York Civic Trust unveiled a blue plaque to James Pigott Pritchett (1789-1868) on Wednesday afternoon, 22 May 2019, at York Cemetery.

The plaque unveiling ceremony.

Pritchett was a renowned architect in his day. Operating from his offices in York, he was responsible for many of the city’s C19 Congregationalist non-conformist chapels, including the chapel – now Zizzi’s restaurant – on Lendal (1816) and the Ebenezer Primitive Methodist Chapel on Little Stonegate (1851, now The Banyan bar). He also designed the neoclassical portico (1828) for the Assembly Rooms on Blake Street, and York County Savings Bank in St Helen’s Square (1829-30).

Further afield, Pritchett was also responsible for Huddersfield Railway Station (1845-8), which John Betjeman described ‘as one of the most splendid in England’.

Huddersfield Railway Station, 1845-48

The plaque is affixed to the chapel in the cemetery, which is to be known as the Pritchett Chapel due to it having been designed and built by him between 1836-38. It is a Grade II* listed building. Pritchett was also the mastermind behind the landscaped cemetery and its associated buildings.

Pritchett Chapel, York Cemetery, with YCT blue plaque

Pritchett is buried in York Cemetery, making this location even more befitting for the plaque to celebrate his life and achievements.

Dr Richard Keesing and Dr Peter Addyman unveiling the plaque

The unveiling ceremony was well attended by at least 30 people, largely comprising members of York Civic Trust and York Cemetery Trust. YCT President, Dr Peter Addyman, gave a brief introduction, with a short history of the chapel and cemetery then given by Dr Richard Keesing, Chair of York Cemetery Trust, who also unveiled the plaque.

More details about Pritchett’s life and works can be found on our website, and a video clip of the unveiling by The Yorkshire Post is also available.

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