SEEING the photo of Bootham bar and its adjacent horse-trough (Yesterday Once More, June 27), reminds me of something that happened during Ascot at York.

I met up with two American tourists walking the city walls "treading in the footsteps of Roman soldiers" - or so they thought!

I did, however, inform them the present day city walls were built between the 12th and 13th century. "But what's that Roman sarcophagus doing down there at the roadside?" one of them asked.

"That's a horse-trough," I replied. "Like the ones that John Wayne, the cowboy, used to dump baddies in - in American western films." It was put there in 1905 by a fertiliser magnate - no, not horse fertiliser, the other type!

The trough bears an inscription "A righteous man regardeth the life of his beast" - but there ain't many righteous men "regardething" beast or fellow men these days are there?

"True," said the Yanks, "It hasn't got any water in it."

Dale Minks,

Ancress Walk,


Updated: 10:40 Wednesday, July 06, 2005