The best local knowledge to have


Knowledge is power – that’s sort of true, right? Therefore I can only assume that local knowledge is also power, but more region specific.

For instance if you take me out of Newcastle, my powers really do start to fade. Put me in a whole other country and I’m like one of those penguin eggs that you can’t let touch the snow because of dying reasons – helpless.

But sometimes local knowledge comes across sort of snobby. You probably know what I mean here. The sort of guy that attracts confused tourists because his conversation is so factual and boring – he just has to be leading some sort of tour.

This guy will gladly tell you what year this wall was built in or how Victorian doctors used to perform complex surgeries in that place which is actually a KFC now. Other local experts will insist you’ve got to eat at only this one cafe because the rest aren’t worth trying and that one waiter is such a scumbag.

That sort of knowledge has no power though, because it’s never fun to hear terrible facts and you lose out on the joy of discovering things for yourself.

But there is one type of knowledge that has power beyond words.

And that knowledge is best represented by this monopoly square…


In the real world, someone would buy the free parking square and start charging you for it

Glorious free parking… even better in real life.


If I’m about to go some place and and someone gives me the gift of a free parking recommendation,  I feel indebted to that person for life.

They’ve not just saved me money: they’ve reduced my stress levels, probably saved me some time and, with that extra cash in my pocket, I’m likely to have a better day.

I really love good parking. I’m a bit of a connoisseur (thanks spellcheck) actually.  If you can find me a place that’s near where I want to go, easy to drive to and never fills up all the way – well I’m impressed with you – probably for life.

If you live in a country like the USA where you have big cars, big roads and big car parks, you probably have no concept of the terror of driving into a city centre with no place to rest your wheels. But in the UK the narrow lanes, high population density, one-way streets and crippling parking charges are bad for stress levels.

I honestly get tempted to go some places simply because they’ve got ample free parking. Sure I might be visiting a supermarket, but at least I didn’t pay like an idiot –  for my car to literally do nothing.

If I’m going to spend time in a big town centre, I’ll happily walk 20 minutes to get there. It’s totally worthwhile.

In York it will cost you like £10 to park all day in the centre. Or you can park for free if you’re up for a little walk. The same is true in Newcastle only parking is slightly cheaper because we’re not as rich.

I know free parking spots in Newcastle (including Quayside), York, Grassmere, Windermere, South Queensferry and I’m always on the look out for more.

My list of cheap and awesome places to park is even more extensive…

But I think we should treat our free parking spots like we would Pokemon cards, football stickers or pogs – feel free to share them with friends, but when strangers are involved always insist on a trade.