Take a walk around the historic Beverley Minster

Published: Monday 28th August 2017 by Courtney Farrow

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The stunning Beverley Minster welcomes tens of thousands of visitors each year.

The glorious building has been an important place for Christians since the seventh century. This was when St. John first established a church on the site. The man was a powerful and influential figure in Christianity and became the Bishop of Hexham in 687AD, later taking the prestigious title of Bishop of York.

After his death and subsequent burial at Beverley, millions have travelled to the market town to pay their respects.

Nevertheless, Beverley Minster is more than a place of pilgrimage, offering a wide range of sights and activities for families, Christian or otherwise.

The first thing that you will notice as you approach the structure is the striking Gothic architecture. In fact, it’s one of the finest examples of this type of medieval design in the country. The distinctive building that we see today was constructed in the thirteenth century and took a whopping 200 years to complete.

Inside is just as awe-inspiring. Aside from the beautifully-crafted stained glass windows and stone arches that flank the nave, there is much to be discovered throughout the rest of the church.

The Percy Tomb, for instance, has been described as one of the best fourteenth century canopied tombs in Europe and is a must-see when you visit the church. It is dedicated to the Percys, who were the richest family in the north of England at this time. The elaborate etchings on the crypt reflect their extreme wealth.

There is also a large number of carvings that represent minstrels with their instruments. This is because Beverley was the headquarters of the musicians fraternity during the Middle Ages. See what interesting people and scenes you can spy just by looking up and along the walls.

Another fascinating feature of Beverley Minster is the Frith Stool. Also known as a sanctuary chair, it was used as a peace seat for criminals. This is the oldest and rarest object found in the building and believed to have been there when St. John himself was still around.

On Friday 8 September, a Heritage Open Day is taking place inside the Minster. This will involve a fascinating exhibition of the traditional craft building skills that are needed to maintain the church.

Later on in the month, the Minster will host the Beverley Vintage Retro and Handmade Fair. Rummage through rails of garments from the past set against a gorgeous medieval backdrop.

Throughout September, the art of Pam Davies will be displayed. A Story of Human Experience is a selection of clay sculptures that echo our modern day lifestyles.

And of course, there are regular services and family events on throughout the year. For more information, please visit the Beverley Minster website.

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Published: Monday 28th August 2017 by Courtney Farrow

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