South Elmsall

South Elmsall

infobox UK place
country = England
latitude= 53.5972
longitude= -1.2814
map_type= West Yorkshire
official_name= South Elmsall
population = 18,425 (with South Kirkby)
metropolitan_borough= City of Wakefield
metropolitan_county = West Yorkshire
region= Yorkshire and the Humber
constituency_westminster= Hemsworth
post_town= PONTEFRACT
postcode_district = WF9
postcode_area= WF
dial_code= 01977
os_grid_reference= SE475114

South Elmsall is a small town to the east of Hemsworth in the City of Wakefield district of West Yorkshire, England. It is on the B6422 and B6474 (which leads to North Elmsall and Upton). It neighbours South Kirkby, and the two towns are often grouped together as one town. It is difficult to know where one stops and the other begins. The town is close to the southern boundary of West Yorkshire, being about one mile from South Yorkshire (borough of Doncaster). The A638 Doncaster - Wakefield road runs close to the north of the town, which leads to junction 38 of the A1(M) about three miles to the south-east.

Coal mining

The town is most famous for its coal-mining past; it was the site of Frickley Colliery, which was one of the largest in the whole country and a key source of union radicalism. During the UK Miners' Strike (1984-1985), there were numerous disturbances in the area. On one occasion, four hundred police were deployed to escort two miners to work even though, with the coalfield at a standstill and mining being a collective endeavour, there was no productive work to do.Fact|date=February 2007 The colliery was closed on 26th November, 1993 - following closures of nearby pits like Ferrymoor-Riddings (1985), Kinsley (1986), South Kirkby (1988) and Grimethorpe (1992). The area around Hemsworth was long one of the most depressed areas of the whole European Union, although fortunes have improved recently.

The town hosts a number of key landmarks that have a place in the wider history of the labour movement in the UK. In addition to the coal mine, the Miner's Institute served as a nerve centre during the strikes of the 1970s and 1980s. The Moorthorpe Empire WMC played a key role in the exchange of ideas, the maintenance of morale and the harnessing of community spirit during 1984. During this period, the Empire became a place for the celebration of unshackled unionism, internationalism, feminism, and even a sympathy for non-violent Irish republicanism. Paradoxically, these tendencies co-existed with a parochial outlook that often manifested itself in overt racism.

Several clubs in the area still bear the colliery's name. There is Frickley Colliery Brass Band, a famous football team named Frickley Athletic and a cricket club named "Frickley". Frickley Athletic F.C. now play in the UniBond Premier Division and nearly gained promotion in 2006.

Local economy

The market is a central feature of the village; it is currently undergoing renovations. The market plays host to approximately 105 trading stalls. It has a train station on the Wakefield line which is remarkable for a provincial market. Towards South Kirkby is Moorthorpe railway station on the line to Sheffield and Rotherham.

There is also the High Street (Barnsley Road) which includes many common high street names such as The Post Office, Superdrug, Blockbusters, Greggs, Heron, Vantage pharmacy and also many other individual shops such as The Paint Pot, The Jewellery Centre, Les & June Price Carpets & Furnishings, Allstar Teamwear, Dennis Price carpets and Pebbles schoolwear among many others. The discount supermarket chain Netto has its British headquarters on Elmsall Way in the village on the Dale Lane Industrial Estate. There is a Co-op on Barnsley Road in Moorthorpe.

Also present on the Dale Lane industrial estate are 4 Next Distribution warehouses (Stadium Way One, Stadium Way Two, Elmsall Way and Elmsall Drive), Superdrug, Del Monte and Finlays. The estate itself reflects the changing fortunes of the area being one of the key expansion areas since the closure of the local collieries.


The local secondary school is Minsthorpe Community College which has a sixth-form and also covers South Kirkby and Upton. In general, secondary schools in the Wakefield district (except Castleford and Normanton) achieve quite reasonable results, and Minsthorpe is unfortunately an exception gaining less than average GCSE results and even lower at A-level. People who have an association with Minsthorpe include playwright John Godber, actors Adrian Hood and Chris Walker, and football entrepreneur David Aisbitt. There are also several primary schools in the South Elmsall area: Carlton, Moorthorpe, Ash Grove and St Joseph's. There are many more in the neighbouring towns of South Kirkby and Upton. [ South Elmsall library] houses the UK's largest collection of Bobby Brewster novellas.Fact|date=February 2007

Town Twinnings

* Wetter (Ruhr)

External links

* [ Frickley Colliery Brass Band]
* [ Frickley Athletic FC]
* [ Hemsworth and South Elmsall Express]
* [ Knowhere Guide]
* [ Minsthorpe Community College]
* [ Netto]
* [ S.E.S.K.U. Boxing Academy]
* [ South Elmsall Parish Church]

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