DURHAM Cathedral is
looking for adult volunteers to train in using Lego bricks.
They will help in a
£1-million fund-raising campaign by constructing a model of the
cathedral, roughly the size of a car, using 100,000 Lego bricks.
Each £1 donated "buys" a brick, which the "builders" will add to
The appeal for cash is
part of the ongoing Open Treasure project, one of the biggest
undertaken at the cathedral for decades. It will go towards the
£10-million cost of opening up parts of the cathedral - including
the Monks' Dormitory and the Great Kitchen - to create an
exhibition space for items such as the relics of St Cuthbert and
Saxon manuscripts currently held in storage.
Lego briefing sessions
will be held at the cathedral on 20 May, when volunteers, who must
be aged 18 or over, will learn about the task. A spokesman said:
"No experience of Lego building is required. However, if you are
already an enthusiast for Lego, or model-making, your skills will
be fully utilised. If you would like to get involved, but not sure
if your Lego-building skills are up to it, please still get in
"Training will be given,
and there will be regular visits by a Lego expert to make sure the
build goes according to plan."
The cathedral has already
secured several grants towards the cost of the Open Treasure
project, and the Heritage Lottery Fund has agreed in principle to a
£3.5 million donation, pending a detailed, second-stage
The architect and
television presenter George Clarke, who was born in Sunderland,
will act as an advocate for the project. He says that the cathedral
is his favourite building, and the reason he became an architect.
He recalls visiting as a seven-year-old, and using any excuse to
return. It even inspired his university dissertation on
stained-glass windows. "The cathedral is the north-east's biggest
asset. I love the building - and I'm a massive fan of Lego," he
The Dean of Durham, the Very Revd Michael Sadgrove, said that
Open Treasure was, in monetary terms, one of the cathedral's
biggest redevelopment projects of the last half-century.