TRIBUTES have been paid to Peter Gibson, founder of the York Glaziers Trust, who died at the weekend.

Mr Gibson, who lived in the shadow of York Minster in Precentor’s Court, was a specialist craftsman whose dedication to the city’s historic stained glass saw him made MBE, OBE and freeman of the city.

The Trust was founded in 1967, and in his role as superintendent and secretary of the organisation, Mr Gibson worked on each and every one of the Minster’s more than 120 windows, and twice supervised the restoration of the Rose Window - once after it was almost destroyed in the great fire of 1984.

Sarah Brown, director and chief executive of the York Glaziers Trust, said: “For those of us who knew Peter, it’s very sad news, because although he was quite elderly he has been such an elder statesman of stained glass and such a part of the city and for the Minster it’s hard to believe he’s passed on.”

Mr Gibson was a lifelong member of St Michael Le Belfrey Church, and served as chorister, organ blower, before being made church warden - a role he carried out for more than 40 years before being given the honorary title of warden emeritus in 2008.

Ruth Somerville, from the church, said: "He was a very private, traditional gentleman, always polite and encouraging, ready to put in a kind word for anybody. He was very friendly to everybody, very welcoming, and spent a lot of time welcoming people into the church. He always remembered their names and who they were and always had a smile for everybody.

"He was loved by many and will be sadly missed. He had a sense of humour which was cheeky, impish, and at the annual meeting of the church - which was a formal affair - he used to make very funny speeches and poke fun at things, and that made everyone laugh which was the highlight of the meeting for many years."

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In 2010, Mr Gibson was given honorary freedom of York. Sylvia Errington, Master of the Gild of Freemen, said the honor was in appreciation of his lifetime of service to the city’s historical features.

His parents William - a private in the Royal Scots Greys - and Mary, met after William came to the city with his regiment after the end of the First World War.

A humble man who lived almost his entire life in the same home, Mr Gibson would not be drawn to confirm his age, but would have been about 86 at the time of his death.

Mr Gibson and his elder sister Ellen, now deceased, both lived in the family home.

He said: “I live here, and I look out of the window, and there it is, the Minster. It is one of the greatest buildings in the world. People cross oceans, cross the world, to come and see it.”

Though Mr Gibson has died, part of him will live on in churches around the city, and especially within the Minster - in a restored Jesse window in the nave. While being repaired in 1950, workers discovered the likeness of Jesse was missing, so an artist was commissioned to paint a new figure. Mr Gibson, who was at the time a young glazier - was the only person in the workshop available to pose as a model.