Window Wednesday — Guildford Cathedral

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It feels like ages since I have posted something for my weekly window post.  My love for windows and their ability to frame a photo hasn’t diminished but time to go out and photograph them had recently.  Last week we ventured to Guildford for a mooch on New Year’s Eve and to see if anything grabbed us in the sales and on the way back we realised we had never been to Guildford Cathedral.  Looked at it up on the hill whilst driving past on the A3 a bazillion times, but never been in it.

So trust us to pick a day when it was in the midst of a massive £7 million refurb and full of scaffolding.   It seemed really incongruous seeing a cathedral as a building site.   I have been in alot of cathedrals and churches and by their very nature they are old.  Built hundreds, if not thousands of years ago, so they are done.  Finished.   You don’t expect to walk in and see skips, rubbish shoots and scaffolding.

But then Guildford Cathedral is a bit different from your average cathedral.  It was built over thirties years from 1936 to 1961 so parts of it are only a bit older than me and god knows there are days when I could do with some scaffolding to sort me out too.

It is also unique in that it was used in the first Omen film as the backdrop to Damien seeing the spire whilst in the car with his mum who he then turns to and bites.    The first sign that this kid might be the anti-christ and a local church is in the background.    It caused uproar locally at the time, as you would expect.  It is hardly a good bit of a PR is it?  And is probably why there is no mention of this on the cathedral’s Wikipedia page, yet it was the only thing I knew before visiting last week.   It doesn’t really make you want to visit on a regular basis does it?  Which is a shame because it is a stunning building

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The wooden cross was erected to mark where the new church would be built and comes from Burma oak that was on HMS Ganges in the 1800s, and is therefore named the Ganges Cross.   The angel on top was given in the name of a local soldier who died in World War II but it seems a shame that the support is a mobile phone mast.   I know the hill means it is good place to put such a thing as it is high up, but really?

Inside right now isn’t particularly photogenic but when it is done in the spring it will be spectacular, so we concentrated on the outside, and when I say concentrated I mean walked around as it was late in the afternoon and the sun was setting which meant it was getting cold.  But the doors, oh the doors, totally satisfied my love for doors and windows.

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Ditto drain pipes with the date on them in roman numerals!  Who knew such a thing existed?  I didn’t but I am totally in love with them and what them at home.

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You see, this window would be stunning with the etched angels, if it wasn’t for the plastic hoarding on the other side of it

 

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I did take time to stand and think about those we have lost as I leaned over the gate of the “Seeds of Hope Children’s Garden”.  Planted to give children a space to go and spend some quiet time if they have lost somebody close to them there really was a peace about it.   It had been the anniversary a few days before of our losing friends in the Boxing Day tsunami so whilst they weren’t children it did give me an opportunity to think about them for a few minutes.  Along with other absent friends who hadn’t been able to join us over Christmas.

 

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As we left the sun was setting so we pulled over on the Hogs Back to get a view of the sky.   I got a view of something else I wasn’t quite expecting but that my friends might need to be a story for another post!
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