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INFORMATION ABOUT COTTINGLEY and the Cottingley Connect Website

About Cottingley Connect

The site (the progenitor of Cottingley village sites) was created in 1998 out of information and research about the village carried out over very many years. As a resident of Cottingley for over 60 years,with parents, grandparents, great grandparents also being residents of Cottingley, I have a genuine love and interest of all things Cottingley.

Being involved with Heritage Days in the village from the start, caused me to collate all this research, carry out more research, reproduce photographs and cuttings from friends, relatives and various publications, for display at these events. It seemed a natural progression to open up this information to others via the worldwide web. Permissions have been obtained and sources acknowledged as far as practicable. Please respect and honour them.

The site is, and will remain, totally non-commercial in nature, seeking purely to pass on interesting information to others. (No funding has been sought or obtained)

The site is updated as necessary on a daily basis.


Bingley UDC and Bradford Coats of Arms

Bingley coard of arms

Per chevron Argent and Vert in chief two Trefoils slipped Sable and in base a Fleece Or on a Chief Gules a Millrind Gold between two Roses Argent barbed and seeded proper. CREST: Issuant from a Saxon Crown Or a Bear's Head Argent muzzled Gules; Mantled Vert doubled Or. Motto 'OPES INDUSTRIA PARIT'-Industry begets plenty.
Granted 10th September 1956.

Bradford coard of arms

Arms and crest granted 18th October 1847.
Supporters granted 31st December 1907

City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council was formed by the amalgamation in 1974 of the former City and County Borough of Bradford, the Borough of Keighley, the Baildon Urban District, the Bingley Urban District, the Denholme Urban District, the Ilkley Urban District, part of the Queensbury and Shelf Urban District, the Shipley Urban District, the Silsden Urban District and part of the Skipton Rural District.

Cottingley was part of Bingley Urban District Council until 1974. In April of that year it became part of the City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council.


  1. In 1861 Cottingley had 133 houses and 667 inhabitants
  2. In 1921 Cottingley parish had 751 inhabitants.

2001 Census

Present Population
4492 Note
Owner occupied
Council tenancy
Other tenancy
Detached Houses
Semi-detached Houses
Terraced Houses
Flats, conversions & shared dwellings

Census (Bradford area) 1991 & 2001

Aerial photograph of Cottingley
Arial photo of part of Cottingley taken in late 1990s
The school shown has since been demolished

See aerial view of Cottingley circa 1938


Cottingley area is mainly rural within City of Bradford Metropolitan District. It lies in the Aire Valley between Shipley and Bingley approximately 100 metres above sea level.

To the north is the A650. The land to the east of the B6269 is mainly flat and that to the west rises to a height of 170 metres at March Cote Farm.

Geologically the area consists of millstone grit with the lower slopes covered with boulder clay and some alluvial deposits. Cottingley beck cuts a deep narrow channel flowing north to the River Aire. It rises in a patch of boggy ground in Allerton Road and flows down under Sandy Lane/Haworth Road. At Sandy Lane Bridge it enters an area of deep Glacial Till. Into this the beck has dug a twenty to thirty feet deep narrow gorge crossed by a road bridge at Lee Lane. It then flows through a wooded area, with the waterfall at the rear of Lynwood Terrace, past the Cottingley Town Hall, under the road at the bottom of main Street and down to the river.

We also have the signs of a glacial drift. Crow Coal mixed with Galliard of approximately 75 ft in thickness was found in the area.

Rough rock runs down the valley to the north of Cottingley. To the south it again had coal measures. Old mine shafts litter the fields either side of Cottingley Cliffe Road. These are shown as either Old Coal Pits or Coal pits on the 1852 map of the area, which seems to suggest that some were still being worked in 1852.

Cottingley also had its own reservoir managed by Cottingley Water Works Co. This is shown above Manor Farm (now March Cote Lane) on the local map of 1908.

Cottingley was formerly on the main road before the highway was built from the Bridge to Bingley in 1825.

Stock House was the home of Mr. Thomas Baines, manufacturer.

