Protection of St. Paul’s Cathedral
The Dean and Chapter of St. Paul’s Cathedral, London, fearing lest in some one of the many big fires that so frequently break out in that congested district, the present church, Sir Christopher Wren’s masterpiece, should share the fate of its predecessor, which went down in the great fire of London, have entrusted to Messers. Merryweather, the well known manufacturers of British fire apparatus, the work of installing protective appliances and adequate means of extinguishing any fire that may chance to break out within the structure or near enough to it to threaten its spread to the church. It is not the intention of the authorities of the cathedral to seem to underestimate the competency of the London fire brigade to deal with any such fire if such should start. Their only idea is to act at once, so as, if possible, to extinguish the flames in their incipiency, to prevent their spread in roof or among the choir stalls in both of which, especially in the vast extent of wooden beams in the former, there is so much inflammable matter for a fire to feed on. There has always been a certain amount of fire protective equipment installed in the cathedral, but, under the new system oi making assurance doubly sure, it will now be possible to pour big streams of water into any part of the building, in crypt, dome or roof. In each corner of the cathedral a 4-inch cast iron pipe is being carried to the 60-foot level known as the cornice, and similar pipes will pass into the crypt.
Laterals from these main pipes will feed an extended system of hydrants throughout the church. Connected with one main will be a 3-inch pipe, which will be led up the face of the cone to the golden gallery and continue upward to the lantern, where it will connect with the existing tank.