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George Bernard Shaw was here.

February 16, 2011

The Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament (opened on the 12th February 1905) in Barbadoes Street is built in the Renaissance style, the work of architect Francis Petre. I believe it was paid for by the piss-poor of the city.The cathedral so impressed George Bernard Shaw* that he hailed its architect as ‘the New Zealand Brunelleschi’. It is now closed to the public after being badly damaged in the earthquakes, and, in particular, the Boxing Day shock. Next door to the cathedral is the Christchurch Music Centre which is an unusual (for Christchurch) building in the Byzantine Revival style, by the architect J. Munning. The old convent (also damaged) is in the Neo-Gothic style, as are many other Christchurch buildings.

 * His impression of NZ–‘Altogether too many sheep.’

 UPDATE: Top set of photos include the window of the Music Centre (in the Byzantine Revival style), the plaque on the building and one of the carvings on the doorway.

Cath_domeCloseup_cathedralLion_carving_on_music_centreMusic_centrePlaque
Cathedral_rc_petre_archOld_convent_damageOld_convent_neo_gothicRc_cathedral

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