Cottingley Hall is shown on this 1908 map as situated near the site of the present Cottingley Manor Park. On the 1852 map it is referred to as Cottingley House. (As Cottingley Hall bore the date 1659 RAF (Robert & Anne Ferrand) together with the Knights double cross, it would appear that Cottingley House and Cottingley Hall are different names for the same property.)

There are several Grade II listed buildings in Cottingley:-

  • Cottingley Town Hall
  • Stock-a-close Farmhouse and Barn
    Mid 17th Century Farmhouse and barn - Originally single storey changed to 2 storeys early 18th century - Double cross of Knights Templars set in apex.
  • March Cote Farmhouse
  • Manor Farmhouse and Manor Farm Barn (see 1666 on history page)

There are frequent bus services to neighbouring towns of Keighley, Bingley, Shipley, Bradford and Leeds and it has its own small shopping centre at The Parade.

Member of Parliament is Philip Davies
Local Councillors are: Margaret Eaton, Simon Cooke and Michael Ellis

Manufacturing in Cottingley

Cottingley has little in the way of manufacturing industry, most residents commuting to nearby towns to work.

Turley Textiles took over the site of the Fourfold Company in Hollings Street. They were the biggest uk manufacturer of specialist cloths for Clerical, Academic, Legal and Masonic areas. The company ceased trading in May 2011.

History of the Premises

The barn formed part of a working farm,(Grange Farm) accessed from Main Street, as late as the 1920's. The land which the farmer (Alf Moore) owned and farmed was up Cottingley Moor Road and stretched up to Lee Lane. One resident of Cottingley recalls that people running cottage industries collected their wool for spinning at this farm in the early 1900's.

In the yard behind (Cottingley Grange) is an old bakehouse, with spacious fireplace, once used as a drying room for leather.....Mr. Edward Berwick ..resided at the old Grange, and in the building in the yard adjoining he used to store his wool before weighing out to the hand-combers. Speight's Old Bingley - 1904

The Grange and farm house are no longer there, but the old barn remains as a reminder of it's previous life.

According to "Ancient Bingley" the title Grange was given to farm houses by the Templars.
Turley Textiles


The business of "skinner" was carried out by Michael Horner at Cottingley Mill. The premises were later adapted for the worsted business by Mr. Hollings, the owner, and let to John Sugden and subsequently Tom Ramsden. Later the mill was sold to Thomas Baines who employed many of the villagers in spinning and machine woolcombing.

On Mr. Baines giving up the business, the mill was taken over by Cottingley Manufacturing Company, and in 1895 it was sold to Walter Kay part of which was for woolcombing purposes. The other part was for weaving purposes by Thomas Smith.

It has seen a variety of uses since the decline of the woollen industry. It has now been developed as offices and workshops , with new modern buildings together with the conversion of one of the old mill buildings. It is now known as Cottingley Business Park.

Cottingley Woods shown on the 1852 and 1908 maps as Fairbeards Wood

Cottingley Woods is mentioned in The West Yorkshire Inventory of Ancient Woodlands 1988 by the Nature Conservancy Council. It stretches from Manor Drive Cottingley through to Bank Top at Wilsden.

Ancient Woods are those which have had a continuous woodland cover since at least 1600 AD and have only been cleared for underwood or timber production.

The main constituent of Cottingley woodlands are young and mid rotation coniferous crops. These were planted in small areas from 1947 to 1978 and Scots pine is the predominant species, followed by larches. Christmas Tree production has been a regular and important feature of the overall sales from the woodland.

The area of the Scout Camp at Black Hills carries a low density broadleaved crop of varying age. Principal species are oak, birch and beech. The areas put aside for this are small accessible areas.
Blackhills Campsite is run by the two Scout districts of Bradford (North & South). The camp is set in some 40 acres of unspoilt rural woodland.

The Folly was built by Benjamin Ferrand in 1796.

Cottingley woods entrance

PLEASE NOTE Cottingley Woods are Privately owned and as such permission must be sought from the owners before venturing within them.