York: Facts and Information

Here are some facts about York.

  • York is located in North Yorkshire, and has a population of almost 200,000. It is about 35 km from Leeds and about 280 km from London.
  • The city was founded by the Romans in 71 AD, becoming the capital of the province. It became a major wool trading centre and later a religious centre.
  • York is considered to be one of the world’s most haunted cities. There are an estimated 500 ghosts in the city, including those of Roman soldiers.
  • York Minster is one of the world’s largest cathedrals, and took 250 years to build. Along with St. Peter’s, it is one of only two churches in the world with its own police force.
  • The Minster is 160 metres long and 76 metres wide. The Lantern Tower is 71 metres high and weighs 16,000 tons, the same as 40 jumbo jets.
  • The narrow street called the Shambles was once home to butchers shops. The street is so narrow that the houses on ether side almost touch overhead. The name of the street is still used today as a word to describe a mess.
  • Betty’s Tea Rooms was inspired by a passenger who sailed on the lavish Queen Mary¬†ship in 1936. During World War II, it was popular with local airmen and a mirror on which they wrote their names is still there.
  • York has over 365 pubs, one (or more) for each day of the year. The city also hosts the UK’s largest food festival, for 10 days each September.
  • Guy Fawkes was born in York, and a plaque on the wall in Stonegate commemorates his birth. The building that he was born in is now the historic Guy Fawkes Inn.
  • York was a hub for rail travel during the 19th century and the station is an architectural masterpiece. The nearby National Railway Museum has the world’s largest collection of historic trains.
  • York was captured by the Vikings, and it was called Jorvik. Excavations around the Coppergate area of York have revealed that the Vikings lived in simple timber, single-storey houses with thatched rooves. The Jorvik Viking Centre in York is a popular attraction and helps visitors to understand what the city was like under the Vikings.

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