and in the surrounding area north and south of York - Ideas for interesting places to visit, good walks etc. and most of what I've photographed and described is free and readily accessed by walking around or from the main city centre
The CITY of YORK itself
Interesting places near York and environs north and south of York
31a. Newby Hall Gardens
A Brief History of York
A BRIEF HISTORY of the City of YORK
INTRODUCTION, then various periods of York's history are discussed
York is a great historic walled city where the Rivers Ouse and Foss meet in North Yorkshire, England. York is the traditional county town of Yorkshire to which it gives its name. York has a rich historic and cultural heritage and witnessed major political events in England over the two millennia of its existence. Despite its relatively small size for a city, York has a wealth of historic attractions, the most prominent being the great medieval building of York Minster.
The word York (from Old Danish Jórvík from the 9th century AD) is derived from the Latinised name for the city, variously rendered as Eboracum, Eburacum or Eburaci. The first mention of York by this name comes from around 95–104 AD as an address on a wooden stylus tablet from the Roman fortress of Vindolanda in Northumberland.
The City of York lies in the Vale of York, a flat area of fertile arable land bordered by the Pennines to the west, the North York Moors to the northeast and the Yorkshire Wolds to the southeast. York was a tidal port until the lock was built at Naburn on the River Ouse south of York. Upto the end of the 20th century, the Ouse was used by barges to carry freight between York and the port of Hull.
The Roman Period
Prior to the Roman conquest of Britain, the York area was occupied by a tribe known to the Romans as the Brigantes. The Brigantian tribal area was initially a subservient Roman state, but, later its leaders became hostile and the famous ('lost') Roman Ninth Legion was sent north of the Humber into Brigantian territory to quell any uprising and preserve the Roman administrative centre of York which had been founded by the Romans as Eboracum in 71 AD and later became the capital of the Roman province of Britannia Inferior. Initially a wooden military fortress was built on flat ground above the River Ouse close to its confluence with the River Foss, it was later rebuilt in stone and the site of the Roman fortress lies under the foundations of York Minster, and excavations in the undercroft have revealed some of the original walls. One particularly notable point of the Roman occupation of York was that the Roman Emperor Constantine the Great was proclaimed Emperor at York in AD 306. York declined in the post-Roman era i.e. after ~AD400, and was taken and settled by the Angles in the 5th century AD.
Pre-1066 Norman Conquest - Anglo-Saxon & Viking era
In this period York was the capital of the kingdoms of Northumbria and Jorvik. Reclamation of the flooded land between the Rivers Ouse and Foss began in the7th century under King Edwin of Northumbria, and York which became his chief city. The first minster church was built in York for the baptism of Edwin in 627. Under Oswald, the first stone minster was completed in the following century Alcuin of York came to the cathedral school of York. Here Alcuin had a long career as a teacher and scholar, first at the school at York now known as St Peter's School, founded in 627 AD, and also as Charlemagne's leading advisor on ecclesiastical and educational affairs.
In 866 the Vikings raided and captured York and under their rule the city became a major river port, part of the extensive Viking trading routes throughout northern Europe. The last ruler of an independent Jórvík, Eric Bloodaxe, was driven from the city in AD 954 by King Edred in his successful attempt to complete the unification of England.
The post-Norman Conquest Period - The Norman and Medieval Period eras
In the Middle Ages, York became a major wool trading centre
and became the capital of the northern ecclesiastical province of the Church of
England, a role it has retained. In 1068, two years after the Norman Conquest of
England, the people of York rebelled with some initial success but with the arrival of William
the Conqueror the rebellion was put down who built two wooden
fortresses on mottes, which are visible, on either side of the river Ouse. York
was ravaged by William's army in the dreadfully destructive infamous 'harrying of the North'.
