Heritage Category:
Listed Building
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Statutory Address:

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

York (Unitary Authority)
Non Civil Parish
National Grid Reference:
SE 60440 51624



SE6051NW CASTLEGATE 1112-1/28/146 (North East side) 14/06/54 The York Story (Formerly Listed as: CASTLEGATE The Heritage Centre)


Formerly known as: Church of St Mary CASTLEGATE. Parish church, now exhibition centre. C15, incorporating remnants of early C11 nave, north arcades of C12 and C14, and south arcade of early C13. Restoration of 1867-70 included new east window, re-roofing and renewal of east end parapet. Church redundant in 1958; converted to exhibition centre 1974-75. C19 restoration by William Butterfield. C20 conversion by George Pace and Ronald Sims. MATERIALS: magnesian limestone incorporating re-used gritstone; roofs of slate and lead. EXTERIOR: chancel and north and south chapels; 3-bay nave with low clerestory, and 4-bay north and south aisles; embraced west tower and spire. Clerestory obscured by parapet, embattled at east end and on south side, plain elsewhere. Church is supported on all sides by buttresses with offsets, most with gabled pinnacles and gargoyles. Chancel and chapels on single chamfered plinth, remainder of church and tower on double chamfered plinth. Windows generally have hoodmoulds on corbel or head stops. Renewed east window is pointed, of 3 stepped cinquefoiled lights beneath panel traceried head. East window of north chapel is pointed, of 3 cinquefoiled lights beneath two tiers of panel tracery with embattled transoms. Sill band below east window stepped down beneath north chapel window. South chapel is set back and has pointed east window of 3 lights, now altered to doorway. On north side, easternmost bay has inserted pointed arched doorway; towards west end is blocked C14 doorway with 2-centred moulded arch; both doors beneath square-headed windows. Windows generally are square-headed, of 2 or 3 trefoiled or cinquefoiled ogee-arched lights beneath embattled transoms and panel tracery. Towards the east end is reset square-headed C14 window of 4 trefoiled lights with cusped curvilinear tracery. Western window beneath tower is pointed, of 3 foiled ogee-arched lights beneath two tiers of panel tracery. Moulded string, stepped in places, runs beneath windows. C19 south door in pointed arch of two orders, the inner chamfered, the outer roll-moulded and springing from carved corbels; square-headed window above. To west of door, length of C13 masonry incorporating original lancet survives. Below, and to west of, chancel south window is blocked segment-arched doorway. Elsewhere windows correspond to those on north side. 3-stage tower has square ground stage, surmounted by embattled parapet and walkway; second and belfry stages are octagonal, with broaches at the base, from which tapering buttresses with gargoyles rise above plain parapet to crocketed pinnacles; recessed spire is octagonal. Pointed west window has 5 cinquefoiled lights beneath double tier of panel tracery with embattled transoms. On each side of window is a carved corbel beneath trefoiled ogee-arched canopy, rib-vaulted on the underside, and surmounted by a crocket. Above the window is a vaulted niche, with trefoiled arch and steep crocketed canopy, housing a defaced figure of the Virgin Mary seated behind a balustrade. At west end of north aisle is doorway in 4-centred moulded arch, to south of low window of 5 foiled lights, 3 round-headed, 2 lancets. Above is a pointed window of 3 trefoiled round-headed lights beneath panel traceried head broken by encircled quatrefoil. Windows to west end of south aisle and south face of tower are of the same type. Upper stages of tower have tall similar windows, partly louvred and banded with panel tracery at belfry level, to three cardinal faces: the fourth, to east, has intersecting tracery in the head. Tall spire is crowned by gilded weathercock. INTERIOR: chancel. 3-bay north arcade, with eastern arch of 2 chamfered orders on half-octagonal responds with moulded capitals and chamfered bases: narrow centre arch, continuously moulded, beneath crocketed hoodmould on headstops: 4-centred western arch of 2 chamfered orders on chamfered responds, with square capitals, coved on lower side, and later, moulded capitals superimposed. 2-bay south arcade, with eastern arch of continuous rolled and filleted mouldings beneath crocketed ogee hood: wide, double chamfered western arch on half-octagonal responds with moulded capitals and bases. Double chamfered chancel arch, inner order only with moulded capitals, outer continuous, beneath coved hoodmould on headstops. Flanking walls retain masonry of original church. Nave north arcade of three double chamfered arches beneath continuous hoodmould on animal headstops. Eastern arches are tall and pointed on half-cylindrical respond with moulded base and scalloped capital, and cylindrical piers with square abaci, one with scalloped capital, one with incised waterleaf. Western arch dies into octagonal tower pier on chamfered base, broach-stopped on to square plinth. South arcade of three double chamfered arches, two pointed, one semicircular, beneath continuous hoodmould on headstops. Half cylindrical east respond with moulded base and half-octagonal capital. First pier is octagonal, on moulded base, with octagonal capital; second pier cylindrical with double roll-moulded base on square plinth, and nailhead capital. Tower pier to west corresponds to that opposite. South aisle arch narrow, pointed, double chamfered,on responds with simple moulded capitals. Clerestory on both sides has 1-light window towards east end, and another of 3 cinquefoiled lights over the second pier. Tower arches of 2 hollow-chamfered orders dying into piers, south arch narrower than north arch. Western responds are half-octagonal with chamfered bases, broach-stopped on to square plinths. To north of west window, pointed chamfered doorway to tower stair. At west end of north aisle, former chapel doorway has 2-centred arch in deep hollow-chamfered surround. In chancel south wall, C19 piscina and restored sedilia of 3 stalls beneath cinquefoiled ogee-arched heads. In north chapel (now in staff lavatory), piscina in 2-centred arch with defaced cusping: arched tomb recess with filleted roll moulding (in staff room). In south chapel, aumbry in rebated surround, and piscina in trefoiled ogee arch; on east wall, 2 half-octagonal brackets with carved angels, each bearing heraldic shield of arms of the Graa family. In north aisle, three arched tomb recesses and plain round-headed stoup without bowl. Blocked chamfered north doorway with segmental head. In south aisle, rebated aumbry and piscina in 2-centred, hollow-chamfered arch. Beside south door, hollow niche for stoup, without bowl, in arched opening. Roofs. Chancel: principal rafter trusses with moulded and embattled, cambered ties on corbelheads, with pierced spandrels and panel-traceried tympana. Chancel north chapel and nave: king post trusses with moulded and embattled, cambered tie beams on moulded corbels, with pierced spandrels and cusped braces. Mutilated stone, c1000, discovered during restoration of 1870 and now attached to east respond of north aisle arcade, records the dedication of the church "in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ and of St Mary and St Martin and of St Cuthbert and of all the saints". MONUMENTS: south chapel - two wall tablets moved from North Chapel: Lewis West (d.1718) and wife Dorcas (d.1732); Richard Coulton (d.1713), Rector, and wife Elizabeth (d.1731). Also to Elizabeth Tweedy (d.1811), and husband John (d.1842). North aisle - tablet to William Mushet, MD, (d.1792), by Fisher of York; also to Rawlins Gould (d.1873). South aisle - William Mason (d.1708) and wife, Jane. (City of York: RCHME: The Central Area: HMSO: 1981-: 30-36).

Listing NGR: SE6043851626


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

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Books and journals
An Inventory of the City of York V Central, (1981), 30-36


This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

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Date: 08 Jun 2001
Reference: IOE01/04021/14
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr Martin Roberts. Source Historic England Archive
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