Thorp Arch (proudly without an "e") is a parish in the Metropolitan County of West Yorkshire within the City of Leeds. However, this can be misleading. The area lies to the east of the A1(M) and north of the River Wharfe and is largely rural with a village of old limestone buildings and a Special Landscape area consisting mainly of farmland. It has a population of around 800.
The area was significantly changed during the Second World War, when the local railway and easy access to the A1 made Thorp Arch (and part of the neighbouring parish of Walton) an ideal site for a munitions factory. At its height this employed over 10,000 workers. The railway and the factory are long gone, but they leave a legacy of the Thorp Arch Trading Estate, the Buywell Shopping Centre, a division of the British Library and HM Prison, Wealstun. In recent years the area has also become home to the Leeds United Football Academy.
The main part of the village, which is mentioned in the Domesday book, is in a conservation area lying on the banks of the river, although recently there has been new residential development between the old village and Walton. It is a vibrant community with a junior school, church and public house. The village shops closed some 20 years ago, but residents are well served by a shopping area in Boston Spa, just across the historic Wharfe Bridge. There is an active Village Society, cricket and tennis clubs and various community groups who are all kept informed by the "Causeway" magazine which is distributed free of charge to all households in Thorp Arch and Walton.
20 Wayside Mount
Phone: 0113 2893624
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