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Old Cathedral of St Michael

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Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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496 of 510  Tue 20th Oct 2020 11:15am  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:3773

The early 20th century was an era of declining religious belief, yet still dominated education and rigid class distinctions, and the Cathedral still played a big part. To my family a sermon in the Old Cathedral meant... a few days before, father would not let me wear my best shoes, they had to be cleaned and polished, my clothes ironed and pressed, likewise my sister and my parents. My two other brothers did not attend, Saturday was the palaver of lugging the old tin bath in front of the lounge fire and scrubbing me from head to toe. Sunday, up very early, dressed waiting for the farmer’s pony and gig, we were then driven by the son down the country roads to Bell Green (a mile). Here, we then caught the clanging, screeching tram for a further 2 or 3 miles till finally stopping in Broadgate. No scraping of toes, blow your nose before entering the Cathedral. You gaze in awe at this great building, the mighty corrugated columns soaring so high, the mighty eagle, the decorated flags, and the statues that looked frightening to a child - and oh so cold. But once the choirboys started to sing, and the flock started to sing, it became warmer and you were allowed to fidget. But no one could deny its overpowering influence and rugged beauty, and I knew father was in a another world, because every time we went, it was either a service after a pit disaster or a WWI ceremony and his mind was somewhere else. That is why the old Cathedral was so very important to old Coventrians, and why so many men cried in the church for days after.
Local History and Heritage - Old Cathedral of St Michael
Prof
Gloucester
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497 of 510  Wed 28th Oct 2020 10:32pm  
Member: Joined Jul 2014  Total posts:1531

The Sanctuary, St Michael's.
Local History and Heritage - Old Cathedral of St Michael
Helen F
Warrington
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498 of 510  Sat 31st Oct 2020 8:33am  
Moderator: Joined Mar 2013  Total posts:2582

An fantastic image dating from 1721 by H Beighton. His collection of etchings will be familiar to us all. Link to the Royal Collection Trust
Local History and Heritage - Old Cathedral of St Michael
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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499 of 510  Sat 31st Oct 2020 10:22am  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:3773

My family have an heirloom item, of bits of the old Cathedral stolen by father and me on the day of the King’s visit. These bits are made into a stick-like object, the cone being a piece of an incendiary. My family wish to keep this item. I would have wished to given it back to the Cathedral. Between each window of the Cathedral is a buttress, that holds the walls together - the top of the buttress is a spire. There was little damage to any of these spires, that leads me to think there were no HE used, only incendiaries. The oak-wood roof with tar created a great heat that did the damage (my version).
Local History and Heritage - Old Cathedral of St Michael
Helen F
Warrington
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500 of 510  Sat 31st Oct 2020 11:40am  
Moderator: Joined Mar 2013  Total posts:2582

I believe that you're right Kaga, the cathedral was only hit by incendiaries. Don't quote me but I believe that part of the destruction was caused by metal replacement beams in the roof. Had they still been wood they would have burnt and possibly left the stonework in place but the metal expanded and pushed/pulled the clerestory down.
Local History and Heritage - Old Cathedral of St Michael
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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501 of 510  Sat 5th Dec 2020 1:18pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:3773

On 19th Nov 2020 5:32pm, CliffB said: Here’s another beauty from Celia’s photos, if I am not mistaken it’s Cross Cheaping as I guess the sign is outside ‘Watsons Boot Market’. The banner reads ‘West Orchard Sunday School’.
CliffB This photo is worth a study - it tells me it's a religious day and everyone is wearing their Sunday best, that's been in the wardrobe for days or even weeks. They are on their way to St Michael’s Cathedral. There are several of the chapel/church groups in the surrounding area. Here they are assembling in order, the older girls waiting for the younger boys to pass, for the younger choirboys assembled in the cathedral first, then teenage girls and lastly the congregation. When the full choir of cathedral, chapel and other churches sang, it fair lifted the roof off. Then they would fade and the girls’ rich golden voices came in and it brought shivers down your spine, and throughout the service the older male choir would kind of chant in turn, and you couldn't help but feel there was something magical and mysterious about religion. But the singing, you just didn't want it to stop (well I didn't), but this had to be heard for you to understand the power of the old Cathedral. Post copied from topic Burges and Cross Cheaping on 5th Dec 2020 2:41 pm
Local History and Heritage - Old Cathedral of St Michael
CliffB
Coventry
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502 of 510  Sun 6th Dec 2020 3:42pm  
Member: Joined Oct 2020  Total posts:50

Not really sure where to post this one, so as it shows the spires.... A nice photo of St Michaels, Holy Trinity and rooftops, another of Celia’s so taken around the 1900’s. I would guess this was taken from or near the Victoria Mill. What say the experts? Wave

Question

Local History and Heritage - Old Cathedral of St Michael
Helen F
Warrington
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503 of 510  Sun 6th Dec 2020 7:02pm  
Moderator: Joined Mar 2013  Total posts:2582

Another cracker. Thumbs up Yes, probably taken from the west end of the Victoria Works.
Local History and Heritage - Old Cathedral of St Michael
Gumnut
Moruya NSW Australia
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504 of 510  Mon 7th Dec 2020 7:26am  
Member: Joined Jun 2014  Total posts:74

I think I prefer that view than the one available now. The place had real life going on.
Local History and Heritage - Old Cathedral of St Michael
Helen F
Warrington
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505 of 510  Mon 7th Dec 2020 11:57am  
Moderator: Joined Mar 2013  Total posts:2582

I love the varied types of shots Gumnut that each tell a different part of the same story. The photos of roofs are surprisingly useful. They tell you the shapes of the buildings in relation to the maps. They say where the chimneys were. They show parts of the city where few photographers and no artists ventured. This photo isn't just interesting, it's artistically pleasing. The two spires exactly frame the end of Holy Trinity but not in an obviously contrived way. Celia's great grandfather had a fantastic eye. To me, as an amateur artist, the railing is slightly displeasing but as an amateur historian, the railing is data. It adds to the industrial/urban feel of the photo.
Local History and Heritage - Old Cathedral of St Michael
NeilsYard
Coventry
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506 of 510  Mon 7th Dec 2020 12:03pm  
Member: Joined Aug 2010  Total posts:2857

It also shows to me what a real 'rabbit warren' of hidden streets/lanes and passageways Old Cov was at that time Thumbs up You can almost smell the 'soot'n'muck!' Keep 'em coming, Cliff. Edited by member, 7th Dec 2020 12:04 pm
Local History and Heritage - Old Cathedral of St Michael
Gumnut
Moruya NSW Australia
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507 of 510  Tue 8th Dec 2020 7:07am  
Member: Joined Jun 2014  Total posts:74

On 7th Dec 2020 11:57am, Helen F said: I love the varied types of shots Gumnut that each tell a different part of the same story. The photos of roofs are surprisingly useful. They tell you the shapes of the buildings in relation to the maps. They say where the chimneys were. They show parts of the city where few photographers and no artists ventured. This photo isn't just interesting, it's artistically pleasing. The two spires exactly frame the end of Holy Trinity but not in an obviously contrived way. Celia's great grandfather had a fantastic eye. To me, as an amateur artist, the railing is slightly displeasing but as an amateur historian, the railing is data. It adds to the industrial/urban feel of the photo.
I could spend multiple hours just in that area of the photo! The streets are so close and narrow and just everyday life for the residents. Amazing.
Local History and Heritage - Old Cathedral of St Michael
Helen F
Warrington
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508 of 510  Tue 8th Dec 2020 10:35am  
Moderator: Joined Mar 2013  Total posts:2582

A number of rooftop views have popped up and they're very interesting. I find the Britain From Above photos addictive too.
Local History and Heritage - Old Cathedral of St Michael
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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509 of 510  Tue 8th Dec 2020 11:28am  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:3773

Yes, they show the dirty, filthy, smoky windows and chimneys that killed of thousands and none of you people have to live in them, or did you see the rat infested city of yesteryear? Me, I prefered the new, clean city that we had in 1937 and so did the people of that era. Yes, by all means look at them as history, but don't laud them.
Local History and Heritage - Old Cathedral of St Michael
Helen F
Warrington
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510 of 510  Tue 8th Dec 2020 11:48am  
Moderator: Joined Mar 2013  Total posts:2582

We're praising the photographs Kaga, not the conditions. Without them and memories like yours, these things would be forgotten. We are also curious about the places and how they would have looked. If we wanted to experience the conditions there are sadly places in the world that are still like this.
Local History and Heritage - Old Cathedral of St Michael

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