A New Defibrillator at the Hall

The Company of Merchant Taylors has recently purchased a defibrillator - funded from the bequest of Tony Coward, Master of the Company in 1996.

Located in the forecourt of the Hall, the defibrillator is available for use by anyone in the local community as no training is required to operate it. The defibrillator is registered with the Yorkshire Ambulance Service who can direct anyone in need to it via the 999 emergency service, and provide them with the code to open the locked cabinet in which it's kept. Our defibrillator now forms part of a network available across the country available to help those who fall ill.

We hope our new defibrillator is never needed but that, if it is, it may one day save a life.


Merchant Taylors Paddle to Victory in the 2019 York Dragon Boat Challenge!

The Merchant Taylors' team, the Swift Taylors, certainly lived up to their name in the the 17th Annual York Rotary Dragon Boat Challenge, held on Sunday 14th July 2019.

Led and inspired by an injured Peter Moody, they powered their way through the heats as the fastest charity team winning the Charity Trophy, which will be displayed in the Merchant Taylors' Hall. They were only just pipped to the podium in the final, finishing in overall fourth place.

Thanks go to Peter Moody, Daniel Rose, Alex Nicholson, Matt Forman, John Leach and Carin Burchell from the Taylors and to James Baldwin and his rugby club friends for such a tremendous effort and performance.

Thanks also go to Annabel and Freddie Amy for ensuring a steady flow of liquid refreshment, and to the Master, Senior Warden and other members and their families for supporting the team.

£1500 has been raised so far and if you would like to add your donation then please click here

The (rather motley!) crew!

The (rather motley!) crew!

Charter Day 2019

Charter Day is the most important event in our Company’s calendar and is the commencement of our Company year.

Held on the nearest Wednesday to the 24th June, the feast of the Nativity of St John the Baptist, the Company's Patron Saint, this year’s Charter Day fell on Wednesday 26th June.

The proceedings began with a meeting of the Court at which the new Master, Mr John Short, and other Company Officers were sworn in. This was followed by the traditional procession through the City to the Parish Church of All Saints Pavement where the Company was joined by the Civic Party for the annual Church Service.

The Company and its guests then returned in procession to the Hall for a celebratory tea.

From left: Mr David Miller – Past Master Warden, Mr Jonathan Leach – Senior Warden, Mr John Short – Master, Dr Allen Warren MBE - Immediate Past Master, Mr Anthony Dixon – Junior Warden, Mr Peter Moody – Searcher

From left: Mr David Miller – Past Master Warden, Mr Jonathan Leach – Senior Warden, Mr John Short – Master, Dr Allen Warren MBE - Immediate Past Master, Mr Anthony Dixon – Junior Warden, Mr Peter Moody – Searcher

Creative Bursaries Awarded by The Company of Merchant Taylors

The Company of Merchant Taylors has awarded Creative Bursaries to a group of artistic students from York College's Art & Design, Performing Arts and Construction Divisions.

The following ten students were especially selected to receive the Bursaries from York’s historic Guild in recognition of their talents and exceptional commitment to their studies.

Music: Anya Lundie, Sam Headford, Max Roberts and Morgan Thomas

Art & Design: Erin Hitchcock, Sophie Woodliffe, Courtney Taylor and Erik Battles-Phillips

Construction: Kieran Gordon and Russell Holliday

Philippa Lester with the Creative Bursary award winners from from York College's Art & Design, Performing Arts and Construction Divisions

Philippa Lester with the Creative Bursary award winners from from York College's Art & Design, Performing Arts and Construction Divisions

The Company of Merchant Taylors has maintained close links with York College for many years, in support of skills training and individual student success and achievement. Annually, the Guild encourages and rewards students who excel in their chosen craft by presenting prizes at the York College Fashion Show, awarding the Creative Bursaries and supporting the Saturday Arts Club.

Philippa Lester, Past Master of the Company of Merchant Taylors, presented the students with their bursaries, saying: "The Company of Merchant Taylors encourages and supports young people in the arts and these Creative Bursaries are in keeping with the charitable aims of our Company and its historical roots in York. The skills and determination demonstrated by these students deserve our support and recognition."

Lee Probert, Chief Executive and Principal of York College commented: "The College is extremely grateful to the Company of Merchant Taylors for their generous support of our students in the arts. There is no doubt the Creative Bursaries will make a real difference to this year’s worthy recipients, each of whom has shown a passion and flair for their respective disciplines. I congratulate them all on their achievements so far and wish them well as they progress onto the next stage of their training at York College or at universities around the country.”

A delicious choice of caterers for weddings & events

The Company of Merchant Taylors is delighted to announce the appointment of Baba Ganoush Dining, Bradshaws of York and Poppy Caterers Ltd as approved caterers for weddings and private hire events at the Merchant Taylors’ Hall from March 2019.

For more information about holding your event at our beautiful, historic hall please see the Weddings & Private Hire pages or email events@merchant-taylors-york.org

2019 Open Day Dates Confirmed


After the success of our 2018 trial Open Days, the Merchant Taylors’ Hall will be open to the public once a month throughout 2019.

The popular ‘Members’ Tours’ of this magnificent building will once again be offered to visitors and several Open Days coincide with special events including Surprise Concerts in partnership with the University of York’s Music Department, and themed events on special days such as Yorkshire Day.

Full details and a list of Open Day dates and times can be found on our What’s On page.

Merchant Taylors' Hall Open Days 2018 - FREE admission

The Hall Open Days provide a wonderful opportunity for residents and visitors to the City of York to find out more about this medieval guild and to visit the ancient Hall. Built in 1415, it is one of York’s buildings of historical importance.

The Hall will be opening its doors between 11.00 and 15.00 on the following days:

  • Tuesday 10 April 2018

  • Tuesday 8 May 2018

  • Tuesday 12 June 2018

Learn about our history with guided tours from our members. During your visit take a break and enjoy refreshments from our award-winning catering partner, Poppy Caterers Ltd. Our historic building is also an ideal location for corporate and private events and, weddings. If you wish to explore this then representatives from Poppy Caterers Ltd will be on hand to discuss any enquiry that you may have.

Free admission and no booking is required (except for groups of 8 or more people). For group bookings please contact: Poppy Caterers Ltd, tel: 01347 878628, email: info@poppycaterers.co.uk

We regret that parking on the premises is available to authorised permit holders only.

Dragon Boat Races 2017

The Merchant Taylors entered a boat in the famous York Dragon Boat race on Sunday 9th July. During a wonderful day our team came fifth out of 36 boats and competed in the Grand Final - an amazing achievement for first time entrants. We were also awarded the Charity Trophy – competing against 14 other charities!

Our thanks go to Peter Moody for organising the Merchant Taylors' team and to everyone who took part including James Baldwin, Matt Forman, Alex Nicholson and Nick Scroggs. We are also very grateful to the other 15 or so non members who were part of our team and did such an excellent job.

We raised funds for very worthwhile local charities as well as for the Merchant Taylors and hope we'll be able to compete again next year with an even more impressive presence!