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Épater la Bourgeoisie
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Westminster Cathedral
Height - 87m./284ft.
Built - 1903.
Architect: John Francis Bentley.
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- The site for the Cathedral was purchased in 1884, after previously being occupied a prison built in 1834. Prior to that, in 1651, Oliver Cromwell interred Scottish prisoners on the site following the defeat of Charles II.
- John Francis Bentley was chosen as the architect, and the foundation stone was laid on the 29th June 1895. The foundations were completed in 1896 and the fabric of the building was finished in 1903. The Cathedral was consecrated in 1910.
- The Cathedral was visited by Pope John Paul II in 1982 and in 1995 by Queen Elizabeth II; the first time a sovereign had attended a Roman Catholic liturgy.
- 125 different marbles from 23 countries on 5 continents are used in the Cathedral - more than any other building in England. The building also houses mosaics containing 12 million pieces; when completed to the original designs, upto 100 million pieces would need to be laid.
- The 14 Stations of the Cross were carved by the sculptor and typographer Eric Gill, who in 1914 was exempted from war service in order to carve them.
- Architect John Francis Bentley conducted a Grand Tour of Europe prior to designing Westminster Cathedral and was influenced by the Byzantine architecture of Venice's Saint Mark's Basilica and Istanbul's Haghia Sophia.
- The cathedral boasts the widest nave in England.

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18,919 Posts
I think it looks better inside, slightly more coherent? The last of the handcrafted buildings in London is probably the British Library... which again looks better inside than out!
 

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Futurist
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Really weird looking building - but weird in a good way, not a bad way. :) I didn't used to like this, but it's grown on me. It's one of those quirky little gems that London does so well; and adds to the rich architectural variety of the urban landscape.

9/10
 

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1,638 Posts
Interesting. Agree it would look better with two towers. Certainly not what you'd expect from a London building - but then that's what's great about the city - there's everything. 8.5/10 - rounded up to 9.
 
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