Day 4 (Continued Again), A Brothel, Bonding, Dick Turpin, Ghosts, Helicopters and Canoes to the Rescue.

Post 187: 5 September 2017, York Minster, A Walk along the Medieval Walls of York and The New Walk to the Millennium Bridge.

We continued along towards Skeldergate Bridge, the start of The New Walk. My photographs from the floods, mainly in 2015, of this section are more ‘interesting’ than today!


Davy Tower adjoins the Bridge and it is alleged used to be a brothel in the seventeenth century. There was no sign of that today, but we could see the Bonding Warehouse on the opposite side of the river. Flats exchange hands for over £1 million now. It used be a nightclub, before being converted to luxury flats.


The Bonding Warehouse
The Bonding Warehouse during the floods in 2015
Looking towards a flooded Skeldergate Bridge from Clifford’s Tower  2015

We passed what is the car park of St George’s Field where the ghost of highwayman Dick Turpin it is said can be seen. He was hanged on the Knavesmire in 1739. Blood curling feuds were also settled here and it is said screams can occasionally be heard.

We crossed the Blue Bridge. The first one was erected in 1738 for just over £100.


Looking back from the Blue Bridge the Foss Barrier can be seen, which was built after the 1984 floods and in theory supports a large gate used to protect the city when the river rises to a certain height.


In 2015 the pumps were overwhelmed and I witnessed a dramatic attempt by Chinook helicopters to rescue the situation, with new pumping equipment. A resident in the nearby house let me into his house to photograph the drama. I have never been so close to Chinook helicopters. I was in the houses on the right. I started in the gardens but the downdraught was too high.





The rescue mission went on most of the day.



With no floods today we were able to continue towards the Millennium Bridge to pass the Piking Well, which is a decorative well house and was believed to be able to cure rickets.

We soon reached the scene of another rescue in 2015. Whilst taking photographs near the Dyrdals Volvo Garage, Andrew MacPherson (now a Facebook friend) arrived in his car with a tiny canoe on the top. He began to unload so I went over and had a chat as to intentions. He was going to canoe to the City Centre! I thought he was mad until he told me he was a very qualified canoeist. I still thought he was mad!




I said I would go further up river and film him. In the excitement I completely forgot my camera bag (I had my camera and tripod) with some £2,000 worth of lenses and other equipment in it. I left it on the pavement. He realised this put it on his back and canoed up the river but we somehow missed each other.  He later phoned me at home to say he had my bag! I asked him not under any circumstances to do an eskimo roll! I am forever grateful to him.

He could have rescued the beer as some York Residents did!


New forms of transport to overcome the floods were embarked upon!


With no floods today, Victoria and myself reached the Millennium Bridge, which spans the 80 metre distance from bank to bank.

York Floods Nov 2012_0520

Acting as an 8 day guide to a 28 year old Alpine walker was taking its effect.


Awakening from my slumber, we carried onto the other side of the River Ouse to the Rowntrees Park Cafe for a most welcome caffeine hit.


The elusive Victoria.


We carried on to rejoin the Walls back to York Minster. Being late afternoon they were very quiet.


There are good views from the walls


Until the classic view of York Minster is reached.


The Ouse is crossed again


And the end of the walk is reached.


Miles Walked 3

As long as there are no floods, the York Walls and New Walk are a MUST for inclusion in ‘the Best of 31 years of Walking in Yorkshire condensed into 8 Days’.

Not only can you see the history of England encapsulated in one City, you will also get your camera bag back from England’s friendliest City should you lose it.

In addition, with Victoria not being a railway enthusiast, we hadn’t even been to the fabulous National Railway Museum. However, that would all change on Day 5 as I had a special day arranged for her!  I know how to treat a lady! 



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