Monument record MYO3512 - St Maurices Church


The church marked on the 1852 plan is the medieval church which the RCHM(E) York Vol 4 suggests dates from the 12th century. This church was taken down in 1875 and replaced by a larger structure which was in turn demolished in 1967.


Grid reference Centred SE 6057 5229 (24m by 21m)
Map sheet SE65SW
Unitary Authority City of York, North Yorkshire


Type and Period (3)

Full Description

Built by late 12th century, rebuilt 14-15C; united with Holy Trinity Goodramgate 1586; damaged 1644; demolished 1875, replaced by a larger building, itself demolished 1967. Excavations in 1972 showed no trace of the 12th century church.

The British Towns Historic Atlas Vol V.

The church of ST. MAURICE, Monkgate, is first mentioned in a document dated between 1195 and 1210 when it was in the possession of the chapter. The church was annexed to the prebends of Fridaythorpe and Fenton until in the early 13th century Archbishop Gray united the moieties under the Prebend of Fenton. In recompense for the loss of temporalities the Prebend of Fridaythorpe was assigned omnes homines in vico de Neubigging et de Munkgate manentes de prebenda de Fenton tenentes with their rents and services, 'husgable', and Peter's Pence. In 1240 the archbishop ordained a vicarage in the church. The rectory and the advowson of the vicarage remained part of the Prebend of Fenton until the 16th century. Like many other small city churches St. Maurice's was shown to be much decayed in capitular visitations during the 15th century, and in 1548 it was proposed to unite the church with St. Giles's but in 1586 it was united, together with St. John-delPyke, with Holy Trinity, Goodramgate. (fn. 36) Unlike other churches affected by the reorganization it was not demolished and continued to be used for services until it was replaced in 1874 by a modern church. An incumbent in 1716 described himself as being 'collated to both churches as one cure'. After the church was rebuilt it became the church in which the cure was principally exercised in the united parishes.

Neither rectory nor vicarage was valued in 1291. When the vicarage was ordained in 1240 it was arranged that the vicar should receive all tithes and offerings and pay an annual pension of 4 marks to the Prebendary of Fenton. In 1535 the vicarage was valued at £3 6s. 8d. Clear; £3 was received from lenten tithes and the remainder from oblations. Although the income of the benefice was, after 1586, annexed to Holy Trinity, Goodramgate, it was frequently reckoned separately in the 18th and 19th centuries: thus in 1716 the tithes from gardens and closes in St. Maurice's parish were £5 2s. 8d. Which in 1764 had been reduced by 2s. When a windmill was demolished about 1745. The tithes were commuted by the commissioners for this reduced sum but were redeemed before apportionment for £130. One pound was received from two anniversary sermons in the mid-18th century and 5s. For the rent of the churchyard. Lands in Bishopthorpe were let at £7 a year, half of which was devoted to the repair of the church and half to the poor: by 1825 these lands were let at £20 10s. The church which preceded the present one was a small building comprising nave with south aisle, chancel with aisle, south porch, and vestry. A small wooden bell turret surmounted the nave roof (see plate facing p. 387). It appears to have been restored and rebuilt piecemeal at all periods: some late-14thcentury work in the west window was the earliest. A small carved panel in the pulpit bore the date 1632. Portions of the early-12th-century doorway are preserved in the present churchyard.

The present church was completed in 1878 at a cost of £7,083; the architect was Charles Fisher of York. It comprises nave with north and south aisles, a chancel, and a square tower in three stories. There are 4 bells, two of which probably came from the church demolished in 1878. The plate comprised in 1912 a silver cup of the 16th century, another silver cup and two patens in a set and a silver flagon. Registers beginning in 1650 were reported to be in the church in 1825. Minutes of vestry meetings from 1795 to 1849 and churchwardens' accounts for 1734 to 1873 have been deposited in the York Diocesan Registry at St. Anthony's Hall. The parish lay outside the walls, bounded on one side by the north-eastern wall, on another by the Foss and on a third by St. Olave's. It retained its identity for secular purposes after the union of 1586 until 1900 and was marked on the Ordnance Survey Plan of 1852.

From: 'The parish churches', A History of the County of York: the City of York (1961), pp. 365-404.

Lord Mayor's Walk was Goose Lane and undeveloped except perhaps in the immediate vicinity of St. Maurice's church. Between the Horsefair and Monkgate lay Paynelathes Crofts, later known as The Groves, an area of small enclosures belonging to St. Mary's Abbey. Surviving remains of St. Maurice's church include an arch of mid 12th-century date and its existence argues for some suburban development in Monkgate by that time; the name Monkgate appears in the form Munccagate in 1080. In c. 1282 the husgable rolls record 50 tofts under the heading of Monkgate (YCA, c60) including two occupied by millers.

