I have never been to Coventry, nor has it ever been high on my list of places I want to visit. That has now changed. Over the last few days I’ve been reading The Tidal Zone by Sarah Moss.
Without giving too much away, as I don’t want to ruin it for anyone and I have raved about this book so much to Octavia that it is already on her to read list, but Coventry cathedral features quite strongly in it. Coventry was bombed to bits in the Second World War. Mother, doing her SRN training in nearby Birmingham, spoke of seeing the glow from the fires in the sky as Coventry burned. The C14 cathedral was left in ruins.
The rebuilding of the cathedral was an important symbol of both remembrance and hope, an affirmation of life and faith. The result was controversial. I remember people talking about it when I was a child. People seemed to have very polarised reactions, loving or hating Basil Spence’s design. But reading The Tidal Zone, I am both awed and excited by the way Spence went to work, and I have to see this cathedral with my own eyes; the plethora of photographs available are not enough.
I expect to finish the book tonight, but it’s a big TV evening; Bake Off’s new series has started, and immediately afterwards there’s a programme following last year’s GBBO winner, the lovely Nadiya, as she goes to Bangladesh where her parents come from, and gets stuck into the local cuisine. I was feeling a bit so-so about this, but there was a trailer and it reminded me of how much fun Nadiya was in 2015’s competition.