Main Street (Briggate)

On this page we travel up Briggate from the bottom near Church Lane to the top known as Town End.

Briggate, today known as Main Street, lies at the heart of the town dividing West Garforth from Church Garforth. Once mainly residential with a few small shops it has changed over time into a busy shopping street and is the centre of the modern community.

Architecturally Main Street is now very mixed with many old buildings surviving amongst less appealing 1960s brutalist concrete and more recent redevelopment. Many old details are obscured by gaudy modern shop fronts so as always it is for interested persons to try and see through to the history beyond.

Old Shops

We begin here with a collection of old shops which were all situated on Briggate over the years. I love old shop photos from the days when people took a lot of pride in their businesses and the proprietors can often been seen posing outside.

date
Unknown
copyright
Unknown
resolution
782x497px · 238.4K ·

George Mosby’s Drapery Establishment [2].

date
Unknown
copyright
Unknown
resolution
389x558px · 116.5K ·

Fox’s cycle shop which stood on the East side of Main Street near to Chapel Close [3].

date
Unknown
copyright
Unknown
resolution
786x484px · 201.5K ·

The fish and chip shop which stood on the East side of Main Street near to Chapel Close [3].

date
Unknown
copyright
Unknown
resolution
791x543px · 245.6K ·

Mallison’s shop which was also known as ‘Reliance Stores’ [3].

date
Unknown
copyright
Unknown
resolution
489x589px · 163.0K ·

Burras Peake men’s wear shop. Pictured is Harold Bramley with manager Jack Haswell [3].

Burras Peake were a Leeds based menswear company with a factory on Gelderd Road and shops in various locations such as Garforth, Otley and Pontefract as well as the City centre.

date
Unknown
copyright
Unknown
resolution
577x753px · 265.6K

‘Daddy Breckon’s’ sweet shop, located in the unit that was later Fenwick’s Newsagents for many years [3].

date
1950s
copyright
Unknown
resolution
770x464px · 211.0K ·

Mr. Starkey’s cobbler’s shop in Main Street during the 1950s. This building was demolished and Mr. Starkey moved his business to the end of Barley Hill Road [3].

I can remember the shop that Mr. Starkey had on Barley Hill Road from when I was small as my Mum used to take her shoes in there to be mended. Mr. Starkey was an older man by that point and I remember he had a very slow and monotone way of speaking! He must have been in his business for an awfully long time as I don’t think that shop closed until c.1995.

date
c.1904
copyright
Unknown
resolution
2000x1248px · 1.2M
postcard
Unknown NN05

This Liberal Club was in a similar location to the more modern Liberal Club which was transformed into The Briggate Wetherspoons around 2018.

This club looks to have been inside what would have once been a house and the location is also marked on some of the old OS maps.

Lower Briggate - General Stores and Post Office

TB Smith’s General Store on the left and the Post Office (hidden by an awning)

date
c.1909
copyright
Phototype Co.
resolution
2000x1244px · 1.3M ·
postcard
Phototype 1878
Garforth Briggate
date
copyright
resolution
… · …
 
 
awaiting comparison photo

The old Post Office

date
c.1925
copyright
Hoult
resolution
2000x1231px · 1.1M
postcard
Hoult NN01
Garforth Main Street
date
copyright
resolution
… · …
 
 
awaiting comparison photo
date
Unknown
copyright
Unknown
resolution
500x327px · 61.8K ·

A front view of the old Post Office.

The old Council Offices which stood where T.B. Smith’s General Store once stood [3].

The cage on the roof of the building held the air raid siren from the war which I can remember being there in the 80s when I was small.

date
1990s or early 21st century
copyright
Unknown
resolution
782x487px · 221.2K
Garforth Main Street (Briggate)
date
5th August 2007
copyright
Ian Atkinson
resolution
2000x1208px · 1.4M
Garforth Main Street (Briggate)

Lower Briggate - Holly House and Alfred Smith Grocers

date
c.1907
copyright
Bramley
resolution
2000x1246px · 1.7M ·
postcard
Bramley B7
Garforth Briggate
date
13th April 2020
copyright
Ian Atkinson
resolution
2000x1237px · 1.4M
 
 
Garforth Briggate
date
c.1907
copyright
Bramley
resolution
2000x1307px · 2.1M
postcard
Bramley B7 Tinted
date
c.1905
copyright
Parkinson & Roy
resolution
2000x1287px · 1.6M
postcard
Parkinson & Roy NN03

Looking up Briggate with Holly House in the centre left of the frame along with the end of Barley Hill Road.

