One of the things I love most about the UK is its diverse history. And so when I hear about really historic towns, you know, ones that were around during the Ancient Roman empire and such like, well, I love it. So without further adieu, let me introduce you to another local’s interview, this time about truly historic Chester in England…
1. Could you tell us a little about yourself and where you come from?
I’m Tom, a traveller from Chester in the North West of England. I have lived in 3 separate countries while travelling the globe. I’m a huge sports fan, and also enjoy reading a good book and attempting to write one!
2. How long have you lived in Chester? And what brought you here?
I was born in Chester. I lived here up until I was 22, when I went travelling to Australia. Since then, I’ve been back on and off over the past five years, until I moved back recently to save up for some future trips.
3. What do you love most about your hometown?
Chester is a deeply historical city. It was one of the main centres of the roman Empire in the UK. We even have the largest Roman Amphitheatre in the country. As well as that, there are lot of beautiful historical buildings to discover, such as the Cathedral and the Roman walls that encircle the inner city.
4. Is there anything that frustrates or annoys you when tourists visit England?
It frustrates me how little people know about England outside of London. Whenever I was abroad, people would always talk about London, and even assume that was where I was from. We may not be a big island, but there are a lot of places to see outside of the capital. I think people get so caught up in visiting London, they forget there is a whole country outside of it, just waiting to be discovered!
5. In your opinion, which places should be at the top of any visitor’s wishlist in Chester?
If you’re coming to Chester, you have to visit the Roman sights in the city centre first. A trip to the amphitheatre and a walk around the walls are a necessity. Outside of that, if you can rent a car, there are a lot of interesting places to see in the surrounding areas. You can go to the Ice Cream Farm, where they make, wait for it, homemade ice cream. You can also head to the Sandstone Trail, and walk amongst the beautiful Cheshire countryside. Venturing a bit further, it’s only an hour to Snowdonia National Park in Wales by car. If you’re feeling adventurous, a hike to the top of Mount Snowdon is highly recommended!
6. What foods must visitors eat when in England?
Fish and chips, without a doubt. It’s the first thing that springs to everyone’s mind when they think of English food. You have to buy it from a fish and chip shop or ‘chippy’ as we call them, for an authentic experience. Be sure to order it with curry sauce!
7. What’s your favourite English word? Why? What does it mean?
There are so many! My favourite would have to be bollocks though. Mainly, because I like the way it’s said with a Northern accent. It has a few meanings. The most common usage is to say it when someone is talking rubbish. Conversely, if you say the ‘Dog’s Bollocks’, that means whatever you’re talking about is brilliant.
8. What advice would you give to somebody moving to Chester from another country?
If you’re visiting Chester, my advice would be to come prepared. We are a stone’s throw from Wales, so it can start raining at any moment. You will definitely need a jacket and, probably, an umbrella. I would say you’ll need to get used to the lack of sun and grey skies, especially during the winter. It can get dismal at times. That said, Chester is a beautiful place to live. The locals are really friendly, and we are in an ideal place to explore the rest of the North West. Liverpool and Manchester are only an hour away by car or train.
9. If you could describe Chester in just one sentence, what would you say?
A beautiful and historical city that will charm the pants off you!
10. If tourists were to know one thing about the British culture, what should that be?
We say sorry a lot! After living abroad, I realised just how much we say it. I don’t know the reason why, maybe we’re all afraid of upsetting one another? If you find someone saying to sorry to you, and you are completely dumbfounded, don’t worry, it’s just a reflex. We can’t help ourselves, sorry!
Thanks Tom – we’ve loved getting to know you and Chester better!
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