I would actually be in favour of inscribing York. The UK doesn't really have many cities or churches inscribed (Edinburgh, Bath, Canterbury) and York felt different to them. The cathedral is great, the Roman and Norman ruins are, too...
I am reminded of Frances nomination for 2023 "Maison Carrée de Nîmes (France)" which had previously been "Nîmes, Antiquity to the Present".
France does have loads of old towns, Roman ruins, .. inscribed. That's the difference. Nimes is a joke considering that the area is already clustered with sites covering the same time span. I don't see a similar situation in York.
As for your question. IMO - despite the large number of Gothic Cathedrals inscribed already I couldn't really see how any nomination of that building could be refused..
For some reason, I don't consider UK churches to look like their counterparts on the continent. I think York Cathedral would add something. Only similar church is Canterbury.
Other mediaeval buildings are scattered around the city (which is itself the "problem". 1 or 2 could possibly be picked out as separate locations but it would all be a bit "artificial" and wouldn't really solve the problem of development controls on adjacent buildings)-
Only visited for half a day. I would assume the cathedral and its immediate vicinity, the motte, and the castle wall would make the cut plus a few gems/clusters within the city.
I think York would have been a great nomination... in 1987. But does the List need another European cityscape complete with grand cathedral? What makes York unique? Augsburg had to scrabble around for a water management system.
Augsburg was bombed. As were plenty of historical places in Germany. The Fuggerei in original shape would have been a stellar WHS. But it's reconstructed as is most of the town. It should not have been inscribed, but regional pride would not accept it.
I think the UK is a peculiar area as their WHS skew so heavily towards industrialization and the list is still short (compared to Germany).
And UNESCO hasn't helped itself in the bigger battles it has chosen to intervene on. Has the Waldschlösschen Bridge as built really destroyed the Dresden-Elbe Valley OUV? Why on earth couldn't UNESCO realize that the Liverpool core area was unnecessarily large and come to an accommodation on altering the boundaries to allow a reasonable (if not magnificent) development in a run down area which wasn't central to the OUV of "Liverpool
Two answers to your question:
1) The delisting was more about process than quality for Dresden. The local politicians really showed their disdain for Unesco and the delisting was the consequence. They could have worked out a solution. E.g., Cologne built skyscrapers across from the cathedral. They just approached it the Rhinish way, talking, understanding, ... The Saxons decided to tell Unesco to go f!"§$ themselves. What a surprise, that they were delisted.
2) In Liverpool's case, the same disdain for Unesco and Unesco's mandate (see newspaper titles) was mixed with landing a flying saucer (football stadium) in the buffer/core zone. A tiny bridge several kilometers up river does not make a difference. A huge football stadium does.