On 31 March hundreds of people, conservators, stonemasons, volunteers, guides and friends gathered at the east end of York Minster to celebrate the successful completion of the five-year Heritage Lottery funded York Minster Revealed Project, which has seen the conservation of the east façade of the minster and the conservation and protection of John Thornton’s magnificent Great East Window, as well as the redisplay of the minster’s museum collections, the provision of new toilets, and the creation of a new urban space to the south side of the building. Speaking of the HLF’s £10.5 million contribution, chief executive Carole Souter said ‘I hope National Lottery players will be proud of what their contribution has achieved.’
The conservation of the Apocalypse section of the Great East Window, the largest expanse of medieval stained glass in Britain, has included the creation of a new state of the art ventilated protective-glazing system, fabricated in Glasshütte Lamberts Restauro UV© glass. The six-hundred-year-old window is not only kept dry and safe from wind pressure, but light-sensitive conservation materials are shielded from damaging UV light, providing effective protection from all detrimental environmental factors. The history of the window and its conservation by the York Glaziers Trust (YGT) is outlined in the sumptuously illustrated Apocalypse: The Great East Window of York Minster by YGT director Sarah Brown (London: Third Millennium, 2014).
Work is continuing on the twenty-seven Old Testament panels of the window and the tracery panels, which will return to the minster by the end of 2017.