No doubt most of you know of the roofless church in Old Portsmouth – the Garrison Church – at one time known as England’s Military Cathedral.
The roofless part of the church is the nave which suffered in the blitz on the city on January 10, 1941.
Most of it was constructed about 1212 by the Bishop of Winchester as a hospital for passing pilgrims.
Looking at the nave today, one might think it was of Norman origin, but in fact it is much younger by many years.
It was used as an ammunition store and later a house for the governor of Portsmouth during the reign of Elizabeth I.
From that period until the mid-19th century it fell into disrepair, until 1868 when the chaplain to the forces, Archdeacon Wright, took control and set about restoring the church.
It took the form of a Gothic revival with buttresess and a turret. What was once an almost flat bow roof became a soaring gable roof with eaves. In fact an almost new church which we see today, apart from the roof.