TOWN-HOPPING IN THE YORKSHIRE WOLDS
There’s arguably no better way to spend a summer’s afternoon than by town-hopping around the picturesque Yorkshire Wolds. The area is rife with attractive towns, and Pocklington is as good as anywhere to start. Dominated by Market Street, the town is replete with independent stores teeming with all manner of wonderful gifts. However, dare to step off Market Street and scuttle past the church, and you’ll surely find that “Lily” can’t fail to lure one and all inside, the first thing to catch my eye in there being a rousing series of landscape photographs by Bridlington-based photographer Jean Illingworth, all shot within the Wolds, such images capturing blooming bluebells near Lockington and beautifully rolling fields beset by moody clouds.
“Happy Days” is one of Pocklington’s most alluring stores, stacked to the rafters with bespoke gifts and lovingly upcycled furniture. It’s simple to invest at least half an hour in doing nothing more than browsing around; it’s even easier to scoop up armfuls of rustic photo frames and cute knick-knacks in exchange for hard cash. Just over the road, “The Coffee Bean” proffers one of the best places to pick up a light snack. For less than a fiver, I picked up a baguette positively weeping with perfectly grilled bacon and a divine chilli sauce. A smooth Americano accompanied such food, sending my taste buds on the most satisfying of vacations. While a gargantuan slice of Rocky Road pleaded to be purchased, I somehow resisted, keen to sample Market Weighton’s delights just down the road. Indeed, less than ten miles separate Pocklington from Market Weighton, it being necessary to hop onto the main York Road to swoop into Weighton via Shiptonthorpe, on the edge of which a new “McDonald’s” was in construction as we passed.
Continuing our crusade to support as many independent stores as possible, the looming spectre of Weighton’s “Asda” drove us over to the far side of High Street, into the delightful “Curios”. Inside, a staggering range of comely gift ideas, rare collectibles, and shabby-chic furniture jostled for attention, a wooden memory-board one of many things to jump out. A few doors away, a baby shop tempted us astray. Alas, its ‘Open’ sign betrayed the locked door’s infuriating intentions. Thus, we had no choice but to trudge away empty-handed. On the upside, the fact that the store was shut meant we had another sound reason to return as soon as time permitted. In the meantime, an exhilarating high-level romp by road awaited, the scenic route back to Driffield relaying us through Middleton-on-the-Wolds, Bainton, and then Kirkburn… just in time for tea.