Ely is best known, and rightly so, for its extraordinary octagonal lantern tower. When the Norman tower fell in 1322 a new tower was erected, using oak beams to support 400 tons of stone and lead in a structure at once massive and airy. The first church here was erected in 673 by St. Aetheldreda, and rebuilt in 870 following Danish raids. In 1109, in the midst of another rebuilding, Ely was raised to cathedral status. At that time the country around Ely was marsh, and the cathedral rose like a beacon on the only spot of dry land for miles around.
Minster Place, Ely, Cambridgeshire, England, CB7 4DL
Heritage Rating: ?
Heritage Highlight: 14th century lantern tower is an engineering tour de force
Nearest: Hotels - Self Catering - Bed and Breakfasts