How about standing on a corner and seeing five milestones without moving?  You can in Yorkshire. Visit Pool Bank, north of Leeds, at the junction of the A660 ‘new’ Leeds to Otley road with the A658 Bradford to Harrogate road and the Dudley Hill to Killinghall turnpike in Bramhope Parish.

In Bramhope and Adel parishes there are at least ten ‘tombstones’ with numerous places listed including Adel Brickyard and several churches and bridges.  The distances are given in miles and furlongs.  On one of these stones, a few yards north west of the traffic lights, Otley, Burley, Ilkley, Addingham and Bramhope churches are inscribed, together with Adel School, Woodhouse Moor and Leeds Bridge.  On the other side of the road about 100 yards away is a triangular cast iron post, one of five on the A660, showing Leeds 8, Otley 2½ and London 194¼.  

Now look up the A658.  Immediately on the left is a ‘Bramhope’ stone with nine places inscribed although some of the distances are erased or eroded.  Then there is a mounting block type complete with metal plate and hands pointing To Bradford 9, To Harrogate 10 – pictured below .  There are four more of these left between here and Bradford but none with plates.  

A little further up is the third and youngest stone belonging to the Dudley Hill, Killinghall and Harrogate Turnpike of 1758.  Dudley Hill is to the south east of Bradford and Killinghall is to the north of Harrogate.  Riding from Dudley Hill you are soon on Killinghall Road although the end is 23 miles away.  There are none of these 19th century stones with protruding metal attachments nearer to Bradford but there are ten complete and one broken one on the B6161 to Killinghall with one on the B6162 Harrogate branch.

Christine Minto

Reprinted from Milestone Society Newsletter, July 2004, no 7