16th to 18th Centuries - The Tudor & Georgian Periods
York experienced a period of economic decline during Tudor times,
particularly under Henry
VIII, when the Dissolution of the Monasteries saw the end of the York's many
houses, including orders of friars, the hospitals of St Nicholas and of
St Leonard, the largest such institution in the north of England. This
'dissolution' of monastic houses led to
the Pilgrimage of Grace, an uprising of northern Catholics in Yorkshire and
Lincolnshire opposed to the religious reforms instigated by Henry VIII, but,
Henry restored his authority by
establishing the Council of the North in York in the dissolved St Mary's Abbey
(ruins in the Museum Gardens).
York's many elegant Georgian townhouses, such as the Lord Mayor's Mansion House and Fairfax House date from this period, as do the Assembly Rooms, the Theatre Royal, and the racecourse. The Guildhall (dating from medieval times, near the river down from St Helens Square) is where members of the City of York Council meet and the Mansion House (A fine Georgian building in St Helens Square) is home to the Lord Mayor of York York's first subscription library opened in 1794.
19th Century - The Victorian Period
In the 19th century, York became a hub of the new and rapidly expanding railway network and a confectionery manufacturing centre for sweets and chocolate. In 1893 the first free public library, the York Library, was built on Clifford Street to mark Queen Victoria's jubilee, though a new building was erected on Museum Street in 1927 and is still the library today by the medieval ruins of St Leonard's Hospital.
The railway promoter George Hudson was
mainly responsible for bringing the railway to
York in 1839, but Hudson's career as a railway entrepreneur ended in
disgrace and bankruptcy. However, his promotion of his own railway company, the York and
North Midland Railway and of York over Leeds, helped establish York to become an major
railway centre by the late 19th century.
Modern Era - 20th and into the 21st Century and Tourism
York has had to move with the times and the economy once dominated by its confectionery and railway-related industries, is now one of service providers and the University of York and health services have become very important major employers. York's tourism industry goes back to medieval times (e.g. popular place for pilgrims) but this is now a much more important sector of the local economy. The opening of the University of York in 1963 has greatly added to the prosperity of the city with thousands of students contributing to the local economy and provided much needed jobs. York's economy is now very much based on service industries including public sector employment, health, education, finance, information technology (IT) and the all important and growing tourism that has become an important element of York's economy. York is still the headquarters of the confectionery manufacturer Nestlé York (formerly Nestlé Rowntrees) and home to the KitKat and iconic Yorkie bar chocolate brands. Terry's chocolate factory, makers of the Chocolate Orange departed in 2005, when production was moved by its owners, Kraft Foods, to Poland, but the historic factory building is situated next to the Knavesmire racecourse.
York has a huge range
of historic attractions, of which York Minster is the most prominent,
and a variety of cultural activities. The historic core of York has
became one of the city's major assets for the tourism industry, and in
1968 it was designated a conservation area. Some of the most recent
attractions are the National Railway Museum in York and the Jorvik Viking Centre.
The central part of
York is surrounded by the city's medieval walls, which form a great historic and popular
walk and these defences are the most complete in England, dating from Roman
times through Norman times, the Middle Ages, the 17th century Civil War
and Victorian reconstructions.
York has some prestigious sporting connections and venues. York Racecourse was established in 1731 and from 1990 the famous racecourse has been awarded Northern Racecourse of the Year for 17 years running! In August York horse racing takes place over the four-day Ebor Festival that includes the Ebor Handicap dating from 1843. York has also hosted the UK Snooker Championship, which is the second biggest ranking tournament in snooker, at the York Barbican Centre. In July 2014, York hosted the start of Stage 2 of the 2014 Tour de France.
Apart from the cinema, theatres there are many cultural activities to go to in York e.g. Each September since 1997, York holds an annual Festival of Food and Drink with the aim of highlighting the food culture of York and North Yorkshire by promoting local food production. The famous 'medieval' York Mystery Plays are performed in public at intervals, using texts based on the original medieval plays of this type that were performed by the guilds. The Academy of St Olave's, a chamber orchestra which gives concerts in St Olave's Church, Marygate, is one of the music groups that perform regularly in York. A former church, St Margaret's, Walmgate, is the National Centre for Early Music, which hosts concerts and arranges concerts of medieval, Renaissance and classical period music at other venues and York St John University music department regularly perform lunchtime concerts in the University chapel.
