Building record MYO1153 - 4 Minster Yard


A house built between 1700 and 1727, with later 18th century additions, converted to office by 1988. Listed as 'Number 4 and attached garden wall, gate and railings at front and back'.


Grid reference SE 6041 5221 (point)
Map sheet SE65SW
Unitary Authority City of York, North Yorkshire


Type and Period (7)

Full Description

House, attached front garden wall, railings and gate; railings attached to back steps. Early C18, with early C19 alterations: restored 1992.

MATERIALS: front of orange-brown brick in Flemish bond with timber doorcase and eaves cornice; rear of various brick in random bond with cogged brick cornice; right return red brick in English garden wall bond. Tiled roofs, with three 2x2-pane Yorkshire sash windows in box dormers at front; rear roofs are hipped, with corner scrolls: brick stacks, some rebuilt. Central entrance hall plan.

EXTERIOR: 2 storeys and attic; 5-window front. Open pedimented doorcase of attached fluted Ionic columns with foliar necking, frieze block rosettes and festooned mask in tympanum: door of 6 raised and fielded panels and radial fanlight recessed in panelled reveal. Windows are 12-pane sashes on ground floor, unequal 15-pane sashes on first floor, all with flat arches of gauged brick and painted stone sills. Dentil and modillion eaves cornice, returned at right end; fluted bowl rainwater head at left end. At far right end, behind No.5 Minster Yard (qv), brick coped shaped gable masks 1-bay wing. Rear: 3 storeys with 2-storey projecting bay at left. Glazed panelled door at right of centre, approached by flight of steps with stick railings and flat handrail wreathed at foot on turned newels: at right end, heavy door of 6 sunk panels: to left, square bay window. Windows on ground and first floors are 4-pane sashes, on second floor 2-light Yorkshire sashes, some retaining 1-course segmental brick arches.

INTERIOR: ground floor: right front room has fluted doorcase and 6-panel door: fully panelled above dado rail, moulded cornice and plastered sunk-panel beam: alcove framed in round arch on fluted pilasters with enriched imposts continued as band within alcove. In entrance hall, two bolection-moulded doorcases remain. Keyed segmental arch on plain pilasters with moulded imposts leads to stairhall. Open well staircase rises to attic, with moulded close string, heavy bulbous balusters, square newels with attached half balusters and pendants, and moulded handrail: matching dado panelling lines well. First floor: left front room fully lined with bolection-moulded panelling, has moulded dado rail and coved and moulded cornice: door on L-hinges is of 3 moulded panels; eared and enriched fireplace surround has moulded cornice shelf. Right front room retains moulded cornice and plastered spine beam.

SUBSIDIARY FEATURES: at front of house, low garden wall is
surmounted by square section railings and turned standards with urn finials, ramped up to front door steps: similar 2-leaf front gates.

(City of York: RCHME: The Central Area: HMSO: 1981-: 162). Listing NGR: SE6041152218

Derived from English Heritage LB download dated: 22/08/2005

House, No. 4 , of two storeys with basement and dormered attics, was built at the beginning of the 18th century within the confines of a complex of mediaeval buildings at the E. end of the Minster; some parts of these earlier structures were incorporated in the building. It appears on John Cossins' map of c. 1727 as Dr. Ward's house.

The five-bay symmetrical front elevation of brick laid in Flemish bond was built against a lower mediaeval structure and at its upper floor extended over it at the N.W. end. It has a late 18th-century doorway similar to that of No. 39 Bootham (York IV, Monument (41)), with reeded columns and open triangular pediment with composition decoration, flanked by four modern hung-sash windows beneath flat arches of gauged brick. The five first-floor windows are similar. The modillioned and dentilled cornice is a late 18th-century modification and the three dormers in the tiled roof are modern replacements for the three shown on Cossins' map. The N.W. side elevation has a Dutch gable in part obscured by a later chimney-stack. The mediaeval range on this side has been modified at various periods and although once incorporated in No. 4 Minster Yard is now occupied as a separate dwelling (see No. 1 Chapter House Street. The rear elevation, of brick with a serrated cornice of bricks set diagonally, has a hipped roof but incorporates at the N.E. end a mediaeval timber-framed gable. The windows have segmental heads.

Inside, two original bolection-moulded doorcases remain on the ground floor but the S.E. front room was refurbished with composition ornament in the late 18th century. The staircase, at the rear of the house, has a moulded close string, heavy bulbous balusters, square newels with attached half-balusters and pendants, and a heavy moulded handrail; it rises to the attic about a rectangular well with three flights and quarter-landings between floors. The N.W. room on the first floor retains its full complement of bolection-moulded panelling and doorways, although the window architraves have been altered. Most other fittings are of the 19th century or modern.

Monument 275; RCHME: The Central Area: HMSO: 1981-: 162

NMR Information

Full description

(SE 60415222-O.S 1/2500, 1962)

1. No 4 MINSTER YARD 5343

SE 6052 SW 27/366 14.6.54


Early C18. The house incorporates parts of medieval structures which stood on this site. Brick; 2 storeys plus attic; 5 sash windows (single glazing bars only) with flat brick arches; good later C18 doorcase of engaged fluted columns with paterae above the capitals, an open pediment with radial fanlight and mask and swags in the tympanum. To the left, forming the corner into Chapter House Street, is a low, projecting gabled wing, the ground storey of which is stone and the upper of C17 brickwork with a brick string-course above the stone. Rainwater head dated 1756; later C18 dentilled modillion cornice; 3 modern gabled dormers; tiles. The interior retains good C18 features including the staircase. (RCHM Vol V, Monument 275).

1 List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest. p226 City of York, June 1983
2 List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest. District of York, 14-MAR-1997

BF060854 YORK DIOCESAN BOARD OF FINANCE, YORK File of material relating to a site or building. This material has not yet been fully catalogued.

NMR, NMR data (Unassigned). SYO2214.

RCHME, 1981, City of York Volume V: The Central Area (Monograph). SYO65.

Sources/Archives (2)

  • --- Unassigned: NMR. NMR data.
  • --- Monograph: RCHME. 1981. City of York Volume V: The Central Area.

Protected Status/Designation

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (1)

Record last edited

Jun 2 2020 4:35PM


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