Explore Bradford: Bath Road

Bath Road, Masons Lane and Mount Pleasant.

The present road to Bath, the A363, was laid out as part of the Bradford Turnpike Trust in the 1790s. Before that there were various minor routes that headed in the direction of Bath, some of which are just represented by footpaths today.

"Witch's Cottage", Masons LaneMason’s Lane begins at the junction of Market Street and Newtown and climbs up the hill to the plateau level. Facing down Market Street is a thatched “cottage ornée”, which was a must-have thing in the 18th century to decorate an estate, in this case that of The Priory. It is locally known as the “Witch’s House“. Behind are 1930s houses that were built after the estate was sold off.

 

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Mason’s Lane cloth factory has some typical late 18th/early 19th century factory windows, now blocked, on the street side. The factory burnt down in the 1860s and the rebuilt building became an Undenominational School, which closed in the 1920s. It then became three private houses and from 1978 a Buddhist centre.

The Roundhouse old windmillThe Roundhouse was built in the first decade of the 19th century as a windmill by Thomas Smart, a corn factor and grocer, probably because all water-powered mills had been given over to more profitable woollen cloth production. It was not successful and was soon converted into a house. It is now a guest house with round rooms and wide views.

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Christ ChurchChrist Church was built as the church of a new parish to serve the northern fringe of the town. It was designed by the Bath architect George Manners in 1841 in a gothic style, with a spire that would be more at home in Northamptonshire or Lincolnshire. The body of the church was in the Georgian tradition of a hall for preaching, so the chancel had to be extended by Sir George Gilbert Scott in 1878 to cater for High Victorian taste.

> Christ Church graveyard

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The Castle InnThe Castle Inn must originally have been a square Georgian house of ashlar under a pyramidal slate-covered roof; it has a stone porch on tuscan-style columns on the garden front. It was recorded as a pub from 1848 and a single-storey pub front was added on the street side.

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Christ Church SchoolChrist Church School, Mount Pleasant was founded as a Church of England (National) primary school in 1847, enlarged by the addition of an infants school in 1878 at the expense of Miss Isabella Poynder and a schoolmaster’s house. The junior and infant schools were replaced by a new school that was built on a field behind and they are now the Mount Pleasant Social Club.

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Clifton House (New Inn), Bath RoadThe former New Inn, next to the church in Bath Road was recorded in 1826, but seems to have become a private house after 1865. The present street façade is in a late 19th century neo-baroque style. It is now called Clifton House.

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Berryfield House (Bradford Hospital)Berryfield House, reached by Christchurch Road from Bath Road, is a Georgian mansion that served as Bradford’s maternity hospital from 1939 and in 1979 as a district hospital. The house was built in the 1840s on the site of an earlier one. It was the home of Brigadier-General Llewellen-Palmer MP.

The house has been divided and its grounds have been redeveloped, partly as the 63-room Wiltshire Heights Care Home, which was opened by broadcaster Angela Rippon on 4th July 2014.

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Lower Bearfield Farm, Bath RoadThe house on the corner of Ashley Road was Lower Bearfield Farm. When the farm ceased to exist part of the house became Bath Road sub-post office which closed in the 1990s after an armed robbery. Some buildings of the former farmyard still stand further up the road, in use as garages.

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Bath Road pumping stationJust beyond Lower Bearfield Farm, set back from the road, is a small building that was once the Bath Road pumping station which was built by the Urban District Council in 1950 to provide mains water for the new housing in the area.

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Frankleigh HouseAt the top of a low hill near the junction with the road from Woolley is Frankleigh House. This was basically a 17th century building, but greatly modified and extended by the architect Henry Clutton in 1848 for the Bailward family. In the 20th century it was a series of private schools: Kingwell Court School, the Old Ride School (1959-1990), a special school related to one at Warleigh Manor and part was a Steiner School. It became fairly derelict until 1995 when it was divided into several homes by a co-housing group.

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Maplecroft

Potticks House

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