Saturday, 14 January 2012

Rochester Cathedral

Although I go to Rochester quite often, I have never been in the cathedral. 'The Mystery of Edwin Drood' inspired me to do so this week, as Rochester, renamed 'Cloisterham', is the settting for Dickens' last novel, and there was a good version of it on the BBC this week. We had a proper frost this morning, so everywhere looked beautiful and bright. This is a view of the cathedral through the twisted branches of an ancient Catalpa or Indian Bean Tree, thought to be the oldest in Britain. The tiny model of the cathedral in the crypt. Rochester is the second oldest Cathedral in the country. (I think Durham is the oldest) The present nave was started in 1083 and a Saxon cathedral was there in 604. A timeline here shows its interesting history.
Lovely details-this carving is around a doorway used by monks as a night-time entrance from their dormitory in the next door priory. It is from the 1340s. So you can forgive it for being a little chipped!
I love gargoyles. Such strange characters hiding around the place.

I loved the light transferring the pictures in the windows to the stone.

And the views from the windows of the crypt.

Our day didn't end there. We had a delicious lunch in Topes restaurant, a walk to the bridge to see lions, a visit to a Tudor lodging house and some secondhand book browsing. The book shop at the end of the highstreet is another place I have not been and it is enormous. You could get lost in there for days.


Rattling On said...

Looks like a lovely place to go, bit far from here for a day trip though!
We are frozen solid this morning and it's minus 4 at the moment, but everywhere looks lovley.

jabblog said...

I used to walk past Rochester Cathedral most days during my school days so it's lovely to see it here on your blog. Such a peaceful setting.