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Earlier in Henry's reign, on , he had laid the foundation stone for a new Lady Chapel at the east end of the Confessor's church, but as the Abbey's own financial resources were not sufficient to continue the rebuilding of the whole church at this time no other work was carried out.It is said that Henry's devotion to St Edward the Confessor later prompted him to build a more magnificent church in the newest Gothic style, and also to provide a new shrine for the Saint, near to whom Henry himself could be buried.The present building dates mainly from the reign of King Henry III.In 1245 he pulled down the eastern part of the 11th century Abbey, which had been founded by King Edward the Confessor and dedicated in 1065.The three master masons supervising the work were Henry of Reyns, John of Gloucester and Robert of Beverley.It is not known if Henry was English or French but the architect was greatly influenced by the new cathedrals at Reims, Amiens and Chartres, borrowing the ideas of an apse with radiating chapels and using the characteristic Gothic features of pointed arches, ribbed vaulting, rose windows and flying buttresses.The last phase of building of the Abbey was the completion in 1745 of the West Towers in Portland stone, to a design by Nicholas Hawksmoor, the Abbey's Surveyor.John James, his successor as Surveyor, finished the work.(Both Wren, William Dickinson and Hawksmoor had put forward various designs for a central tower, dome or spire on top of the lantern roof but this was never done.
The next great addition to the Abbey was the construction of a magnificent new Lady Chapel by Henry VII between 15 to replace the 13th century chapel. The Perpendicular architecture here is in total contrast to the rest of the Abbey.Wooden carved misericords can be seen on the stall seats.The original jewel-like stained glass by Bernard Flower has, however, disappeared.No accounts for this building have been found but it is thought that the architects were Robert Janyns and William Vertue.It has been called "one of the most perfect buildings ever erected in England" and "the wonder of the world". The glory of the chapel is its delicately carved fan vaulted roof, with hanging pendants.