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Work to start at Walmgate Bar
A MAJOR restoration of an historic gateway to York is finally set to go ahead, more than three years after its half-timber extension was propped up with scaffolding.
Walmgate Bar is the only one in York still with its barbican, portcullis and wooden inner doors, and parts of the building date back to the 12th century.
It survived being bombarded during the Civil War siege of York in 1644, but when it was struck by a vehicle in 2010 some cracks developed in an extension wall, and scaffolding was erected as a precautionary measure.
Further problems arose when a pipe burst during Arctic winter weather, with water dripping through the floorboards of the extension, which dates back to about 1580 and is currently used as a library and café run by the Calvary Chapel Bible College.
City of York Council said in 2010 that it would be consulting with English Heritage and drawing up a detailed restoration programme for 2011/12, but the scaffolding is still there today.
However, council spokesman David Warburton said the authority was now appointing an external specialist structural engineer to design the sensitive restoration works that will be required.
“The appointment has been approved by English Heritage,” he said. “The repair works will be carried out by the council’s own in-house ancient monuments team, and are part of the council’s ongoing commitment to maintain the walls.”
He said during the current financial year the council would be spending a total of £250,000 on the city walls, including works to install a new guard rail next to Station Rise. “The works are expected to start in the autumn and the scheme should be completed by next April,” he said.
Peter Brown, director of York Civic Trust, said he was glad the council had appointed a specialist to take on the restoration of the Bar.
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