An ex London Transport bus Routemaster KFF 367 RM 1101 LONDON NECROBUS courtesy of Ghost Bus Tours Ltd
SO, this is a great city to visit with lots to see and do !!!
and I hope my selections of photographs encourage you to VISIT YORK
The beautiful and historic City of York is one of the most popular tourist destinations in England and full of locations displaying its heritage. The visitor can explore the old walls, museums, many fine ancient medieval churches, The York Minster, Roman and Viking sites as well as the old pubs! There is plenty of accommodation and places to stay to cover all budgets and innumerable attractions for the tourist to visit in the City of York, all of which can be reached on foot and choices of walks abound.
Street art in York City centre - "The Last Judgement" - very appropriate for a city riddled with medieval churches!
York has many great churches for weddings and reception venues!
There are always street musicians playing somewhere in York
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The 'YORK PANORAMA' mural in York Library
|Below is an 'illustrated' list of some cafes, pubs and restaurants to suit all 'tastes' and budgets! I think you will agree there is quite an interesting variety of locations in York when eating and drinking out by the River Ouse or dining out in style in the City!|
|A good place for vegetarian food is the cafe 'Mannion & Co', 1 Blake Street, York.|
One of our favourite budget eating place is in the Spurriergate Centre, York, and applaud its policy of employing people who might otherwise not find it that easy to find work. It was originally the medieval church of St Michael, York, and the fine Norman columns and more recent? stain glass windows provide a most interesting and atmospheric setting for a hearty lunch.
|York Public Library in Museum Street has a very nice coffee area with very comfortable chairs, good coffee and great scones and other tasty goodies! It is being refurbished in 2014, hopefully ready for 2015.|
|Left: The Vanilla Cafe on College Street, York, just near St William's College, a popular rest spot (below) on the green near the east end of York Minster.|
|The Goji vegetarian cafe and vegan cafe in Goodramgate, York with a very cosy sheltered back yard to eat in.|
|The Cafe on the top floor of the high street shop M&S, York, has great views of York Minster, the food is pretty good too!|
|The 'Lucky Days' cafe in Church Street, York, for sandwiches, salads, coffee and cakes.|
Left: Crumbs on the Road by York Minster
Right: Crumbs CupCakery on College Street, York
Reeds Cafe Tea Rooms in High Petergate, is just across from the west front of York Minster, there is often some 'street art' between the cafe and minster!
|The Gatehouse Cafe at Walmgate Bar, York. Set in an Elizabethan house built onto the city walls! A most interesting location|
|Cafe Concerto, High Petergate, York|
|Ambiente Tapas Cafe Dining in Monkgate, York|
|The Lamb and Lion Inn pub in High Petergate, York, (see pictures below too) is next to the gateway of Bootham Bar. Established in 1756 with 'good food and ales'. The rear beer garden is overlooked by the towers of York minster.|
|The Museum Gardens, York, including the ruins of St Mary's Abbey, provide a magnificent setting for a picnic above the River Ouse.|
|Grays Court Bar, Chapter House Street, York, this cafe-tea room bar nestles beneath the city walls. A lovely historic house and garden setting to take afternoon tea or a relaxing drink! A popular venue for Wedding functions and other events.|
St William's College, near York Minster, dating back to the 15th century, has wonderful medieval courtyard and restaurant in which to take a break from exploring the streets of York.
