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David Ford, History Editor Ancient York
by David Nash Ford BA,
Editor, History on Britannia

The Guildhall
On the Ouse, behind the Mansion House

The Guildhall, York The York Guildhall, through the archway beside the Mansion House in St. Helen's Square, was the heart of the medieval city. This magnificent mid-15th century building was where the trade guilds of York met to regulate the work of the city merchants. Unfortunately, it received heavy bomb damage during the last war, but it has been fully restored with an exact replica of the extraordinary carved roof and fascinating stained glass tracing the history of the city.

The panelled inner chamber of the hall, with its secret stairways, escaped the bombing. It was here that Cromwell paid the Scots 200,000 for helping him in the Civil War. A medieval alley with Roman origins, Commonhall Lane, actually runs beneath the hall and down to the river. There are fine views of the building from the far side.

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