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Ilkley >  Google™ Map Apr 2015  West Yorkshire Coat of Arms

ylica (personal name) + lēah Old English (woodland) clearing. Population - 14,809.

England-West Yorkshire Flag UK > England > West Yorkshire

Apr 2015

West Yorkshire Coat of Arms

It's likely you'll like Ilkley. We like Ilkley. Very likeable is Ilkley and just a little bit fancy with its Michelin™-starred restaurant.

Ilkley Car Park

Ample parking is provided next the modern Moors Shopping Centre, itself providing inspiration for an idea that will be shattered soon enough, shame.

  The Box Tree Restaurant (Church Street)

The Michelin™ star seems to have gone and with it the former formality. Bouches are still being amused, however, in this long-established restaurant where, unlike their crab, you no longer need to be well dressed.

The Moors Centre is possibly the only slight visual blight in this old spa town but it's been done sympathetically enough, just about, and houses a Wetherspoon™s.

  The Lister Arms (South Hawksworth Street) wetherspoon

The Spoons have a tradition of naming their pubs based on the history of the town or the old building they invariably inhabit. The inevitable offering in a town of this size is called the Lister Arms because, well, there used to be a pub in Ilkley called the Lister Arms.

There are no awards for their nearly-out-of-date ale and none for the Director of Contrived Waterhole Naming, neither. They were clearly on holiday or couldn't be bothered to get out of bed that day and whoever deputised on that decision is getting an immediate (0/5).

It's not even the original building and isn't Bar T'At much, much better? At the time, this was thought to have been genuinely inspired and Bob was walking around like he was Don Draper. It soon became clear, however, that some wag got there first and there's one here already on Cunliffe Road, no doubt down to Peggy who never really got the credit.

Yes, Mad Men has just been binged on, again.

There's more indoor shopping just behind in the Victorian Arcade, dating from the turn of the 20th century but with a relatively recent makeover.

Ilkley - The Victorian Arcade

Now, it's not so much ties and top hats, more Thai and tapas, eh?

There's a Bettys in Ilkley but better to nab an outdoor table at the Little Teahouse to eavesdrop and understand why there's a Betty™s in Ilkley.

Yes, Ilkley is just a little bit that kind of place.

It's such a that kind of place, independent retailers dominate the shopping along Brook Street and The Grove.

Ilkley - Brook Street
Ilkley - The Grove

In one such outdoors store, having decided to take a walk out, a map was needed. A map and some advice, really...

Advice as to whether, if venturing up onto the local moorland, without a suitable form of headwear, advice on, if one were actually to do so, would this cause a big song and dance?

Apparently so.

This was the several'th visit to the town but the first time down to the River Wharfe.

Ilkley - River Wharfe

There's a park and a big old play area behind you, not shown, and this place jumps in the summer, they say.

The Dales Way is an 80-mile, long-distance footpath to Cumbria's Bowness-on-Windermere and actually starts right here. It doesn't look too troublesome with the first half just about following the flat course of the Wharfe.

That's for another day, however, the only thing troubling today was what's for tea?

Thai or tapas?