LAST week two York-born teacher friends of mine visited York for the first time in seven years. Below is an extract from a letter I received from them.

“How did we find York? Mmm, not changed for the better. Wandering around the streets after dark and seeing police cars wasn’t encouraging, and there are a lot of grimy corners, especially around the countless cafés and restaurants. Can’t somewhere more discreet be found for rubbish bins?

People are so rude too.

If you are walking along a pavement the only way to stop the hordes of visitors barging into you is to move aside. It is as if you are invisible.

Also there are the brash shop fronts spoiling the look of the old streets. It’s not the way I’d like to remember the place.

At least we enjoyed the visit to the Treasurer’s House and an evening service in the Minster – 20 minutes of peace!”

A disappointment for them coming all the way from Truro. Being York-born they remember the “good old days” when York was a pleasure to visit.

They now understand why I rarely go into town (not least because of the terrible pavements we have to negotiate on our way around the city).

S Watson, Oaken Grove, York