I’m a huge fan of cathedrals, me. When you look at the staggering detail involved in even the tiniest details - including on the roofs where, presumably, no one but God himself would even be able to see whether it had been done properly - it’s truly mindblowing. What do we get these days? The bloody Walkie Talkie, which melts cars because no one bothered to design it properly.
And we are truly blessed to have some of the greatest cathedrals in the world right here in the UK; why, there’s one in practically every city, just pop your head up like a meerkat and you’ll probably see it.
But, as ever, it’s not enough to simply have lots of beautiful, incredible cathedrals in our midst. No, we have to decide which is the best one.
And, following in the footsteps of the esteemed Richard Osman, who has done a range of excellent World Cup of Things, architecture fan Ben Brock decided to start a cathedral-based tournament on Twitter to settle the debate, and find out who is Lord of the cathedrals - the Anglican ones, at least.
Having noticed that there were 48 of them in England and Wales (Scotland was not included but for good reason), a world cup tournament was the ideal format to sort the wheat from the chaff, so off he went.
A couple of rules to begin:
Off we went, with Ben posting interesting facts about each one involved:
By this point, things had got serious.
While Ben was already thinking of the next tournament:
Now to the semi-finals, which saw 4 groups of 3 - with the 12 winners (Durham, Chichester, Salisbury, Coventry, York, Ely, Liverpool, Gloucester, London, Lincoln, Winchester and Canterbury) joined by the 4 runners-up with the most votes (Bristol, Lichfield, St. David’s and Peterborough).
By now, the cathedrals themselves were getting involved:
Here we go and, to begin: a shock result in a nailbitingly close contest:
Nobody saw that coming. Apart, perhaps, from God, as he is omniscient.
By this point, Ben was getting pretty excited with the whole thing.
On we went:
The cathedrals were magnanimous in defeat:
Suddenly, with the final in sight - Durham, Bristol, York and Lincoln being the chosen few - a big-hitter got involved:
But the others weren’t giving up:
And finally… (literally)
Who would triumph?
It was a tense finale.
The winners were euphoric.
What a moment.
Congratulations Lincoln, well done Ben, and a final thought to take away with you: