Castleford

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Coordinates: 53°42′50″N 1°21′22″W / 53.714°N 1.356°W / 53.714; -1.356

Castleford is one of the five towns within the metropolitan borough of the City of Wakefield, in West Yorkshire, England. It is near to Pontefract, and has a population of 37,525 according to the 2001 Census, but has seen a rise in recent years and is now around 40,000. To the north the River Calder joins the River Aire and the Aire and Calder Navigation canal. To the west and south is the M62 motorway.

Historically a part of the West Riding of Yorkshire, Castleford and its surroundings have provided archaeological evidence of Roman activity.

Contents

History

Castleford is built upon the site of a Roman army settlement that was named Lagentium or Legioleum. Funeral urns dating from the time of the Romans have been found there. The modern name of the town is derived from the fort, Castle (referring to the fort) and Ford (a low crossing point through a river).

Queens Park in Castleford, as viewed from Google earth, shows two circles on the top playing field area, which could be the remnants of round houses used by early Anglo Saxons. Standing over 250 feet above sea level, it is thought that the area which is Queens Park today would have offered a defensive view of the settlement.

Oliver Cromwell (1597–1659), had a local encampment in nearby Ferrybridge. It is said locally that his cannon faced towards Pontefract Castle from the nearby Redhill Retail Park.

From 1630 until his deprivation during the Interregnum, the Rector of Ackworth was the Reverend Thomas Bradley, DD (Oxon), who attended King Charles the I of England at his execution.

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