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An easy day in Northallerton, North Yorkshire’s County Town

Northallerton, the county town of North Yorkshire

A friend and I met in Northallerton as she mentioned she had never really been and was interested to have a stroll round. She came on the train so I parked in the station car park and met her off the 10.06 from York. Asking what she would like to do, the answer was immediately, coffee and cake, lunch then afternoon tea! Not difficult and perhaps a bit of clothes shopping etc in between? Of course!

To get into town from the train station walk down South Parade but first look across the road at County Hall, an imposing building on Racecourse Lane which has been the headquarters of North Yorkshire County Council since 1906. Apparently the building was built on part of the racecourse, where the grandstand had been, the course having being abandoned in 1880 after the railway was built. Continue on down South Parade and when nearly to the roundabout at the bottom there is South Side café our first to do off the list.  A lovely café, with great coffee, it hasn’t been there for very long and the staff were so helpful, sit in or out, either was fine.

Soon we embarked on our way down to the High Street. Near to the roundabout on the right you can see remnants of what was a cruck framed house (much rebuilt and developed since medieval times) at the end of the building housing The Nags Head. Also on this side of the street I noticed an Italian restaurant, Bianco, we weren’t quite ready for lunch so passed it by but looking at the reviews on returning home it could be well worth a visit. Onward along the High Street, there are numerous shops, all there to tempt, a few charity shops if you like a rummage but secretly my goal was Barkers. Upstairs is women’s clothing and the sales were on! Just had to have a squirt of perfume on the way past the beauty counters downstairs first though. A large independent store which I defy anyone to come out of empty handed. Dreadful! Just had to treat myself. By the time we’d explored it was lunch time and we ventured into the café on the first floor. There is a bistro too on the first floor but we were happy with what was on offer in the café.

Out onto the High Street again, various arcades to explore as you go along and if you are there on a Wednesday you’ll find a large market on the High Street.

Wandering further down to the north end towards All Saints Church, which dates back to 13th century, well worth a visit if open, then cross the road and venture back up the other side. After the junction look out for the The Fleece, the oldest pub in town, and then Lewis and Coopers which is a must, the smell is divine, well I think so, all things deli. Again out onto the street and further on you’ll find a variety of shops to interest. When you get to Zetland Street have a little look down here and perhaps pop into the Joe Cornish gallery. At the moment there is an exhibition of photographs of Brimham Rocks. An HM Prison on East Street, running parallel to the High Street, which operated from 1788 until 2013 has now been partly demolished and is being regenerated into a retail and leisure destination including cinema, shops, café’s, bars and parking. I had completely forgotten about it and it would have been nice to have a look, for another time though I feel!

Soon it was time for tea so it was Betty’s Cafe which is an absolute must! We were lucky there wasn’t a queue and we enjoyed a very happy hour or so enjoying what was on offer.

A simple day but very pleasant for a stroll in the sunshine. Lots of parking in various places if you aren’t coming on the train. A town where you can’t get lost either!

Stay in one of our lovely holiday cottages and visit Northallerton during your stay, book online or call me Nadine or my daughter Joanne on 01969 663559 for friendly help and advice.

Country Hideaways

Written By Nadine Bell

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