Thursday, October 25, 2007

A church on the move in Germany

A 660-tonne stone church was lifted lock stock and barrel on to a giant rolling platform in eastern Germany on October 22nd to make the 12-kilometre journey to its new home.

The church in the village of Heuersdorf had to be moved because it was sitting on extensive deposits of lignite, or brown coal.

Mining work to extract the lignite, a fuel used in power generation plants, is expected to start soon. Packed tightly into a cradle of wooden supports, the 750-year-old church complete with tiled bell tower was separated from its foundations and lifted 1.5 metres to be placed on the rolling platforms.

It started its painstakingly slow journey to the village of Borna on October 24th and is expected to arrive by October 31st, said Regina Messinger of the Mibrag mining company that is moving the church in a project costing $4.2 million.