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Otley

Trip Planner Europe  /  UK  /  England  /  Yorkshire  /  West Yorkshire  /  Otley
(3.9/5 based on 200+ reviews for top 10 attractions)
Things to do: parks, shopping, nightlife
Otley is a market town and civil parish in the City of Leeds metropolitan borough, West Yorkshire, England, by the River Wharfe. Historically a part of the West Riding of Yorkshire, the town has a total resident population of 14,124, reducing to 13,668 at the 2011 Census. It lies in the valley of Wharfedale.HistoryToponymyOtley's name is derived from Othe, Otho or Otta, a Saxon personal name and leah, a woodland clearing in Old English. It was recorded as Ottanlege in 972 and Otelai or Othelia in the Domesday Book of 1086. The name Chevin has close parallels to the early Brythonic Welsh term Cefn meaning ridge and may be a survival of the ancient Cumbric language.Early historyThere are pre-historic settlement finds alongside both sides of the River Wharfe and it is believed the valley has been settled at this site since the Bronze Age. There are Bronze Age carvings on rocks situated on top of The Chevin, one such example is the Knotties stone. West Yorkshire Geology Trust has reference to Otley Chevin and Caley Crags having a rich history of human settlement stretching back into Palaeolithic times. Flint tools, Bronze Age rock carvings and Iron Age earthworks have been found. In medieval times the forest park was used as common pasture land, as a source of wood and sandstones for buildings and walls.
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