Backstreets and Alleys or Snickets and Ginnels

As reported a couple of weeks ago I visited York for the Medieval Mystery Plays, but I couldn’t resist using the visit to have a wander round some of my old haunts in the city.

Places such as The Shambles and gimmicky streets quickly become crowded these days.

Much the same could be said about Petergate or Bootham Bar.

A good time to look round York is early in the morning, before the visitors get up and before the tour operators get going. Alternatively you can, with the aid of a map move quietly and swiftly from one part of the city to another using the backstreets and alleys – better known to the homegrown as snickets and ginnels.

The really interesting thing about many of these lesser-known routes is that they contain small gems of history and tradition which could so easily go unnoticed.

Round the back of the Minster is Ogleforth and Chapter House Street

From time to time famous people emerge on these footpaths

One less noble soul is buried just outside the city walls but nevertheless his grave is well marked and (it appears frequently visited).

There are so many pokey passageways but I heartily recommend pursuing them to find unusual buildings such as the Merchant Adventurers Hall

My favourite and perhaps my bete-noire is an alleyway known as Lady Pecket’s Yard. Not often visited and incredibly difficult to photograph. Well here goes…

Always happy to receive submissions of this view from photographers who have been a little more successful at this site than I !