The tower of Temple Church rises to 114 feet. The lower two stages were built c. 1390 but work
was halted when the tower began to lean due to the marshy nature of the ground beneath. The final
stage was added c. 1460 and was built at an angle to the lower sections. This caused the tower to lean even
further, and work was then abandoned for good which is why the church has no pinnacle or parapet. In 1586
WILLIAM CAMDEN wrote in his Britannia that the tower 'shakes so when the bells ring, that it has parted company
from the rest of the building, and left a chink from top to bottom three fingers broad, opening and closing as the bells
ring'. After the church was damaged in the blitz the British Army were called in to make the building safe.
Assuming that the tower's precarious lean had been caused by bomb damage, the army decided that it
was dangerous and set about bringing the tower down with explosives. It was only the fact that a
passing Bristolian pointed out that the tower had been leaning for nearly 500 years that
prevented the destruction of this famous Bristol landmark.