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A city in West Yorkshire with a population or around 80,000, Wakefield was a site of battle during the Wars of the Roses and a Royalist stronghold during the English Civil War.
Culture in Wakefield
Wakefield Cathedral is the city's major landmark. With the tallest spire in the whole of Yorkshire, it's a magnificent, awe-inspiring building which brings the tourists flocking. Equally, the Grade II listed Neoclassical Crown Court, Wakefield Town Hall and the Queen Anne Style County Hall in the Civic Quarter on Wood Street are very interesting pieces of architecture.
The Hepworth Wakefield, a new and innovative art gallery celebrating the work of major contemporary artists, is a very popular attraction, as is Wakefield Museum on Burton St. Here, the history of the city is documented from prehistoric times to the present day.
Things to do in Wakefield
Sandal Castle, a ruined medieval castle in Sandal Magna (a suburb of Wakefield), makes for a fascinating day of exploring, while kids will be kept entertained for hours at Pugneys Country Park and Nature Reserve. The historic Theatre Royal, Wakefield has a wide range of youth musicals, tribute acts, stand up comedians and off West End shows to keep audiences amused.
Clarence Park Festival, Yorkshire's longest-running free music festival, is held in July every year at the bandstand in Wakefield's Clarence Park – a wonderful weekend for the whole family to enjoy! There is plenty going on from a culinary perspective in Wakefield, too, in particular Delphi Cafe & Restaurant, Olive and Meze and Hokkaido.
Student Life in Wakefield
It's not a hugely student-heavy area, other than Wakefield College. However, the University of Leeds (with a massive student population of over 30,000), the University of Bradford and the University of Huddersfield (University of the Year in 2013) are all fairly nearby. It's certainly not inconceivable that students studying at these establishments would seek to live in Wakefield, especially given the excellent train connections between these places.
Buying in Wakefield
An ideal location for commuters (Leeds is an 11 minute train ride away; Bradford a 35 minute car journey). Families will appreciate the good local schools and the plentiful green space nearby, young professionals will appreciate the excellent transport links, the good bars and restaurants, and the quieter, less hectic pace of life. In other words, the buyers' market here will be very competitive.
Leeds has a thriving job market and Bradford is slowly but surely seeing the benefits of regeneration, so more people are likely to be driven to these two large Northern cities over the next few years. Wakefield, much smaller but with plenty going for it, looks set to benefit from those who want to live in a city that isn't 100mph 24 hours a day.
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