2018 Travels – York

Back in March of last year, I decided to take a day trip to York. I had been twice previously, once in 1996 with my parents, and again in 2016 on my own. At the time, I said to myself that I wouldn’t leave it another 20 years between visits, so 18 months later, I went back.

My journey began at my home station of Burton-on-Trent. I think it’s fair to say that Burton station is not the greatest on the network, especially on a cold and wet day as it was back then. My first stop was Derby, where I had to change trains to go to York. On my train to York, I had to change seats three times because I had bought my tickets through a split ticketing website. I saved a bit of money, but it was a bit of a pain to have to keep changing seats.

My first destination upon arriving in York was the historic city walls. As it was a wet day, I had feared that they may have been closed for health & safety reasons, but they were open. It was a bit scary at times walking along the wet walls, as they are open on one side, and I thought I might have slipped and fallen off them. They have no railings on the most part, as the medieval people who built them hadn’t heard of Health & Safety. I’ll bet they didn’t even wear hi-vis vests or hard hats when they were constructing them.

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The view of York Station from the city walls.
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Another view of York Station from the city walls.

When I exited the walls at one of the gates, I went towards Clifford’s Tower. The tower is the keep of the old York Castle. It is quite a magnificent sight, on a fine day, that is. On this day, it just looked wet and miserable. I had a walk up the steps to the top, and took a few photos of the fantastic view from the top. I could have gone inside, but it costs money, and so I didn’t bother. Besides, my stomach was rumbling, and I walked back down the stairs and headed towards the city centre.

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One of the gates of the City Walls, York.
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A better view of the gate.
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Cliffords Tower, York
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Clifford’s Tower
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The view from the top of the stairs.
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The back of Clifford’s Tower.

After a quick look around the shops and a stop-off at McDonalds for some food, I went back out again to Dean’s Park, near York Minster. Possibly because of the rain, there was hardly anyone around. In fact, it was so deserted that I wondered if the area had been evacuated or something. I took a few photos of the Minster while I was there.

Time was marching on, and I wanted to spend a couple of hours in the National Railway Museum, so I walked over to the Yorkshire Museum Gardens. There wasn’t time for a visit to the museum itself, but maybe next time. I had a look at St Mary’s Abbey, or what’s left of it.

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Ruins of St Mary’s Abbey

After a stroll around the gardens, it was time to visit the National Railway Museum. I’m not a huge railway nerd; I don’t write down numbers of trains and I couldn’t tell you what train is what. As far as I know, there’s old steam trains, they were replaced by old diesel ones and then there were modern ones. That’s as far as my knowledge goes.

There is a lot to see and do in the National Railway Museum, and I saw a lot, including the model railway, which a young lad who was there was very excited about, bless him. I also found a sign from my home town of Burton-on-Trent advertising the Marstons brewery. Here’s some pictures I took:

After a couple of hours, it was time to go home. So I went to the station, but I had a walk around the nearby memorial gardens, as I had a bit of time to spare.

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Memorial Gardens, York

Overall, I enjoyed my visit to York. It’s a pity about the weather, but that can’t be helped. Ironically, the following day, it was sunny in York. I will hopefully be back there sometime.

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