

In the 1950's the cement used to lay the bricks of the main tower became so cracked and unstable that the tower had to be rebuilt. Under the supervision of an architect called Cecil Brown the bricks in the tower was relaid using proper mortar...literally brick by brick!

The ceiling under the tower was also restored at this time.

In the late 19C this rose window was built. It was fully restored in the 1980s.

The day we visited the Cathedral the sun was shining through the windows in the nave creating some beautiful light patterns on the stone.
After enjoying the cathedral we went for a walk in the park close by. I think that drought everybody worried about in the spring never materialised.

Quite a few swans were swimming on the lake.

And dozens and dozens of rabbits were grazing on the plush green grass.

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