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Learn more about the Chapter of York

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The governing body of York Minster is the Chapter. It is made up of the following people:

Acting Dean of York and Canon Pastor:
Residentiary Canons:
Lay Canons:

You can learn more about their roles below.

The Dean and the Residentiary Canons are required to live close to the Minster, and take their turn being ‘in residence’. They are present at Morning and Evening Prayer for the week. The Canon in Residence is on hand to meet pastoral needs, and may be required to chair committees or deputise for the Dean.

The Archbishop of York, Stephen Cottrell, is the bishop of the Diocese of York, which is in his special care. The Diocese of York is an area of land bounded roughly by the North Sea, the River Tees, the A1 and the River Humber.

His throne (Cathedra) is in the Quire of the Minster on the south side. He is the Preacher at Christmas and Easter and uses the Minster for diocesan services but he does not have any responsibility for running the Minster nor is he usually present at our daily services.

Acting Dean of York and Canon Pastor

The Revd Canon Michael Smith

Michael is our ‘first responder’ for pastoral care and represents the Minster in the Deanery of York and in ecumenical networks.



The Revd Canon Maggie McLean

As Canon Missioner, Maggie serves as an ambassador for York Minster, developing partnerships with Christian communities in the City of York, the Diocese of York, the Northern Province of the Church of England and with our link Dioceses in South Africa.



The Revd Canon Dr Vicky Johnson

Vicky leads and oversee the cathedral’s liturgy and music team.   Day to day she enables the planning and delivery of worship and music, supporting the work of the Director of Music and the 48 choristers (24 boys and 24 girls) and 12 adult singers of the world-renowned York Minster Choir.  She also be works with partners in the City of York to explore the development of music outreach in the years ahead.


Lay Canon

Sir William Worsley

William Worsley is Chair of the Forestry Commission. He is also President of the Yorkshire Agricultural Society and Chairman of Hovingham Estate. He is a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and a Fellow of the Royal Agricultural Societies.

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