Sunday Post : Road

Why is it that whenever I see Jakesprinter’s new challenge, a song comes into my head?  This week’s topic Road had the same effect, and I’ve found myself singing McCartney’s “The Long and Winding Road” at intervals all week.  Surely a hint, and time to put pen to paper.

The road I had in mind was my long and sometimes deviating road through life.  Slightly crazy in my youth, I guess I haven’t really changed as much as I might think.  Mellowed, shall we say?

I imagined taking you on a photographic oddessy through my life, but I’ve settled instead for an illustration of one of it’s many twists.  This week I am escorting my lovely Polish niece, Basia, around England’s north east.  Lively Newcastle-on-Tyne, and Durham’s inspiring Castle tour both scored hits.  Even the spell on the roof of Durham Cathedral, clutching umbrellas damply, didn’t spoil our enthusiasm.  But it was in historic York that I had to marvel at the ability of some of England’s roads to adapt and survive.

York Minster, the Cathedral

Stonegate is at the heart of the walled city of York, which was founded by the Romans in 71AD.  Six feet below its pavement lies the Via Praetoria, which connected the Roman fortress to the civilian settlement of Eboracum (York) across the River Ouse.  The name Stonegate is thought to derive from the quantity of stone transported along it during the building of York Minster.

In the Middle Ages the road fell under the jurisdiction of the Minster, and was home to goldsmiths, printers and glassmakers, trades related to the Cathedral.  Today Stonegate is a pedestrianised hub of tourism.

A touch of whimsy as the “statue” pedals down Stonegate

So many shops to choose from

Some a little strange

Some, not so strange

Some, more traditional

But the antiquity cannot be denied

Fashioning gold and painting glass must have been thirsty work

Such a stylish emporium!

A little fashion?

With a hint of refinement, even at Sale time

I can’t help liking them all.

This road has certainly withstood the test of time.

I am again indebted to Jakesprinter for hosting his Sunday Post.  Follow the links or the dragon logo to see other interpretations of this weeks challenge.  What does the word road conjure for you?  Why not join in, if not now, then next week?


  1. Stonegate seems to be a very special street, very British I might add. And it looks like a great place to wander around – and take photos. Great series of photographs that brings the life of Stonegate to the viewer.

    1. Thank you so much, sir- that’s praise indeed! I struggled with reflections in the shop windows, but decided it added to the atmosphere. It was pretty nigh impossible to take photos without people in, so you had to be quick.

  2. Americans like to name their shops “the olde shoppe this and the olde shoppe that. There’s a Vitamin Shoppe circa 1970s and it cracks me up every time I read the date. Nothing beats the original “Olde Worlde” 🙂

    1. No, but she had 3 smaller ones with a roast dinner on Tuesday and Sunday, and she’s a fan! Also of volleyball, so we’ve been cheering on the Polish team in the Olympics.

  3. What lovely buildings. The one with the date 1434 under it´s window looks very much like the “London Court” building in Perth, fashioned like an old London house. I will have to write a post about it, as I find it´s so pretty.

  4. Very nice. To me, York is incomparable, but Yorkshire people always say that. I’ve also spent a lot of time there, wearing one hat or another so have viewed it from many different perspectives. Your photos of Stonegate are lovely and capture the street so well. Very enjoyable post.

      1. The West Riding, but as far as York goes, I’ve visited on lots of days trips, weekends, worked on a dig there, stayed at the uni, been to conferences and meetings, and latterly when my parents moved near there, it was our local city. As you can guess from my comments on your other posts though, I’m not picky about Yorkshire, I think every part has its attraction – as do other counties, but being bigger it has a lot of variety.

  5. thanks for the lovely trip jo, i would like to browse in those shops and find a cosy corner for a cup of tea … and so interesting to know the old roman road is still there underneath 🙂

  6. Lovely pictures, gorgeous City. I know what you mean about touristy – York, Bath, Mont Saint Michel, have all become pastiches of themselves. Minster Cathedral is tautology. Most cities have Cathedrals but York is different in having a Minster.

    1. I was in Cambridge recently, Viv, and felt the same, but so quintessentially English, you have to love them. Sorry about the tautology- wasn’t sure if people would appreciate that it is a cathedral. I will rectify.

      1. Hi Jo.
        I’ve been many times, which is probably why I recognised it so easily. 🙂
        My earliest memories of York, were the school visits to Rowntrees.
        Nowadays I just love the buildings and the narrow streets, which your photos portray so well.

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