Mansion House
Mansion House
The Mansion House is an elegant Georgian building that has been the official residence of the Lord Mayor of York since the early 18th century. It is the first house in England to be built expressly for a Lord Mayor. The mansion was established in part because the city council thought that the Lord Mayor ought to have an impressive house to "Keep up the grandeur and dignity of the City" by holding at least two public dining days each week.
In 1722 the council granted a budget of £1000, and construction commenced in 1725. Some things never change - costs were higher than expected and the project soon ran over budget. Costs were keep slightly lower when some craftsmen proved willing to work for free in exchange for being granted the freedom of the city. The last major part of the house, the Great Room, was built in 1732.

Aside from acting as the Lord Mayor's seat and providing a space for entertainment and exhibitions, the Mansion House houses displays of civic regalia including the civic plate, and a collection of silver and other mementoes from York's history.

Though the Mansion House is not a regular 'tourist attraction', there are regular tours and special group tours can also be arranged. As of this writing the Mansion House is open from March to late Christmas, Friday-Saturday 11am and 2pm for guided tours.