Friday, 3 February 2012

Cheadle's Pugins Gem

One of my favourite places

Once upon a time in a small market town in Staffordshire, England, an amazing church was built by a not so famous architect. The same man also designed the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben. St Giles RC church, because of its beauty and spectacular gothic architecture, became known as Pugin's Gem and has featured on both the BBC and Channel 4  in recent years.

That man was Augustus Welby Northmore Pugin, and he is now regarded as being responsible for the revival of Gothic architecture in the UK in the nineteenth century. In a recent BBC documentary, his influence on architecture was likened to that of Darwins influence on science.

2012, was the Bicentennial of the birth of Pugin and it was celebrated in style in Cheadle, a relatively unknown town that sits on the edge of the beautiful Staffordshire Peak District. A series of events,workshops, tours and exhibitions were staged throughout the year based around the church, the nearby Pugin Centre,and other local Pugin buildings. The legacy is the Pugin discovery and heritage centre which is sited at the centre of the High St.

The church itself is open to visitors most days and really should not be missed. Put a coin in the slot, sit back and be amazed as the church  is revealed in all its splendour. You will not be disappointed. To appreciate the church in full obtain an audio guide first from the Pugin Centre and allow it to guide you around the features of the church.

If you are travelling close to Staffordshire Peak District this year why not spend a little of your precious time to visit the not to be forgotten Pugin's Gem. There's also a chance to discover more of the Secrets of Cheadle, which lies only a few miles from Alton Towers resort and the scenic Churnet valley with its Steam railway and excellent country walks.

To find out more about Cheadle and how to get there why not visit the Cheadle,Staffordshire website Cheadle Staffordshire

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