Minster changes take step forward

A refined set of plans which would see significant changes in the area around  York Minster have been published.

A copy of the prospectus can be downloaded from this link

The proposals are both ambitious and respectful tot eh heritage of both the Cathedral itself and the surrounding City.

They include a new “Queen Elisabeth Square” adjacent to the west end of the Minster. This is a welcome move towards the pedestrianisation of Duncombe Place. A vehicular access route – which will apparently still accommodate the Railway museums “Disney” train – has been retained.

The role of Deans Park as a quiet part of the City centre has been respected.

Likely to be more controversial – with the devil being in the detail – are plans for new buildings in the area where Constantine currently sits. The Roman will be rehoused further down Deangate, where he will be joined by a statute of Queen Elisabeth II

 A separate Deangate cycle track is planned ending the present shared space arrangement with pedestrians. Access only restrictions will be enforced ending the visits of parents to the entrance to the Minster School. They will have a separate drop off point at the end of Duncombe Place. The school itself will get enhanced facilities.

St Williams College will be brought back into use – not before time – and will accommodate Minster office staff. It is an old building, with an arcane layout, so good look to them with that.

The existing Church House administration offices will be converted into flats which will be rented out.

There are plans to develop the Deanery garages as residential accommodation for workers.

That may not suit everyone and there are some potentially awkward interfaces with the surrounding community. The new square, for example, doesn’t seem to make the best of the possible linkages to Stonegate.

But overall the proposals represent good progress and are being progressed in an inclusive way which reflects well on their authors.

Responses to the consultation can be made via this link The consultation closes on 16th June 2019.

What’s on in York: Parsifal Hallé Orchestra Sir Mark Elder (conductor) at York Minster 17th April

BWagner – Prelude to Act 1 and Act 3 of Parsifal

For his final masterpiece, Wagner turned away from themes of power and romantic love towards the sacred realm, aiming to compose a work in which ‘the most sublime mysteries of the Christian faith are openly presented on stage’. His ‘festival play of consecration’ re-tells the ancient story of Parsifal, a ‘holy fool’ made wise through pity and redeemed by a simple act of compassion. Act III is the spiritual heart and emotional climax of the work, as Parsifal fulfils his journey towards understanding. After a solemn orchestral prelude to represent the turmoil from which the world must be saved, there follow two scenes of redemption. In the first, Parsifal shares his own transformation with Kundry by baptising her; in the second, he heals the wounds of Amfortas. Between the two scenes, the famous Good Friday Music celebrates the day on which the world is renewed – a moving paean to the beauty of nature that sees springtime as a reflection of the Resurrection of Christ on Easter Day. The work ends with an unforgettable chorus, a symbolic joining of earth and heaven, as boy trebles join a massed chorus while a white dove descends. ‘The hero’s path to compassion and understanding can be a metaphor’ says Pope Francis, ‘to better understand how human beings understand themselves today.’

Sir Mark Elder and the Hallé are second-to-none in this music. Their 2013 Proms performance was described by The Guardian as ‘a constant wonder’ and by The Spectator as ‘miraculous’, while for The Daily Telegraph he and the orchestra found the ‘spiritual halo’ and ‘all the essential pain and anguish’ of the work. Heard in York Minster during Holy Week, this will surely be an unforgettable performance.

Heard in York Minster during Holy Week, as part of the Ryedale Festival, this will surely be an unforgettable performance.

Tickets are available from the Ryedale Festival website.

DATE 17 Apr 19

TIME 7:30 pm


PRICE From £20

What’s on in York: Bach St John Passion (sung in English) at York Minster on Saturday

  • Saturday 6th April 2019 7:30pm

Enjoy hearing this unforgettable work in the superb setting of York Minster, performed by York Musical Society with a choir of over 100 voices, six soloists and a full orchestra. The ideal music and setting as Easter approaches!

Bach wrote the St John Passion during his first year as director of music at Leipzig and it was first performed in 1724. The Evangelist’s words closely follow the text of Luther’s version of St John’s Gospel. The chorales used melodies and words that would have been sung by the congregation in Bach’s day. When you hear it, you will experience why the Passion is still frequently performed and greatly loved.

