English Churches and Cathedrals
There are around 37000 churches dotted around the UK, in all shapes and sizes, from the small round towers, or the flash looking wool churches in Norfolk to the beautiful and Gothic cathedrals. I have an amateur interest in history and love stepping back in time when visiting churches. I see churches in ways many will never see and see them as art, with different types of moods, but also see them as a haven for nature (Read Below).
Englands newest Arboretums
I often see trees, wildflowers, shrubs, hear more birds and see more insects within churchyards than I do in the ordinary countryside. So when you are walking around a church grounds, stop and take a look around you, are you seeing and hearing more nature? Seeing trees, you don't mostly see. Well, it means the churchyard is a village arboretum, displaying the past. How strange when you think, the architecture holds loads of history but so does that grounds!
There is an exciting leaflet about the churchyard conservation scheme from the Norfolk Wildlife Trust called the churchyards for wildlife which can be downloaded Here
NEW! for 2019, Glossary page just added for church architecture Glossary Page Here
What I have seen after four years of church photography, Church in Bedfordshire often stand away from their village, most will be due to the black death but in Cambridgeshire where I'm from all the churches are within the communities, why I have no idea.
There's Tydd St Giles church with its rare detached bell tower and St Wendreda's of March that contains over 100 roof angels.
There are some beautiful churches here, and Long Sutton has the oldest and tallest wooden spire in the UK, and just a few miles down the road at Gedney, you find the Cathedral of the Fens St Mary Magdalene, the largest church in the area.
And we must not forget those lovely old round towers, around 124 remaining and most in Norfolk (more on round towers in the link below).
The Exteriors of these buildings are dramatic and Gothic looking. When you enter, you enter into a world of magnificent architecture, it is simply breathtaking and needs a good few hours to take in these man-made wonders from ancient times.
Round Tower Churches
If the Cathedrals are at the overkill end of the style scale, then the little round towers are at the bottom end, but this less dramatic look is the main draw for me, these are genuinely beautiful and cute small buildings.