We didn’t know that they were having a chocolate festival until after we got there – honest! We arrived at the end of the weekend so I wonder whether we did miss some stuff. There was a kind of market with various stalls including small-scale businesses that made chocolates as well as a franchise offering melted chocolate to drink or poured on cake or fruits. I tried some of that melted chocolate and although it was nice it didn’t take too much to have enough. Under a marquee there was a demonstration (and tasting) of chocolate truffle-making. Although we arrived part way through the demonstrator was happy to answer our questions as well as catch us up with the bit we had missed.

Meanwhile, when we visited the Castle Museum in York (incidentally rather better value for money than the Jorivc centre even with the joint ticket to include DIG) we saw chocolate being tempered and had an informative talk about the right temperature for melting and working with chocolate. That’s the sort of thing an amateur cook might like to know as well as any chocophiles present. Elsewhere in the museuam there was also some interesting social history as well as some obvious pride in the role the Rowntree family played in making poverty an issue that had to be and could be addressed.

The view from the city walls allowed us to see the top of the old “Terry’s of York” chocolate factory.

One of the best places for us was the National Railway Museum. Entry was by donation but even if it had been priced like the Castle it would still have been good value for money. As well as trains, locomotives and carriages etc from the early “Rocket” to the modern “Bullet” train, there was a miniature railway, a science show for children, and a short play that told the story behind a huge painting of Waterloo Station in its hey day (1967). Worth a repeat visit I would say.

Although we were only there for a couple of days, we enjoyed our visit and would like to go again.

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