Christchurch Cathedral is an Anglican cathedral in the city of Christchurch in New Zealand. It is located at the centre of the city, in a plaza called Cathedral Square. It is the seat of the Bishop of Christchurch.
Christchurch, the city, was founded by the Canterbury Pilgrims, who had come with the intention of setting up a cathedral and college and naming the city Christchurch. The name is derived from Christ Church College at the University of Oxford.
The Canterbury Pilgrims arrived in 1850. Due to all the difficulties encountered, they only managed to lay the cornerstone of Christchurch Cathedral on 16 December 1864. Financial constraints delayed the completion of the cathedral to between 1865 and 1873. Although the nave and tower were consecrated in 1881, the entire building was not fully completed until 1904.
Christchurch Cathedral was originally designed by Sir George Gilbert Scott, with New Zealand architect Benjamin Mountfort as site architect. The initial plans to use wood was changed when good quality masonry stones were discovered. The cathedral has a spire reaching 63 metres tall. From the spire, visitors get a good panoramic view of the city. The spire had been damaged by earthquake three times. After the third earthquake, the stone construction of the spire was replaced with the more resilient copper sheeting.
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