Looking the level of the River Ouse, it is hard to think that York has an ongoing problem with occasional inundation whenever the river bursts its banks. However, drop towards the level of the water and you'll encounter mud from the last time that the waters ran high. Even with that threat, you'll find a good number of pleasure-craft on the river and there are sightseeing river trips too with a boat for one of these being moored just beyond Lendal Bridge. The scene reminds me of Chester though there seems to be less river traffic here.
On the left bank, you'll find Yorkshire museum gardens and there are generous walkways on both banks around here too. One of these has been called Dame Judie Dench Walk and I wasn't aware of her connections with York. Previous visits haven't seen me explore York's waterside so much and it looks as if I would do well to spend more time around there.