York Minster Stoneyard blaze caused by electrical fault

It is believed an electrical fault caused the blaze which broke out on Wednesday night at York Minster Stoneyard

It is believed an electrical fault caused the blaze which broke out on Wednesday night at York Minster Stoneyard

First published in News by

FIRE chiefs believe the huge blaze at York Minster Stoneyard was caused by an electrical fault.

A North Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service spokesman said Wednesday’s fire was believed to have started accidentally because of an electrical wiring fault in one of the sockets in an office on the first floor of the building.

The blaze forced a race to save the Minster’s Great East Window.

More than 30 firefighters battled to douse flames that broke out in the office at the stoneyard, where experts had been working on the 600-year-old window in a £27 million restoration project.

Ian Tomlinson, of the York Glaziers’ Trust, helped firefighters rescue the glass and save the window, which was being stored in more than 300 pieces directly under where the blaze started.

The firefighters, together with Mr Tomlinson, the Rev Canon Glyn Webster and the Chamberlain, Dr Richard Shepherd, managed to prevent the delicate stained glass from being destroyed by the blaze.

The fire began shortly before 11.30pm on Wednesday and lasted until about 2am on Thursday. A North Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service spokeswoman said: “The room where the fire started suffered 12 square metres of fire damage. The overall total fire, heat and smoke damage to the whole building was 400 square metres.”

The Dean of York, the Very Rev Keith Jones, also helped firefighters rescue the window, which is one of the largest areas of medieval stained glass in the world. It was built by glazier John Thornton between 1405 and 1408 and cost £58, paid by the then Bishop of Durham, Walter Skirlaw.

The Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, visited the stoneyard to survey the damage caused by the fire.

He said after his visit: “I am glad to say that, apart from two offices that were damaged, fire officers worked at such great speed that the damage was limited – and no one was injured.”

Comments (6)

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2:57pm Fri 1 Jan 10

Garrowby Turnoff says...

That'll put the cat-among-t'pidgeons with regard to the insurance claim. Insurance companies often have an "electrical wiring fault" disclaimer inserted. Shoddy workmanship etc...
That'll put the cat-among-t'pidgeons with regard to the insurance claim. Insurance companies often have an "electrical wiring fault" disclaimer inserted. Shoddy workmanship etc... Garrowby Turnoff
  • Score: 0

3:41pm Fri 1 Jan 10

El Capistrano says...

Is it the same lot who did Oscars?
Is it the same lot who did Oscars? El Capistrano
  • Score: 0

9:36pm Fri 1 Jan 10

petethefeet says...

Residual current protection devices would probably have saved it but these things tend to trip-out when you have big motors on the load. Just like those that power stone-saws
Residual current protection devices would probably have saved it but these things tend to trip-out when you have big motors on the load. Just like those that power stone-saws petethefeet
  • Score: 0

7:05am Sat 2 Jan 10

jt says...

Huge blaze? The area affected by the fire was previously reported as 12sq.m. or 12ft x 12ft in old money.
Huge blaze? The area affected by the fire was previously reported as 12sq.m. or 12ft x 12ft in old money. jt
  • Score: 0

6:44pm Sat 2 Jan 10

Seadog says...

Thank God - and I mean that quite literally - that no-one was injured or killed. Thank God too, that this staggeringly significant piece of Christian art (it is, after all, about the Great Drama of Human Salvation!) has itself been saved. Well done to everyone - both spiritual and secular - who did their part!
Thank God - and I mean that quite literally - that no-one was injured or killed. Thank God too, that this staggeringly significant piece of Christian art (it is, after all, about the Great Drama of Human Salvation!) has itself been saved. Well done to everyone - both spiritual and secular - who did their part! Seadog
  • Score: 0

12:14am Mon 4 Jan 10

Garrowby Turnoff says...

jt wrote:
Huge blaze? The area affected by the fire was previously reported as 12sq.m. or 12ft x 12ft in old money.
That's 12 sq ft in old money! Tsk tsk!
[quote][p][bold]jt[/bold] wrote: Huge blaze? The area affected by the fire was previously reported as 12sq.m. or 12ft x 12ft in old money.[/p][/quote]That's 12 sq ft in old money! Tsk tsk! Garrowby Turnoff
  • Score: 0

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