10th May 2019
Robin Hood has its roots back to Saxon times, when the area was predominantly forest and woodland. The area has reputed links to the folk-hero of Sherwood Forest, Robin of Loxley, or ‘Robin Hood’. Some of the legends have him operating as an outlaw in the ‘Outwoods’, which may reference Outwood, near Wakefield. He was supposedly in a place referred to as ‘Stan Lea’ (potentially the village of Stanley near Wakefield) and around Barnsdale Forest, which is close to Wakefield itself.
The area was one of the most productive coal mining districts of Yorkshire in the late 1800’s and into the twentieth century, which served the local residents well in terms of employment and social cohesion. Sadly, the mines were closed in the 1960’s, although this gave rise to significant house building in the area. This is now a popular commuter area for the cities of Leeds and Wakefield.