Saturday, 30 January 2010


I popped over to York again yesterday, so some observations on the city to start:

In some senses, it doesn't feel like a city. Certainly not the way somewhere like Leeds or even Hull would. If anything, the endless cafes and touristy bits and medieval elements make it feel more like a big version of Beverley.

It's quite easy to find your way to the minster, because you can spot it from most angles. That's in contrast to Beverley, where something about most of the shopping area blocks the view.

The library is very quaint, but I actually find myself prefering those in Hull. They're set out to be as easy to use as possible, while the minster library isn't necessarily that convenient. There's a lot of clambering about on ladders, for a start, and not that many places to work. On the other hand, it does seem to be the only place for fifty miles that has bought the complete set of the English Episcopal Acta series.

It's the only place I've driven to recently that I haven't got lost finding. Mostly because even I can manage "follow the A1074". It's not quite a yellow brick road, but it will do.


Thomas at My Porch said...

I totally agree with you about York. I had a friend who was studying there when I visited in 1997. My thought was that it seems really charming at first, but once you scratch the surface there isn't much substance to the place. I felt the same thing about Bruges when I went there for the first time back in October. Charming, but seems to exist for tourists more than anything else.

Having said that, I had the best pork sandwich (with crackling) of my life at a little take-away place in York.

stu said...

What's interesting is that the places containing York's 'sub-cathedrals' of Beverley, Ripon and Southwell all seem to feel very similar. Maybe it's the effect of having a huge minster towering over everything.