The Duomo in Barga is once again at the centre of some heated discussions in the city with some people even using the phrase “institutionalised vandalism”
Just last week came news of vandalism as a bench was removed and subsequently damaged from outside the Duomo and graffiti daubed on the nearby Civic Museum – article here (many other local news sites across the net reported erroneously that the graffiti was actually on the Duomo.)
The polemic this time across social media and networks in this area is instead based on a far different action but the depth of feeling from some commentators seems to be just a deep. There are some unhappy people out there.
A hand rail on one side of the steep ramp which gives pedestrian access to the Duomo has been installed and for many people this modernisation is completely out of keeping with the centuries-old aesthetic of the cathedral.
One person talked about the poetry of struggling up the last steep incline towards the Duomo making absolutely sure not to touch the tall bushes covered in 5 cm long thorns flanked on either side. A visual and tactile reminder of part of the story central to the Christian faith.
Those spiny bushes now exist on only one side of the path, the other being completely cleared.
It must also be stated that the path is extremely steep and the handrail probably comes into its own not for people going up but as an aid to people going down.
It will probably come into its own in the winter months as elderly churchgoers make their way back down the incline after the services but many people insist that something has definitely been lost with the addition of this metal rail.
Time will tell.