York is unlike any other English city. It’s perfectly placed half way between London and Edinburgh, and not to mention the glorious Yorkshire Dales and North York Moors right on the doorstep.
Ancient walls linked to its Roman roots and Viking past surround the city’s contemporary independent shops and vibrant eateries, offering something for everyone.
With more attractions per square mile than any other UK city, you’ll be spoilt for choice with fun things to do. Visit the spectacular York Minster, marvel at masterpieces at York Art Gallery, discover the original Viking encounter at JORVIK Viking Centre or be spooked at the York Dungeon.
In 2018 the city was voted the best place to live in the UK by the Sunday Times, described by the newspaper as a “mini-metropolis with cool cafes, destination restaurants, innovative companies – plus the fastest internet in Britain”.
As the unofficial ‘capital’ of Yorkshire, Leeds is the third largest city in the UK and has plenty to offer. The city centre combines a vibrant shopping district with an array of pubs, bars and restaurants which gives Leeds an excellent nightlife.
If British history is your thing, the Royal Armouries Museum displays the National Collection of Arms and Armour. Kirkstall Abbey, located four miles outside the city centre, is one of the best preserved medieval Cistercian abbeys in Britain.
Leeds is also home to Roundhay Park, one of the largest city parks in Europe. Explore one of the nine geology trails, the tropical butterfly house, or try your hand at golf on one of the two courses within the park’s grounds.
Leeds can be reached by train from Penistone – take the hourly service to Huddersfield, where you’ll find direct links to the city centre every 15 minutes.
Spicer Manor lies close to ‘Last of the Summer Wine’ country, with the TV series being filmed in nearby Holmfirth and the surrounding Pennine villages for over 30 years. With its unspoilt stone cottages nestled along the Holme Valley, this picturesque town is well worth a trip whether you want to seek out the famous spots from the TV show (Sid’s Café is still going strong!) or just enjoy sight-seeing.
Just three miles from Spicer Manor is the market town of Penistone. With an array of independent shops, a picturesque church and a weekly market, the town is worth a visit. For film fans the 105-year-old Paramount cinema offers a trip down memory lane. It is also home to one of the few remaining theatre organs in the country.
The annual Mayor’s Parade in June and the agricultural show in September attract visitors from across the country.
Penistone is also the place where you can join the Trans Pennine Trail. This section of the trail follows the route of the historic Woodhead railway line, making it an easy cycle ride even for younger children. Look out for the weird and wonderful sculptures along the route, and the spooky curved tunnel. Penistone Cycle Hire, situated directly alongside the trail, will provide bikes for all ages if you can’t bring your own, and there is also a free on-site car park.
Often dubbed the ‘capital of the north’, Manchester has so much to offer and is an hour across the Pennines from Spicer Manor.
For fans of the beautiful game, the National Football Museum can be found in Manchester. With a mountain of memorabilia on show plus lots of interactive games, there’s plenty to keep all ages entertained. If that’s not enough, take a guided tour of Old Trafford, the home of the biggest club in world football, Manchester United.
In nearby Salford, visit the ever-changing Quays where you’ll find the headquarters of BBC Television and the set of iconic soap Coronation Street.
Manchester can be reached by train from Penistone – take the hourly service to Huddersfield, where you’ll find direct links to Manchester Piccadilly every ten minutes.
Spicer Manor sits just five miles from the Peak District National Park boundary. Whether you want to explore the wild moors of the Dark Peak, or the stunning limestone gorges and rolling hills of the White Peak, this national park has something for everyone. There are excellent facilities for cycling and walking, with a wide range of signposted off-road routes whether you are on foot or two wheels – this is without doubt the best way to explore, with magnificent views around every corner.
The main towns, such as Buxton, Bakewell and Matlock, have weekly markets where you can find fresh local produce to take home. Explore the smaller villages for quaint tea rooms and country pubs which offer great food in a relaxed, cosy setting.
As the nearest large city, Sheffield has plenty to offer. Known as ‘The Steel City’, Sheffield was famed for its industry, but many of the steelworks have now closed and the city is reinventing itself. It is proud of its green spaces, with more trees per person than any other city in Europe. Much of the western part of the city falls within the boundary of the Peak District National Park.
Sheffield is also famous for its sporting history. Sheffield FC is the world’s oldest football club, and fellow local team Hallam FC play at the world’s oldest football ground. The city is also home to the World Snooker Championship, which takes place at The Crucible theatre every Spring.
Sheffielders are known to be some of the friendliest people you’ll find, and with award-winning theatre, beer, music, festivals, street art and so much more, there’s something for everyone.
There are hourly direct rail links to the city centre from Penistone train station.