VISNEWS Apr 1 filmed General and Madame Franco as they attended the moving religious ceremony opening the Spanish National Civil War Memorial at Cuelgamuros, in the Guadarrama Mountains 36 miles north of Madrid.
VISNEWS Apr 1 filmed General and Madame Franco as they attended the moving religious ceremony opening the Spanish National Civil War Memorial at Cuelgamuros, in the Guadarrama Mountains 36 miles north of Madrid. The Cardinal-Primate of Toledo officiated.
After an hour long requiem mass for Primo de Rivera, founder of the Falangist Party shot during a dawn execution in the courtyard of an Alicante Prison Nov 20 1936, whose body was transferred to the memorial from the Abbey of El Escorial, General Franco addressed an estimated crowd of 45,000 outside.
The 1,000 foot long Basilica, tunnelled into the living rock and lined with polished granite, is intended to be a memorial for the dead of both sides in the Spanish Civil War. The cross surmounting the underground cathedral is 460 feet high and inside one of the arms is a floodlight which is visible more than 300 miles away. The dome of the Basilica is richly decorated with mosaics representing scenes from the Last Judgement.
Blasting the 60,000 cubic metres of rock out of the mountain-side to build the church has been long and costly. Started 16 years ago the total cost is expected to top GBP9 million....mostly from donations to the Franco cause during the civil war. Seven hundred labourers, working round the clock, have created a Church impressive in its simplicity, dignity and beauty.