Winchester Cathedral

Winchester Cathedral

[ Mar.2017 ] When I said to my husband “Shall we go to Winchester?”, the city in the south of England, he started singing a song.

I did not know this song, but apparently it is called “Winchester Cathedral” and it was sung by an British group called The New Vandeville Band in 1966.

The song is about a young man who fell in love with a prostitute apparently and it reached the top of the US chart and climbed up to the 4th in the British chart.

So we went to the Winchester Cathedral, which is the longest cathedral in Europe.

They started building it in 1079.

After the famous Norman Conquest in 1066, the William the Conqueror appointed a Norman bishop to build this.

The current building was not built in one go, but many modifications and renovations were made during the long history and each time they did it in the architectural style of that period, so this cathedral has many different styles.

Among them, the east end part of the long building which was built in the 13th century became dangerous to walk on around year 1900 as it was sinking.

So they started reinforcing it.

Because many parts of Winchester are on reclaimed land built by the Romans, this part of the grounds was marshy.

When they dug down they found a lot of water so they needed a diver to sort out.

A diver called William Walker worked under the foundations in murky dark water to dig out the rotting old timbers and to place bags of cement.

And the work took as long as 5 years.

This part of the cathedral still leans and when we were there, I felt uneasy, but apparently there is no danger there any more, thanks to him.

They were exhibiting his diving suit there.

The entrance fee for the cathedral was £7.95, which was not cheap, but when I looked at the ticket closely, it said it is valid for 12 months.

The closing time was 5 pm and we did not have enough time to see everything, I especially regret that we did not see the crypt with the sculpture made by Antony Gormley.

We have seen his works in northern England and in Tuscany in Italy.

So we can go back to see it within a year with this ticket, if we want to, but I remember that a similar thing happened at Windsor Castle and we never went back there within the time limit.

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