Ultima Thule

In ancient times the northernmost region of the habitable world - hence, any distant, unknown or mysterious land.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Fire destroys St Petersburg cathedral domes

By Aussiegirl

What a shame!

swissinfo - Fire destroys St Petersburg cathedral domes

A fire gutted a 19th century cathedral in the heart of Russia's second city on Friday, destroying its famous azure domes which attract thousands of tourists every year.

As flames leapt from the main dome of the Troitsky (Trinity) Cathedral -- one of the largest wooden domes in Europe -- passers-by helped to rescue priceless artefacts from its renowned art and religious icon collection.

"The fire services don't have long enough ladders to reach the top of the dome. They have been aiming their water guns at the middle section," Reuters photographer Alexander Demyanchuk said by telephone from outside the cathedral.

The cathedral had been covered by wooden scaffolding during reconstruction work when the fire started.

"The main dome has been destroyed but we could not stop the fire because it was so high and now other domes are in flames," a spokesman for Russia's emergencies ministry told Interfax news agency.

Emergency services said there had been no casualties.

The Troitsky Cathedral, built overlooking one of central St Petersburg's canals, is big enough to hold 3,000 worshippers and also housed the military uniforms of Russian 19th century tsars.


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