YORK Minster is a focal point for many people in York during the festive season.

Whether it is to attend a church service, a carol performance or witness spectacular events such as the Sankta Lucia Festival of Light, a visit to the Minster is part of many families' festive traditions.

Although visitors and worshippers must now adhere to social distancing rules and wear face coverings, for some people, the Minster will remain very much at the heart of their Christmas celebrations again this year.

We dipped into our archive to bring you some lovely photos of Christmas past at York Minster.

Some of our photos, from the 1980s and 1990s, show children at the Minster Crib, with figures of Mary, Joseph and Baby Jesus.

The photo from the York Minster crib service in 1994 features choirboys from the Minster school who are shown in the Chapter House admiring the figures of Mary, Joseph and Baby Jesus.

The accompanying story says that the Belgian crib dates back to 1920s and takes pride of place in front of the Five Sisters window in the North Transept for a special service on Christmas Eve.

Another shows the Minster beautifully illuminated in 2003.

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One of the most atmospheric photos is from the candlelit celebration of Sankta Lucia taken last year.

The service, for all the family, is based on the traditional Swedish Lucia celebration.

In Sweden, Lucia is one of the most significant traditions in the calendar – a powerful symbol and celebration of light and an integral part of the Advent season.

The celebration of Sankta Lucia is based on the bravery and martyrdom of a young Sicilian girl – St Lucy – who died in the early fourth century. Her name and story reached Sweden along with Christianity, and she remained popular even after the Reformation as the bringer of light during the long darkness of winter.

The service was run in partnership with the York Anglo-Scandinavian Society.

If you are planning to visit, here are the latest guidelines from the Minster, from its website:

"We’ve put a number of measures in place to help keep our staff and visitors safe including physical distancing measures, additional cleaning regimes, limiting touch points and closing parts of the cathedral.

"Please note that it is now a requirement for visitors to wear a face covering when visiting places of worship, and that you must not mix/meet with people outside of your household or support bubble while in the Minster."

For more up-to-date details, including services, visit yorkminster.org