A brief photographic shimmy around this old northern town
(Photos/words © urban75, 1st Sept, 2008)
On our way up to the Lake District, we had an hour or so to kill between trains in Lancaster, so we took a quick spin around the small city.
The traditional county town of Lancashire, Lancaster stands on the River Lune with a population of around 46,000 souls.
Steeped in history, the town is dominated by Lancaster Castle, partly built in the 13th century and standing on the site of a Roman garrison.
The city's name first appears in the Domesday Book in 1086 as Loncastre, and is derived from the Old English for, 'Roman fort on the River Lune.'
After the infamous Pendle witch trials of 1612, so many people were sentenced to die from the court based in the castle (the Lancaster Assizes) that Lancaster earned itself the nickname of 'the Hanging Town'.
Many buildings in the city centre and along St. George's Quay date from the 1800s and were built during a brief heyday when the port became one of the busiest in the UK. Shamefully, it was also the fourth most important port in the UK for the slave trade at the time.
Although Lancaster gained its first charter in 1193 as a market town and borough, it had had to wait until 1937 to be granted city status.
Bashful Alley, a curiously named street name in central Lancaster.
Ye Olde John O Gaunt, a fune old jazz/live music boozer at 3 Market St, Lancaster.
Market in Lancaster.
Oooo-er! Slip Inn Lane.
Bloke on phone selling bubble blowing guns.
The Penny Bank in Penny Street, another pub offering real ales and live bands.
Lancaster Town Hall stands in Dalton Square and was officially opened on the 27th December 1909 by Lord Ashton.
Deep-pocketed Ashton shelled out £155,00 to pay for the new Town Hall and the statue of Queen Victoria opposite.
Statue of Queen Victoria in Dalton Square .
Another view of the Town Hall.
A view along Penny Street.
The exterior of Cunningham Jewellers, est. 1885.
Church St, Lancaster.
Old Co-op building in Church Street.
Building detail, showing carving of beehive.
The Judges Lodgings at the top of Upper Church Street.
Now open to the public as a museum, the house was once the residence of Thomas Covell who was involved in trying the 'Pendle Witches.'
Close up of the building with the Covell Cross is in the foreground.
A texter drifts past the old YMCA building, erected in 1908.
Some views of old Lancaster, from near the castle.
Looking south-east over the city from the castle.
Workmen attending to the brickwork of Lancaster Castle.
Waiting at Lancaster Station for our train to Grange Over Sands.
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