111 Places in York That You Shouldn't Miss
|Series:||111 Places/111 Shops|
What sort of curious place would give its shortest street the longest name? Or build a dazzling gold-lined dome - and hide it from view? The same mixed-up metropolis that was once the capital of England - and also birthplace of its most infamous terrorist. Even if you were the world's most imaginative storyteller, you couldn't make York up. The city is stranger than any fiction. But to find its oddities and secrets you'll need to step off the beaten tourist path and explore its footstreets and alleys, known locally as snickelways. Be warned, the journey might throw up a few dark moments, from the Bitchdaughter Tower to the spikes upon which traitors heads were impaled. Yet you'll also encounter the traces of many local colourful characters, from an Oscar-winning actor to a dastardly plotter, from assorted stone cats to a rather rude ghost. You can browse the shops in the street that inspired Harry Potter's Diagon Alley and tour remarkable retailers like Duttons For Buttons, and the Banana Warehouse - which sells pretty much everything - except bananas; or celebrate in the city that hosted Britain's first Christmas and is home to Ulph's Drinking Horn.With 2,000 years of history to discover, there is a surprise around every corner - if you know where to look.
Chris Titley is an award-winning journalist and writer. During his time as features editor at the Yorkshire Evening Press he wrote a weekly column, two books, and a number of supplements on the history of York. Since turning freelance in 2006 he has written for the Guardian, Times Educational Supplement and Yorkshire Life. Chris also researched and wrote the 50,000-word text for the History of York website on behalf of the city's Museums Trust, and a biography of the city's confectionery pioneer Joseph Rowntree. He is co-founder and editor of the online news magazine YorkMix.