Prince Charles new royal patron of York Minster Fund after Prince Andrew controversy

The Prince of Wales has been announced as the royal patron of the York Minster Fund - taking on the role following on from Prince Andrew resigning amid controversy at the end of last year.

Prince Charles has agreed to be the Patron of York Minster Fund (YMF) almost a year after his brother, the Duke of York, stepped down from the role.

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In December last year Prince Andrew resigned from his role as Royal Patron at the York Minster Fund after 15 years.

The Prince of Wales has agreed to be the Patron of York Minster Fund almost a year after his brother, the Duke of York, stepped down from the role. Photo credit: VICTORIA JONES/ Getty Images.

It was one of many organisations to cut its connection with the Duke of York over the controversy about his relationship with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein and followed shortly after the Prince stepped back from public duties for the "forseeable future" following his appearance in a controversial TV documentary.

YMF was founded in 1967 to raise funds to repair the cathedral's 197ft (60m) Central Tower after a survey showed it was sinking under its own weight.

The charity operates as the lead fundraising body for the Chapter of York and York Minster, especially in the maintenance and restoration of the cathedral.

Commenting on the new appointment, Richard Shaw, chair of YMF Trustees, said: "For over 50 years, York Minster Fund has supported the work of the Chapter of York.

Pictured, York Minister, in the centre of the city. Founded in 1967, York Minster Fund operates as the lead fundraising body for the Chapter of York and York Minster, especially in the maintenance and restoration of the cathedral. Photo credit: OLI SCARFF/ Getty Images

"We are thankful now for the far sightedness of our founding trustees because it has enabled us to continue to support the Minster’s dedicated and skilled staff in their restoration and preservation projects in spite of the unprecedented loss of income caused by the ongoing Covid-19 crisis.

"We are delighted that HRH The Prince of Wales has agreed to support us in our work to restore the magnificence of the Minster, to maintain the skills which preserve it, and to develop the facilities and skills needed by future generations."

The Right Rev’d Dr Jonathan Frost, Dean of York added: "York Minster is a treasure at the heart of York, Yorkshire and the North. It stands as a symbol of continuity, faith and witness. Every time I enter the Minster, I have a strong sense, both joyful and overwhelming, of responsibility to hand on this great gift to future generations.

"York Minster Fund has been a valued partner, and friend to the Minster down the years and especially through the recent pandemic crisis.

Prince Andrew, Duke of York. Photo: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

"I am delighted that HRH The Prince of Wales, has graciously agreed to be our Patron and I look forward to welcoming him back to a place he knows well. I know that the York Minster Fund team and its vast company of supporters, will be delighted by this news."

Previously the Minster thanked Prince Andrew, following his resignation last year, for his support over the years.

In a statement the fund said: "The Duke of York has been the Royal Patron of York Minster Fund for 15 years and in this role has been very supportive of our work.

"However following his decision to step back from public life, and recognising that the Fund needs an active patron to champion its work, HRH Prince Andrew has decided to resign from this role."

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