Countdown to a heavenly spectacle in a medieval minster

East Yorkshire’s minster town of Beverley already counts a heavenly masterpiece as one of its top visitor attractions, but later this year it will become home to another celestial spectacle.

Dominating the skyline around the picturesque market town, Beverley Minster has wowed pilgrims and visitors for centuries and is among Britain’s finest examples of medieval gothic architecture.

Originally founded in the eighth century, the current building has stood at the heart of the town for almost 600 years and is famous for its twin towers as well as an awe-inspiring interior, including the stone Percy Canopy, Anglo-Saxon ‘Frith Stool’ and medieval carvings.

Now a modern masterpiece is set to bring a new attraction to the medieval setting – a giant, replica of the Earth, offering a chance for visitors to see the planet from an astronaut’s viewpoint.

Gaia, a giant three-dimensional illuminated touring artwork from British artist Luke Jerram, will ‘float’ inside the Minster as part of a special exhibition being staged this September.

Measuring seven metres in diameter, Gaia has been created from detailed NASA imagery of the Earth’s surface and gives viewers a rare chance to see Planet Earth up-close, floating in three-dimensions, slowly revolving and accompanied by a special soundtrack from BAFTA award winning composer Dan Jones.

From 8 September to 1 October, Gaia will take centre stage in the Minster, with free entry, except on Saturday 23 September when there is a Retro Fair event with a £3 per person charge.

Living in the UK but working internationally, Luke Jerram’s multidisciplinary practice involves the creation of sculptures, installations and live arts projects, and is known worldwide for his large-scale public artworks.

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General tourist information on East Yorkshire as a destination is available at

Photo (c) Gareth Jones