Historic county of Yorkshire

Dent is a village in the Westmorland and Furness district.

The village is the heart of Dentdale, an area which, before 1974, was in the West Riding of Yorkshire. Today the area is still part of the Yorkshire Dales National Park.

Dent is about 5 miles south-east of Sedburgh, around 14 miles by road west of Hawes and an 11-mile drive north of Ingleton.

The village, with its winding cobbled main street and whitewashed cottages, is full of historic character.

Dent traces its history back to the Norse settlers who set up isolated farms in Dentdale around 1,000 years ago and the valley is still characterised by its farms spread along the valley.

St Andrew's Church in the village is a Grade I listed church which originates in the 12th century. Although rebuilt in the 15th century with further restorations in the late 16th, 18th and 19th centuries, some features of the original building still survive.

The Dentdale Methodist Church in the village is also a listed building. It was originally built as a Society of Friends meeting house in 1701 but was bought from the Quakers in 1834 by Wesleyan Methodists who had been meeting in a barn. It has continued in use as a Methodist church since that time.

More about the history of the area can be found at the Dent Village Museum & Heritage Centre (see below).

 Village features

Dent was formerly in the West Riding of Yorkshire.

Dent is in the Yorkshire Dales National Park.
The village is on the River Dee.
Dent is on The Dales Way, a signposted 80-mile walking route with Ilkley in West Yorkshire and Bowness-on-Windermere at its end points.
Dent has pubs - The Sun Inn, The George amp Dragon.
Dent has a shop.
The village has a Post Office.
The village has cafes and tea-rooms.
The village has a library with limited opening times. It is run by volunteers at Dent Reading Room.
Dent has a museum - Dent Village Museum and Heritage Centre.
Places to stay in Dent include guest house, inn, holiday home, caravan, camping accommodation.
Dent has a village hall - Dent Memorial Hall
There are public toilets in the village.
Dent has a school.
Dent has an old parish church.
Places of worship: Anglican, Methodist.


Bus travel

The village has an infrequent bus service.

Dent station

Dent stationDent station on the Settle to Carlisle line is the highest mainline station in England at 1,150ft above sea level. It is also the most remote station from the village it serves. The station is a road distance of 4½ miles to the west of Dent village and a steep climb above Dentdale and the small village of Cowgill. Settle is 17 miles away, Skipton 26 miles and Leeds 47 miles.
Station managed by: NORTHERN.   Operator/s: NORTHERN.

NATIONAL RAIL - Departure and station info
External link to National Rail live departure board for services at this station (opens in new tab).

Road travel

Dent is reached on minor roads

Places to visit

Dent Village Museum and Heritage Centre

Dent Village Museum & Heritage Centre

The small museum, in a building which was once a filling station for the village, explores the lives of people who have lived and worked in Dentdale over the centuries through a rich variety of exhibits. Marble quarrying, agriculture and the cottage industry of knitting are among the themes covered along with a more curious story of 'The Dent Vampire'. The museum is open daily.


Yorkshire Dales National Park

The part of South Lakeland district which is historically in Yorkshire remains within the Yorkshire Dales National Park. This area has some of the remotest parts of the park including the Rawthey Valley, Garsdale and Dentdale. England's highest cascade waterfall above ground, Cautley Spout, is near to the head of the Rawthey Valley. Find out more about the park on our Yorkshire Dales National Park page.

Emergency services

Cumbria Constabulary  Cumbria Constabulary website.

Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service  Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service website.

North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust  North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust website.

Local government

Civil parish council

Dent with Cowgill Parish Council
Provides some local services in the area.
Link to council website:  Dent with Cowgill Parish Council

District authority Abolished

South Lakeland District Council

South Lakeland District Council, the district authority since 1974, is scrapped under Government changes from April 1, 2023 as two unitary authorities are formed — Westmorland & Furness Council and Cumberland Council.

Link to  South Lakeland District Council website.

Unitary authority New

Westmorland & Furness Council

This Unitary Authority council is established on April 1, 2023 as the Government abolishes local authorities formed in 1974 — the Cumbria County Council and the shire districts of Cumbria, including South Lakeland District Council into which this area fell. The area around Sedburgh, Dent and Garsdale was a part of the West Riding of Yorkshire county administration before 1974.

While South Lakeland already covered a large area of the southern part of the Lake District National Park, a western portion of the Yorkshire Dales National Park, areas between the two parks and also along the southern Cumbrian coast facing Morecambe Bay, the new unitary authority also includes the area of two other district councils, Barrow to the west and Eden to the north-east.

The new authority is the south-eastern half of a split in two of the 1974 county of Cumbria and stretches from Barrow-in-Furness to Penrith.

Westmorland was one of Britain's historic counties, not as old as Yorkshire but with origins in the 13th century. The new district, while including the name, does not however match the historic county boundaries.

The Furness of the name reflects the parts of pre-1974 Lancashire in the new authority. Westmorland & Furness also includes this part of Yorkshire moved in 1974 and also includes a part of historic Cumberland, around Penrith, which is currently the Eden district. The other unitary authority forming the north-west half of the Cumbria split will be known as Cumberland but excludes that area and also does not match the boundaries of the historic county of Cumberland.

The new Westmorland & Furness authority will retain offices in Barrow, Penrith and its principal base of Kendal, which was the centre of the South Lakeland district.

The council is made up of 65 councillors representing 33 wards. These were elected initially as a shadow authority in 2022.

While the new council is deemed a unitary authority there remains also widespread coverage of Parish and Town Councils and Parish Meetings across the district.

Link to  Westmorland & Furness Council website.

Political composition as at March 2023:

361411211 Vacancy
65 members

County authority Abolished

Cumbria County Council
Cumbria County Council, the county authority since 1974, is scrapped under Government changes from April 1, 2023 as two unitary authorities are formed — Westmorland & Furness Council and Cumberland Council.
 Cumbria County Council website.

Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner

Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Cumbria
Oversees policing and fire services across the former county of Cumbria.
Elected PF&CC: David Allen Labour & Cooperative
 Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Cumbria website

Fire authority Abolished

Cumbria County Council was the fire authority. The fire service will continue to serve all Cumbria after abolision of Cumbria County Council, however its governance changes. Public consultation favoured by 54% to 46% there being governance by a combined authority of the two new unitary authorities in Cumbria rather than that power being an additional duty of the Police and Crime Commissioner. However, the Cumbria Fire & Rescue Service has announced that the Police and Crime Commissioner has officially become Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner from April 1.

Pre-election parliamentary constituency

Westmorland and Lonsdale
Elected MP: Tim Farron Liberal Democrat

New parliamentary constituency

Morecambe and Lunesdale
This is a new parliamentary constituency for the next General Election.

National government region

North West England

Ceremonial county



- 1974 : The area around Sedburgh and Dent was within the West Riding of Yorkshire.
1974 - 2023 : The area was in the South Lakeland shire district of the county of Cumbria.

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