St John’s Cathedral is unique in Australia as the completion of the building design was achieved through collaboration between clergy, stonemasons and architects over a period of almost 100 years… It was also the only Victorian Gothic cathedral under construction in Australia
William Webber – the third Bishop of Brisbane and previously a vicar in London – was instrumental in initiating the Brisbane cathedral project. In 1885–86, he commissioned John Loughborough Pearson to make sketch plans for Brisbane cathedral. The Brisbane cathedral movement began in earnest in 1887 as a celebration of Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee
It was a cruciform church with a wide nave, double aisles, apse and ambulatory, short transepts about halfway along the length of the building and an apsidal side chapel on the north. The west front had towers close to the end of the nave. The upper part of the west wall was supported by a relieving arch, which continued the line of the interior cross arches. The towers had massive buttresses. Their strong vertical lines carried on into corner turrets set before pyramidal spires
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