Discovering St Albans…
As a newbie in St Albans and eager to discover more about this city, I was lucky enough to join a tour of the Cathedral tower at the weekend (they only organise these a few times a year). I even roped in my little sister who’s lived in the area for years and not visited the Cathedral yet. Although I am a bit of a geek for these things, it was a surprisingly delightful tour and not just a history lesson.
As we sat in the Cathedral, our guide Laurie explained that the Cathedral was built in the Roman city of Verulamium in the 11th Century and is the only standing Cathedral tower in the UK to still have its original structure. This made me feel honoured to have such a historic site just down the road from where I live. The Cathedral was refurbished at the end of the 19th Century and what struck me was the stunning modern stained glass round window — the Rose Window — which apparently caused a lot of controversy at the time.
After this short historic insight, off we trotted one by one to climb up the narrow stairs and passages up to the bell ringing chamber and then another flight of stairs to the Belfry to see the bells! Who knew there was such a thing as a bell ringing method. If you want a good workout, you should consider a career in bell ringing (apparently, it’s a thing nowadays!).
The last part of the tour was walking up to the roof of the tower which is 42m high and seeing remarkable views of St Albans (think carefully if you are a tad claustrophobic or scared of heights!!). I also definitely spotted my sister’s house but also it was great to see the Clock tower and the Saturday farmer’s market in all its glory.
So, if you haven’t been yet, go ahead and get yourself up that tower! I thought it was a fabulous tour to go on and I learnt great things about this historic city! Our guide Laurie was also fabulous and very knowledgable!
I’m already looking for the next adventure to go on in St Albans and Hertfordshire…
See you next time!
Find more info here: @StAlbansAbbey