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New Cathedral of St Michael

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dutchman
Spon End
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1 of 78  Sun 26th Sep 2010 5:47pm  
Member: Joined Mar 2010  Total posts:2688

This site has some very interesting pictures of the Cathedral being built. Click on the thumbnail pictures to see a very high quality enlargement. Purely as an aside it just so happens that my route back from school between 1965 and 1967 included a walk through the gap between the two cathedrals and down the steps to Priory Street. During that period I must have been snapped by literally hundreds of tourists' cameras so if anyone has a picture of a 11-13yr old boy in a blue school blazer walking down the steps the chances are very high it's me!
New Cathedral of St Michael
nodigitsever
Allesley Park
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2 of 78  Mon 27th Sep 2010 11:34pm  
Member: Joined Jul 2010  Total posts:5

What a monstrocity the new cathedral is compared to the old one
New Cathedral of St Michael
NeilsYard
Coventry
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3 of 78  Sat 2nd Oct 2010 7:39pm  
Member: Joined Aug 2010  Total posts:2775

They are different buildings from different eras but as a piece of 20th century architecture I think its pretty amazing.
New Cathedral of St Michael
K
Somewhere
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4 of 78  Thu 2nd Feb 2012 2:00pm  
Member: Joined Nov 2011  Total posts:522

I wonder if others here like me watched the weathercock being put on the new Cathedral by a Chinook helicopter? Quite a rivetting thing to behold.
New Cathedral of St Michael
walrus
cheshire
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5 of 78  Thu 9th Feb 2012 4:27pm  
Member: Joined Dec 2011  Total posts:220

I'm a little relieved that not everyone is overwhelmed by the new cathedral because I always thought that the architecture was brutally ugly but felt it would be disloyal and possibly disrespectful to say so out loud. I went to the consecration in 1962 but the cathedral felt more like a museum or an example of what modernism was all about. Also it has always appeared to me to have been shoehorned into too small a space. Is there a structural or architectural reason why the old cathedral could not have been rebuilt? I hope not to offend but for me it is the architectural equivalent of Wood End.
New Cathedral of St Michael
Dreamtime
Perth Western Australia
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6 of 78  Thu 9th Feb 2012 4:36pm  
Member: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:2350

They don't/can't build them like they used to, Walrus.
New Cathedral of St Michael
dutchman
Spon End
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7 of 78  Thu 9th Feb 2012 4:40pm  
Member: Joined Mar 2010  Total posts:2688

On 2nd Feb 2012 2:00pm, K said: I wonder if others here like me watched the weathercock being put on the new Cathedral by a Chinook helicopter? Quite a rivetting thing to behold.
It was actually a Bristol Belvedere Keith, a British designed twin-rotor helicopter. The Belvedere flew very close to us on its way to the Cathedral and I remember it seemed to hover for ages while the spire was manouvered into position.
New Cathedral of St Michael
dutchman
Spon End
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8 of 78  Thu 9th Feb 2012 4:47pm  
Member: Joined Mar 2010  Total posts:2688

On 9th Feb 2012 4:27pm, walrus said: Is there a structural or architectural reason why the old cathedral could not have been rebuilt?
None at all Walrus. It was a purely political decision by the CofE to leave the shell of the old Cathedral as a war memorial. My problem with the new one (and many other new churches for that matter) is that it doesn't look particularly 'religious'. If you weren't told it was a cathedral you probably wouldn't guess its purpose.
New Cathedral of St Michael
flapdoodle
Coventry
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9 of 78  Thu 9th Feb 2012 11:01pm  
Member: Joined Nov 2010  Total posts:808

On 9th Feb 2012 4:27pm, walrus said: I'm a little relieved that not everyone is overwhelmed by the new cathedral because I always thought that the architecture was brutally ugly but felt it would be disloyal and possibly disrespectful to say so out loud
The new cathedral is most certainly not brutal - it's clad in sandstone for a start. As for modernism, well, when the cathedral was being built Paddy's Wigwam was going up in Liverpool. Coventry Cathedral was considered as old fashioned. I'm not religious, and I like it. The stained glass is fantastic, and the sawtooth edges a wonderful touch. It hasn't dated at all, unlike the rest of post-war Coventry, which now looks woeful, and is really just a modern interpretation of a Gothic cathedral. Basil Spence actually saw the building as being a box filled with artwork, hence the statues, glass and tapestry. One interesting feature is that the pillars in the Cathedral are not actually load bearing, and apparently narrow down to a point at the bottom. The original plan was to have them look as if they were balanced on balls. Most of our so-called medieval cathedrals are fake, anyway, having been heavily rebuilt over the years. Even the old Coventry Cathedral is more Victorian than medieval as it was heavily restored in that period.
New Cathedral of St Michael
Kimbo
Leicestershire
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10 of 78  Sun 12th Feb 2012 9:30pm  
Member: Joined Feb 2012  Total posts:84

Have to agree with Flapdoodle. It's a stunning piece of architecture and a credit to the city. I was there at the consecration (aged 9) and have loved it ever since. Thumbs up As for 'Paddy's Wigwam' - oh dear!
New Cathedral of St Michael
stevie g
wyken, coventry
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11 of 78  Fri 27th Apr 2012 7:54am  
Member: Joined Feb 2012  Total posts:92

50 years today the spire was placed on top of the new cathedral by RAF (see pathe news) any memories anybody Cheers Cheers Big grin
New Cathedral of St Michael
TonyS
Coventry
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12 of 78  Fri 27th Apr 2012 10:48am  
Member: Joined Jan 2011  Total posts:1271

This link is to a British Pathe short film (not sure if it's the same one to which StevieG refers) which I hadn't seen before. Excellent quality and duration. Coventry Spire by Copter (then click the "play" icon)
New Cathedral of St Michael
dutchman
Spon End
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13 of 78  Sat 28th Apr 2012 6:37pm  
Member: Joined Mar 2010  Total posts:2688

The remains of the GEC factory in Whitefriars Lane backed onto our garden where it formed a raised viewing platform. From on top of that I was able to watch the helicopter fly in (from Baginton?) with the spire slung underneath as well as the entire placement operation.
New Cathedral of St Michael
charabanc
Coventry
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14 of 78  Mon 30th Apr 2012 8:47pm  
Member: Joined Apr 2012  Total posts:126

I lived in Cedars Avenue in Coundon in my youth and, because it was at the top of a hill, my back bedroom had a view of the city skyline. I watched the helicopter installing the fleche from my bedroom window through binoculars and then watched the report on the television news in the evening.
New Cathedral of St Michael
Baz
Coventry
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15 of 78  Thu 21st Jun 2012 10:00pm  
Member: Joined May 2012  Total posts:302

Linking the Old with the New. Taken from the spire of the Old Cathedral 2012 Thumbs up Yes I did walk up the steps.Wave
Always looking forward to looking at the past.

New Cathedral of St Michael

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