11 year, £11m Restoration Project at York Minster starts this week.

10th May 2019

Some Funding Good News!!

The first phase of work to protect 600-year-old stained glass windows as part of an 11 year, £11m conservation and restoration project at York Minster starts this week.

And to help ensure it happens – York Minster has just announced last year’s sell out Northern Lights fundraiser will be back this October!!

The major project to repair and maintain stone and stained glass in the cathedral’s South Quire Aisle, which dates from the late 1300s, originally began in 2016 and focussed on replacing and conserving stonework.

Specialist conservators from York Glaziers Trust are now beginning work to protect the area’s medieval stained glass, starting with the removal of two windows from the upper Clerestory level.

The work is part of a wider 20-year partnership project between York Glaziers Trust and York Minster to ensure all the cathedral’s windows, which hold the largest collection of medieval stained glass in the country, have protection from the environment.

The 20-year strategic glass plan will see state-of-the-art glazing extended to all of the windows, halting the decay and buying much needed time for conservation work. Funding for the £11m project has been kick-started with an endowment grant of up to £1m from the National Lottery Heritage Fund which will be invested to create a regular source of income for the 20-year work.

The grant means that since the fundraising campaign launched in 2018, every £1 raised by the public and York Minster Fund has been matched by the NLHF.

To help reach the £1m target and generate further funding for the project, the awe-inspiring Northern Lights sound and light projection will return to the cathedral by popular demand in October this year for a week-long run after its sell out two night debut last June.

Tickets for the event which will run from 24 to 31 October, will go on sale on Tuesday 28 May.

The windows, part of a scheme of eight, are believed to have been created between 1404 and 1414 and tell the story of the triumph of Christianity in the North of England, and the crucial role played by York Minster.

The windows were severely damaged in 1829 during a fire started deliberately in the cathedral’s Quire by local resident Jonathan Martin. The graffiti marks of the 19th-century glaziers who repaired the windows following the fire can still be seen.

The windows are two of around 70 of the cathedral’s 128 mostly medieval windows which currently have no protective glazing, leaving their glass vulnerable to corrosion and decay.