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Tributes to top York sculptor Geoff Kaye
A TALENTED York sculptor whose work still adorns churches and cathedrals throughout the country has died while on holiday in America.
Geoff Kaye, 82, will be remembered for his talent in creating intricate works from wood and stone during his time in York, from the 1950s to the 1970s.
Born in Dewsbury, Mr Kaye moved to York as a boy and, at the age of 14, gained a position as an apprentice with the sculptors GW Milbury & Sons.
In 1955 he set up his own business and quickly became established as a talent throughout the region and beyond. His son, Michael, said: “Between 1955 and 1970 he completed fine works in wood and stone at Durham, Llandaff, Armagh, York, Liverpool, Sheffield and Lichfield cathedrals.
“His enthusiasm and talent led him to undertake sensitive restoration works in many churches and stately homes, including Castle Howard.”
He said: “He built up the firm over the years with apprentices and a lot of them went on to work in their own right, starting up their own businesses.”
After building his own home in York, Mr Kaye went on to establish a building arm to his business and was responsible for the construction of many stone houses in areas including York, Leeds and Harrogate.
When not working, Mr Kaye was an enthusiastic sailor and devoted his leisure time to yacht racing. He was a member of the Royal Yorkshire Yacht Club in Bridlington for 12 years before he moved to the south coast.
Michael said: “He went on to compete from 1972 in his yacht Savage, with enormous success, winning the Solent Points Championship three years running and representing the Royal Southern Yacht Club and Great Britain in the three-quarter tonne world championships in 1980.”
Mr Kaye died on January 22 in Florida and was buried near his home in Poole, Dorset.