September 4, 2017 in Category Scarlett Adventures...,UK,Yorkshire

I went to see a 600 year old hand so you don’t have to.

Back when I went on my big haunted weekender in York, we visited the old house of Margaret Clitherow who, if like me you have no idea about this sort of thing, was one of the 40 English Martyrs who was put to death when they found out she had created a secret room in her house in Shambles as a refuge for Catholic priests.

I won’t go into the history of Margaret Clitherow because you know where Google is, but while I was there a sweet little fella started chatting to us about her. It turned out he had struggled with panic attacked for years, and had come to the house because he lived alone and thought, if he died during an attack, he’d at least get found by somebody.

Are you crying yet?

Anyway, he found peace in this little house and his panic attacks stopped. He decided it was Margaret who saved him, and he converted to Catholicism and ended up getting a job at the church, a house and turned his life around. Which, even as someone who’s not religious in the slightest, I still thought was a really sweet story

So,clearly seeing I was interested in his tale, he suddenly goes “you can go and see her hand you know.”

Fucking pardon?

“Yes, her hand is at the Bar Convent, you can go and see it.”

Now, call me weird, but I thought ‘fuck me how random, I’m going to hand to go.’ So I dragged my poor mum, who needs a hip replacement this month by the way, 45 minutes across the wall and up 5 flights of stairs to see this 600 year old hand, that the nun’s had hidden behind this red velvet curtain.

Honestly, I’ve never known anything so intense in my entire life. They sat us down in front of this curtain and, in complete silence, one of the nuns slowly pulled the rope to reveal it.

We all sat there in complete silence. Us… and the hand. I don’t know what I expected to be honest. We’d traveled all this way to see a 600 year old hand, and that’s exactly what we got; a really old hand.

margaret clitherow's hand

We sat there for what felt like the longest two minutes of my life then said, “Great. Excellent, thanks very much.” and set off on the 45 minute walk back to the hotel.

So there you have it. A 600 year old hand looks exactly like you’d expect it to. But you’ll have definitely earned a wine in the pub opposite after the walk, so swings and roundabouts.

Until next time… x

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