The Year was a ceremonial baton, that represented the passing of the year from the Queen of Snow to the Queen of Sunrise during the Spring Equinox, and vice versa during the Autumn Equinox. Although its purpose was metaphorical, its presence in the Land of Holly and Hawthorn did have applications to the seasons of Gielinor. The true year had to be obtained by gathering keys from spirits and carving a sculpture for the Queen of Snow, so that she can see the beauty of it in ice, in order to convince her. If players destroyed an Evil holly tree, they would receive a fake year.
When attempting to bank the true year, it said that "A magical force is preventing you from banking this item".