Ancient artefacts under the hammer of TV auctioneer to help save Beverley churches

Thu 11th May 2023
Ancient Artefacts Under The Hammer Of Tv Auctioneer To Help Save Beverley Churches

Auction of rare ancient artifacts to help save Beverley churches

500-year-old stone pinnacles, ironwork and wooden panels to go under the hammer this summer could attract a global internet audience

Public invited to search their attics for additional items of interest - First valuation event Friday 12 May

Crumbling parts of two ancient Beverley churches, that have been removed and replaced by new components on safety grounds, are to come under the hammer this summer in a unique fundraising auction.

Proceeds will benefit the Two Churches One Town charity which has a target to raise £20-million to save the ancient fabric of Beverley Minster and St Mary’s from falling into dangerous disrepair.

The public are also being asked to search their attics, basements and outbuildings for any hidden ‘treasure’ they could also donate to the auction.

Television personality and local auctioneer Caroline Hawley, who often appears on national TV shows such as the BBC’s Bargain Hunt, is coordinating the collection and valuation of all the lots by Hawley Auctioneers.

Caroline said: “I’m so excited to be working on this auction to help secure the future of these two magnificent buildings in my home county of East Yorkshire. They’re of great importance and are recognised for their outstanding architecture, not only in this country but also around the world.”

The concept was developed by Beverley Minster Old Fund which is organising the charity auction on Saturday 8th July 2023 in the South Transept of Britain’s biggest parish church. Its former chair, Martin Needler, believes the combination of rare ancient artefacts and public items could raise significant funds.

Mr Needler explained: “Over the years the churches of St Mary’s and The Minster in Beverley have accumulated several items which are surplus to requirements. Items such as the old stone pinnacles, wood from the roof, 19th century oak pews along with iron gates and much more. These will be auctioned off to provide funding towards the urgent restoration of both churches.

“There is a need for £20m to cover the work on both churches to prevent them falling into disrepair and having to close their doors. We are delighted to have Caroline Hawley manage the auction for us.

“We are asking members of the public, including the congregations of both churches, to submit personal items, which they can donate to the auction, to be sold alongside the churches’ artifacts.”

Tim Carlisle, chairman of the Two Churches One Town charity emphasized: “We have a huge target of £20m to raise to carry on the repair and renewals at both the Minster and St Mary’s Church. There is a wonderful film available on our website which explains just how special Beverley and the two churches are.  

“We know how much these two churches mean to people in this area and we want to push that message out to the rest of the world and encourage people to help us fundraise to keep the buildings safe, open and free to visit for residents and international visitors alike.” 

Members of the public are being invited to donate their personal items at a valuation day that has been arranged for Friday 12th May in the Minster Parish Hall starting at 12noon until 5pm.

The afternoon will commence with a talk by Caroline about antiques. People attending can then have a valuation of their personal items, the cost of which is covered by a nominal £5 entrance fee. A further valuation day will be held in St Mary’s on Friday 23rd June from 2pm until 5pm.

The day prior to the auction, on Friday 7th July, the Minster will be open to enable everyone to view all the auction items from 10am to 6pm.  Viewing will also be available on the day of the auction from 8am to 10am on Saturday 8th July.

The auction at Beverley Minster will also be open to global bids using two internet platforms so attract a worldwide audience.

If people cannot attend the valuation day, they can contact Hawleys Auctioneers by email at or Tel: 01482 868193 to arrange to donate their personal items.

Full details of the Two Churches One Town campaign to raise £20-million to save Beverley’s St Mary’s Church and Minster is online at

Just Beverley