Wakefield  West Riding


In 1887, John Bartholomew's Gazetteer of the British Isles described Wakefield like this:

Wakefield, parl. and mun. bor., market town, par., and township, S. div. West-Riding Yorkshire, on river Calder, 9 miles S. of Leeds and 176 from London by rail - par., 10,056 ac., pop. 51,140; township, 758 ac., pop. 22,173; mun. bor., 1553 ac., pop. 30,854; parl. bor., pop. 34,566; 4 Banks, 4 newspapers. ...

Market-days, Wednesday and Friday. Wakefield is a well-built town, with wide and regular streets, and with handsome public buildings. A curious relic of antiquity is the chapel on the bridge which spans the Calder, built by Edward IV. in memory of his father, Richard, Duke of York. Wakefield has considerable mfrs. of woollens, worsteds, and hosiery, breweries, roperies, foundries, railway waggon works, and cocoa-fibre mat manufactories; it is a great mart for corn, malt, and wool; and in the neighbourhood are extensive coal mines. It was the scene of a battle in 1460, in which Richard, Duke of York, was defeated and slain; it was also the scene of frequent strife during the Civil War. Wakefield was incorporated in 1626; it was made a parliamentary borough in 1832, and returns 1 member; its parliamentary limits were extended in 1885 so as to include the Belle Vue portion of Sandal Magna parish.

Wakefield through time

Click here for graphs and data of how Wakefield has changed over two centuries. For statistics for historical units named after Wakefield go to Units and Statistics.

How to reference this page:

GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Wakefield in West Riding | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.


Date accessed: 16th April 2024

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