A West Yorkshire village has been crowned the most popular in the whole of Yorkshire – so we wanted to spend a few hours there to see what all the fuss is about.
Nineteen miles north west of Leeds, you’ll find Boston Spa – a small village which stands next to the flowing banks of River Wharfe.
With only around 4,000 residents, it’s three miles from Wetherby and 11 miles from Harrogate.
The beautiful scenery around it is enough to pull in visitors and the quaint older houses that can be spotted add a certain allure too.
There are busy attractions nearby such as Stockeld Park, known for being Yorkshire’s largest Christmas tree plantation as well as having an adventure park that hosts different events each season.
Hikers and tourists come from all around the area to explore the nearby countryside and the many walks the village offers.
It’s easy to why so many choose to live there, but what makes it so special?
Speaking to residents, many of them have lived in the village for decades, with the next generation growing up in Boston Spa too.
A resident said: “I’ve lived here 71 years and seen so many changes.
“We lived in a prefab that was built after the war until houses were built on Wickham Avenue. I will live in this beautiful village until the end of my days.”
While many comment on the arrival of new builds and seeing the change of the high street over the years, it clearly hasn’t been too much of a bad thing.
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Speaking to a local, one of the things they found loveliest was the close-knit community.
She said: “There are various groups of volunteers who dedicate so much of their time to create community amenities and events.
“There’s the local park at stables lane, Boston Spa festival, the arts and crafts festival, Boston in bloom, the green group, the riverside committee, the Halloween trail and Santa events, are just a few that I know of, and have had some involvement in.”
Another added: “There has been lots of change with all the new builds but a nice place, quiet and lots of nice walks.
“Easy access to A1, Leeds York and Harrogate. The high street has changed for the better over the years with a lot of amenities and quite vibrant with the new eateries, independent shops and there is a lot of community involvement.”
On Thursday night, we went to a few bars in Boston Spa to speak to some residents.
At The Crown, one local Andrew Thomas said: “I woudn’t to live anywhere else – it’s a lovely and lively little community which has everything it needs.
“If you want to, you can get yourself over to Leeds or Harrogate within 20 minutes, but we just love it here.
“We’re all friends, it’s good to see the same people every few days and build friendships with your neighbours – that’s something you don’t really get living in the city.”
Another man at the same venue said: “It’s good that Boston Spa gets recognised to be honest, but I think we like it because it’s a quiet little village.
“And while it is quiet and serene, we have so much to do here.”
Outside Stew & Oyster, another resident, Richard, said: “I have lived in four villages around Yorkshire in my time and I’m very much happy and settled here – I can’t see myself ever wanting to leave.
“I love having a community togetherness in the place you live, when you can feel that, there really is nothing like it. It’s what separates a house from being a home.”
What is your favourite village in Yorkshire? Let us know in the comments section or via Facebook in the comments below this post.
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