The tourist trail

Day three, and what a glorious day three it is. The sun is out and there isn’t a cloud in the sky – perfect for our final stage ride to Bridlington, where we shall dip our wheels in the North Sea (as is customary on a sea to sea ride). The view from our hotel room looks toward Clifford Tower, one of York’s more gruesome and dark historic monuments. In 1190, 150 local Jews were killed in a pogrom in the castle keep. Of course today’s visitor to York generally only sees the sanitised version of history with everything prettified and neatly presented amongst trimmed lawns and hanging baskets. There is clearly plenty of appetite for this ‘chocolate box’ image of British history, the hotel is full of European coach parties lapping up all the ‘must see’ sights. The Trafalgar Tours sign on the hotel restaurant today proudly informs the tour party that today they visit ‘the actual house that Shakespeare was born in’ – I wonder if they’ll visit ‘the actual latrine that Shakespeare…’ – you get the idea. As the Italian, Russian and German coach tour parties head south, we head east for our very own quintessentially English seaside experience. Kiss me quick hat anyone?

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