York’s Hidden Spaces – Solar System Trail

Join us as we discover hidden green spaces in our blog series

We're in York for our hidden green space this month, on a great walk and cycle route heading south of the city

At Move the Masses HQ we’re always keen to find new green spaces to explore. If you know of a spot near you let us know, we’d love to hear about new places! 

This walking and cycling spot is a great favourite for our volunteers and staff. This is the fourteenth blog in our series – check out the others here. Don’t forget to let us know if you visit anywhere new as a result – we always love to hear from you! Likewise, if you have anywhere you think others should know about, please get in touch and we’ll feature it soon: hello@movethemasses.org.uk  

Happy exploring!

Signpost to Venus and the sun
The route has signs along the way
The path through the trees
The route is surrounded by nature

How to find the Solar System (York)…

No rockets required!

The route is along cycle network route 65. 

Show location on Google Maps. This is the location of the Sun and the start of the route.

Car parking is available at Askham Bar Park and Ride. This has direct access to the path and is only 5 minutes from the sun where the route begins. Buses run from the city centre to Askham Bar Park and Ride. Toilets are also available here.

The paths are tarmac and relatively flat so are accessible for wheelchair users and pushchairs, some of the entry points to the route have steep ramps or steps. 

This a popular place for dog walking. 

There are lots of great spots for refreshments and toilet breaks along the route, including Brunswick Nursery and lots of pubs.

Check out the map of the route with pubs marked here.

Did you know…

The York Solar System model was created by the University of York as an accurate scale model of the Solar System. From the sun to Pluto the models are spread out along 6.4 miles of the old East Coast mainline railway. All the models are done to scale and include models of all the planets in the solar system as well as models of the Cassini and Voyager spacecraft. 

The scale is 575,872,239 to 1, so every 100 metres along the track corresponds to more than 57 million kilometres in space. This means that along the route the speed of light is about equivalent to around 1 mph, so you can walk at 3 times the speed of light! 

The Fisher of Dreams - wire sculpture of person fishing atop the bridge
The Fisher of Dreams sculpture
Model of Saturn with signpost
The model of Saturn, with signpost to neighbouring planets
Child in sunglasses eating ice cream
A well earned ice cream stop at Brunswick Nursery
Metal sculpture of Judi Dench
Metal sculpture of Judi Dench

The route is maintained by the Sustrans. You can find more information about the route here, including a map of the route. Don’t forget, if you decide to visit as a result of this article, please take a photo and let us know!

You can tag us on @move.map on Instagram, or feel free to drop us an email: hello@movethemasses.org.uk 

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