Lincoln’s Minster Yard

Following on from our stroll in uphill Lincoln we entered through the †14C Exchequer Gate into Minster Yard which is contained within the remains of its medieval gates and walls. Most of the houses are medieval and were built for the clergymen and associated workers who maintain the life of the cathedral.

Exchequer Gate
Exchequer Gate

Facing the cathedral are four Georgian houses, 20 – 23, referred to as the ‘Number Houses‘ as they are believed to be the first houses in England to be given numbers. (So why start at #20?) Built in 1740 by Precentor Trimnell on the site of a blacksmith’s shop and other buildings. Number 19 was the birth place of the painter William Logsdail (1859-1944), a prolific English landscape, portrait, and genre painter. His father was a verger at the cathedral.



Moving in a clockwise direction we encircled the cathedral, looking back across its Norman west frontage, the only part remaining after an earthquake in 1185.

The houses facing are for Cathedral dignitaries – formerly the Deanery and the ‘Old Subdeanery’. This corner of the cathedral is notorious for the wind whipping around it and has the name ‘Kill Canon Corner’.


EastgateFrom the northern side, along Eastgate, you get a view of the towers.

A short walk down James Street also provides views of the cathedral. As well as lovely golden stone walls. An area where the Burghersh family served the Chantry House founded in the mid †14c.

We returned to Eastgate and carried on walking around the cathedral grounds.

Atherstone House
Atherstone House

Passing the Bishop’s House, Deanery and Minster School which are all part of a medieval house built around a courtyard, you come back onto Minster Yard through the Priory Gate, or, like us, over the lawn.

Potter Gate
Potter Gate

To get a decent photo of the medieval Potter Gate meant standing in the centre of the road as it is now straggling a traffic island. Fortunately in the evening this was fairly quiet. Lovely Georgian and medieval houses line this road.

The Chancery
The Chancery

The Chancery is probably the prettiest with its red-brick facade and oriel window in the centre.

Choristers' House
Choristers’ House
Vicars’ Court and Palace Gate

“To see it [Lincoln cathedral] in full perfection, it should be in the red sunshine of an autumnal evening, when the red roofs and red brick houses would harmonise with the sky and with the fading foliage”
~ Robert Southey, poet (1774 – 1843)

Precentory, Cantilupe Chantry
Precentory, Cantilupe Chantry

Through the Palace Gate the road leads down to the Medieval Bishop’s Palace which was unfortunately closing as we approached (an English Heritage site) and the Bishop’s Palace and Alnwick Tower. This was the home of the Bishop of Lincoln from 1886 until 1942 and was converted into a 16 room bed and breakfast establishment in 2009, with prices for a double room from £85 and views of the cathedral, this is a perfect place to stay.

The Old Bishop’s Palace (EH)
The Old Palace B&B
The Old Palace B&B

A pathway led back up to the cathedral and there are some good views of the south side of the cathedral including the great rose window which contains fragments of medieval glass.


The South Transept
The South East Transept and Judgement Porch
Back to Exchequer Gate
Back to Exchequer Gate

Next time we’ll have a look inside the cathedral.



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I live in the UK, but when I was younger I spent several years travelling the world followed by a period living in South Africa. I look forward to a long and leisurely retirement doing what I like most - gardening, photography, walking and travelling.

27 thoughts on “Lincoln’s Minster Yard”

  1. Have been enjoying your Lincoln posts – and now it’s non league football side has reached the FA cup quarterfinals, there’s definitely something to cheer about👍⚽️😀

  2. Precentor Trimnell! What sort of a name is that??? Glorious shots of the cathedral and green, Jude! I didn’t notice the link till afterwards. Thank you very much 🙂 Been too busy to get around the blogs this weekend but I’m trying. Walking this morning, in doubtful weather, and then an RVS volunteers meeting this afternoon. All go! 🙂

  3. From your posts, I can always count on seeing interesting photos, getting a bit of history, and occasionally learning a new word. Today’s word was ‘oriel window’ 🙂

    You already know how much I swoon over your strolls through history. My favourite photo today is the one you labelled “Burgersh Chantry House”. I want to walk down that street!!

    Whoever came up with Kill Canon Corner was a fan of alliteration … if not a bit on the dramatic side 😉

  4. Yes, please. A look inside the cathedral will be a treat.
    Stunning, Magnificent. Well preserved. Love the clean lines of the architect and well-maintained grounds. What a fabulous place to stroll and take pictures! Thank you for sharing, Jude. 😀 😀

  5. Absolutely beautiful photos! I will be visiting family in Hull later in the year. You now have me considering a day trip to Lincoln. Thank you!

  6. I grew up in 23 Minster Yard but have not been back since 1983. Loved the flash back to my childhood.

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