West Yorkshire

West Yorkshire is a county in Yorkshire in the north of England. It’s largely industrial, but with a surprising amount of countryside, especially in the Pennine hills to the west.

West Yorkshire is nowadays a county in name only, as it comprises five “unitary” or metropolitan districts with no county level of government. It’s convenient here to describe it in terms of those five, since transport routes radiate and visitor amenities cluster in that way.

. . . West Yorkshire . . .

Map of West Yorkshire

Map of West Yorkshire

The five districts are Leeds, Bradford, Wakefield, Calderdale and Kirklees.

  • 53.799722-1.5491671 Leeds is West Yorkshire’s biggest city and main transport hub. It makes its money from IT, finance and law, and has a large university quarter. It has the best shopping, dining and drinking, and a modern art gallery. Within the district are:
53.905-1.6871 Otley in the valley towards Skipton.
53.9276-1.38391 Wetherby, a small market town with a racecourse.
  • 53.8-1.752061 Bradford, the second-largest city, hosts the National Media Museum and has a wide variety of shops, restaurants and pubs. Within the district are:
53.846-1.8361 Bingley is industrial, but the canal is worth walking by the ladder of locks.
53.925-1.8221 Ilkley is a market town on the edge of the Dales.
53.867-1.9111 Keighley is the start of the steam-hauled railway to Haworth.
53.83-1.961 Haworth is where the Brontë sisters did much of their writing. Other locations associated with them, the Brontë Country, stretch across the north of England.
53.83717-1.790261 Saltaire is an outstanding “model village” and UNESCO World Heritage site, centred around Salts Mill.
  • 53.6801-1.4921 Wakefield is home to the Hepworth, the Yorkshire Sculpture Park and the National Mining Museum. Within it:
53.691-1.3121 Pontefract is a small market town with a racecourse and ruined castle.
  • 53.725-1.8631 Halifax, the chief town of Calderdale district, has “Piece Hall”, a well-preserved 18th C market place, and Eureka children’s science museum.
Within the district are the scenic villages of 53.742-2.0091 Hebden Bridge, 53.75309-2.037161 Heptonstall and 53.713-2.0961 Todmorden
  • 53.645-1.77981 Huddersfield is the chief town of Kirklees district. Within the district are:
53.57-1.7871 Holmfirth is a charming rural town.
53.6011-1.92671 Marsden in the Pennines, with good local walking.
Birstall has a huge retail park and cinema. Just north of it is Oakwell Hall, a fine Elizabethan manor.

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. . . West Yorkshire . . .

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