During his career, English architect, Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, worked on several buildings, including the New Bodleian Library, Battersea Power Station and Liverpool Cathedral. He blended Gothic and modern styles in his architectural designs, resulting in many well-known landmarks. Yet, it is not only these buildings for which we remember him. Scott’s most famous creation was the iconic red telephone box, which still appears on streets in the United Kingdom, Malta, Bermuda and Gibraltar.
In 1901, the diocese of Liverpool announced a competition to design a new cathedral. Two well-known architects were assigned to judge the submissions: George Frederick Bodley (1827-1907), who had connections with the decorative arts manufacturer Morris & Co., and Richard Norman Shaw (1831-1912), the designer of the Piccadilly Hotel in London. At least 103 architects entered the competition, including Temple Moore who also allowed his pupil to submit an entry. Remarkably, Bodley and Shaw selected Scott as the winning architect.
Unsurprisingly, many contested the result, arguing that a 22-year-old with no experience was not a good enough architect for the job. Nonetheless, the diocese accepted Bodley and Shaw’s choice, although asked Bodley to oversee the work. Unfortunately, Bodley had commitments in the United States and was rarely on hand to support the young architect. As a result, the process was slow and frustrating, causing Scott to contemplate handing in his resignation. Before Scott could put this thought into action, Bodley unexpectedly passed away in 1907, leaving Scott in charge of the project.
Without Bodley to hold him back, Scott made rapid progress with the cathedral, but he no longer liked his original idea. After receiving permission from the diocese, Scott redesigned the building, making it simpler and symmetrical, allowing for more interior space. By the end of 1910, the first part of the building – the Lady Chapel – was constructed and consecrated, but the First World War slowed down the rest of the work.
The main body of the cathedral was erected in 1924 and consecrated in the presence of King George V (1865-1936) and Queen Mary (1867-1953). The Second World War caused problems with the construction and, although Scott worked on the project for the rest of his life, he never saw the finished cathedral. The building works finally came to an end in 1978.
Although Scott spent his entire career working on Liverpool Cathedral, he simultaneously produced designs for other buildings. His first completed construction was the Roman Catholic Church of the Annunciation in Bournemouth, followed by other churches in Norfolk, Kent, and the Isle of Man. He also worked on a house in Surrey with his brother, Adrian (1882-1963). During the First World War, while work on Liverpool Cathedral slowed, Scott became a Major in the Royal Marines and oversaw the construction of sea defences on the English coast.
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This blog post was published with the permission of the author, Hazel Stainer. www.hazelstainer.wordpress.com
Credo quia absurdum ("I believe because it is absurd") - Tertullian (c.155-220 AD)
Nobody could plausibly have invented the story of Jesus as the Bible has it. They tortured and crucified the hero. They vilified him for speaking to the wrong people and championing the poor. As a story, this is absurd. You would have to be a fool to believe it. As I write this letter, I am aware April Fool's day is approaching. Who else but a fool would invent such a story as that of Jesus?
April fools jokes are legion. Here are some articles which I ask you to decide, are they true or false?
They are all, of course, false.
According to tradition, on 1st April, we can be pranksters up until noon. The origin of the day is uncertain but may date back to Roman times when, at the start of the year, they celebrated renewal festivals. This allowed servants to control their masters or children to order their parents around. At one point, the Spring Equinox marked the beginning of a new year. Nowadays, this falls towards the end of March and may explain why the April Fools Day holiday developed. Also, when calendars changed to make 1st January the beginning of the year, people made fun of those who continued to celebrate new year in the spring.
Yet, believing in Jesus is far from foolish. Why would twelve of his closest friends, apart from John, die horrible deaths in Jesus’ name? They all sent the message of Christ’s resurrection around the world. If it was not true, why did no one break ranks to save themselves? The fact they did not is the biggest reason to believe.
There are many inconsistencies within the New Testament, but that does not take away from its authenticity. The Gospels were written from varying viewpoints, allowing us to read about a more detailed and complex saviour. The life of Jesus is a true story, meaning we must not forget that Christ came into the world so that all shall not perish but have eternal life.
Jesus is counterrevolutionary, asking us to believe in one God when the Romans and Greeks believed in many. He asks us to love our enemies by demonstrating that love practically. Rather than thinking it foolish to believe in such a man - fully human, fully divine - the jester's hat sits firmly on the non-believers.
P.S. True or false? The Gants Hill URC website has had almost 14,000 visitors since its creation. TRUE!
We are happy for you to use any material found here, however, please acknowledge the source: www.gantshillurc.co.uk
Rev'd Martin Wheadon