It has history, charm, some of York’s most popular places to eat and drink – and a river runs through it. But Fossgate has often been overshadowed by more glamorous thoroughfares like Shambles and Stonegate.
Not any more. Fossgate’s profile is getting a double boost with a new website and iPad app showcasing its unique mix of independent shops and businesses.
And following its launch, a free iPad app has also been created by York-based software and mobile app developers, Evercode.
“Fossgate is a goldmine of wonderfully diverse, and mostly independent businesses, yet seems to be largely overlooked by locals and visitors alike,” said Duncan Lomax, owner of Ravage Productions.
“Many locals don’t seem to have visited for years, and tourists tend to come out of Shambles, then turn back into the city centre instead of crossing over and exploring what is undoubtedly one of York’s most interesting streets.
“Even visitors to the magnificent Merchant Adventurers’ Hall arrive via Piccadilly instead of through the beautiful archway entrance on Fossgate.”
Forgotten Fossgate? Take another look with our Mix Six guide to what to do on the street.
From photos to phones
Duncan began by capturing the street’s colours in photographs, from vibrant vintage clothes to fine restaurants, and the website grew from that.
Owner of Evercode, Edward Hunn, takes up the story. “Having seen the quality of the Ravage Productions imagery, I decided to create a free app to further promote the area, albeit via a different channel.”
“The app also provides a concise history of the area for tourists and locals alike. Despite living in York for many years, there was a lot about the area I didn’t know myself. In that sense, this project has certainly been an education.
“At the time of writing, the app has only been available for a little over 24 hours and we have already received downloads from the US, Canada and Argentina.”
A visit to the website, the app – or the actual street – does reveals a vibrant, buzzing community that, in Duncan’s words, “bucks the trend in high-street decline”
“In the space of just a few hundred metres, some of York’s longest established businesses sit side-by-side with new ventures in this ever-changing area,” he said.
You can download the free Fossgate York app for iPad on iTunes.