Birstwith shown within North Yorkshire
|OS grid reference|
|Shire county||North Yorkshire|
|Region||Yorkshire and the Humber|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|EU Parliament||Yorkshire and the Humber|
Birstwith is a village and civil parish in the Harrogate district of North Yorkshire, England. It is part of the Nidderdale, and is situated on the River Nidd. According to the 2001 census it had a population of 756.
There is a large Mill/Rusk[clarification needed] production plant in Birstwith run by the food manufacturing company Kerry Ingredients. There is still a mill race and sluice gates for the mill although it no longer turns a water wheel. Water came from the River Nidd which flows though the village. The mill race rejoins the river some way downstream. To provide a head of water for the mill there is a weir. About 1 mile (1.6 km) upstream is a packhorse bridge.
The village had a railway station on the line running between Harrogate and Pateley Bridge. This was closed by Beeching in the 1960s. The goods yard became Birstwith Grange, one of the early housing developments for commuters as car travel became more popular. The railway line continued up the Nidd Valley and was used in the construction of the Scar House and Angram Scar reservoirs.
The village used to have a village school (up to age 11) and a Reading Room, both built and donated by the owner of the local Swarcliffe Hall in about 1880. In the mid-1970s Swarcliffe Hall was sold and the contents auctioned, the building becoming a private prep school. There is a waste water treatment works at the end of Birstwith Grange. Today Birstwith is served by a Church of England Primary School and a private school, Belmont Grosvenor, occupies Swarcliffe Hall.
Birstwith is a reasonably well serviced village and today it is home to an award winning village store and post office. There is an excellent medical group who have a presence in the village close to where the butcher used to have his shop (this is now closed). There is an excellent cricket pitch, tennis courts and also a snooker room.
- "Birstwith News", Harrogate Advertiser, 27 May 2008. Retrieved 17 December 2011
Media related to Birstwith at Wikimedia Commons
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