Over these days, we toured the midlands -- including York, Nottingham, Devonshire and Bakewell (as well as driving through many other regional towns) we went to:
The York Minster, the largest gothic cathedral north of the Alps. The first York Minster dates back to the year 627. Bishop Paulinus accompanied the Christian princess Ethelburga of Kent when she came north to marry Edwin of Northumbria. Edwin was convinced to convert to Christianity, and Paulinus baptised him in a church especially constructed for the purpose. This rude wooden church, of which nothing remains, is regarded as the first York Minster. This first church was rebuilt in stone a few years later, and dedicated to St. Peter. We also went down into The Undercroft and Crypt of the York Minster.
The Shambles, often called Europe's best preserved medieval street, although the name is also used to collectively refer to the surrounding maze of narrow, twisting lanes and alleys as well. The street itself is mentioned in the Domesday Book, so we know that it has been in continuous existence for over 900 years. The Shambles has the effect of a time machine, transporting you back to the Elizabethan period. The houses that jostle for space along The Shambles project out over the lane in their upper stories, as if trying to meet their neighbours opposite.
Jorvik Viking Centre, an award-winning museum that re-creates in vivid detail the sights, smells, sounds, and flavour of daily life in the tumultuous world of 10th century York.
On my next trip to York, I'd like to see The Roman Bath Museum and The Ghost Hunt Walking Tour.
Devonshire & Bakewell
In Devonshire, we went to Chatsworth, Chatsworth is one of Britain’s best loved historic houses and estates, offering something for everyone to enjoy, from famous works of art and the spectacular fountains in the garden to the finest shopping, food and drink and many miles of free walks. The home of the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire is set in the magnificent landscape of Derbyshire’s Peak District National Park. The house, garden, farmyard, gift shops and restaurant are open every day until 21 December 2005. The 1000 acre park, the farm shop and its restaurant are open all year round. Chatsworth has a long tradition of welcoming local people and holiday makers from around the world. The farm shop was just amazing with some of the best meats, cheeses and teas I've ever seen in one place!
We went to Bakewell pretty much just for dinner -- but found the town of Bakewell to be quite striking!! Bakewell, Derbyshire, England, is an ancient town in the centre of the Peak District National Park, founded in Saxon times. It is the home of the famous Bakewell Pudding. The Domesday book entry calls the town 'Badequella', meaning Bath-well. The town was built on the Wye at a spot where it was fordable and in 924 Edward the Elder ordered a fortified borough to be built here. Bakewell has one of the oldest markets in the area, dating from at least 1300. The first recorded fair was held in 1254. Markets are still held every Monday and there is a thriving livestock market. All of the buildings and walkways are made exclusively out of local quary stone and match! See the photo on the left. After a huge dinner, we had desert... authentic Bakewell Pudding! (Photoed on the right) -- I know it doesn't look all that tasty, but looks are deceiving!! With a scoop of ice cream and served warm, this was just a fabulous desert!
Nottingham is the closest major city to where Dave lives. It is a lot bigger than I thought it would be!
Just south of Nottingham is where Robin Hood and his Merry Men romped around in Sherwood Forrest! We had a very interesting meal in Nottingham -- Tapas. Tapas are like a Spanish Dim Sum! You order four or five dishes to share with the table and dig in! We walked about a bit in Nottingham, stopped into one of the local gay pubs for a pint and headed home after a drive-through.
On Thursday afternoon, we took the train back to London!