Moving away from home can be a daunting situation, especially when you find yourself moving over 200 miles away from home! But now, in my third year, York has become a second home, and I settled in far quicker than I ever imagined, thanks to this beautiful city.
I remember when my UCAS email came through to say I had a place at York. I stood frozen, realising that I would be moving all the way up North! Now as a Southerner, the North seemed a long way away. I hadn’t let that hinder my university choices, as I had wanted so badly to study Music at university. Now, that opportunity was right in front of me, and I had to face moving across the country; excitement and nerves came over me. At the age of twenty, I hadn’t been away from home for more than two weeks and now I was going to be moving away semi-permanently.
Since the Open Day, York had really appealed to me. Having spent my previous years studying in London, I was aware that moving cities was going to be a big change. London was busy, loud, and full of life. How would York compare? I was used to the nightlife in London, the people, the transport and the opportunities, so I had so much to learn about life in York.
Far From Home
It’s easy to stress over distance when choosing a university. It’s most likely your first time moving away from home and it’s hard not to let distance determine your choice. I’m so glad I chose York. The course was right for me and I would have been foolish to let the anxiety around distance control my decisions.
Being here, I don’t notice the distance, as I only go home in term breaks, which would have been the same if I was at a closer university. The train journey to York only takes me around 3 and a half hours, and I can get a ticket for around £20 (with a railcard), which is pretty decent. I have driven up more recently, which has been great, as I’ve had my car to explore the city. Although, I would only recommend driving up if you have a playlist of tunes ready! Being away from home, I have developed my confidence and social skills, whilst learning to look after myself and work independently.
Moving from London was a big step for a young fresher, but I am so glad I chose to study here. I’ve had the opportunity to meet people I never would have met and I’ve proved to myself that I can be independent and adapt quickly to new surroundings.
York has so much to offer as a city. It has shown me that there are cities outside London that are just as vibrant and lively. York offers several different nightclubs across town. However, for me, it’s the bars where York comes into its own. I’ve been here nearly three years and, somehow, I haven’t been to all of them! You’ve got your chains, such as Slug & Lettuce, Turtle Bay, Las Iguanas, and some of my favourite independent bars like Evil Eye and Dusk.
Restaurants in York are also great, there are so many! Check out Wildwood (the pizza is amazing) and Cosy Club (in 2nd year I used to get a hot chocolate with my housemates once a week – very wholesome). York also has some lovely cafes; Brew & Brownie is a Yorkie favourite, serving up some delicious naughties and the best mocha in town. Drift In is also fab if you want juices and smoothies. I spend most of the summer in that place, getting takeaways and then wandering down by the river with friends.
York has everything a London girl could need. I love London for its shops, which York is fab for, offering a great selection. When in London, I love going to the theatre, which York has several of! Plus, Leeds is only 20 minutes by train, if you want to catch the musical tour of Les Misérables at the Grand Theatre. Perfect if I want to get my dose of stage shows!
Additionally, Yorkshire is a gorgeous place and I have done lots of exploring since arriving here. Having great transport links, friends and I have been on many an adventure outside York. There are some great places to explore outside the city, I’ve explored Thirsk, Robin Hoods Bay, Harrogate and Whitby.
Everyone here in York is so friendly and approachable. The city feels so safe with the University’s student-led Nightsafe service, providing support for students on nights out in York. It’s great to have people on hand to help you when you’re new to the city, trying to find the bus home! It’s services like this that make student cities, like York, unique. During my time here, I’ve made some wonderful friends from all over the world.
Moving from London to York for University, I have developed independence and proved to myself that I am capable of living far away from home and creating a new life elsewhere in the country. I find it amazing to think that I was dropped off in 2018, not knowing a soul. And now, in 2021, I will soon be graduating with an abundance of wonderful friends and memories. York is a wonderful city, and distance shouldn’t contribute towards one’s decision on university. If your course is right for you, and the city is as lovely as York, you’ve got an easy choice on your hands.