M&S lorry gets stuck under York's Micklegate Bar

Lorry stuck under Micklegate Bar, York. Picture: Trevor Moorby The City of York Council said the ancient bar had not been damaged structurally

Fire crews in York have freed a lorry after it became stuck under one of the city's medieval gateways.

The Marks and Spencer lorry was travelling through the central arch of the 12th Century Micklegate Bar on Thursday night when it got stuck.

Micklegate Bar is one of four medieval gateways into the city and has a height restriction of 10ft (3.05m).

The City of York Council said it had carried out an inspection of the bar and there was no structural damage.

Micklegate Bar

  • The first building was erected in the early 12th century and consisted of a simple stone gatehouse with an arch at each end.
  • The bar is a rectangular gatehouse. On the ground floor there is a passageway. There are three storeys above.
  • There were people living over the bar as early as 1196. An annual rent of 6d was paid from 1196 to 1212 when Benedict, son of Ingleram, a clerk, lived there.
  • In the 14th century, the gatehouse was heightened to include a portcullis.
  • It was the focus for civic events, such as greeting a monarch, and was used to display the severed heads of traitors including Richard Duke of York in 1460.

Source: City of York Council

'No ordinary accident'

North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue said it had cut away a spoiler from the cab of the lorry in order to free it.

The incident prompted numerous comments on Twitter with many people using humour based on recent M&S television adverts.

Chris Wilkie wrote: "This is not just any lorry getting stuck...but an M&S lorry."

"No ordinary accident. A Marks & Spencer Accident," was the comment from Andrew Little.

A spokesperson for the supermarket said: "We would like to thank the North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service for their support in ensuring the incident was resolved as quickly as possible with minimal disruption."

Since 1389, in a tradition established by King Richard II, monarchs visiting York must formally request permission to enter the city at Micklegate Bar.

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