Craft skills are sustained through continuous investment in the next generation of skilled Cathedral stonemasons. York Minster currently has four stonemasonry apprentices who will each spend four years training to become qualified masons.

The Centre of Excellence for Heritage Craft Skills and Estate Management will establish the York Minster Precinct as a world class campus facility for research, education and training in ancient craft skills. It will bring benefits including continuing the craft of stonemasonry and encouraging global learning and knowledge sharing.

Meet some Apprentices at York Minster:

Freya de Lisle

“There has been the opportunity for a lot of varied work. The current stone I am working upon is my first foray into tracery, and the largest stone I have worked so far. I have undertaken a number of onsite tasks such as repointing, fixing, stone conservation from salt damage, and lead pouring, as well as 3D scanning of our plaster cast library for record taking purposes.

Working on the Cathedral as well as its wider precinct offers an array of projects, and every week seems to bring new experiences and opportunities.”

Geraint Pounder

“I am working on practise stones and honing my skills and the trade. I am proving that I can bank masonry and it is nice that there is limited pressure to get the work done and discuss the work with the other apprentice and masons, so we can figure out the best way to approach problems.

It is a great learning experience. We can discuss this openly and it is invaluable experience.”