I was very impressed by this replica of Amy Johnson’s Gipsy Moth aircraft hanging from the roof from the roof of the Paragon Interchange. You can’t tell from this photograph, but “Jason” is flying over the florists, towards the railway station ticket office. In a plane just like this one, Hull born Amy Johnson flew from London to Darwin in 19 days in 1930 and this replica was made by inmates at HM Prison Hull as part of the City of Culture celebrations.
You can read more about the replica on the BBC News website.
With the Keighley & Worth Valley Railway, the location for Lionel Jeffries’ 1970 film version of “The Railway Children“, being only a few station stops away, I suppose it is only right that a scene from “The Railway Children” welcomes visitors to Bradford. Interestingly though, it might be quickly to get to Keighley from Bradford’s other railway station, Bradford Forest Square, but there is only 20 minutes in it!
According to WWW.Waymarking.Com, this pebble mosaic was designed by Maggy Howarth and it forms part of a memorial to Councillor Brian Lynch, who had a seafaring past, having served in the “navy“; presumably the Royal Navy, rather than the mercantile marine. Bradford-by-the-Sea was also a nickname given to Morecombe, because so many mill workers from Bradford holidayed in the Lancashire seaside town, so Bradford does, or certainly did, have strong links with the coast.
Having travelled from the coast all the way to West Yorkshire, it was very comforting to see the sea or at least a fantastical vision of it, with seahorses bobbing along beside octopuses and crabs.
If you happen to be leaving the train at Bradford Interchange station and set off towards the city centre on foot, look out for Norfolk Gardens and its pebble mosaic.
Clifford’s Tower, one of a group of buildings and green spaces that form an area known as York Castle, affords excellent views of York and I should think it has done since the reign of King Henry III. Clifford’s Tower, currently maintained and garrisoned by the staff of English Heritage, seemed to be a popular spot to stand and try and absorb the enormity of the situation.
I knew that the “King’s Arms” on King’s Staith had a history of flooding, in fact one Tripadvisor review describes it as “The Iconic Pub That Floods“, but on all my previous visits to York I have been fortunate that the River Ouse hasn’t been in flood, making my visit last Sunday a notable exception.
My travelling companion assured me that I would be able to keep our appointment in York, despite the various flood warnings, because he had studied the route carefully and I must admit that we travelled as far as the Fishergate Bar, which provides pedestrian access from Paragon Street, through the city wall, into George Street. Then the day started to take a surreal turn, as we were faced with the River Foss, which had burst its banks.
Later in the afternoon we reached Bridge Street and stood, with quite a crowd of pedestrians, watching the River Ouse distort a scene I thought I knew. The beer garden of the “King’s Arms”, not to mention most of the ground floor, had disappeared and with it any sense remaining sense of normality.
Having said that, from the very same spot on Bridge Street, I could see diners at “The Slug and Lettuce” eating their Sunday lunches in a building that must have had flooded cellars, which leant the afternoon an added, surreal, twist.
York is a city I love and I wish all of the city’s residence, students and visitors well at this difficult time.