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JMU North of England Programme


Chester, York, and Ripon, England

Program Description

We will stay in Chester (University Student Housing) for nine nights, Ripon (The Royal Oak) for three nights and York (Alcuin Lodge, Headley House Hotel) for seventeen nights including a day trip to Hadrian’s Wall and Durham.  The programme counts towards the History major, the Classics, Medieval/Renaissance (Hist 391) and History minors and the public history concentration (Hist 391).   The mornings are devoted to lectures and the afternoons to site walks.  Weekends are free for student travel.

We will walk two Medieval Walls (Chester and York), visit four cathedrals (Chester, Ripon, York, Durham), two ruined abbeys (Fountains, St Mary’s), Hadrian’s Wall, Durham Castle, Clifford’s Tower, the Merchant Adventurer’s Hall and a plethora of museums, ranging from the ancient world to the modern industrial and socio-cultural:  Roman Army Museum, Yorkshire Museum, Grosvenor Museum, Jorvik Viking Centre, Castle Museum, Silk Museum, Workhouse/Police and Prison/Court Museums, Fairfax House, the Cheshire Military Museum and the National Railway Museum (home of the Hogwarts Express) amongst others.  Group meals range from gastro-pubs, fine inns, French restaurants and a tearoom in 17th century surroundings.  The catered banquet takes place in the elegant formal dining room of York’s 18th century Mansion House.  Join us for a serious education in three of the oldest and most beautiful cities in Northern England.

The programme requires two classes from the list of four:  GHUM 250, HIST 271 (The Ancient Mediterranean), HIST 391 (The Life, History and Culture of the North of England), HIST 489 (Topics in Ancient and Medieval Britain).  HIST 391 is mandatory for the programme.  HIST 489 is an alternative to GHUM 250 and HIST 271 for History and Anthropology majors who do not need the General education credit or 200 level history courses.


REQUIRED: HIST 391. Travel History Seminar: Life, History, and Culture - North of England (3)


GHUM 250. Foundations of Western Culture: The Ancient Mediterranean (3)

HIST 271. The Ancient Mediterranean (3)

HIST 489. Selected Topics in World History: Ancient and Medieval Britain (3)

Location Description

The principal locations are the beautiful cities of York, Chester and Ripon.  There is also day trip to Hadrian’s Wall and Durham.  York and Chester were Roman legionary fortresses and housed two of the three legions in the province of Britannia.  All four cities boast fine architecture from the Roman to the Victorian periods as well as beautiful Medieval Cathedrals.  York and Ripon boasted two of the most powerful abbeys in England before the Reformation.  Their haunting ruins remain impressive.  Prior to the industrial revolution, these cities were amongst the most important and wealthy in the North.  York’s Georgian architecture, as exemplified by the Mansion House and Fairfax House, is still some of the most elegant in this most historic of cities.  In the modern era, York became a great centre for the railways and chocolate manufacturing. 


Stephen Chappell | | History


The students stay at the well-appointed dorms at the University of Chester, an inn in Ripon and a beautiful bed and breakfast, the Alcuin Lodge, and a nearby hotel, the Hedley House, in York.  All are conveniently located for the city centres.  The accommodation provides breakfast and there are six group meals.  In addition, students receive a liberal stipend of twenty pounds per day to cover lunch and dinner.  NOEP 2014 lived well within this allowance. 

Applicant Criteria

Applicants must have a GPA minimum of 2.0

Application Process

For this program, students need to complete the online application (a $25 fee required), which includes:

  • Short essay
  • Official transcript required for first-semester transfer and non-JMU students.

Online Application Coming Soon

Application Deadline


All dates are tentative and subject to change


HIST 391: Travel History Seminar: Life, History, Culture - North of England (3 credits) - REQUIRED

GHUM 250: Foundations of Western Culture: The Ancient Mediterranean (3 credits)

HIST 271: The Ancient Mediterranean (3 credits)

HIST 489: Selected Topics in World History: Ancient and Medieval Britain (3 credits)

Courses listed here are to be used as a general guideline for program curriculum. *All courses are considered pending until approved by the Academic Department, Program, and/or College.