Headingley Lane and Otley Road From the air
"In the heart of the old village, where St Michael's Church looks across the two pubs, the name of the main road changes from Headingley Lane to Otley Road... The change reflects a major development some 250 years ago which had a considerable impact on village life.
At the start of the eighteenth century...the road which led from Leeds across the waste of Woodhouse Moor to Headingley was then just a narrow country lane leading to the village... The condition of all the road was appalling: narrow and rocky, flooded after rain, slow and hazardous for packhorses and travellers and often impassable for carts and wagons.
As traffic increased in the first half of the eighteenth century with the growth of trade, the merchants of Leeds saw an urgent need to improve their cross-country road connections... In late 1754 a number of petitions were submitted to Parliament for the repair and improvement of the road from Leeds to Otley...
A trust was set up for the Leeds to Otley section of the road - the Leeds-Otley Turnpike Trust... With the improved turnpike road came increased traffic, better links with the town of Leeds and centres elsewhere, and an opening up of village life...
During the twentieth century the Otley Road (now the A660) did not escape its troubled past... While the road is at times choked with buses, vans and cars... it has kept its shape and human dimension, a measure of continuity..."
Eveleigh Bradford, Headingley: This Pleasant Rural Village (2008)
Download the photos below: left-click on an image for a close up.
Hyde Park Corner
Headingley Town Centre
Thanks to Ian Barraclough for providing the photographs.