Acomb War Memorial work completed

The York Civic Trust has completed its work on the restoration of the Acomb War Memorial on The Green. The Trust has paid for much of the work from their exemplary City Enhancement Fund

The Westfield Ward Committee has funded a new access footpath to the base of the memorial. It is hoped this will make the monument easier to reach particularly for people with disabilities.

There will be a Service of Remembrance at the Memorial on Sunday starting at 10:45am 

Restored Acomb War Memorial rear

Restored Acomb War Memorial front

New monument access path paid for by the Westfield Ward

1922 cutting from local newspaper

Acomb War Memorial shortly after completion in May 1922

Repairing and restoring York’s City Walls

Micklegate Bar

Micklegate Bar

Plans to invest £350,000 repairing and restoring York’s historic City Walls will be considered by City of York Council on Thursday 9 June.

Proposals for the first phase of works to repair and restore the York City Walls over the next five years (from 2016/17 to 2021) will be taken to the Executive Member for Transport and Planning as part of plans to preserve the Walls and set out a quinquennial programme to manage their restoration.

The Executive Member for Transport and Planning will be asked to approve the plans repair and restore the City Walls, including three priority schemes which have been identified for repairs this financial year using £90,000 funding from the Bar Walls budget for 2016/17 and the allocation of £260,000 in capital funding. They are:
• Micklegate Bar Roof
• Monk Bar Steps
• Tower 32.

After an initial 15 month programme of inspection and monitoring from 2014 ten locations in need of repair and restoration are proposed in the report and will be considered for the second phase of this project in future budgets.

John Oxley, City Archaeologist at City of York Council, said: “York’s City Walls are the best example of medieval City Walls still standing in England today, which over a million people walk across every year. Repair and restoration work is needed in many areas along the 3.4km route and we are hoping to continue the restoration of the Walls following the success of the Walmgate Bar project. This report looks to bring about the first phase of repairs ahead of a longer term programme of engagement and investment that will seek to ensure residents and visitors will be able to continue to enjoy York’s famous City Walls”

The City Walls are open every day from 8am to dusk. To find out more about the Walls visit:

Contractor for historic Mansion House project announced

York based contractors, William Anelay, have been appointed to work on York Mansion House’s historic restoration project.

Mansion House ChristmasYork based contractors, William Anelay, have been appointed to work on York Mansion House’s historic restoration project.

Work will begin in the New Year to restore the building, including improvements to facilities which will allow visitors to enjoy more of the building than ever before.

The appointment comes after the Mansion House received a grant of £1,198,700 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), as well as funding from City of York Council and donations to the restoration fund so the historic building can be restored. Thanks to the National Lottery players the project – ‘Opening Doors’ – will be the biggest investment in the Mansion House since it was built in the eighteenth century.

The four main areas of the ‘Opening Doors’ restoration project are:
•  Restoring the original kitchens to create a fully working eighteenth century kitchen and a modern kitchen allowing the house to continue hosting culinary events and functions.

•  Improving displays, conservation and access to the civic collection of gold and silverware

•  Developing an integrated environmental and conservation plan for the structure, including installing an effective conservation heating system to minimise long-term damage to the contents and fabric of the building and reduce its carbon foot print.

•  Preparing an oral history project, involving people past and present with a connection to the building.

York Theatre Royal reopening delays to cost £3/4 million

The Theatre Royal will not reopen until 22nd April.

That means it will have been closed for 47 instead of 27 weeks during its current restoration.

Theatre Royal restoration scaffoldingThe delay has been caused by the unexpected discovery of archaeology remains including the foundations of the St. Leonards Hospital. Asbestos was also discovered in the back wall of the stalls.

The additional cost of the building works is put at £1/4 million but to this must be added an estimated loss in income of £500,000.

Origonally the restoration had been expected to cost £4.1 million.

The Theatre is hoping to persuade the Arts Council to help to make up the deficit although some subsidy from the York Council is also likely.

The news is a major blow to the Theatre which is one of the gems in York’s cultural crown. It does much to promote the City around the world with the recent “in Fog and Falling Snow” production featuring in a TV documentary only last month.  The cast was mainly made up of York residents.

The adaptation for the stage of the Railway Children had its genesis in York. It is currently still running in London at the Kings Cross theatre.