The pale building on the far side of Barley Hill road was Preston’s tailors shop. Later on this unit was Knowles’ greengrocers and Everett’s the butcher’s [3]. This unit is now La Bella Vita Italian restaurant.

date
Unknown
copyright
Lilywhite
resolution
2048x1257px · 705.3K
postcard
Lilywhite GFH16
date
Unknown
copyright
Richards
resolution
2000x1247px · 1.1M
postcard
Richards 02
date
c.1967
copyright
The Francis Frith Collection
resolution
2000x1270px · 2.7M ·
postcard
Frith GFH40
Garforth Main Street
date
13th April 2020
copyright
Ian Atkinson
resolution
2000x1409px · 1.7M
 
 
Garforth Main Street

Opposite the end of Barley Hill Road looking down towards Lidgett Lane.

In the centre right of the frame is Alfred Smith’s grocery shop and the attached living quarters known as Holly House (‘China Town’ in the contemporary image). Holly House later became the Leeds and Holbeck Building Society.

Alfred Smith’s shop was later owned by a Mrs Holliday and then the Shaws [3].

date
Unknown
copyright
Parkinson & Roy
resolution
781x497px · 292.7K ·
postcard
Parkinson & Roy NN14
Garforth Briggate
date
25th August 2007
copyright
Ian Atkinson
resolution
2000x1241px · 1.3M
 
 
Garforth Briggate
date
c.1900–1910
copyright
Unknown
resolution
1651x1023px · 829.9K ·

Holly House with the edge of Barley Hill Road just visible in the centre right of the frame. The house in the left of the frame no longer exists and newer shops have been re-built in its place.

The little girl in the picture is Flo ‘Flo Toes’ James who in later life was a teacher at the Parochial School and also starred in local theatre [3].

Lower Briggate - Sweet Shop Parade

date
Unknown
copyright
Parkinson & Roy
resolution
2000x1264px · 1.3M ·
postcard
Parkinson & Roy 559
Garforth Briggate
date
13th April 2020
copyright
Ian Atkinson
resolution
2000x1261px · 1.4M
 
 
Garforth Briggate

Looking towards Lidgett Lane, this image shows Holly House and the end of Barley Hill Road in the centre of the frame.

In the right of the frame is a parade of shops comprising of H. Appleyard, P. Breckon’s sweet shop and and Louis Dimler’s pork butcher’s [3].

date
c.1909
copyright
Phototype Co.
resolution
1297x811px · 448.4K ·
postcard
Phototype 1873
Garforth Briggate
date
13th April 2020
copyright
Ian Atkinson
resolution
2000x1253px · 1.4M
 
 
Garforth Briggate

Briggate Centre

date
c.1967
copyright
The Francis Frith Collection
resolution
2000x1306px · 2.4M ·
postcard
Frith GFH44
Garforth Main Street
date
19th April 2019
copyright
Ian Atkinson
resolution
2000x1314px · 1.6M
 
 
Garforth Main Street
date
c.1967
copyright
The Francis Frith Collection
resolution
2000x1266px · 2.5M ·
postcard
Frith GFH46
Garforth Main Street
date
19th April 2019
copyright
Ian Atkinson
resolution
2000x1310px · 1.5M
 
 
Garforth Main Street

The middle of Main Street with the top of Coupland Road in the right of the frame.

It is possible that this particular photograph is of a procession carrying the cross from St. Joseph’s to the newly built St. Benedict’s in Aberford Road [3].

date
Possibly 1960s
copyright
Unknown
resolution
782x476px · 247.6K
Garforth Main Street (Briggate)
date
27th August 2007
copyright
Ian Atkinson
resolution
2000x1228px · 1.2M
Garforth Main Street (Briggate)
date
Unknown
copyright
Unknown
resolution
787x464px · 204.4K ·
Garforth Main Street (Briggate)
date
27th August 2007
copyright
Ian Atkinson
resolution
2000x1295px · 1.5M
Garforth Main Street (Briggate)

Eagle House can be seen in the right of the frame in this image of Armistice Day celebrations.

date
1918
copyright
Unknown
resolution
1490x919px · 700.1K ·
Garforth Main Street (Briggate)
date
27th August 2007
copyright
Ian Atkinson
resolution
2000x1252px · 1.5M
Garforth Main Street (Briggate)

The right hand side of Main Steet with the Welfare Hall in the centre left of the frame.

The houses shown, ‘Colliery Row’ and ‘Long Curtain Row’, were replaced by a parade of shops.

