This week’s blended picture shows just how little Bramhope has changed - at least, that is, the centre of the village, which looks pretty much the same as it did more than half a century ago. Probably, one could find older images which would prove it has survived aging much longer still.
The original black and white image was taken on January 8, 1960.
In 1870-72, John Marius Wilson’s Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales described Bramhope thus: “BRAMHOPE, a township-chapelry in Otley parish, W. R. Yorkshire; on the Leeds and Thirsk railway, 2 miles S of Arthington station, and 3½ SE by E of Otley. Post Town, Otley. Acres, 1,290. Real property, £2,055. Pop., 312. Houses, 83. The manor belongs to J. Dyneley, Esq. The living is a p. curacy in the diocese of Ripon. Value, £48. Patrons, Trustees. The church is plain. There are a Wesleyan chapel, and a Church school.”
According to the 2001 census the parish had a population of 3,400.
The earliest known settlement in the area was a British camp established off Moor Road. The Romans built a road through the area from Adel to Ilkley, traces of which remain in a field near Leeds Bradford Airport.
The place-name Bramhope appears first in the Domesday Book as “Bra(m)hop”, with later medieval spellings including Bramhopa and Bramhoppe.
The name seems to derive from Old English brōm or ‘broom’ + hōp, meaning ‘a small valley, side-valley off a larger valley’, here referring to a small valley off Wharfedale.
In 1649 the Dyneley family moved into the area and acquired Bramhope Hall.They built the Puritan Chapel, which is a Grade I listed building.
Bramhope Tunnel was built between 1845–1849 on the Harrogate Line. Many men lost their lives in its construction.