York & North Yorkshire

Medieval windows removed from York Minster for restoration

Image copyright Danny Lawson/PA
Image caption Conservators carefully have to remove all 72 panels of glass from the windows

Two 600-year-old windows have been removed from York Minster as part of a major restoration project.

The windows are part of a sequence of eight and the 11-year project in the cathedral's South Quire aisle will see all of them removed and restored.

They will also be given protective glazing to prevent future damage in the £11m scheme.

Exposed to the elements for centuries, the glass has cracked and buckled in places and allows water in.

Dating from the early 1400s, the windows are about 70ft (21m) from the ground.

Stained glass work in York Minster Image copyright Danny Lawson/PA
Image caption The windows will be given protective glazing to protect them from the elements

"The windows in the South Quire Clerestory have been unprotected for 600 years and are now heavily corroded, with extensive paint loss, fire damage and even holes in places," said Sarah Brown, director of York Glaziers Trust.

The glass will be cleaned and repaired and the lead, which keeps the glass in place, will also be stabilised.

"Once complete, the panels will be returned to the Minster with new, state-of-the-art protective glazing to prevent further decay and preserve the irreplaceable glass for future generations," Ms Brown added.

The windows 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.

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