Saltaire Village / UNESCO world heritage
If you expect a rural village then you are misled because Saltaire Village is an industrial housing estate with communal facilities and the old “Salt`s Mill” from the time of the “Industrial Revolution” which was built between 1851 and 1872 by the industrialist Titus Salt.
The place is not an open-air museum but still a lived in estate. The factory buildings were empty in the early 80s, abandoned and derelict but fortunately not demolished. The Salt Mill has become a widely admired example of how to reuse a historic industrial site in sympathetic and creative ways without losing its architectural integrity.
Large sections of the mill are leased for commercial use. Other parts of the building are used for cultural and artistic activities. (electronic manufacturer, galleries, shops, Shipley College, Opera North, Royal National Theatre).
Beside the shops the David Hockney Art Gallery I would highly recommend to visit. So beside getting a good idea of how such an industrial community was organized and geographically positioned (river; canal, railway line) you also can admire Hockney`s art and designs. (see also the tip about the Leeds – Liverpool Canal)
You can easily spend more than an hour at this place.
The houses and facilities built by Salt for his workers offered a great improvement on those in nearby Bradford at the time. Yet one thing was missing – as a nonconformist with sympathies for the temperance movement (and a keen sense of his own business interests) Salt made sure that there was no public house or saloon built in the village.
Obviously times have changed, “Don`t tell Titus” is a bar and restaurant in the village centre that offers drinks, snacks but also dinners. But don’t tell Titus…
Written and contributed by klb