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Coordinates: 53°46′05″N 1°25′12″W / 53.7680°N 1.4201°W / 53.7680; -1.4201

Swillington is located in West Yorkshire
 Swillington shown within West Yorkshire
Population 3,530 (2001 census)
OS grid reference SE385305
Civil parish Swillington
Metropolitan borough City of Leeds
Metropolitan county West Yorkshire
Region Yorkshire and the Humber
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town LEEDS
Postcode district LS26
Dialling code 0113
Police West Yorkshire
Fire West Yorkshire
Ambulance Yorkshire
EU Parliament Yorkshire and the Humber
UK Parliament Elmet
List of places

Swillington is a small village and civil parish near Leeds, West Yorkshire, England, in the City of Leeds metropolitan borough. It is located east of the River Aire and surrounded by streams including Fleakingley Beck. In 2001, Swillington had a population of about 3,530.[1]

Swillington was a coal mining village until the closure of Primrose Hill pit. Where that once stood is now a housing estate with streets named after the colliery.

The Old Church School in Swillington
St.Mary's Church in Swillington

There are several walks which can be taken in the area including the Leeds Country Way which passes through the village.


The name Swillington is first attested in the Domesday Survey in the forms Suillictun, Suilligtune and Suillintun. Its etymology is uncertain, but probably derives from Old English swīn "pig" + either lēah "open ground" or hyll "hill" + ing, a suffix which in this case marks the word as a place-name + tūn "estate, farm".[2] The name was recorded as Svilentone in 1147. Historically Swillington's full title was Swillington-in-Elmet, which refers to the association of the village with the early medieval polity of Elmet. However, as with many other places the "-in-Elmet" has been lost in modern times with only a few exceptions such as Barwick-in-Elmet and Sherburn-in-Elmet surviving. Nowadays Elmet only exists as a political constituency.[citation needed]

Many local people, mainly of the younger generations, have taken to abbreviating Swillington to "Swilly".


Swillington does not have a railway station unlike the nearby town of Garforth. There are various bus services in operation.

The major roads through the village are Wakefield Road (the A642), Swillington Lane and Astley Lane.


The local school, Swillington Primary School has around 270 pupils. Swillington does not have its own secondary school so pupils normally go to Garforth Academy.

YEDL, the local electricity distribution company, has its overhead line school at Swillington where it trains its apprentice linesmen and qualified linesmen in the correct techniques required to work on the electricity network throughout its license area.


The village has four local football teams, a bowls team, several snooker teams and a rugby league team. They used recreational grounds surviving from the mining days. There is also a shooting and country sports supply business in town, and several horseriding stables.

Food and drink[edit]

Leventhorpe Vineyard is near the village, and has been recommended by Rick Stein.[3] It was until recently the most northerly commercial vineyard in Britain. (There is now one further north, near Malton.) It was established in 1986 by George Bowden.[4]

There is also a Soil Association-certified organic farm[5] on the former Lowther estate which has been frequented by celebrity chefs and has produce that was voted the 'Best Meat In Yorkshire' in 2007.[6]

HS2 Rail link[edit]

Under proposals released on 28 January 2013, Phase 2 of the High Speed 2 rail link would be built close to the western side of the town, running adjacent to the M1 motorway. The HS2 track would cross the existing railway line close to Thorpe Park to the north of the town, and also cross Selby road via embankment and bridge. Further south a viaduct would be placed across Wakefield Road. This line would carry the spur away from Leeds, towards the East Coast Mainline at Church Fenton.


Nearby villages and towns include Austhorpe, Garforth, Kippax, Castleford, Great Preston, Little Preston, Allerton Bywater, Oulton, Woodlesford, Rothwell, Colton, Swillington common and Methley.

Notable people[edit]


  1. ^ Office for National Statistics: Census 2001 : Parish Headcounts: Leeds Retrieved 2009-09-09
  2. ^ Victor Watts (ed.), The Cambridge Dictionary of English Place-Names Based on the Collections of the English Place-Name Society (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004), s.v. SWILLINGTON.
  3. ^ Our trends in the north - Telegraph
  4. ^ BBC Inside Out - Weird Weather
  5. ^ Soil Association
  6. ^ Yorkshire Post Winners
  7. ^ Adam Mosley, 'Chamber, John (1546–1604), in Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (Oxford University Press, 2004)

External links[edit]