chichester cathedral – south-west tower

South-west tower of Chichester Cathedral. In the left of the frame you can see a sundial and if you look closely you can see the shadow hand, which was only about 20 minutes out at the time. Not bad.

Construction of the cathedral was begun in 1075, to replace the cathedral founded in 681 by St. Wilfrid for the South Saxons at Selsey, and completed in 1108, when it was dedicated to the Holy Trinity. In 1187 a fire that destroyed much of the town necessitated substantial rebuilding and the cathedral was reconsecrated in 1199. The central tower was completed in the 13th century and the spire in 1402.

The cathedral encompasses both Norman and Gothic architectural styles and is notable due to its free-standing bell tower at the north-west end. The reason for this being a history of subsidence at the site of the main structure – the south-west tower collapsed in 1210 and had to be rebuilt and the north-west tower collapsed in 1635 and not rebuilt until 1901.

Apparently it is one of only two English cathedrals visible from the sea (the other being Portsmouth cathedral).



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