The changing vision of a young Beverlonian
Born and bred in Beverley, I’m what is known as a Beverlonian. As a bored, disillusioned & angst ridden teenager, I frequently found myself thinking ’there must be more to life than just existing in a small town in East Yorkshire‘…a somewhat dreary place I felt, that seemed to suffer with a habitual case of nothingness and a constant attack of bad weather. So, at the tender age of just 18 years old, I dropped out of school and with my overstuffed rucksack (heavy due to book-contents, not, practical wear and gear!), a generous supply of romanticism (and I now realise a fairly substantial amount of stubbornness and determination) I booked a one way plane ticket and set off to travel solo around South-East Asia and Australia.
After spending 14 months backpacking and working my way through some exquisitely beautiful and dangerously exciting destinations, I began to feel the overwhelming sense of being pulled back, to England, to the town that had welcomed me into the world, the town I’d dismissed as holding nothing of interest for miss-world-traveller me.
So, I left Australia and 48 long and tiring hours later, I arrived, with relief, back in my home town of Beverley in East Yorkshire. I saw the town in a new dimension, and felt, to a certain extent, as a first time visitor would. I was filled with intense excitement and trepidation as I began to re-discover this town, I was drawn to the cobbled streets and quirky oddities of the town like a duck to water. It all felt both intimately familiar yet strangely foreign. The sights, sounds, and friendly aura left me feeling pleasantly surprised and unexpectedly delighted…and I felt compelled to write down this ethereal experience of my changing vision towards a town that I thought I knew so well, then on looking closer and deeper, realised that in fact I knew very little…
Whether you’re looking for a taste of Ancient History, a romantic weekend getaway or simply an enjoyable day out with a difference…Beverley in East Yorkshire has it all! Be swept off your feet by architectural splendour, versatile eateries and superb shopping.
With a well established public transport network of buses and trains, it gives eco-friendly non-car owners an equal opportunity to enjoy a visit… and being a stones-throw from gorgeous countryside and outdoor things-to-do Beverley makes it easy to be green. Situated close to the Yorkshire Moors and even closer to the East Yorkshire Coastline , Beverley, can be a fabulous stop off point or day out in its entirety and is well established in an extremely popular, accessible & desirable location.
Surrounded by scenic views and winding country lanes that lead into a vast array of pretty, tranquil villages, Beverley is a destination that is enjoyed by visitors of all ages & abilities. As a friendly, historical market town it offers a balanced mix of tradition and contemporary…a town that provides an assorted range of activities & entertainment sure to satisfy a wide range of requirements and tastes, all complimented by a flourishing air of vibrant sophistication and delivered with a thoroughly modern twist.
Enjoying the benefit of regular financial investment, Modern-day Historical Beverley has an on-going programme of development and improvement, designed sympathetically to the towns’ existing unique style and characteristics. The town has a wealth of excellent sports facilities, schools, housing, hotels and shopping areas and maintains a high level of upkeep to existing memorial gardens’ and buildings of great significance, all of which have been skilfully improved without compromising the architectural or historic individuality of the town as a whole.
If you love the atmosphere and bargains found at a traditional market, then you should be very happy…Wednesdays and Saturdays throughout the year, come rain, snow or sun, host the ever popular outdoor market stall days and in addition there are frequently held specialist & seasonal markets, that sell anything from French cheeses to Christmas Crackers.
There are also many regular annual attractions and events which have become synonymous with Beverley and the surrounding villages, giving visitors the opportunity to be both entertained and warmly welcomed into the community spirit of the town…the ‘Food Festival’, ‘Beverley Folk Festival’ and the ’Christmas Festival’ are just two examples of annual events that increase in popularity and notoriety year after year.
Frequently described as ‘a Small York’, Beverley is historically a town with a great deal of religious significance. A few minutes walk, in opposite directions from the town centre, and you’re bound to stumble upon one of two magnificent churches…the awe inspiring Minster (who‘s spires I‘m sure you spotted dominating the horizon, no matter which way you entered the town), built to replace the original Minster destroyed by the Vikings, reconstruction began in 1220 and took over 200 years to complete, the magnificent building before you, originated with the Monastery founded by the (soon to become Saint) Bishop John and was the destination of thousands of pilgrims over the centuries… and the smaller, but equally impressive and beautiful St Mary’s, which is one of the last remaining, architecturally exquisite Gothic Churches in England. Both of these churches welcome visitors to come and enjoy their full programmes of services, concerts and regularly held meetings and exhibitions.
The two churches are obviously very significant, surviving remnants of Beverley’s rich past. Historical Beverley is a town layered with stories, tales and fascinating history, there are several books available written purely with the intent of aiding those with a thirst for knowledge about the town.
If you enjoy shopping then Beverley is a place that you can ‘shop ‘til you drop!‘. So much has been improved, even since leaving on my travels in early 2007, I felt there was a whole new side of the town to explore when I returned…there’s now an excellent network of pedestrian shopping areas which are the ideal location for the eclectic mix of popular high street retailers and quaint, unique, independent shops ready to welcome you with a smile…enhanced by a fantastic Art Gallery located within the towns excellent Library, as well as a great and very diverse selection of cafes, bars (Beverley proudly holds more bars/pubs per square mile than anywhere else in England) restaurants and delicatessens’, all perfect for providing a comfy place to relax, recuperate and to ‘recharge your batteries’.
If you like the Great Outdoors, then just five minutes walk from the centre of town is a vast area of wooded and grassed common land, which can be explored on foot or on horseback. Known locally as the Westwood, it houses the local golf course and also the Grandstand, a nationally recognised race course that plays host to many important events in the horseracing calendar.
So I guess that gives an idea of how my new vision of Beverley looks…it’s a vibrant town with a friendly atmosphere of community spirit and it seems to be able to suit any budget with its wide choice of accommodation and restaurants…and with activities including shopping, Art Exhibitions, outdoor activities, Events and Festivals as well as the exciting opportunity to explore many places of great historical significance and importance… I really feel that Beverley can offer everyone an exciting, varied experience that is second to none.
I used to feel certain that ’the grass was greener on the other side’…but after travelling the world in search of the ’other side’…I’ve returned to my home town and found that Beverley has actually had ‘very green grass’ all along!
‘Beverley, a small market town with a huge number of unexpected surprises!’
Researched & written by Gemma Lucas,
a CSV East Riding Vinvolved Volunteer. For more exciting opportunities like this contact Sue Dudill on 01482 880818 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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