New homes in Wakefield
From museums to country parks, art galleries and shopping centres, there’s lots to see and do in and around the city of Wakefield. If you’re looking for a place to live with good commuter routes to Leeds and surrounded by the beautiful Yorkshire countryside, a new home in Wakefield could be the right choice for you.
A quick history
Settlements around Wakefield date back to the Iron Age, while the Romans constructed roads through the town. The modern day town was established by the Angles around a hilltop church, and after the Vikings invaded the area in the 9th century, the Danes settled in Wakefield. The town became the most important town in the West Riding.
After the Norman invasion, the Harrying of the North saw widespread violence, and Wakefield was largely destroyed. By the 13th century, two charters had been granted for annual fairs, and a regular market was held. Wakefield was soon one of the wealthiest places in the area.
During the English Civil War, Wakefield’s church was badly damaged by the Parliamentarians, but it was repaired and became a cathedral in the late 19th century, making Wakefield a city. Industries included agriculture, wool making, brickmaking and pottery, while the cattle market was opened in 1765 and became one of the biggest in the region.
The railways came to Wakefield in the mid-1800s, and electric trams were introduced in the early 20th century.
Business and industry
The head office of clothing retailer Bonmarche is located Wakefield, while there are a number of major employers in Leeds nearby, including Asda, Leeds Building Society, First Direct, Yorkshire Bank and Jet2.com.
Things to do in the area
If you enjoy a spot of retail therapy, Wakefield is home to Ridings Shopping Centre and Trinity Walk, where you’ll find a range of high street and independent shops. Cultural attractions in the city include Wakefield Museum and The Hepworth Wakefield modern art gallery, while the National Coal Mining Museum is located in Overton nearby.
To discover more about the city and local area in times gone by, historic places of interest include Wakefield Cathedral, Nostell Priory and Parkland and Sandal Castle. There are lots of places to explore the great outdoors just a short drive from Wakefield, including Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Newmillerdam Country Park and Angler’s Country Park. The Peak District National Park and the Yorkshire Dales National Park are also close enough for day trips.
If you want to practice your swing, the City of Wakefield Golf Club and Low Laithes Golf Club are nearby. The Theatre Royal Wakefield hosts performances throughout the year.
Travel and commuting
Wakefield has good transport links by road and rail, located just a short drive from the M1 and with train services to Leeds and London.
The journey from Wakefield to Leeds takes just 15 minutes by train or 20 minutes by car, making it a popular commuter route. Halifax can be reached in 30 minutes by car, while Bradford can also be reached in 30 minutes and Huddersfield in 35 minutes.
To get to London, the most convenient way to travel is by train, with the journey from Wakefield Westgate to King’s Cross taking just two hours 15 minutes. When it’s time to get away from it all, Leeds Bradford Airport is only a 40-minute drive away.