The Protestant Reinoldikirche is, according to its foundation date, the oldest extant church in Dortmund, Germany; it is dedicated to Saint Reinoldus, the patron of the city. The church was built as a palatinate church in the Ottonian era. The present building is a late Romanesque church with a late gothic quire. The Reinoldikirche was built from 1250 to 1270, and is located in the center of the city, directly at the crossing of the Hellweg (a historic trade route) and the historic road from Cologne to Bremen.
Efforts to complete the tower of the Reinoldikirche were renewed in 1443. After its completion in 1454, it was 112 m tall and was referred to as the “Miracle of Westphalia”. The polygonal spire was renovated the first time in 1519. On 24 June 1520, the copper roofing was completed, and on 27 July the spire was added. The apex of the church was now about seven meters higher. In 1661, the tower collapsed after being damaged during an earthquake. The foundation for the new tower was laid 1662, and the building was completed 1701, with a baroque ornament on the top.
The church was heavily damaged in World War II. Since the reconstruction the tower now bears a hood with baroque features. These features supply a visual and harmonious connection between the original style of the church and its appearance after reconstruction. The tower of the Reinoldikirche (today’s height: 104 m) can be visited, up to the first platform by the bell tower. On the inside there is a large set of bells, made by the “Bochumer Association” foundry (total weight: 20 t), built in 1954 with altogether 6 steel bells. Their cost at the time of creation was 90,500 DM. The heaviest bell (Pitch: f°) weighing 6.500 kg, and measuring 2.50 m in diameter, is the largest cast steel bell in Westphalia.
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