Here in Leeds we have a church spire boasting a Telstar wire-cage atom, defended by a phalanx of angry gargoyles. There is also a romantic frieze on a building society wall, and a few miles up the road we find Bradford, where a recent pride parade was held.
“From high above the city an atomic eye keeps watch; like
A hawk suspended on the wind, it sees occasional
Strangers make their puddled way past bright shop windows
The night is still but still not dark, our streetlights keep
The past at bay. The people dare not speak, too weak to care
About the ornate walls or slender spires, while
Between the shadows darts a fox in silent elegance.”
The Church of the Atomic Eye is actually the Church Institute, built in 1868 and designed by Adams and Kelly. On her website ‘victorianweb.org’ the historian Jacqueline Banerjee gives a brief account of this building together with a photograph showing the splendid Gothic windows.