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Last Updated: Monday, 27 October, 2003, 16:16 GMT
Grotesque idea to raise funds
The cathedral needs 10 new gargoyles
A cathedral in need of cash has come up with a 'grotesque' way to raise funds - allowing people to 'buy' gargoyles.

Gloucester Cathedral wants to raise 30,000 to pay for 10 new carvings for the 900-year-old building's facade.

And instead of asking parishioners to collect the money, it is asking anyone who wants to 'sponsor' a gargoyle to stump up 3,000.

In exchange for their donation, benefactors will buy their own little piece of cathedral history - a medieval-themed waterspout which will grace the church's masonry for generations to come.

Eroded carvings

Anne Strathie, the cathedral's development manager, said: "We are always trying to raise money for projects, and we find people like to support something identifiable.

"We felt the gargoyles were something people could identify individually, and we think the cost - 3,000, or 2,500 in a one-off tax-free donation - is an amount within people's reach.

"We hope people will be prepared to help in this way - they will be able to show their friends that they were able to play their part in the restoration of the cathedral and point to 'their' gargoyle."

The new gargoyles, on the building's south face, will replace a number of carvings which are almost completely eroded after five centuries of wear.

Animal inspiration

They will represent a number of animals, including a lion, a ram and a wolf, playing musical instruments.

They have been designed by the cathedral's master mason, Pascal Mychalysin.

Gloucester cathedral was the site of Henry III's coronation in 1216, and is the resting place of Edward II, who was murdered at nearby Berkeley Castle in 1327.

The Norman cathedral has been immortalised on film, with parts of the Cloisters used as a location for the Harry Potter films.

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