Ike pussyfoots his way along York Walls Part 2 – Baile Hill to Barker Tower

Over the rivers Foss and Ouse, Ike re-joined the wall at Baile Hill. This is actually a man-made hill and once had a castle on top, to mirror Cliffords Tower on the other side of the river. Together they defended York from an attack up the river Ouse.

Just past the hill, Ike passed the Tower Two project – which will stabilise part of the wall and at the same time gives archaeologists a chance to learn more about the construction phases of the city walls.

Just before reaching the other minor Bar (Victoria Bar), Ike ‘s keen eyes spotted something carved into the walkway – a chess board! But this isn’t how medieval archers whiled away the time. When the Victorians were renovating the walkways, they needed materials and used flagstones from the recently demolished York Prison. So this was probably from a cell where the prisoners had plenty of time to make themselves a game board.

Micklegate Bar is traditionally used by the monarch when visiting York and in the past it displayed the heads of executed traitors. Due to the current social distancing restrictions, Ike couldn’t get off the wall here to take a photo!

The next section of wall has views of York Rail Station and Ike took the classic photos of the walls with York Minster in the background.

Come back for the next post tomorrow, when Helen, Traff and Ike continue exploring and see York Museum Garden.

4 Replies to “Ike pussyfoots his way along York Walls Part 2 – Baile Hill to Barker Tower”

  1. Chess is an ancient Indian board game that found its way to Western Europe through Spain and in the 10th century finally reached England. It was fascinating to read about the prisoners using old flagstones for boards.

  2. My sister and I visited York in 2004 and have many wonderful memories of our stay there. I’m so happy to be able to tag along on Ike’s visit! Thank you so much.

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