Watch: Sale of the centuries as items from York Minster under hammer

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Crowds gathered for a chance to buy historic souvenirs from York Minster.

The annual stoneyard auction at the landmark is already a popular feature in the city’s calendar. This year, stone was joined by wood as some of the timbers burned in the famous South Transept fire of 1984 went under the hammer.

Three-year-old Henry Mace checks out the lots. PIC: Jonathan Gawthorpe

Three-year-old Henry Mace checks out the lots. PIC: Jonathan Gawthorpe

The timbers, taken from the roof during work to repair the damage from the fire, included a number of bosses – carved wooden ‘hubs’ where the ribs of the vaulted ceiling met – as well as pieces of the roof itself. They date from the 14th Century.

Rebecca Thompson, superintendent of works at the Minster, said: “Images of flames licking out of the roof of the South Transept have been widely used as we marked the 30th anniversary of the fire, so it seemed appropriate now to bring out some of the timbers that we have had in storage for three decades and make them available for people to buy.”

In total, 100 items were auctioned. Highlights included a couple of two-piece pinnacles which stand 5ft high which may make a bird table or bath. Other stones include sections from the ‘tracery’ of the Great East Window, which is being restored.

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