We visited Durham for the first time today - and were a bit disappointed with it. We had expected to fine it a bit like York - but with hills. Apart from the Cathedral, we didn't fine much of interest. It seemed VERY dirty and run down - so many buildings needing a good clean up and coat of paint. Very few interesting or attractive shops, very few attractive cafes and restaurants - most of the ones with outdoor seating meant actually sitting at unattractive metal tables with the pavement covered in litter and dirt. Even the entrance to Marks and Spencers was filthy! We found a really horrible shopping centre - The Gates - not at all in keeping with a heritage site - just ugly and "cheap". Am I being unfair or am I missing something? We have been to may cathedral towns but just found Durham to be so disappointing and not at all what we expected - it seems the present town does not do justice to itself , to its history, to its architecture and to what it could be. Does anyone else agree?