Gallery: Cathedral is scaffold-free

FOR the first time in almost a decade, Suffolk's cathedral has broken free of its scaffolding.

Laurence Cawley

FOR the first time in almost a decade, Suffolk's cathedral has broken free of its scaffolding.

Yesterday - when the scaffolding for the roofing was taken down from St Edmundsbury Cathedral in Bury St Edmunds - the moment was called “simply great” by those who worked there.

“There's nothing impeding the view. It is great. It is the first time in nine years that the cathedral has not had scaffolding up. For eight years, there was scaffolding up for the Millennium Tower, work on the cloisters and then for about six months there's been scaffolding up for the refitting of the roof.

“We can now enjoy the building in all its glory - it is a great moment to enjoy it.”

However, that enjoyment will be short-lived because the cathedral will again be shrouded behind metal bars when further works get underway.

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“That will be in late June. We are planning a cathedral festival for the first two weeks of June for when the Archbishop visits. And this brief respite has been well timed because it ties in with Easter and The Queen's visit next week. These sorts of buildings are constantly evolving and need work.”

Richard Rout, leader of Bury Town Council, said: “It is fantastic to have the Cathedral Tower, which celebrated the start of the 21st Century, revealed in all its glory for the first time in nine years.

“The tower is a wonderful example of how Bury continues to move forward while staying in sympathy with its heritage - it is a beacon of hope for us and for generations to come.”

Nigel Aitkens, the cabinet member responsible for tourism at St Edmundsbury Borough Council, said: “The cathedral has always been a draw for visitors as part of the Abbey and the Abbey Gardens and it has grown out of that.

“Over the last few years it has become a fantastic building in its own right. It is the landmark of Bury and Bury is very fortunate to have it.”