Over 2 miles in length and with a history stretching back nearly 2000 years, the walls of York are amongst the finest preserved historic monuments anywhere in the world. Of the 108 walled towns and cities that once existed in England, less than a third retain as much as a single gateway. York is totally unique in Britain offering as it does examples of Roman, Dark Age, Viking, Medieval and later defences, and on such a massive scale.
Following extensive recent research, they are now brought to life with a self-guided audio tour on a personal media player (all equipment supplied) - taking you around the walls at your own pace.
The tour also includes FREE ENTRY to the Richard III Museum (Monk Bar), where the tour starts and finishes.
Designed to be both informative and entertaining, the tour is a great way to explore York at your own pace and discover in detail its fasincating history, and is great value for money as the tour will take between 3 and 4 hours to complete. Unlike other tours you can conduct the tour whenever you want, and it is recommended that you take a break at one of the establishments we have included as part of the tour, all located near to different points along the way, including York's most haunted pub, York's oldest pub and one of the finest restaurants in Yorkshire.
Listen to a preview track here!
In addition to your narrator, a number of historic characters feature throughout the tour to tell you of the fascinating events that have occured at during various historic ages, including :-
The first Christian Emperor, Constantine is one of the most famous figures in the whole of Roman history. His story begins right here in York, where in 306AD, upon the death of his father, he was proclaimed Emperor at the military headquarters where York Minster stands today. He will be telling you of the Roman age of York.
A proud member of the medieval guild of stonemasons, Thomas was responsible for building part of the walls (the stretch from Fishergate Postern to Fishergate Bar) in 1345, a section still standing to this day. He will be speaking of York in the medieval age, as well as passing on some of his secrets from the stonemasons guild about how the walls were built.
Known as "Black Tom" for his dark complexion, Fairfax was the leading military figure in the English Civil War, rising to become the commander-in-chief of the Parliamentatiran New Model Army in 1645. Just one year before he was here in York, beseiging the city and attempting to wrestle it from the troops holding York for the King. The walls of York would be put to their greatest military test in this time, and Thomas will be speaking of this and other events during the murderous era of the English Civil War.
The lifelong companion of the world renowned artist William Etty. During the early 1800s the walls were coming under their greatest threat - not from any invading army, but from the city council itself which constantly attempted to demolish them in their entirety. Fighting the council at every turn was the York Footpath Association - formed by William Etty and other York residents in 1827 to fight for their preservation. Although nearly 300 yards of the walls were demolished by the council, the vast majority of the 2 miles of walls were saved and Elizabeth will be talking of the various battles that took place to save them.