Miners in (Old) York

By Laura Riegel

Laura in York

Laura Riegel climbing the York Minster

My favorite site that we have visited so far is the York Minster Cathedral, which is a Gothic style building with flying buttresses and a vaulted ceiling. The extra support for the roof allows the walls to hold stained glass windows. There are many spectacular, vibrant windows on all sides of the cathedral.  Some of the windows were the Rose window, Five Sisters, and the Great East Window. Some the windows depicted God, saints, angels, prophets, patriarchs, creation and fall, the Old Testament, St. John, and the book of Revelation. The Great East window is currently being restored and will take a couple of years to complete.

The construction of York Minster started in about the 600s and it was burned down and rebuilt multiple times. It wasn’t until about the 12th century that the Gothic-style church began to be erected. Since the construction continued through different eras, the final design of some parts of the building did not quite line up perfectly. There was an underground crypt where you can see some of the tombs. During the English Reformation, Elizabeth I called for the destruction of the tombs and parts of the cathedral in her effort to destroy the Roman Catholic church.

Laura, York Minster

The York Minster

You can also climb a seemingly never-ending spiral staircase up to the top of the central tower. The view at the top was well worth the extra £5. From the top you can view the whole town of York and many of its historical buildings such as the city walls and Clifford’s Tower, which is the oldest building in York, built by William the Conqueror in the 11th century. The wall around the city was first built by the Romans in about 71 A.D., additions were made around 867 when the Danes ruled the area, and the wall was restored in the 12th century.

Laura and gang up the Minster