Why not buy some ready to eat food and fruit from one of York's markets e.g. the 'cosy' but open-air Newgate Market with some fine old buildings and streets around it. One side is the back of the famous street the 'Shambles'.
|The Hole in the Wall pub in High Petergate near Bootham Bar|
|The Golden Slipper and the Royal Oak pubs, next to each other in Goodramgate, York. The Royal Oak serves quality cask ales, beers and lagers as well as a great range of wines, speciality coffees and quality British food with ingredients locally sourced.|
|Bennett's Cafe, York, where High Petergate meets Duncombe Place by the west end of York Minster. Relax and admire the grandeur of the local architecture!|
The licensed Earl Grey Tearooms, York, in the famous narrow street called the Shambles, which 'lights up' when the sun is in the right direction, otherwise the inclined buildings provide 'ye olde' medieval silhouette!
|Bar Convent, on Micklegate, York, dating from 1686, has beautiful 'chapel' with some interesting objects in it like the set of mother of pearl icons. As well as the licensed cafe tea & coffer shop facilities there is a historical display describe the heritage of the Bar Convent community. The cafe specialises in cooked breakfasts, homemade cakes, fair-trade coffees and experience delicious main meals in tranquil surroundings and garden. Gluten free food is a house speciality.|
|Another quiet picnic spot is in the gardens of Treasurers House, York, behind the great York Minster. This fine 17th-18th century house in Minster Yard contains a good tea-room. The herb garden is open on selected days.|
|The Black Swan public house, Peasholme Green, York, is one of the oldest pubs in York and is just along the road from an equally old building known as the 'Red Tower' of 1490. The inn was originally a timber framed medieval building displays some excellent 17th century craftsmanship by way of oak carving in the interior.|
|The National Railway Museum, near York Railway Station, houses a fine selection of 'retired' steam locomotives and more modern, but equally historic, heritage diesel and electric locomotives. The museum is free to walk around to admire the design of the engines and picnic area and cafe facilities are available too.|
|Ristorante Pizzeria, York, is in the historic street called Goodramgate and not far from the beautiful and historic church of Holy Trinity, whose entrance is through an (easily missed) brick and iron arched gateway, but you should not miss viewing the wonderful medieval architecture and stained glass windows. Its also a quiet refuge of the hurly-burly of busy Goodramgate.|
|Keystones (upper yellow sign on left of left picture) is situated in Monkgate Monk Bar gateway (Monkbar). Delrio's Cellar Restaurant (on left of right picture) is also by an equally handsome medieval gateway entrance called Micklegate Bar.|
|The largest Betty's Cafe, York, (on the right corner of the left picture) is opposite St Helen's Church in a corner of St Helens Square and just up the road from the finely restored and painted Mansion House.|
|There is also a Bettys Cafe Tea Rooms in Stonegate, York.|
|St Crux Parish Hall, York, cafe cum tea-room is situated on the site of the church destroyed in 1887 (how? why?) and was built from the remains of the great medieval church of St Crux. Across the road is the sign for 'WHIP MA WHOP MA GATE', the shortest street in Britain? at the bottom end of the famous medieval street called the Shambles.|
|The Golden Fleece, York, on the Pavement, is a narrow 'pub' squeezed in between several shops including a fine black and white' timber framed building and the entrance to Lady Picketts Yard. It is opposite the bottom end of the Shambles and is supposed to be the most haunted in pub in York City, hmmm!!!!|
|The Parish Bar in Micklegate, York, was once the medieval church of St John but is now a 'trendy' bar! It is situated just up the road from the Ouse Bridge over the River Ouse.|
|The Little Italy Ristorante & Deli, York, (upper red brick building on the left of the picture) is a decent budget Italian Restaurant by Monk Bar, Monkgate, which forms part of the City walls. This restaurant has built a good reputation as one of York's better Italian restaurants.|
York Railway Station has several varieties of 'fast food' facilities, but take time between trains or waiting for your train to admire the wonderful Victorian engineering of the iron work of the great roof arches and the detail of the supporting columns.
