An extensive restoration project to conserve and modernise York Minster continues to make progress.
York Minster Revealed is five-year project that is currently taking place at what is the largest Gothic cathedral north of the Alps. The project began in early 2011 and is the largest conservation project in the UK.
The project has been divided into smaller projects, including the Chapter House project and the Great East Window project.
William Anelay Ltd is the main contractor for the Chapter House project, whilst Minster Stoneyard and York Glaziers Trust are the main contractors for the Great East Window.
Conservation specialist Arrol & Snell is the architect for the entire York Minster Revealed project.
The Great East Window is the largest window of its kind in the UK and is therefore a significant feature of the cathedral. The £9 million Great East Window project comprises the complete restoration of a medieval window and associated masonry work across the whole east front of the cathedral. In order to complete the work, careful and considered restoration will take place to correct damage to the window, whilst the original lead work will be replaced.
Meanwhile the £750,000 Chapter House project comprises the conversion of rooms into public toilets and staff facilities. The project will also see access to Chapter House improved through the provision of DDA compliant wheelchair ramps.
Arrol & Snell Ltd Managing Director, Andrew Arrol, said:
“During World War II the glass in the Great East Window was removed and then subsequently replaced. However some of the glass was installed incorrectly, whilst other areas of the window have been damaged.
“The glaziers will strip back the lead, reassemble the glass and protect the window against future damage using a technique called Isothermal Glazing which will place the window behind an additional layer of glass.
“As the Cathedral Architect I have a lot responsibility for the fabric of the whole building so it’s great to see the work that is being conducted on York Minster.
“It is very exciting to see work progressing on a project that will make the cathedral more accessible and enjoyable. The work will create a greater understanding of the building for visitors and will subsequently increase the number of people who get to see the building.
“Projects of this level don’t come along very often, so it’s a great privilege to be involved with this one.”
York Minster Revealed is scheduled for completion in summer 2016.