Day Trip to Carlisle

I’ve set myself a semi-serious target of doing something each weekend. This might be something like “uploading a load of photographs taken weeks ago”, or some other project at home, but as far as possible, I’m aiming to go out to places more. Ideally places I’ve never been, or haven’t been to for a long time.

Last weekend, I went to Berwick upon Tweed[1]. Today, I went to another place I’ve never visited, and unlike Berwick, a place I’ve never even been through on the way to somewhere else. Carlisle is a city in the North-West of England – it takes about an hour and a half on a moderately slow train from Newcastle, for the not unreasonable cost of £14.20 for an off-peak return. I set off early enough to catch the 10:10 from Newcastle[2], which after a short delay due to signalling problems, got me to Carlisle just before noon.

I had a good wander around, taking pictures as I went[3]. One thing I particularly wanted to see was the famous “Cursing Stone”, an artwork commissioned at the turn of the millennium[4]. It’s a block of stone with the text of an Archbishop’s curse against Border Reivers[5]. It seems some people blame the presence of the stone for anything bad that’s happened in Carlisle since it was installed. Because stones can do that sort of thing, obviously.

Anyway, here’s one of the pictures I took of it:

Cursing Stone

Cursing Stone

A quite detailed curse against Border Reivers originating in the 16th century, engraved on a lovely bit of stone in a walkway in Carlisle.

You can read the whole curse on a BBC page.

If you want to find the views of people who think it’s doing bad things, you’ll have to use your favourite search engine, because some things are too weird for me to link to, so there.

[1] And the photos from there will appear soon. Well, fairly soon. Probably.
[2] That’s pretty good for me on a Sunday
[3] Details to follow, etc
[4] Like a lot of other things
[5] Delightful families who took it in turns to rob, pillage, kill, and generally make a mess of each others’ stuff, and indeed anyone else’s they could get their hands on