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York Branch - Living In York

Why Live in York?

In order to paint a picture of why we think York is the best city in the world to live in, we've put together a York area guide. So whether you're a stranger in your own city, or you're trying to pitch why you should move to York to your other half, read no further. With a historic background, a thriving economy, and the awards to back up our statement, we can't possibly think of another reason why anyone would want to live anywhere else!


York is a historic walled city, complete with castle and cathedral, that was founded in 71AD by the Romans who named it Eboracum, later to be named Jorvik by the Vikings, and eventually transitioning into the York that we now know.


Major employers in the city include: York St John University, University of York, Northern Rail, Network Rail London North Eastern, City of York Council and Nestle Rowntree. York was named as 2018’s ‘Best Place to Live in Britain’ by the Sunday Times - the newspaper described it as a "mini-metropolis with cool cafes, destination restaurants, innovative companies - plus the fastest internet in Britain".


Average property price £241,318 (according to the UK House Price Index as of May 2018) and sought-after areas include Bootham, Fulford, Clifton Moor, Bishophill and Clementhorpe (which recently took ninth place in The Times' top 30 'coolest places to live').


York’s transportation is highly efficient, York Station being a key junction approximately halfway between London and Edinburgh means you can get to London in under 2 hours, Manchester in under 1.5 hours and Edinburgh in under 2.5 hours. Travel within York itself is also efficient, with the Park & Ride service taking you directly into the centre of York from various pick up points across each corner of the city: Grimston Bar, Rawcliffe Bar, Monks Cross, Poppleton Bar (A59) and Askham Bar are the journey starting points.


Young people’s education is well accounted for in York, with York St John University based in the centre of the historic city, and the Russell Group University of York based on the outskirts, in the area of Heslington. All buyers are catered for as the city is home to first class public schools such as St. Peter’s School and The Mount, as well as an abundance of state schools.


The City of York is regularly presented with prestigious awards, in 2018 the city was crowned as ‘Best Place to Live in the UK’ by The Sunday Times, this was complimented by topping a list of friendliest places to live (beating 28 other cities including Cambridge, Edinburgh and Newcastle). York is also in the top 5 UK destinations, in the top 100 world destinations and in the top 25 European destinations in the Traveller’s Choice Destination awards by TripAdvisor.


Plentiful luscious gardens and green spaces, a hand -picked selection of our favourites include Rowntree Park, Yorkshire Museum Gardens and Treasurers’ House garden.


Gatehouse Coffee, Merchant Adventurers’ Hall, Roman Baths (not so hidden but v cool), Perky Peacock, Spark York, Barley Hall, Dick Turpin’s grave.


Amazing museums such as Jorvik Viking Centre, Yorkshire Museum, York Dungeons, National Railway Museum and York’s Chocolate Story.


York’s shopping experience is also second to none, there really is something for everyone, no matter what taste. In various locations across the city, expect to find a range of typical high street shops, independent boutiques and shops, as well as various designer and high -end stores. Feeling adventurous? Hop on the Park and Ride from the city centre and find yourself at the York Designer Outlet, where famous label fashion is available at heavily discounted prices.


A hub for foodies, York boasts every type of culinary experience available, a huge range of dishes suitable for different occasions. If you’re looking for something for a special occasion, there is high end dining in the form of The Ivy and Le Cochon Aveugle (to name a couple), as well as this, there are plenty of independent vendors serving a variety of delicious street food, found at either Shambles Market or Spark York. On top of this, you can expect to find all of your favourite chain restaurants, as well as the plentiful, cosy pubs that offer a delicious array of classic British meals.


Art lovers are well accommodated for, with the prestigious York Art Gallery, set in an 1870’s building and featuring paintings and decorative arts that date back from the 1400’s to the present. On top of this, there are plentiful charming galleries on a smaller scale across the city, boasting a wide selection of fine art.


A wide variety of cinema is also at one’s disposal, ranging from the stellar weight, VUE, to the riverside arthouse cinema that is the City Screen Picturehouse, to Everyman Cinema, an innovative and unique approach to cinema where you swap your soft drink for a nice glass of red wine and a slice of freshly made pizza served to your seat.


The Laugh Out Loud Comedy Club bring the best in comedy to the York Barbican, whenever possible they showcase famous comedians to the city, and in the past have hosted the likes of Jason Manford, John Bishop and Sarah Millican. The Basement is another popular comedy spot that regularly host events, seating 100, this spot resides in the basement of the City Screen Picturehouse. Not forgetting the likes of the York Theatre Royal and Grand Opera House, guests can be expected to be of a high calibre, Jimmy Carr and Russel Howard being recent examples.


The age-old story goes that York has 365 bars/pubs – enough to visit a different establishment each day of the year. Whether this is a myth of not, it’s fair to say that York is renowned for its abundance of pubs and bars. If it’s a cosy, medieval pub you’re looking for, or an upmarket cocktail bar, the diversity that York possesses means that no matter your requirements, you will be accommodated for. Don’t want to end your night too early? Not to worry, York has you covered for all after hours needs too – with 5 main nightclubs, all specialising in different genres of music, so whether your preference is cheesy noughties anthems or pumping house music, you’ll never be short of an option.


York plays host to a plethora of unique festivals, with individuals of all kinds accounted for. Every November, the Aesthetica Short Film Festival takes place – a major UK and international film festival that is BAFTA recognised. Other notable mentions are: St Nicholas Fair, where you can wander around the magical market stalls under twinkling lights, York Beer & Cider Festival, which has recently celebrated its 10th anniversary, York Food & Drink Festival, with wine tastings, talks and food tastings to cookery demonstrations and hands-on workshops in some of the city’s iconic buildings, and York Resident’s Festival, in which residents with a York Card or Student ID can enjoy over 70 different events, offers and attractions for free (including The Jorvik Viking Centre).


Located next to the former Terry’s Chocolate Factory is the York Racecourse, set on an expansive green space named the Knavesmire, the racecourse dates back to 1730 and is one of the premier tracks in Europe - having won an award for ‘Best Racecourse in Britain’ on 8 occasions. Fixtures take place between May and October each year, with notable meetings including The Dante Festival, John Smith’s Meeting, and Ebor Festival. A family favourite is the Music Showcase Weekend which takes place in July, a combination of top-class racing and live music, over the years the racecourse has seen appearances from the likes of Kaiser Chiefs, Boyzone, Madness and Spandau Ballet.