Page last updated at 10:06 GMT, Monday, 14 February 2011
Cathedral visits increase with Climbing Great Buildings
Dr Jonathan Foyle and Lucy Creamer
Dr Jonathan Foyle was aided by professional climber Lucy Creamer

On 8 February BBC2 viewers had another opportunity to see Coventry Cathedral on the programme Climbing Great Buildings.

The crew and presenter Dr Jonathan Foyle spent two long days at the cathedral to achieve feats like abseiling in front of the world's largest tapestry and descending into the cathedral ruins on a zip wire.

The repeat of the programme was great news for the cathedral, which saw a sharp increase in visitor numbers after its broadcast on 24 September 2010.

Andrew Marlow, events manager at Coventry Cathedral, explains: "We saw a big upturn in visitors immediately after the programme was aired and a lot of those visitors mentioned the programme."

Stunning pictures

Its success did not surprise him: "The programme showed the cathedral in a great light, showing its architectural milestones were cutting edge at the time and are still relevant and beautiful today.

"Lots of local visitors came afterwards saying they hadn't realised how good it was inside, having only seen the building from outside before.

"We also saw an increase in visitors from very far afield and even now we're still seeing an increase on numbers before the programme."

Unusual techniques

Dr Jonathan Foyle
Dr Jonathan Foyle also scales London's St Paul's Cathedral in the series

In the series architectural historian and novice climber Dr Jonathan Foyle scales Britain's most iconic structures, from the Normans to the present day.

With unusual techniques he reveals the buildings' secrets and tells the story of how our architecture and construction has developed over 1,000 years.

His methods raised some initial concerns at Coventry Cathedral, according to Mr Marlow: "On paper it looked bizarre and we had some fears about them tying off to old masonry, but the team was so good and so thorough that our cathedral structural engineer was very happy.

"They were brilliant and the results were well worth the effort; the cathedral looks great in the programme."

Watch online

Climbing Great Buildings was broadcast on Tuesday, 8 February 2011 at 1430.

The programme will be available to view on iPlayer for a limited time. Follow this link to see the whole series on iPlayer .

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