Thursday, 17 May 2012

And Now: England!

It is almost two weeks now since my sister and I have returned from our holiday in Yorkshire, and by now I have done all the catching-up (blogwise) I meant to do, and am ready to start on the Yorkshire report.

I will try and stick to the chronological order, and will also try not to bore you to tears with overly detailed descriptions. There will be lots of pictures, although not all of them - I took somewhere around 250 and filled almost ten pages of my album on photobucket. If you really do want to see them all, you are welcome to browse the album here, and leave comments as well.

But now, off we go!

As I told you in this post, the day before we left, it was really warm here in South Germany at about 28 Celsius (82 F). But of course we knew not to expect the same weather up in Yorkshire; we had checked the forecast and packed our bags accordingly.

To be ready for all sorts of temperatures, layers are your best choice, and so I went layered, as you can see; my red suitcase is already waiting by the door. (My grey padded winter coat was coming with me as well, but I did not need to wear it until we landed in Manchester)

Travelling to England from Germany is really just a short hop across the Channel, about 1 1/2 hours by plane from Stuttgart to Manchester, and even shorter to London. To get to the airport in Stuttgart, it takes about an hour for us: a ten-minute walk to the station and 3/4 of an hour on two different inner city trains. Going through security and then waiting by the gate takes up some time, too, but I do understand all these measures are necessary, and don't complain.
Our flight was punctual almost to the minute, and when we landed in Manchester and arrived at the luggage pick-up, my red suitcase was emerging on the conveyor just that very moment. My sister's suitcase was there, too, and so we arrived at the airport's train station just in time to get on the train we had been hoping to catch. I had booked our train tickets over the internet already a few days ago, so we did not lose time buying those, either.

It was a Sunday, and while the Transpennine "Express" took its usual leisurely pace for the stretch between Manchester and Leeds, connections from Leeds were a bit trickier: Some engineering on the line between Leeds and Harrogate meant there was no train, but a replacement service in the shape of a bus.
There were no signs to indicate where that bus would be going from, so I asked at the station, and we found the provisorial stop just as the bus was approaching.

By then, it had begun to rain, and it was cold enough for my winter coat.
It was warm and dry on the bus, though, and for the next hour and a half, we were taken across the Yorkshire country side in what sometimes resembled white-water rafting, splashing along the narrow lanes through huge puddles.

In Harrogate, my sister-in-law met us and drove the 20 minutes or so to Ripon, to the B&B where we were going to stay the next seven nights.

So, apart from horse-drawn carriage and boat, we used almost any means of transport, and it took us about eight hours altogether, but it was all worth it!
We took a well-deserved rest in our cosy room that evening, as you can see: (note the triangular sandwich next to the lamp...)

Here are some pictures of the B&B. It is called Box Tree Cottages, situated only a five minute walk from Ripon's market square, and yet the neighbourhood is very quiet. There are only six rooms, and it is managed by two couples who are very friendly and make an extremely good breakfast. Their website is here.

Our room was on the upper floor; the 2nd window from left was our bathroom, the 3rd window our bedroom. The breakfast room is to the left of the front door, the lounge to the right.

View from the back; there is plenty of space for visitors' cars. 

This church is right opposite Box Tree Cottages, but sadly, it has no bells (or at least they are never rung).

Our room: (sorry about the first picture being rather dark)
Isn't it lovely? I wouldn't want it at home (too much deco), but I loved it there; it was the same room we already had in August 2010. We certainly needed all those extra blankets, with temperatures getting as low as -4 Celsius at night!

The lounge:

And the breakfast room - plus an example of what we had every morning (for me, preceded by a bowl of muesli, for my sister, followed by some toast and jam or marmalade).

Now you have the setting ready, and my next post will be about the next day.


  1. It looks lovely! I'm so glad you had a great time.

    1. It was, and we did :-)
      Thank you for popping in, Paula!

  2. I'm always impressed by how 'hardy' you are! All that train, air, train, bus, train travel would have put me in bed for a week. I feel put-upon if I have to wait a couple of hours for an airline departure not to mention really put-upon if I have to take a shuttle to the airport to begin with.
    Seriously, I wish I could have been with you and your sister on the beginning of this vacation. I love your B&B too! Although, I quite agree, too much deco.

    1. Thankfully, Jill, all the deco does not seem to hinder the cleaning process at the B&B; it is kept spic & span.
      Travelling can be exhausting, but it is easier when you've done the same route many times before and know quite well where you're going and at what time you can expect to be where.

  3. That Bed & Breakfast looks so inviting. If I ever make it to Yorkshire, I will know where to stay.

  4. I seem to spend my life in permanent puzzlement theses days. I read this post a few days ago as you know (because I commented on Photobucket) and I was just re-capping before reading the latest post when I discovered I hadn't commented here. Not that that is compulsory, of course, but what's disturbing is that I was so sure that I had done. The last time I stayed in Ripon I was exhibiting at the Harrogate Gift Fair so it's at least 10 years ago. It's a charming City in beautiful countryside - as is Harrogate. You have whetted my appetite for a renewal of that acquaintance.

    1. Graham, I was happy to find your comments on my photobucket album, and I did not expect you to comment on here as well, so, thank you!
      Do you remember where in Ripon you stayed?

    2. I have stayed several times and apart from the fact that the second time we took a self-catering flat near the centre for a week in a white building I cannot recall the places at all.