Cathedral Roof Fall Leaves Woman Trapped In Bell Tower

    April 29, 2014
    Val Powell
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The RAF (Royal Air Force) was called to the Wells Cathedral in Somerset, England, to rescue a 68-year-old woman who was trapped between a void located between two walls in the church’s bell tower. The woman was trapped for three hours before the rescue team came to her aid.

According to a spokesperson for the cathedral, the woman was part of a 12-person group that was touring the top of the cathedral with two tour guides. During the tour, she fell 30 feet and became lodged between two turrets located 150 feet from the ground. Based on police reports, she sustained pelvic and arm injuries from the accident.

Marc House, a representative from the Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue team, said that they had to call in specialist crews in order to come up with the best plan to get the woman down. The RAF was called to the scene after they decided that it was the best way to rescue her from the bell tower comfortably and without adding further injures. The helicopter came and landed on the Cathedral Green and four RAF personnel rescued the woman. The woman was given pain medication and then brought to the Frenchay Hospital in Bristol for medical treatment.

Wells Cathedral administrator Dr. Paul Richards said that they would be investigating how the accident happened, and the cathedral will be closed for tours during this time.

The woman was said to be part of the cathedral’s “high part” tours wherein a tour group is brought to hidden parts of the cathedral where they can enjoy fantastic views of Somerset and Glastonbury Tor. Richards suspects that the woman fell in between the gaps on the floor of the 775-year-old cathedral.

A representative for the Health and Safety Executive said that they intend to fully cooperate with the local authorities regarding the accident.

Image via Wikimedia Commons

  • ohhhdear

    I have climbed up the spire of Salisbury Cathedral, and it is a fascinating tour. The views are fabulous. However, it is not a climb for anyone out of shape, and the footing is precarious in places. This is often the case in many other country’s tourist spots, such as the towers in San Giminano, Italy which often have no handrails.

  • SecularHumanist199

    She was in a cathedral, so why didn’t god keep her from falling? Hmmm.

    • john

      he did.

      • SecularHumanist199

        OK, fixed it. It is idiotic to think that if there were a god that he would allow a woman to fall like that only to “save” her from dying afterwards. If he really was in control wouldn’t he have prevented her from falling in the first place?

  • there is always one

    well she probably just ruined it for future tours. bummer. sounds like it would be cool

  • sam

    The boys from the RAF did a superb job! Hats off to them for a successful resolution to a very complex and dangerous problem!

  • Arlen Elliott

    Secular Humanist 199, You err in thinking God is in full control of everything. If he was, we would all be puppets and be continually controlled by Him. God allows us to be “free moral agents” to do as we please. If we don’t do what He says, but rather just do our own thing, we will not be rewarded in the next life like a true follower will be. GE, a Christian and a life time Bible student