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Visit Bedern Studios

About Bedern

In the shadow of York Minster, England's treasure house of medieval stained glass, York Glaziers Trust, thanks to a generous grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund, has converted a disused medieval chapel into Bedern Glaziers Studio.

There is now the first opportunity in over 50 years for the public to get up close to York Minster's Great East Window, to see real conservation in action and to meet the experts entrusted with this ambitious conservation project.

The window was made between 1405 and 1408 by a team of craftsmen led by master-glazier John Thornton of Coventry. This is one of the most ambitious stained glass creations of the Middle Ages, depicting the beginning and end of all things. The largest number of panels is devoted to the Apocalypse, the events that will herald the end of the World and the Second Coming of Christ. The glass was removed in 2008 as a prelude to the major restoration of the east façade, providing a once-in-a-life-time opportunity to conserve and protect this medieval masterpiece.

The conservation process will last over five years and will involve cleaning the glass, returning dislodged pieces to their correct position and the removal of disfiguring mending leads which destroy the window's legibility. Following conservation the window will return to the Minster with external protective glazing, safeguarding it for future generations to enjoy.

Special tours allow visitors to find out about modern stained glass conservation, combining ancient craft skills with 21st-century scientific understanding.

Bedern is fully accessible - if you have particular needs please let us know in advance.

Group Visits

Connoisseur Tours - These tours are led by a member of the York Glaziers Trust team of expert conservators and provide a more in-depth look at the project. The tour can accommodate up to 15 people (minimum number 10) and must be booked directly by contacting York Glaziers Trust on 01904 557228 or by emailing These tours last 1.5 hrs and cost £144 inc. VAT.

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