York & North Yorkshire

York Minster proposes new square named for the Queen

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Image caption The proposed square would be situated at the cathedral's West Front

York Minster is proposing to create a new public square dedicated to the Queen as part of a new neighbourhood plan for the area.

Queen Elizabeth Square, at the Minster's West Front, would be the first new public square in the city for almost 200 years.

A life-sized statue of the Queen would also be erected on one of the empty niches at the front of the building.

Access for local residents, businesses and the taxi rank would remain.

The space, at the top of Duncombe Place, would offer a new civic and ceremonial space for the city, the Minster said.

Other proposed improvements to the Minster Precinct, which includes the area and buildings surrounding the cathedral, include a new cafe on the south side of the building, a new ticket office and welcome centre and a dedicated cycle path at Deangate.

Alex McCallion, director of works and precinct at the cathedral, said the emerging plan was the result of detailed collaboration with the Minster's immediate neighbours, the wider local community and statutory bodies, including City of York Council and Historic England.

'Significant and exciting'

He said: "The future of the Minster Precinct is hugely important to many people, particularly to those who live and work in the neighbourhood."

It would be, he said, one of the most "significant and exciting civic improvement projects" anywhere in the UK.

"This is a tremendous opportunity for the city of York to create an outstanding and accessible new public square that draws people to the space and is sympathetic to the city's history and heritage," he added.

The Minster has not indicated how much the scheme would cost or how it would be funded at this stage.

A consultation on the proposals will run until 16 June.

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