Click on title to expand ……. The Club had an excellent meeting on 23rd January at Mere and Tabley Community Club. Almost 40 members heard an account of club activities since the previous meeting, including a splendid afternoon tea at Knutsford Golf Club, a morning’s invigorating indoor bowling at Weaverham and a 4 mile circular walk through interesting countryside between Christleton and Guilden Sutton, near Chester.
Members then enjoyed a first-hand account by Philip Harrison of the construction of Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral – “Paddy’s Wigwam”. A 9 acre site had been purchased in 1930 at the opposite end of Hope Street from the Anglican Cathedral for £100,000, and Sir Edwin Lutyens had designed a massive church which would have been the second largest church in the world, with the largest dome. Construction began in 1933 but was suspended during the War and abandoned afterwards when the projected cost had risen from £3M to £27M. Only the crypt was finished to Lutyens’ design in 1958, after which a fresh design competition was won by Sir Frederick Gibberd.
Philip described how he had come to join Gibberd’s London practice as his personal assistant and had subsequently become Resident Site Architect for the Cathedral between 1964 and 1968. He gave a detailed description of the cathedral’s design and construction and told several anecdotes of events during the construction period. In one of them he described the hair-raising access route by ladders to the top of the lantern and explained how two young boys had managed to get to the top one evening and were too terrified to get down by themselves. Philip rounded off his talk with an account of his attendance at the celebratory Mass when the Cathedral was completed in May 1967.
Future Rex Club events include an evening meeting of the Discussion Group, a meeting of the Information Technology Group, and walks in the Whitegate and Delamere areas. There will also be the regular Club meetings at Mere and Tabley Community Club on the second and fourth Thursdays of February at 10.00am for 10.30am. The Club currently has 53 members and potential new members are encouraged to contact the Club Secretary, Richard Martin, by email at [email protected] Further details about Knutsford Rex Probus are available at www.knutsfordrexprobus.co.uk