Ticket Information: Front nave £20 | Rear nave £15 | Side aisles £10 | Student & children 13-17 £5 | Children 12 and under 12 free with accompanying adult

2 hours 15 minutes (including 15 minute interval)
Doors: 6.45pmB

Available via the Theatre Royal HERE 

What’s on in York: Minster joins in York Residents Festival

DATE 26 Jan – 27 Jan 19

TIME 9:30 am – 4:15 pm

LOCATION York Minster

York residents are invited to experience unbeatable, panoramic views of York from the highest point in the city – York Minster’s central tower – for free as part of the 2019 York Residents’ Festival.

Admission to the Minster is free all year round for York residents, but for the festival the cathedral is also offering residents free tower trips across the weekend, which normally cost £5 each.*

On the Saturday, people can also enjoy free interactive activities in the awe-inspiring surroundings of the cathedral’s 13th century Chapter House, including:

  • Drop in family sessions to create a Heart Of Yorkshire inspired sun catcher (10am-3pm)
  • Object handling sessions with items from the cathedral’s historic collection (11am-2pm)
  • Noah’s Ark themed Little Explorer backpacks to help young explorers discover the Minster (9am-4pm) and an activity area for young children with books and toys linking to the Minster.


Christmas Eve and Day services at York Minster

Dec _24Minster

York Minster :

Mon 24 & Tue 25 Dec :

Various Times :



Experience Christmas Eve and Day at York Minster with our traditional services.

Christmas Eve – Monday 24 December

12noon: Crib Service – Traditional and popular family service.

4pm: Nine Lessons and Carols (doors 3pm please arrive in good time)

11.30pm: First Eucharist of Christmas:

Christmas Day – Tuesday 25 December

8am: Holy Communion

10am: Sung Eucharist of Christmas Day (doors 9.15am)

11.45am: Christmas Day Choral Matins

4pm: Christmas Day Choral Evensong

All services are free and un- ticketed. All Advent & Christmas at YorkMinster.org/Whats-On

What’s on in York: Chapter House Choir

Formed in 1965 to raise funds for the York Minster Appeal, the Chapter House Choir continues to build on its reputation as one of the North of England’s finest amateur chamber choirs, under the leadership of musical director Benjamin Morris.

This concert completes a series on the theme of exile, reconciliation and peace.  The concert marks three significant 100-year anniversaries:

  • Hubert Parry’s death,
  • The granting of women’s suffrage and later the right for women to be elected to parliament,
  • The forthcoming 100th anniversary on 11/11/18 of the armistice in the First World War.

The programme includes several of Parry’s masterful Songs of Farewell, C V Stanford’s virtuosic 8-part MagnificatA short Requiem by Walford Davies and the BBC Radio 3 commissioned work, The Pankhurst Anthem – words and music by Helen and Lucy Pankhurst – for which the Chapter House Choir will be joined by the talented Chapter House Youth Choir

Tickets – £15 & £13.50 (concessions), Students & under 18s £5 are available to patrons of the Chapter House Choir in advance of the general release on 7 September.  For details on how to become a patron, please see here

What’s on in York: York Minster Stone Carving Festival 2018

Join stone masons from all over Europe for the fantastic #StoneFest18

17-19 Aug 18



Stonemasons and carvers from across the UK and Europe showcase their skills during a weekend- long celebration of the ancient craft

An international Stone Carving Festival, celebrating the ancient craft and showcasing the skills of stonemasons and carvers from across the UK and Europe, will take place in Dean’s Park this summer.

The festival will see the park transformed into a tented village with the Mason’s Marquee forming the centre-piece and hub for expert craftspeople to carve designs based on the theme ‘All creatures great and small’.

Festival-goers will be able to see world-class stonemasons and carvers at work, try their hand at stone carving and enjoy food and drink supplied by some of York’s finest producers. Music will be provided by York’s community of buskers and a range of craft based activities will also be available for children and families.

The event will close on Sunday 19 August with a stone auction at 3.30pm, giving visitors the chance to bid for some of the newly carved stone. Funds raised from the auction will be reinvested in caring for the cathedral.

The festival runs from 8am to 6pm on Saturday 18 August and from 8am to 5pm on Sunday 19 August.

The York Minster Stone Carving Festival runs for four days and includes a Stoneyard Open Day on Friday 17 August.

What’s on in York: Heart of Yorkshire Festival

MinsterYork Minster 

& Deans Park

4th Jul – 2nd Sep

9:00am – 10:00pm

Various Prices

Workshops, craft activities, bars and a cinema will take over Dean’s Park this summer for a very special festival hosted by York Minster.

There are activities for all ages and you are warmly invited to pop along to take part or to simply enjoy the space as always.

See YorkMinster.org for all up coming events.

Please download the brochure here.