York Civic Trust is asking you to nominate your favourite aspect of the city as part of a new initiative to collect Views Of York.

Working in partnership with the City of York Council and English Heritage, the trust aims to compile a comprehensive database of images as a resource for planners and developers to assess the likely impact that a specific development might have on certain views.

“We are aware that the Views Of York are communal treasures and belong to everyone, hence the need to protect them in the future,” says the trust.

“All views are regarded as important, not only the great iconic prospects of York Minster, but also the modest views that play a vital role in the appreciation of York’s remarkable streetscape.

“This could include the details of ironwork, carving and decoration on buildings, for example, or the medieval patterns formed by the street layouts.”

Trust director Peter Brown, who is leading this initiative, is delighted to be playing a prominent role in helping to capture these images.

“There are so many wonderful views of York and I am sure everyone has a favourite. My personal choice is looking up Petergate from King’s Square.

“The Lord Mayor of York, Coun Sue Galloway, says hers is the distant view of York Minster from the corner of Beckfield Lane and Almsford Road. “We’re also looking for those views from the walls, from the city and beyond. Some have been designed but more often than not they come about out of happenstance, and to lose them would be a huge misfortune.

“They are a composite of a long history and often contain cherished landmarks and landscapes, which give pleasure to all. The fact that they enrich our lives is reason enough to ensure they survive.”

Peter asks you to assist the project by sending the trust either your own photographs or images of paintings, prints and drawings. “We plan to create an extensive collection that will not only be a reference point for planning decisions but also a useful resource for everyone to access,” he says.

The trust intends to create a competition and all the views submitted will have the opportunity to be entered for this event next year.

Plans are afoot too to mount a Views Of York exhibition in 2012, which will draw together paintings, watercolours, prints and drawings of York showing features of the city that artists over time have deemed special.

This will include loans from national and local collections, both public and private, and some of the public submissions will be used in this display.

An associated programme of walking tours of the city and special tours of the exhibition will be given for local societies, with more details available shortly on this programme.

Running alongside the exhibition will be an illustrated catalogue, edited by Peter, which will provide a lasting legacy and will be the culmination of a much wider, in-depth study, designed to codify the defining characteristics of the city.

Information on the Views of York project is available on the trust website at www.yorkcivictrust.co.uk/viewsofyork along with a downloadable application form for members of the public to complete when submitting their images.