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Sunday, April 8, 2012

Kingsbridge Cathedral

One of the most searched for terms that brings people to this blog is "Kingsbridge Cathedral," which is interesting as the place does not exist.

Kingsbridge does and is a lovely town south of Totnes and north of Salcombe in the South Hams area of Devon, 6 miles upstream from the sea.  Kingsbridge dates back to the 10th century, and has some lovely cobbled lanes, a colorful country craft market and some recommended pubs and restaurants.

So what is the fascination with the mythical Kingsbridge Cathedral.

The answer lies in the book The Pillars of the Earth by popular novelist Ken Follett and the subsequent TV series adaptation.

Follett's epic 1000+ page yarn tells the story of the building of a 12th century English cathedral, supposedly based on Salisbury Cathedral and Wells Cathedral, and the lives, loves and fears of those involved, set against the political intrigue and violent skull-duggery of those times

The Pillars of the Earth is one of the UK's most read books and was voted in to the top 100 best-loved books in the BBC's Big Read at number 33.

The book spawned a sequel called World Without End which takes place in the same fictional place but 200 years later.

Salisbury Cathedral

So if you do come to Kingsbridge you won't find its cathedral but you will find a beautiful place that was inhabited at the time Follett's book is set, as well as a number of medieval churches such as St. Thomas of Canterbury parish church in Dodbrooke. Thomas Becket, the Archbishop who was murdered in Canterbury Cathedral in 1170 is portrayed in the book.

Kingsbridge map

South Devon Kingsbridge Kingsbridge Cathedral

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