WORK on the refurbishment of Stonebow House, once York's most unloved building, is proceeding rapidly. So just to remind people of how this quarter of York has developed over the years, we've been rummaging around in the collection of dusty envelopes we think of as The Press archive in search of old photos.

We've dug up a few, dating from 1955 to 1964, which between them provide an interesting pictorial history of the area. Some of them you may have seen before, others perhaps not. But anyway, here they are...

1. August 10, 1955: 'Now well on the way to completion is the road being built to connect Whip-Ma-Whop-Ma-Gate with Peaseholme Green. It is to be called The Stonebow,' says the caption to this photograph.

2. September 14, 1955: The Stonebow on the day it was opened, by the Lord Mayor, Alderman F Brown.

3. January 9, 1957: Workmen put up the first concrete bus shelters in The Stonebow. Quite why it took them 16 months to get around to it after the road opened we don't know. The expressions on the faces of the two women waiting for a bus seem to indicate that they are not particularly impressed...

4. March 11, 1960: 'The demolition of a former warehouse in St Saviourgate, York, has opened up this view,' says the caption to this photograph.

5. April 25, 1961: The space in front of the Central Methodist Church and St Saviour's Church (ie where Stonebow House stands today) was briefly used as a car park in the early 1960s.

6. March 6, 1963: The car park proved short-lived. By March 1963, work was beginning on building the block of shops and offices in Stonebow that was to become Stonebow House.

7. January or February 1964: Work on Stonebow House was proceeding steadily, as can be seen in this photograph taken from the telephone exchange. The familiar outline of the building as we have it today had already taken shape, and concrete pilings had been sunk deep into the ground.

Stephen Lewis