What the Victorians Did for Us

Form 5 went to meet historian Alex Cockshott from Ilkley Civic Society to learn more about Ilkley’s Victorian heritage.

When Victoria first became Queen, there were only 100 houses in Ilkley; at the end of her reign there were 1000. Fast forward to present day and Ilkley is a town filled with Victorian architecture.

The trip forms part of our learning challenge: ‘What is so great about Ilkley?”

We were taken on a tour of the town to look closely at the different Victorian buildings and creations from the era.

Throughout the walking tour, Alex shared facts and pieces of trivia with us that few may know about Ilkley. We also passed a brook that Mr Nicholson never knew existed in Ilkley!

We wrote down information from the trip which we will discuss in class, and compare with Ilkley during the Roman times through to World War 2.

Did you know: Ilkley became known as a spa town and holiday resort in the Victorian times?

The town’s water was so pure that people jumped into wells to get their blood flowing: a treatment called the ‘Cold Water Cure’ which was an early form of hydrotherapy.

As it became such a popular place to visit for the spa, and the views on Ilkley Moor, plans were made to create rail links between Leeds, Bradford and Ilkley. In 1865, Ilkley railway station was opened, the very same station we used to get to Ilkley today!

We learnt lots on our trip today – thank you Alex from Ilkley Civic Society!

Conveniently situated on the A65 between Ben Rhydding, Ilkley and Burley in Wharfedale, Ghyll Royd School, Pre-School and Nursery is ideally located for families living in or commuting to the surrounding cities, towns and villages of Ben Rhydding, Ilkley, Burley in Wharfedale, Addingham, Menston, Guiseley, Baildon, Bingley, Otley, Leeds, Bradford, Harrogate, Skipton and Keighley.