It was here that Jack Charlton, the footballer once ran his men’s wear business [3].

date
Unknown
copyright
Unknown
resolution
783x498px · 237.5K ·
Garforth Main Street (Briggate)
date
27th August 2007
copyright
Ian Atkinson
resolution
2000x1257px · 1.5M
Garforth Main Street (Briggate)
date
c.1908
copyright
Bramley
resolution
2000x1228px · 1.3M ·
postcard
Bramley B8

Looking towards Town End from the middle of Main Street. The houses on the right were demolished in the 1950s, but the large house beyond them, Eagle House, still stands today at the end of Chapel Lane [2].

date
c.1908
copyright
Bramley
resolution
2000x1296px · 1.9M
postcard
Bramley B8 Tinted
date
c.1912
copyright
Laycocks
resolution
2000x1250px · 1.3M
postcard
Laycocks 494
date
Unknown
copyright
Parkinson & Roy
resolution
2000x1257px · 1.4M ·
postcard
Parkinson & Roy NN09
date
unknown
copyright
Bramley
resolution
2000x1209px · 1.0M
postcard
Bramley NN25
date
c.1935
copyright
Milton
resolution
2000x1267px · 1.1M
postcard
Milton NN02
date
c.1942
copyright
Richards
resolution
2000x1239px · 1.1M
postcard
Richards 7

Coupland Road and Marshall’s

The end of Providence Cottages can be seen on the left. There is then a gap where Bellevue Cottages would later be built and the next house along is Newport House opposite the Salvation Army Citadel on the right.

The closest row of houses on the right were knocked down to make the entrace to Halliday Road.

date
c.1907
copyright
Parkinson & Roy
resolution
2000x1270px · 1.4M ·
postcard
Parkinson & Roy 560
Garforth Coupland Road
date
May 2016
copyright
Google
resolution
2000x1267px · 655.2K - reshoot
 
 
Garforth Coupland Road
date
Unknown
copyright
Laycocks
resolution
2000x1211px · 1.0M
postcard
Laycocks 1051

This image is taken slightly further forward than Parkinson and Roy 560 and we can now see Bellevue Cottages have been built on the left.

date
c.1937
copyright
Milton
resolution
2000x1286px · 1.2M ·
postcard
Milton NN05

This is the furthest forward of the three Coupland Road images with the Salvation Army Citdael now more clearly visible on the right and Newport House on the left.

date
Unknown
copyright
Unknown
resolution
387x566px · 105.7K

Marshall’s Brickworks used to be situated where Halliday Court now stands, off Coupland Road.

Bricks from this works were used to build things all over Garforth, including Salem Chapel, Station Bridge and the Welfare Hall.

The clay that the bricks were made from came from a quarry in Barley Hill Road, known locally as ‘t’clay ’ole’, which was located on the land now covered by the car park [2].

This image shows the chimney stack for the brickworks being demolished.

Briggate Upper

A view of the top part of Main Street which in the late 19th century was known as ‘Catley Hill’ after a grocer who had a shop there [3].

date
c.1906
copyright
Bramley
resolution
2000x1222px · 1.0M ·
postcard
Bramley B9
Garforth Briggate
date
13th April 2020
copyright
Ian Atkinson
resolution
2000x1362px · 1.4M
 
 
Garforth Briggate
date
Unknown
copyright
Laycocks
resolution
500x334px · 51.2K ·
postcard
Laycocks 487
date
1980s/1990s
copyright
Unknown
resolution
790x533px · 233.6K
Garforth Main Street (Briggate)
date
13th April 2020
copyright
Ian Atkinson
resolution
2000x1351px · 1.5M
Garforth Main Street (Briggate)
date
1960s
copyright
Unknown
resolution
790x499px · 229.0K

The top of Main Street from the 1960s showing a procession for the Festival Queen [3].

This snowy photo is looking back down Main Street and was taken by Mr. Holroyd the chemist [3].

date
Unknown
copyright
Unknown
resolution
783x498px · 243.8K ·
Garforth Main Street (Briggate)
date
27th August 2007
copyright
Ian Atkinson
resolution
2000x1235px · 1.4M
Garforth Main Street (Briggate)

A view down Main St. from Town End, notice the ghost sign still visible today for 'Sugar Coated Pills Made by Parkinson the Pill People'

date
Unknown
copyright
Unknown
resolution
500x285px · 46.0K ·
Garforth Main Street (Briggate)
date
30th March 2019
copyright
Ian Atkinson
resolution
2000x1231px · 1.2M
Garforth Main Street (Briggate)

The police house stood at the top of Main Street where Pease’s car park is now. The station moved to the current premises in Lidgett Lane in the 1970s [3].

The building with the gable in the roof was the Leeds Industrial Co-operative Society which can still be seen today within the gable itself

date
Unknown
copyright
Phototype Co.
resolution
2632x1612px · 1.0M ·
postcard
Phototype 1886
Garforth Police Station
date
20th April 2019
copyright
Ian Atkinson
resolution
2000x1290px · 1.1M
 
 
Garforth Police Station