The designs of two talented schoolchildren from our region have been chosen for a pair of new gargoyles at Ripon Cathedral.

More than a thousand schoolchildren from across North Yorkshire submitted entries for the competition, which is being run as part of a project of repairs currently being undertaken in the north east corner of the cathedral – where worn out stonework and crumbling gargoyles are being replaced.

The drawings of Rachael Ogier, aged 10, from Moorside Junior School in Ripon and Hayden Horsfall, aged 10, from Pickering Community Junior School will now be realised in stone and will take their place on the cathedral for centuries to come.

Cathedral Architect Oliver Caroe and two expert stone carvers were amongst the judges who selected ten finalists. The designs were then put on display in the cathedral and members of the public invited to cast their votes.

Ripon Cathedral’s Director of Operations Julia Barker said: “We had such a fantastic response and we are pleased to be working with two schools in the production of these gargoyles which will be here for many generations to come. It’s something not just for them but hopefully for their children and grandchildren.”

Gargoyles were traditionally used to help ward off evil spirits and show that within the church you were protected from evil. The vital work to replace the figures and other historic stonework is being funded by the First World War Centenary Cathedral Repairs Fund.

The winning school children will now work alongside the architect and stone carvers to see their ideas brought to fruition.