|The Happy Valley Bistro and Cafe, York, like several other cafes and restaurants, is situated in Goodramgate with its many 'old' buildings.|
|The gardens of the famous historic medieval building called the Merchant Adventurers Hall, York, (founded in 1357) is another peaceful picnic spot. You don't seem to notice the traffic of the nearby busy road. The Great Hall is the largest timber framed building in York.|
|This particular Starbucks Coffee cafe, York, (right of picture) is situated in Low Petergate and quite near York Minster with its famous Rose Window visible down the nearby short street called Minster Gates.|
|The Snickleway Inn is in Goodramgate, York, along with many other old historic buildings which may be shops, cafes, restaurants, private houses and inns-pubs!|
|The Petergate Fish and Chip Shop and the Royal Tearooms, in Low Petergate, York, serve traditional fare while street musicians entertain you in sight of the Minster at the end of the street.|
|The Corner Pin pub in Tanner Row, York, is just round the corner from the Parish Church of All Saints in North Street, with its great spire and famous stained glass windows.|
|The Lowther cafe and bar, York, is in great position on the quayside of the River Ouse near where the YorkBoat cruises sail from.|
|The Arts Barge Cafe was moored by the Bonded Warehouse in York, but seems to have gone? pity!|
|The Judges Lodgings Hotel, Lendal, York, was built around 1710 for an eminent York Physician, Dr Winteringham, but in 1806 it became the official residence of the Assize Court Judges. You can get good food, wines and beers and sit outside to enjoy the great atmosphere of central York from this beautifully restored Georgian building.|
|The Old White Swan in Goodramgate, York, one of the oldest pubs in town, has some interesting features eg the Tudor Bar! This pub has developed of utilising a number of buildings, some dating from medieval times! Apart from the timber-framed Tudor Bar, this is a small courtyard providing respite from the busy streets of York (see pictures below).|
|The Terrace is a bar-pub in Fossgate, York, that caters for those who love to watch TV sport on the plasma HD screen! It consists of one long bar, alcoves and 12 viewing screens for watching the football, cricket, tennis etc. etc.!|
|Plunket's licensed restaurant in High Petergate near Bootham Bar. This lively atmospheric restaurant specialises in South-West American food and bistro style dishes.|
|Cafe Rouge restaurant and bar at the west end of Coney Street where it meets St Helen's Square in York city centre.|
|Harkers bar in St Helen's Square, York, just across from the Mansion House. A symbol of Georgian architecture, was built in 1824.|
|The Dean Court Hotel in Duncombe Place, York, is few hundred yards from the west end of York Minster|
|Yates Beer Garden down off the east end of Coney Street in York city centre. Its a nice quiet place just away from busy bustling Coney Street.|
|The Pitcher and Piano on the banks of the River Ouse in York. South facing tables and chairs on a balcony overlooking the river.|
|Thomas's Bar in Museum Street York serves coffee, cocktails, beer etc. etc.! and has a very elaborate and interesting entrance (see pictures below).|
|The City Cinema Cafe on the banks of the River Ouse in York. South facing tables and chairs on a balcony overlooking the river.|
|Revolution in the old offices of 'The Yorkshire Herald' on the banks of the River Ouse in York. South facing tables and chairs on a balcony overlooking the river.|
|Just across the road from Fishergate Tower on the city walls is the York City Centre Travel Lodge and the Wetherspoon's bar called The Postern Gate, on Piccadilly and Tower Street.|
|The Lime House restaurant in Goodramgate York, surrounded by many medieval buildings.|
|The Cross Keys pub on Goodramgate, York, is a snug Georgian pub dating back to the 1800s and located in the one of the main shopping streets of York.|
Left: The Castle Tea Rooms in Castlegate, York
Right: Jack's Cafe, The Blue Boar pub and Sooty's CupCakery, also in Castlegate, York
|Zizzi Ristorante and Rustique Bar & Bistro are two restaurants next to each other on Lendal in York|
The York Designer Outlet, just off the roundabout where the busy A19 and A64 main roads cross, contains a large winding Shopping Mall over two floors with a huge variety of retail outlets selling a great range of goods. There is an enormous car park that is absolutely free and free from the crowded hustle and bustle of York City itself. There are several good cafes such as Cafe Thorntons (above) and Starbucks Coffee (below). There is quite a Viking theme to the decor of the York Designer Outlet!
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