On my last visit down south I was fortunate enough to visit Ely Cathedral, near Cambridge, which had been on my ‘to-do-list’ for quite some time. And what a magnificent building it is.
Work on the present cathedral began in the 11th but there had been a monastery since the Anglo-Saxon times founded by Etheldreda, daughter of Anna, king of East Anglia. In 1109 the monastic church became a cathedral and the Diocese of Ely was created.
Ely Cathedral is probably most famous for its Octagon and medieval lantern. In February 1322 the Norman central crossing tower collapsed. Instead of replacing it, it was enlarged to an octagonal tower with a large glazed timber lantern. You can take a tour up there which I wholeheartedly recommend.
The Lady Chapel and the cathedral itself have been used as filming locations (Elizabeth: The Golden Age, The Other Boleyn Girl, The King’s Speech for example) so some pictures might look slightly familiar.
I’m going to stop boring you with more facts now, let’s just take a look around. Why don’t we start inside?
Time to climb some steps and take a closer look at this marvel of medieval architecture.
The Lady Chapel is quite a contrast to the interior of the cathedral as it is very light and airy.