Building record MYO1398 - 23 High Petergate


House, carriage house and garden wall, now in use as offices. The house and garden wall were built in 1779-80, the building has rainwater heads bearing these dates. The carriage house was added in the late 19th century and further alterations took place in the early and late 20th century.


Grid reference SE 6024 5212 (point)
Map sheet SE65SW
Unitary Authority City of York, North Yorkshire


Type and Period (7)

Full Description

House, carriage-house and garden wall; now offices. House and garden wall c1779; late C19 carriage-house: early C20 and later alterations.

MATERIALS: house front of red brick in Flemish bond on painted stone plinth; right return of orange-brown brick in English garden-wall bond; rear of orange-brown brick in stretcher bond; wing of red-brown brick in English garden-wall bond; timber doorcase and cornice; roofs of plain tile and pantile, with stone coped gables, brick kneelers and brick stacks. Carriage-house of orange-grey brick in English bond, whitewashed at rear, with slate roof and brick stacks. Garden wall of orange-brown brick in stretcher bond with moulded stone coping.

EXTERIOR: house has 3-storey 4-bay front. Doorcase of fluted Corinthian pilasters, dentilled open pediment enriched with composition mouldings and panelled reveal; steps lead to 6-panel door and radial fanlight with moulded glazing bars recessed in fluted round-arched architrave with impost band of incised flutes and flowers. Three 12-pane sash windows with fielded panel shutters to right of door; similar taller windows without shutters on first floor; unequal 9-pane sashes on second floor. Ground and first floor windows have painted stone sill bands; those on second floor, painted stone sills: all have flat arches of orange gauged brick. Broad bands of painted stone to first and second floors. Dentil and modillion moulded cornice with inverted bell rainwater head dated 1780. Torch extinguisher attached to left of door.

Rear: 3 storeys and attics; two gabled fronts, right one projecting forward of the left. Visible windows below attic are 12-pane sashes with flat brick arches. Attic windows are semicircular with brick arches, left one a lunette, right one with 4-pane fixed light in partly blocked opening. 3-course raised brick bands to all floors. Garden wall approximately 1.75 metres high, ramped up to rear of house, extends approximately 6 metres to south-west.

Outbuilding: 2 storeys and attic; 3 unequal bays, one gabled half dormer with finial. Carriage house entrance with flat arch of gauged brick, altered with insertion of tall windows with square leaded lights. First floor windows are sashes with glazing bars. Dormer has 3-light window with transom.

INTERIOR: full-height geometric staircase with slender turned balusters and serpentine handrail, wreathed at foot around turned newel on shaped curtail step.

(City of York: RCHME: The Central Area: HMSO: 1981-: 185). Listing NGR: SE6024552121

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

House, No. 23, was built c. 1779, of three storeys with attics, four bays wide. The front is in Flemish-bonded brickwork of fine quality, with narrow, painted stone bands at the sill levels of the ground and first-floor windows and broader painted stone bands at the first and second floors. It has a pedimental entrance with fluted composite pilasters, a lunette fanlight, and applied composition enrichments to the tympanum and entablature blocks; at its side is an iron torch extinguisher (Plate 160). The sash windows have deep, flat arches of fine guaged brickwork; those to the ground floor have shutters with three fielded panels. Above is a dentilled and modillioned cornice. At the E. end is a lead rainwater head bearing the date 1780; a similar one to the rear elevation is dated 1779, with the initials RT for Robert Thornton (YML, Sub-chanters Book 1752-85, 291), whose town house it was.

Internally, the house is well fitted and an exceptional feature is the cantilevered staircase, which rises in a continuous curve between floors, with slim turned mahogany balustersb and a mahogany veneered handrail. The E. side wall is curved to the shape of the stairs and has round-arched niches at intervals. Top lighting is provided by a glazed shallow dome, the bae of which is enriched with neo-classical plasterwork in the 'Adam' style.

1981. An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in the City of York. Volume V, the Central Area. P 185. London: RCHME. (Monument 334)

NMR Information

Full description
(SE 60245212-O.S 1/2500, 1962)

5343 (south-west side) No 23

SE 6052 SW 27/442 14.6.54

Circa 1779. Brick; 3 storeys plus attic; 4 sash windows with flat brick arches; ground storey windows with shutters of 3 fielded panels; sill bands; broad bands at 1st and 2nd floors; dentilled modillion eaves cornice; good fluted pilaster doorcase with acanthus caps, enriched entablature blocks, open pediment with swagged tympanum, and enriched radial fanlight; link extinguisher to left of doorway; lead rainwater head dated 1780 and a similar one at rear dated 1779. Good interior retains notable elliptical staircase with cantilevered treads. (RCHM Vol. V, Monument 334.)


1 List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest. p. 145 City of York, June 1983
2 List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interes District of York, 1997

BF061014 23 HIGH PETERGATE, YORK File of material relating to a site or building. This material has not yet been fully catalogued.

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

NMR, 2019, NMR data (Digital archive). SYO2214.

York Archaeological Trust, 2023, 23 High Petergate (Unpublished document). SYO2982.

On Site Archaeology, 2023, Rear of 23 High Petergate (Unpublished document). SYO2983.

Sources/Archives (4)

  • --- Digital archive: NMR. 2019. NMR data.
  • --- Unpublished document: York Archaeological Trust. 2023. 23 High Petergate.
  • --- Unpublished document: On Site Archaeology. 2023. Rear of 23 High Petergate.
  • --- Monograph: RCHME. 1981. City of York Volume V: The Central Area.

Protected Status/Designation

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (4)

Record last edited

Apr 28 2023 2:58PM


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