Cov Cathe­dral named as one of Eng­land’s finest gems

Coventry Telegraph - - NEWS - By JOHN CAR­LON News Re­porter news@reach­plc.com

COVEN­TRY Cathe­dral has been named one of Eng­land’s finest her­itage sites.

BBC arts edi­tor Will Gom­pertz in­cluded the 1960s land­mark build­ing as one his ten favourite ex­am­ples of her­itage ar­chi­tec­ture, de­scrib­ing it as “a mag­nif­i­cent, op­ti­mistic and bold re­sponse to the hor­rors of war.”

The new cathe­dral was built along­side the ru­ins of the old cathe­dral which was de­stroyed in the 1940 Blitz.

Gom­pertz added that “to cre­ate a modern and am­bi­tious build­ing ded­i­cated to spir­i­tual en­rich­ment from the lit­eral ashes of de­struc­tion was - and is - a sub­lime an­swer to bru­tal­ity.

“It is a build­ing born out of love and hope, made from the rub­ble of hate and de­spair.”

Also on his list are the An­gel of the North and the Tate Modern.

An­other War­wick­shire build­ing mak­ing the her­itage cut among 90 oth­ers was Shake­speare’s Birth­place on Hen­ley Street in Strat­ford-upon-Avon the writer and nov­el­ist Mon­ica Ali chose the tourist at­trac­tion as a lit­er­ary her­itage spot.

St Pauls in the City of Lon­don was the other cathe­dral cho­sen by Gom­pertz - its renowned dome was de­signed by ar­chi­tect Sir Christo­pher Wren and com­pleted in 1711.

Coven­try Cathe­dral is open ev­ery day, and it is now free to en­ter af­ter the Dean­ery waived ad­mis­sion charges last month.

The cathe­dral was con­se­crated in 1962, as the new St Michael’s to re­place the for­mer cathe­dral de­stroyed by the bomb­ing of 1940.

Other arts spots on the list are the Tate Modern in Lon­don, the for­mer Bank­side power plant; the York­shire Sculp­ture Park in the Bret­ton Hall Estate near Wake­field; and Antony Gorm­ley’s An­gel of the North by the A1 in Gateshead.

Gom­pertz will dis­cuss his se­lec­tion in pod­casts, avail­ble on iTunes and Sound­cloud .

A hun­dred places his­tory cam­paignThe cat­e­gory of art, ar­chi­tec­ture and sculp­ture is the ninth out of 10 cat­e­gories in the Ir­re­place­able: A His­tory of Eng­land in 100 Places cam­paign, funded by the church in­surer Ec­cle­si­as­ti­cal.

The cam­paign also in­clude sci­ence and dis­cov­ery, sport and leisure, faith and be­lief and in­dus­try, and trade and com­merce. A fi­nal cat­e­gory, “power, protest and progress”, is still yet to be re­vealed.

Dun­can Wilson, Chief Ex­ec­u­tive of His­toric Eng­land, said: “These ten choices rep­re­sent the huge range of our most pre­cious places, all of them spe­cial and sig­nif­i­cant around the world.

“They are sym­bols of great cul­tural and artis­tic achieve­ment, from cathe­drals and great houses to iconic sculp­tures, a theatre in a stun­ning nat­u­ral set­ting and one of the great­est gal­leries of modern art in the world created in an aban­doned power sta­tion.

“These places all have a strong iden­tity, and bring peo­ple to­gether in a spirit of won­der and en­quiry.

“They fully de­serve to be cel­e­brated.”

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