30 November 2008

The twisted spire of St. Mary and All Saints

The scientific explanation is that the spire [Chesterfield, Derbyshire] was built in the 14th century, in the era of the Black Plague, when the available workforce of unskilled craftsmen used unseasoned wood to support the 50 tons of lead sheeting. When the lead expanded with a summer heat, the wood twisted into its current semi-helical appearance.

The public tends to favor a less prosaic and more picturesque explanation: that the tower bent itself trying to get a view of the incredible sight of a virgin getting married in the church below. If that should happen again, locals say the tower will straighten itself back up in astonishment.

(Image credit from here - cropped)

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