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Woodhouse Ridge, Batty's Wood footbridge


Woodhouse Ridge, Batty
Description:
12th October 1936. Public footpath led from Meanwood Road to Woodhouse Ridge via a footbridge over Meanwood Beck. This view is of the Ridge from behind Yorkshire Switchgear, an electrical engineering plant which fronted onto Meanwood Road. Woodhouse Ridge is one of the few remaining woodland areas of the ancient manor of Leeds. This part of the wood was named Batty's Wood, the gift of John Warburton to add to the existing public parkland. A local legend suggests that during the Civil War, a skirmish took place here and that musket balls have been found in the earth! The nearest action in this area was in January 1643 when General 'Black' Tom Fairfax (noted for his long dark hair) led Parliamentarian troops against Lord Savile, who was holding Leeds for the Royalists. Fairfax split his men, half went south of the River Aire, the rest he led over Woodhouse Moor, down to Briggate. With troops coming from the north and south, Lord Savile's army was caught in a pincer movement and defeated. There is little evidence that troops were in Batty's Wood.

User Comments:

Name:
Mike

Comment:
Roughly about the 1960' 70' musket ball could be found in the beck that is poss called the river Mab below Batty woods, my brother in the past as found some there, this could have had something to do with the skimish at the time or the bank of Batty woods above the river could have been used for target practice, however the round balls were musket balls.

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Name:
Jack Wallace

Comment:
to the left of this picture were what were known as the 39 steps which led from Meanwood Road to this pointi on the Ridge

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Name:
Tony Ambler

Comment:
As a young lad of 14, in 1978, me and my friend Ian went hunting for musket balls. And we found them. I think we found most of them just above Meanwood beck. On the side away from the cricket ground.. i.e the ridge... But most away from a chemical industry, which seemed to be the flavour of the day....

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Name:
Dot Smith

Comment:
Woodhouse Ridge started from the back of Binns Garage, near where the Primrose pub is. You then went past what was known as the first field. There was a path that forked the top path led you to what was known as the old mans shelter. Just before the shelter there was a beautiful garden on the right. I used to go to the shelter as a child with my uncle Teddy. Some elderly locals used to gather to have a game of dominoes. There was a clock in there that used to chime so loudly, as a child it was quite frightening. If you took the bottom path to the left there was a path known as the Indian war path. On the right hand side further along there was a bandstand. Also further along there was a shelter known as the Chinese shelter. I think because of it's shape. Many a name has been carved there. In my youth I can remember lots of times walking from the first field over Woodhouse Ridge through Batty Woods on to Meanwood Park, past the Hollies and so on. (All this with jam and bread sandwiches and a bottle of Spanish wine, this consisted of some halfpenny liquourish sticks mixed with water) A couple of years since I returned to the first field on Woodhouse Ridge and it was a mess, the grass was over grown and you could not have ventured over there. It's a shame that it has not been maintained.

Date:
05-Mar-2009

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