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Sothwark Cathendraw Millenium Project Essay

1847 words - 7 pages

The Southwark Cathedral is the oldest cathedral church building in London with evidence showing that there might have been a church on the site since AD 606. It lies on the south bank of the river Thames close to London Bridge and it acquired the status of cathedral in the year 1905 after it became the seat of the Anglican Bishop of the new diocese of Southwark (Sacred destinations, 1995-2011).
The millennium commission partly funded a project on the cathedral renovations which was given the name; Southwark Cathedral Millennium Project. The project was undertaken from 1997 to 2001 using a design made by Richard Griffiths and it entailed re-casting of the existing church yard and a creation of a new enclosed square associated with the new refractory building. The east church yard was designed as a new herb garden with herbs and shrubs containing medicinal and culinary uses.
There was also construction of a new paved country yard space which is enclosed by the new buildings and a new planter containing a row of liquidambar trees on the Cathedral’s northern side. On the southern side the space was re-designed to improve the quality of the fabric and render the space more useable (Myers, 2004). The new entrance courtyard and the new building were designed in a manner to show that they had always been there (Emap Limited, 2002-2010).
The project used numerous resources which included manpower and money to achieve the set targets. But evaluation upon its completion shows that there were some positive aspects and also negative outcomes of the project. Hence it is fair to compare both the negatives and the positives so as to come up with an overall verdict and conclusion on the success achieved and the failures/challenges encountered.
The failures
The millennium commission considered the cathedral project because it represented mainly Christian history and heritage. However, not everyone would be comfortable in the building mostly due to religious inclinations. This means that certain groups of people feels locked out and discriminated against because they are not at liberty to visit such sites. Thus commission should have financed another general project with no religious ties so that everyone would feel comfortable and free to enjoy the outcomes (Chartres, 2009).
The primary goal of the project was to improve the cathedral’s structures and buildings but still maintain the old look and design. This was to be done through using new and modern materials in a manner that on application the cathedral would still maintain the ancient look. But just by adding new materials, the cathedral lost its originality and features which were there from the beginning because they were just a replica of the original. This erased the originality of the church making it be old by name but the features and materials used were new and different (Southwark cathedral, 1998).
It is important and natural for projects to have benchmarks on whom to compare with and...

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