Walk: Selby Trails Part 1. The Abbey Trail

in Selby

Discover Selby Timeline, Selby Abbey, Market Cross, Disappearing Street and Westfield cemetery with one of the Selby Trails.

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The Route

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  • Start Point: Ousegate, Selby YO8 4NJ
  • Finish Point: Westfield Cemetary, Selby YO8 9DQ
  • Distance: 1.2 Miles

GPX Route Map

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Walk Description

Discover Selby Timeline, Selby Abbey, Market Cross, Disappearing Street and Westfield cemetery with one of the Selby Trails.

The Abbey Trail instructions:

1. From Ousegate next to the river, follow the road around The Crescent to reach Selby Abbey.
2. Follow The Crescent round, turn on St. James’ St. and find Market Cross on Market Lane.
3. Follow New Lane and head up towards Finkle St. to find Disappearing Street.
4. Head down Gowthorpe and make a turn onto Brook St. Follow the road straight down to reach Westfield Cemetery

Stop 1. Selby Timeline. Take a walk through the riverside park and look for the twelve brass paving slabs that depict Selby’s history. The artwork was created by sculptor Ailsa Magnus and ranges from conflicts on the Ouse between the Saxons and the Vikings; to the ‘Stars and Stripes’ of the American flag, representing the American and Canadian aircrews who were stationed in Selby during WWII. TOP TIP: Grab some paper and chalk and use the artwork to create beautiful brass rubbings.

Stop 2. Selby Abbey. Possibly Selby’s most iconic feature, the Abbey has been at the centre of the town’s history since the 12th Century. The architecture has continued to evolve, prompted by two fires that almost destroyed the Abbey! After the first fire in 1340, the striking stained glass windows were added to the south isle of the Nave. Then disaster hit in 1906 when a huge fire, that started in the organ chamber, destroyed the roof and tower. Thankfully, a donation from William Liversidge led to restoration of the South Transept and the addition of another, wonderful stained glass window!

Stop 3. Market Cross. The Market Cross signifies the spot of Selby’s open-air market, a weekly event that has been ongoing since the 14th Century. The market was started by the Monks of the Abbey, but trade went on to include imports that had been transported up the River Ouse and there were even reports of farm labourers offering themselves for work!

Stop 4. Disappearing Street. Can you spot the false archway filled with bricks at 25 Finkle Street? This is actually the site of Lees Terrace, a street of houses that could be accessed via a small wooden door. In 1996, renovations to the surrounding buildings led to the removal of Lees Terrace, giving it the status of a disappearing street!

Stop 5. Westfield Cemetery. Westfield Cemetery contains many white marble graves of men who flew and fought in the Royal Flying Corps and Royal Air Force between 1914 – 1945. Once a year members of the Clergy and groups of school children take part in a remembrance service to commemorate those that lost their lives in the war.

Related Accommodation

Picture of The George Inn

The George Inn

Market Place, Selby, YO8 4NS, United Kingdom
Picture of Willow House by Lavender Stays

Willow House by Lavender Stays

Buller Street 16, Selby, YO8 4BT, United Kingdom

The Lodge

Blackwood Hall Business Park, Cornelius Causeway, North Duffield, Selby, North Yorkshire, YO8 5DD, United Kingdom

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