Parish Church of St. Maurice stood at the junction of Monkgate and Lord Mayor's Walk. A mediaeval church dating at least from the late 12th century was taken down in 1875 and a larger structure erected which was in turn demolished in 1967. The following architectural fragments and fittings have been preserved. Arch reconstructed probably from S. doorway, now of two orders but incorporating voussoirs of three types, as well as jamb stones reused as voussoirs. Decoration in form of roll mouldings, rosettes and beak-head ornament. Arch springs from capitals carved with foliage and (?) interlace. Third quarter of 12th century. Built into fabric of church of St. James the Deacon, Acomb Moor.

Window, of two round-headed lights, roll-moulded heads and parts of jambs. Lights divided by round shaft attached to rectangular pier. Head pierced by circular hole forming embryonic plate tracery (J. H. Parker, Introduction to Gothic Architecture (1861), 52). Late 12th-century. In Yorkshire Museum.

Fittings. Bells: (1) inscribed Gloria in Altissimis Deus SS 1665; (2) venite exultemus Domino SS Ebor. Now at church of St. Hilda, Grangetown, Teesside. Coffin Lid, carved with raised cross, the head foliated against a plain circular background, 13th-century. At church of St. James the Deacon. Monuments, in churchyard, headstones of 1781 and later. Panelling, reset in 19th-century door, four panels carved with four Evangelists and their symbols, 16th-century. At church of St. James the Deacon. Plate: cup of 1568, cover-paten by John Oliver, York 1684, now in the care of St. Michael-le-Belfrey, York; cup and two patens by Barber and North, York 1842, now at church of St. Thomas, Lowther Street, York (Fallow and McCall, 1, 20, 21; cup of 1568 pl. vi). The present whereabouts of a flagon by Robert and David Hennel, London 1797, is not known.

An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in City of York, Volume 4, Outside the City Walls East of the Ouse (London, 1975), pp. xxxviii, Monument 8

Just outside Mink Bar stood a small church dedicated to St Maurice. The earliest mention of it occurs between 1195-1210 in a grant of land at the east end of the churchyard. In an undated ordinaiton of Archbishop Gray, the church is described as being 'in Newbigging'. A transitional doorway is in the churchyard. Another relic of old St Maurice is preserved in theYorkshire museum, the stonework of a transitional window, showing an early example of tracery. A side ailse was added in the 15th century. The church was taken down in 1875 and a much larger building erected. St Maurice's was not a important church and is not often mentioned in wills: 1409 will of John Moreby refers to the recently built side chapel; 1436 will of William Barton and 1487 will of John Holme refer to the alter of the Virgin Mary; 1433 will of Robert Howme refers to The Rood; 1511 will of Charles Kiddall and 1521 will of John Robynson refer to the image of Our Lady of Pity; 1499 will of William Davyson requests burial before and image of Our Lady at the quire door; 1494, John Barnes asks to be buried between images of our ladt and St Anne; 1429 will of William Hedon gives sword and two bows and twelve arrows to the light of Our Lady; 1504 Geoff Gurnell gives 'sex waynescote burds wt a lytill tee' for work in the church and 2s for work on the vestry.

The church belonged to the Dean and Chapter of York and was visited by their officals. In 1409 it was reported that the chancel was in a dangerouus condition and that there was not enough light in the church. The mensa on the high altar was broken, an antiphony and also a surplus for a parish clerk were needed, and the baptismal font was broken and did not hold water. In 1472 the chancel was dilapidated in its walls and roof, and in the glass of the windows; the choir stalls were broken and unseemly and the head of the chiefimage was to some degree out of shape. In the siege of 1644 some desperate fighting took place outside Monk Bar and the church was badly damaged. In October of that year the City Council ordered that, as the church was partly destroyed and the houses in the parish burnt down, the wardens of Monk Ward should inspect it and with the cooperation of the parishoners takes steps for the preservation of its stalls, books and other things.

Raine, A. 'Medieval York' p. 276-8.

NMR Information

Site of a Norman church, it was damaged in the siege of 1644, but it was repaired and lasted until 1875 when it was demolished and a new church built on the site. This church was demolished in 1967. A Norman arch from the original church survived and was reset in the church of St James the Deacon, Dringhouses.

BF060221 ST MAURICE'S CHURCH, YORK File of material relating to a site or building. This material has not yet been fully catalogued.

NMR, NMR data (Unassigned). SYO2214.

RCHME, 1975, RCHME Volume 4, Outside the City Walls East of the Ouse (Monograph). SYO2424.

2015, The British Historic Towns Atlas Vol V, p93 (Monograph). SYO1898.

Sources/Archives (3)

  • --- Monograph: 2015. The British Historic Towns Atlas Vol V. p93.
  • --- Unassigned: NMR. NMR data.
  • --- Monograph: RCHME. 1975. RCHME Volume 4, Outside the City Walls East of the Ouse.

Protected Status/Designation

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (4)

Record last edited

Nov 10 2020 4:11PM


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