Wentbridge is an ancient village on the Southern boundary of the Saxon Kingdom of Elmet. A Roman Road - Ermine Street - passed by to the west of Wentbridge. The first Christians in Wentbridge were monks, possibly from the priory at Pontefract. From 950AD Wentbridge south of the river was in the Deanery of Doncaster, whereas north of the river was in the deanery of York. In the 13th Century the opening of a new bridge across the river Aire at Castleford led to the re-routing of the Great North Road through the village of Wentbridge. A mediaeval chapel south east of the river Went provided monastic hospitality to travellers from 1030 to 1530AD. The present Church building was built in 1874, but looks much older. A cute doorway into the hillside in the graveyard adds character to the Church. Legend says a tunnel links the Church with the Wentbridge House Hotel, an ideal location for your wedding reception.
Only in 1961 was the road bridge across the river Went built redirecting the A1 out of Wentbridge Village. Formerly teams of horses for stage coaches were changed at Wentbridge because of the steep hills out of the valley. Coaching inns had flourished, and the Blue Bell Inn is the oldest remaining Inn in the village.
The Wentbridge House Hotel was converted from an old hall, and has recently had a very sympathetic new block added in the style of Wentbridge House itself.
Travellers normally bypass Wentbridge as they pass by on the A1, but can see it as the road bridge appears to bend as it crosses the river. Those who are able to stop in the village can choose a range of accommodation: those mentioned already, as well as the Corner Cafe Guest House and in nearby Darrington the Darrington Hotel,and the Kyte Hotel. A noticeboard points visitors along the bridleway to Wentbridge Church, which is dedicated to St John. It is possible still to travel along Jackson's Lane, past St John's Church and to rejoin the A1 Northbound, although pedestrians have to risk life and limb crossing the A1 if they make the mistake of trying to walk to Brockadale, and Smeaton Crags, by going north of the river rather than south of the river, past the former Wentbridge School which closed in 1951. This latter route leads through woodland that Robin Hood haunted, and a plaque on the bridge at Wentbridge commemorates Robin Hood.
Wentbridge Church sits in an elevated position looking over the valley of the river Went. it has a set of 6 bells, which can ring out across the valley. Wentbridge Church is a wonderful beauty spot, worthy of visit in its own right as well as for the walks, the food, conference facilities and accommodation in the village of Wentbridge. It provides a back-drop worthy of your special day, and we invite you to experience the beauty, calm and tranquillity of Wentbridge.
St Johns Church Wentbridge is a beautiful Grade 2 Star listed building licensed for Church weddings. We invite you to experience the beauty, calm and tranquillity of Wentbridge and the River Went.
Walk up to the Church from the Wentbridge House Hotel, or drive there from Rogerthorpe Manor Hotel in Badsworth. From your first visit to Wentbridge Church fall in love with the setting as you did with each other.
Walk along the riverside to Brockadale and Smeaton Crags.
Continue on to Kirk Smeaton or return to Wentbridge and have a warming meal and a drink at the Blue Bell Inn
The Blue Bell Inn in Wentbridge has rooms and serves food, and is noted by the local branch of CAMRA for its Real Ale.