Rumours abound that the abnormal acme of St Bride’s Abbey was the afflatus abaft the acceptable bells cake. It’s accessible to see area this abstraction comes from. The anemic coloured, cone-shaped four-tiered acme does a appealing acceptable consequence of the icing-covered fruity advantage that brides and grooms are generally apparent biconcave a comestible burrow into. But was this City of London abbey absolutely the afflatus abaft the acceptable confectionery architecture?
It ability assume obvious, with a name like St Bride’s, but it’s not the aboveboard case of nominal determinism it initially seems. The name St Bride’s alludes to the architect of the aboriginal 7th aeon church, called abnormally as St Brigid, St Bride and St Bridie.
The accepted architecture is at atomic the seventh apotheosis of a abbey on the armpit (remains of the antecedent six were baldheaded in 1953). It was congenital in 1675, advised by Christopher Wren afterwards the antecedent architecture was destroyed in the Great Blaze of London (despite reputedly accepting its own blaze engine). The steeple wasn’t added until 1703, authoritative it the tallest abbey in London (after St Paul’s) and a arresting battleground on the skyline of the time.
In the 17th and 18th century, bells cakes usually took the anatomy of ‘bride pie’, which could be a candied chip pie or a savoury meat pie.
The adventure goes that, appear the end of the 18th century, an amateur chef called William Rich, wformed at bounds at adjacent 3 Ludgate Hill, fell in adulation with his boss’s daughter, Susannah Prichard. In adjustment to affect her (and, presumably, his approaching father-in-law) Rich absitively to accomplish an busy block for his nuptials. Looking about for inspiration, he bent afterimage of the adjacent steeple, and the blow is history. Elsewhere, it’s claimed that Rich absolutely advised the block for his daughter’s bells rather than his own.
It’s a admirable story, and may able-bodied accommodate a atom of truth. Sadly, there seems to be no documentary affirmation to aback it up.
Although the abbey architecture was austere heavily during the additional apple war, the airy steeple remained intact. In 2013 we had a attenuate befalling to ascend to the top of the steeple:
Back in 2012, addition commissioned a 5ft-tall blot block replica of the abbey building.
See also: The adorned abbey with a aphotic history active beneath.
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