10 Amazing Archive Images of 20th-century Yorkshire

Every year, on 1 August, a Tingley feeling engulfs the nation. This is due to Yorkshire Day – an annual celebration of this proud and historic county.

Not allowing this event to pass by unheralded, our Archive team has gone to the Hessle of collating some intriguing images of this beautiful area. So, Settle down and be Idle for a few moments, as we Jump to it and spin you a Yorkshire Yarm that we’re sure you will a-Dore.

Here Jack Mitchell, Archive Cataloguer, takes us on a wide ranging tourist trip of the White Rose County.

Me old Muker!

A man and his horse
Photograph taken 1930 © Historic England Archive, ref: wsa01_01_07699a

Taken in Muker, North Yorkshire, this image fabulously encapsulates the rural way of life. Milk churns, mule and flat cap. Yet, this is juxtaposed by the delivery lorries that lurk in the background, hinting towards a more mechanised future.

Craven those (Yorkshire) Dales

An empty street
Photograph taken 1925 © Historic England Archive, ref: wsa01_01_00757

The Yorkshire Dales are visible in the distance from Main Street, Appletreewick. Today, the bucolic view of stone cottages and boundary walls has changed little from this 1925 image.

Yorkshire Tea stop

Laburnum House tea rooms
Photograph taken 1925 © Historic England Archive, ref: wsa01_01_00760

No day trip around Yorkshire is complete without a refreshments stop. The Laburnum House tea rooms was situated in the village of Appletreewick and catered for the intrepid motor tourists of the 1930s.   

Take to market

Market
Photograph taken 1930 – 50 © Historic England Archive, ref: wsa01_01_00059

The stalls and delivery trucks indicate that the market has come to town. Market Place, in the town of Helmsley has reportedly held a market since the 13th century. It still takes place every Friday, if you fancy a visit.

Fancy a drink?

The Black Swan pub
Photograph taken 1940 © Historic England Archive, ref: wsa01_01_a0196

Warm ale and public houses are woven into the very fabric of Yorkshire’s being. A treasured part of almost every town and community in the county, it is hard to picture Yorkshire without its pubs. The Black Swan is situated on Market Place in Kirbymoorside, North Yorkshire.

Swing the willow

Family plays cricket on the beach
Photograph taken 1930 © Historic England Archive, ref: wsa01_01_g0584

Although it is trite to say; Yorkshire folk really do enjoy their cricket. Some of this country’s greatest ever cricketers, such as Fred Truman, Adil Rashid and Katherine Brunt all hail from the county. This relaxed family fixture is taking place on Filey beach, north Yorkshire.

Sun, sea, sand and… Scarborough!

Packed beach at Scarborough
Photograph taken 1924 © Historic England Archive, ref: wsa01_01_05779

Yorkshire has a number of popular seaside resorts, but they don’t come any bigger than Scarborough. The famous Grand Hotel is clearly visible in the background as it perches atop the sea cliff.  The town has ably hosted generations of Yorkshire tourists and it remains a fabulous place to visit. However, a cup of tea now costs a little more than the ‘tuppence’ advertised in this image.

The ‘Yorkshireman’ tug

Packed harbour in Bridlington
Photograph taken 1929 © Historic England Archive, ref: wsa01_01_0522

The harbour in Bridlington is packed with local day-trippers. Pleasure cruiser the ‘Yorkshireman’ enters a busy dock area ready for another trip around Yorkshire’s lovely coastline.

Slow down

A man uses his horse to pull his a car out of a ditch
Photograph taken 1920 – 1950 © Historic England Archive, ref: wsa01_01_07431.tif

There is no need to rush. Take in the scenery. Enjoy the views and the rolling Dales. In Aysgarth, Wensleydale, the slower pace of life certainly had its advantages…

These images are taken from the Walter Scott Postcard Company collection, which comprises over 25,000 negatives. The company was established in Bradford, West Yorkshire in 1905, by local photographer Walter Scott. Although little is known about Walter Scott himself, about one third of the collection focuses on Yorkshire.

You can search thousands of these postcard images on our website.

Further Reading

4 responses to 10 Amazing Archive Images of 20th-century Yorkshire

  1. artculturetourism says:

    What incredible photos!! A wonderful archive blog indeed. Many thanks for sharing!

  2. Bob Carswell says:

    I was born in Harrogate in 1944. I left for Canada at the age of 4 months. It is nice to see these older photos of the place where I was born. Thanks.

  3. Trevor Colluney says:

    The great days of big cameras 2in glass slides and the epidiascope — thank you for presenting these images to me

  4. j .metcalfe says:

    the photo – slow down- is taken outside gayle on road to outershaw NOT aysgarth .

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