A day in York

We decided to go a little further this holiday and visit York. Anne had been there as a schoolgirl but I had never seen it. I had put a bit of research in before the holiday downloading an MP3 tour from the internet and planning where to park and setting routes on the SatNavs.We left Healaugh about 8.30 with the SatNav set to short. This took us a lovely meandering route through lovely villages. We got into York about 10.00 and parked at Marygate Car Park. We had something to eat in the car.

We then moved off using my handheld GPS (an Etrex 20 using Talky Toaster OSM based maps). This was just to get us to the castle. We came through a lovely park (Museum Park) down to the River Ouse, looking for a toilet. The GPS said there should be one here but I couldn’t find it. On reaching the River Ouse. I was amazed at the size of it and we are well inland.

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So we took a diversion following signs for toilets but never found them. We headed up Museum Street and eventually went into the Royal Theatre where we got nice clean toilets.

We went back to our route heading down Lendal, Coney Street, Clifford Street and Tower Street to the front of the Castle Museum.

Here we went onto following our MP3 tour (download). We had put the file onto my MP3 player for Anne and onto my Blackberry for myself.The tour starts at the front of the Castle Museum and then goes to Clifford’s Tower just across from it. We went up the steps but didn’t go in.

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We branched round by Fenwick to the Jorvik, Viking Centre but didn’t go in. There was a monster queue and dear knows what it would cost.

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We went on to All Saints a lovely church on what is called the Pavement. We went into the church where my camera's batteries died. Oh dear. I left Anne and went to look for batteries - the shop directly across had them, 12 alkaline batteries for £4, so I could take pictures again. This church was so quiet and so old.

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The tour then took us down High Ousegate and Low Ousgate onto Ouse Bridge where we stopped for some pictures and to listen to the tour.

It was then a retrace up Low and High Ousegate along the Pavement and right onto Fossgate and stopped at Merchant's Hall.

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From here we retraced our steps up Fossgate and onto the Shambles. This was so old and wonderful. The houses are higgle piggle with upper floors projecting out over the street.

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We branched to the left to have a look at a market.

From here it was through King's Square onto Low Petergate and through a wee alleyway to Holy Trinity church, another very old church. We had a look around and then sat in a seat outside and had our picnic lunch. The sun was shining and we were out of the wind. It was peaceful and lovely.

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Anne made a wee friend with the help of her crisps. I ate mine!

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The churchyard was left by the other entrance onto Goodramgate where we turned left and followed it till we reached Monkbar the largest remaining city gate on the wall. It was inhabited till the 1960s, now a museum. We went up the steps onto the city walls. What an impressive, historic place. We must come back and do the walk round the city walls. We went into a lot of charity shops on the way up Goodramgate.

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The tour then took us back down Goodramgate and then turned right onto College Street. This led out to the back of the Minster. What an amazing, amazing building. It just takes your breath away. This is where the tour ends. We walked round to the front and went into York Minster.

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This was just so special. We paid the £10 each for entry. It is well worth it and the ticket is valid for a year. Not so useful when you live in the North of Scotland. We joined a guided tour. It was excellent. The organ was being tuned and it was so hard to hear the guide. Then two of the staff started collecting chairs with a trolley that made a horrendous racket. We got the history of the Minster (which I can't now remember). We also heard about the restoration.

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The North East wall and the huge window there was sealed off for restoration. These are restored glass frames from the great window.

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This is not the Great North East Window but a printout done by Hewlett Packard. They scanned the whole window and then built a printer to print it out on one continuous canvas. That's an achievement in itself!

During our tour things were suspended for a couple of minutes for prayer. Everyone in the Minster was asked to be quiet for it. And all the people on our tour and around us were absolutely silent. It is amazing that this was so. And the prayer was offered in Christ's name. Despite the waning of Christian belief and the disregard for God's Word there is still a place being given to our Saviour. It struck me as we came here that there were churches in every village. Also here in York there are churches all around. Our country was built on belief in Christ and obedience to God's Word. Now our politicians have decided to wave their puny fists at God and introduce what they call "gay marriage". God made it clear only men and women get married. The Bible refers to "gays" as sodomites and describes them as an abomination. But this rejection of God has been building over my lifetime. The death penalty was abolished when I was a boy. Abortion was introduced when I was in secondary school. It seems so strange to save the guilty and destroy the innocent! There has been over 7 million children murdered before being born in the UK since then. Makes the holocaust seem tame! Sometimes the worst thing God can do to us is give us what we want. But He will not stay quiet forever. It's when He breaks out we have to fear!We have to be amazed at grace.Anne and I had a wee tour ourselves round the Minster and I took photos.But isn't it amazing that this great building was built to the glory of God.

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After this Anne and I headed back to the car. We went down Duncombe Place, Museum Street and through Museum Gardens, through Marygate and back to the Car Park. We were tired but what a smashing day. We had something to eat in the car.

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That was a walk of 4.23 miles. It was a fantastic day. We headed back by a route that used quite a bit of the A1 which was faster. It took a while to get out of York onto the Leeds road due to roadworks. We got petrol just outside York. We got into Reeth about 5.30 so we went to the Buck Hotel for our tea - burgers and chips.