Sedbergh

Historic county of Yorkshire


Sedbergh is a town in the Westmorland and Furness district.

The small town was part of the West Riding of Yorkshire before local government changes in 1974.

Today the area is still part of the Yorkshire Dales National Park which has been extended beyond the historic Yorkshire boundary in recent years to encompass a larger area around Sedbergh.

Sedbergh is about 5 miles north-west of the village of Dent, around 16 miles by road west of Hawes and a similar drive north from of Ingleton. Sedbergh is 11 miles by road east of the Cumbrian town of Kendal.

St Andrew's Church, SedberghThe town and its several surrounding hamlets are full of characterful old premises. There are an astonishing 165 listed buildings and historic structures among them.

St Andrew's Parish Church in the town is a Grade I listed building and mostly dates from around 1500. Today the church is used for both Anglican and Roman Catholic services.

Cricket field, Sedbergh SchoolThe town is well-known for its independent Sedbergh School, which in 2025 reaches 500 years since it was founded. The boarding school caters for boys and girls between the ages of 3 and 19. The Old Grammar School building, near to the parish church, dates from 1716. It later became the school library.

Until the 1950s, boarders at the school would have been among passengers arriving at the town's railway station, but this closed in 1954 and while the line continued to be used for goods traffic and diverted trains, the tracks were finally removed in the late 1960s. The line might, in its early days in the late 1800s, have fulfilled ambitions of a direct mainline between Yorkshire and Scotland, but it remained a branch line as rival railway companies clashed as they met at Ingleton and the massive engineering of the Settle and Carlisle Railway was completed instead across wild moorland 9 miles to the east of Sedbergh.

Sedbergh's growth centred on farming and home-spun woollen textiles which ultimately led to the establishment of a number of small mills in the hamlets around the town during the Victorian era. Its rural remoteness and distance from the large industrial towns of the West Riding, however, meant there was nowhere near the scale of production that existed there. Today the textile heritage is remembered at Farfield Mill, about a mile to the east of the town. Here some of its industrial machinery is still in operation, artists and craft workers have studios, exhibitions are held and refreshments can be enjoyed in a tea room.

The area is an attraction to walkers exploring the remote surrounding fells or passing along the riverside on The Dales Way walking route. National Cycle Network Route 68, stretching from Derby to Berwick-upon-Tweed, also passes through the town.


 Town features


Sedbergh was formerly in the West Riding of Yorkshire.

Sedbergh is in the Yorkshire Dales National Park.
The town is on the River Rawthey.
Sedbergh is on The Dales Way, a signposted 80-mile walking route with Ilkley in West Yorkshire and Bowness-on-Windermere at its end points.
Sedbergh has pubs.
The town has shops.
Sedbergh has part-time Post Office services.
The town has a pharmacy.
Inn and restaurant dining can be found in Sedbergh.
A choice of cafes can be found in Sedbergh.
Takeaway food outlets in the town include fish and chips, chinese.
Places to stay in Sedbergh include guest house, inn accommodation.
Sedbergh has a community hall.
The town has a library.
There are public toilets in the town.
Sedbergh has schools.
Sedbergh has an old parish church.
Places of worship: Anglican, Catholic, Methodist, Quaker, other - Anglican and Catholic services take place at St Andrew's Parish Church

Travel

Bus travel

The town has buses to neighbouring towns and villages.

Road travel

Sedbergh can be reached via the A683 A684


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.


Dentdale

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

Sedbergh Parish Council
Provides some local services in the area.
Link to council website:  Sedbergh 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

Cumbria

Historic

- 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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