Three Cathedrals – Wells – Part One

Welcome to the next cathedral in my Three Cathedral series of posts.

We visited Wells Cathedral decades ago and we remembered very little of it apart from a wide sweeping stone stairway. So when we returned in the autumn we looked forward to reacquainting ourselves with its architecture. We guessed where the Cathedral would be in the little city of Wells by following the wide street with its market right to its very end. The market stalls almost funneled us towards the cathedral gates. 

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Just before entering the cathedral grounds we came across this beautifully colourful National Trust shop.

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An open green with specimen trees showed us the way to go.

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Wells Cathedral is a tall imposing structure designed to dominate the city and its inhabitants.

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A modern entrance had been added in recent years to give visitors a comfortable way in and to preserve the main doorway in. The use of green oak and matching stone ensured that the modern extension fitted beautifully and most sympathetically. the new entrance also carefully led us to a new cafe again designed to match. From every one of its windows we got views to entice us onward to explore.

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The vaulted ceiling of the cloister walk has been sensitively restored to show its intricate complex web of wooden beams.

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As well as architecture it is the craftsmanship displayed in our old ecclesiastical buildings that impresses us most. It is good to see them well preserved and carefully, lovingly looked after.

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Often when exploring church buildings it is possible by looking up, to discover carvings of characters. like this “impish” character below left. He looks like he is plotting his next trick. The wooden carving on the left was high up and hard to see in detail and he was part of an ancient complex clock.

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Let us finish this first part of two posts about Wells Cathedral by looking at other characters we managed to find hidden here and there throughout the great building.

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In part two we carry on with our tour and discover an amazing curved staricase and some modern additions.

About greenbenchramblings

A retired primary school head teacher, I now spend much of my time gardening in our quarter acre plot in rural Shropshire south of Shrewsbury. I share my garden with Jude my wife a newly retired teacher , eight assorted chickens and a plethora of wildlife. Jude does all the heavy work as I have a damaged spine and right leg. We also garden on an allotment nearby. We are interested in all things related to gardens, green issues and wildlife.
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3 Responses to Three Cathedrals – Wells – Part One

  1. I really like the vaulted ceiling along the cloister walk.

  2. The flowers in front of the National Trust Shop are spectacular. That is just a wonderful photo. Is that like what we might call a gift shop for the Cathedral here?

  3. The National Trust is a charity which looks after our historic important buildings and gardens. They usually have shops at their properties but a few in tourist towns such as this one at Wells. The cathedrals always have shops inside too.

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