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Thornton is a village within the metropolitan borough of the City of Bradfordmarker, in West Yorkshire, Englandmarker. It lies to the west of Bradfordmarker, and together with neighbouring Allertonmarker, has total resident population of 15,003.

The preserved centre of the village retains the character of a typical Pennine village, with stone built houses with stone flagged roofs. The surrounding areas consist of more modern housing, still isolated from the rest of the city by green fields.

Geography and administration

Thornton was incorporated into the city of Bradford around 1899, but was mentioned in the Domesday Book of the 11th century, when it had been laid waste by William the Conqueror's harrying of the North, punishment for an uprising against the Norman invaders of 1066.

Thornton has lain within the boundaries of the City of Bradfordmarker metropolitan borough since 1974, in which it comprises part of the Thornton and Allertonmarker ward. It falls within the parliamentary constituency of Bradford West.

Its elevation, poor soils, isolation from major transport routes and rainfall of over 34 inches a year limited farm production, but the presence of coal, iron and sandstone, the development of turnpike roads and the coming of the railways enabled Thornton to share in the prosperity generated by the 19th century wool worsted trade. The increasing use of steam powered mills (at the expense of the former cottage-industry production methods) concentrated production in the valleys of the city centre, and foreign imports, the second world war and closure of the railways eventually relegated Thornton to its present status as a residential suburb of Bradford.

Notable residents

Thornton's most famous residents were the Brontës. The Rev Patrick Brontë became the incumbent of Thornton Chapel in 1815, and Charlotte, Branwell, Emily and Anne Brontë were born at 74, Market Street, Thornton before the family moved to Haworthmarker. The remains of the Church where Patrick preached, known as the Bell Chapel, can be seen in the restored old graveyard off Thornton Road opposite the current Church.

References

  1. The population figure of 15,004 is for the ward of Thornton and Allertonmarker, rather than for the village of Thornton alone.


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