Stephen Rees's blog

Thoughts about the relationships between transport and the urban area it serves

Weekly Photo Challenge: Heritage

with 14 comments


This is a photo I took nearly a year ago. York Minster the largest gothic cathedral in northern Europe. Built on much older structures, the remains of which can be seen in the crypt.


It would have been really easy to post pictures of totem poles just like the original challenge. But that’s not my heritage. That’s not my story.

I happened to have the pictures from York open and for some reason the ones that I took then did not get uploaded to Flickr (until now), unlike most of the photos I have used in these challenges previously. So I am going to indulge in some multiple picture posting for this one, as it allows me to discuss more about my heritage.

Although I am now an atheist that was not always the case. My mother was a member of the Church of England, although we did not go to church very often. At home there were only the usual almost – but not quite – secular celebrations of Christmas and Easter. School was different. In England then the law was that there had to be a religious assembly in schools every day, and religious instruction was one of two compulsory subjects. (The other was Physical Training.) The Church of England is still the Established Church, and the Queen is still its head. English history is full of religious disputes and battles – and everyone has heard of Henry VIII and his six wives and how the CofE came to be.

fullsizeoutput_24bc On the day we were there, final rehearsals were underway for the Mystery Plays. These go back to the 1300s. Tickets were, of course, sold out long before we thought about attending.



So yes there is a lot of history and heritage in York. You can still walk the walls of the city. When I listen to the news today about how it’s Montreal’s 375th birthday, I find it just a little bit hard to be impressed by that.

Written by Stephen Rees

May 17, 2017 at 12:34 pm

14 Responses

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  1. I’ve been there, but don’t remember these stairs.

    LuiZ FernandoS

    May 17, 2017 at 12:54 pm

  2. I live in the States, Stephen, so you probably wouldn’t be impressed by our history, either. Not our fault, although we do have lots of Indian heritage places. I’ve always enjoyed the churches in Europe and love history, old and newer.



    May 17, 2017 at 1:32 pm

  3. That’s the temporary stage erected for the play. Behind me were tiers of seats – to ensure everyone gets a good view. The whole interior of the nave is transformed into a theatre for the plays.

    Stephen Rees

    May 17, 2017 at 1:39 pm

  4. I wouldn’t say that. I greatly enjoyed our trip to Washington DC, and I really liked the National Railroad Museum in Green Bay. We have been absolutely blown away by the national parks and those wonderful National Monuments now under threat. And the cliff dwellings at Mesa Verde …

    I have been very impressed by a lot of what I have seen this side of the Atlantic. And in Canada right now there’s a bit of a kerfuffle over “appropriation of voice”, so I decided not to use any of my First Nations pictures.

    Stephen Rees

    May 17, 2017 at 1:45 pm

  5. Don’t even get me started on the “Appropriation of ___________”!


    May 17, 2017 at 1:54 pm

  6. […] Stephen Rees’s blog Weekly Photo Challenge: Heritage […]

  7. Beautiful pictures. It’s a long time since I visited York Minster. I’ve been remiss.


    May 18, 2017 at 10:23 am

  8. Thank you – I have more of York here and will be adding to it when I get some more time

    Stephen Rees

    May 18, 2017 at 10:35 am

  9. Not meaning to start any arguments, I do think that is worth reading this article

    Sample paragraph

    However nothing in what the twuc proposes, or what has been proposed by Indigenous activists in countering the threat of cultural appropriation, comes anywhere close to the bureaucratic system of regulated authenticity that Canada uses for itself. Canadians understand that, when faced with much larger cultural and political force, extraordinary efforts are required to protect your own culture.

    Stephen Rees

    May 18, 2017 at 3:09 pm

  10. I almost expect to see an ancient sword embedded in that column remnant.

    Alex Botta

    May 18, 2017 at 3:32 pm

  11. Well, it was just sticking out there, and no-one seems to have missed it. Of course it had to go in checked baggage so I am sure you can guess the rest.

    Stephen Rees

    May 18, 2017 at 3:34 pm

  12. I have once visited York and also visited York Minster.
    But it’s been a long time.



    May 19, 2017 at 9:29 am

  13. When I was there, a choir was presenting every hour in a secluded area behind the altar. I could only hear because I was always late to the presentation and couldn’t enter.

    LuiZ FernandoS

    May 19, 2017 at 1:16 pm

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