Let’s move to… a place so dull that being murdered by Vikings made a pleasant change. This week: Durham

What’s it about?

Inoffensive, picturesque Durham. Without the fun factor of Newcastle or the ruggedness of Darlington, this medieval site instead thrives on inane wankiness, claiming to have its own shade of purple.

The city is famously the burial place for The Venerable Bede and Saint Cuthbert, providing a sanctuary for pilgrims the world over. But if boring ecclesiastical history isn’t your thing, Klute – voted the worst nightclub in Europe – is a sacrilegious site for those who prefer off-brand vodka, restrooms flooded with excrement and STIs.

It’s fucking freezing all year round, and its notoriously bitter wind is about as thrilling as it gets. The snowy riverside paths provided CS Lewis with inspiration for Narnia and, much like his world of annoying talking animals, Durham is overrun with narcissistic student bellends who all come from Surrey.

Any good points?

Granted, the cathedral and Norman castle are genuinely spectacular, so much so that the rest looks even worse than it already is. The cobbled streets suggest a fairytale, but are actually a needlessly Everestine climb rewarded by a Slug & Lettuce.

The novelty of getting a pasty starter at one Greggs, then rolling downhill to the other 300 metres away for sausage rolls and doughnuts wears off if you need to chuck up cheap meat and greasy pastry in the public toilet, conveniently placed to ruin the splendour of a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Wonderful landscapes?

The whimsical tree-clad River Wear isn’t quite as famous as the Tyne, and the smart Kingsgate Bridge that runs over it has unfortunately been desecrated by generations of sick and piss. Neighbouring Dunelm House, a Grade II listed building designed by architect Ove Arup, is a brutalist marvel and genuine site of interest, but most want to rip it down for being a drab concrete eyesore.

The older stone buildings look delightful from the train ride into the station. On closer inspection, they only consist of sleepy stationery shops, a sweater emporium and ubiquitous chain restaurants heralded in Durham as innovative.

Hang out at…

The upmarket coffee shop franchise Flat White offers some variety from the dreadful greasy ‘Parmos’ or soggy hog roast baps which remain a staple part of the Durham diet.

The local scran can luckily be avoided by trying inauthentic Italian fare at a rooftop cavern famed for its two-litre bottles of house wine that went off when the monks lived here. You can follow that with a boogie upstairs to cutting-edge new sounds like Angels by Robbie Williams.

If being drunk and unruly in a public place is more your thing, sadly the North Road bus station hangout looks to have been cleaned up recently. Luckily, the Fighting Cocks retains its aura of dread and unwelcomeness – a simmering one-room pot where Sunderland vs Newcastle derby day football matches really come alive.

Where to buy?

Affordable house prices are linked to how little there is to do here, and you can’t easily use a car on Durham’s roads to escape to York. Gilesgate is a suitably drab liminal space, a far cry from places bought more centrally using daddy’s money. Whinney Hill is a pricier toff stronghold, at least dragged down by its proximity to the high security prison. 

The Viaduct area has had a much-needed revamp since only housing a Wilko and spa treatment centre where you get your toes sucked off by goldfish.

From the streets

Stephen Malley, aged 65: “All I’ve ever wanted from life is to break both my ankles getting mortal on cobbled streets and argue with that aggressive joke book salesman in the main square. In somewhere that looks dead lovely. Howay!”

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You're never too porky to hide the sausage: The unhealthy person's guide to mindblowing sex

THANKS to unrealistic body images in movies, porn and the imaginings of your own filthy mind, you’d think everyone is an abnormal freak with a toned arse, a clearly defined neck and no beer gut. 

But us mere mortals with zero interest in self-care and a healthy appetite for large bags of Doritos at midnight need sex too. And in fact we’re pretty good at it. Here’s why.

Larger people last longer

You think all those little sparrow-people have got the energy for a full five minutes of missionary AND a full 30 seconds of reverse cowgirl like you? There’s no way a couple of pumpkin seeds and a swig of spinach juice would be enough to get you through a lovemaking session of that intensity. So plonk yourself down in front of Grand Designs with a jar of Nutella and a spoon and remember: fat stores are important in the sack.

‘Chunky’ people know how to have a good time

That’s the stereotype anyway – you’re jolly, like Hobbits. If you’re a normal size, without sky-high levels of attractiveness to make constant shagging more likely, you can make the most of the other things that come with a relationship. Admittedly that’s mainly ‘eating food’, but there’s also arguing and fighting to find a TV show that won’t bore your true love shitless. It’s so much more healthy and balanced.

‘Well covered’ people can let go

Slim people only look like that because they’re deranged narcissists obsessed with exercise. They can’t kick back and enjoy sex in the way those of us who don’t give a shit about our extra padding can. As they bend and thrust, they’re paranoid their thighs or breasts are wobbling about instead of being rock hard like the pecs of a US Navy SEAL. However you can let go and indulge your sexual fantasies, or just think about what’s in the fridge you can eat after.

Plumper people have a comfier time of it

Meatier bods provide plenty to grab onto during sex, although the irresistibility of love handles may only exist in men’s minds. More importantly, a bit of flab is crucial for more ambitious moves, such as an anniversary-sex 69 or even simple doggy on a tiled kitchen floor. It’s uncomfortable enough as it is, so with a load of jutting bones in the mix it would be like shagging a Ray Harryhausen skeleton. Embrace your body and go for it, nobody’s looking! (Assuming you’ve got your laptop closed, your phone on plane mode and internet rumours about cats having cameras for eyes aren’t true.)

‘Big boned’ people make each other feel good

The important thing isn’t getting in shape, it’s getting a partner who’s the same size as you. No need to feel guilty about that fourth cheese meal at midnight when their cholesterol levels are even higher than yours. Go ahead and become each other’s enabler – it’s clearly helping your sex life, apart from the biscuit crumbs, dried-up noodles and the odd chicken wing in the bed.