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Read all about Barnsley - from its' history to where to find the best fish'n'chip shop!

Barnsley is ideally situated in the middle of some of the biggest cities in the UK. Located just off junction 36 of the M1, it's only 24 miles from Sheffield, 20 miles from Leeds, and 39 miles from Manchester. You can reach all three cities in less than an hour by car, making it the perfect location for commuting or going on a weekend getaway.


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Introduction to Barnsley

Barnsley is a fantastic place to live for its affordability, friendly community, stunning scenery, rich history, and convenient location. Whether you're looking for a place to raise a family, start a business, or simply enjoy a slower pace of life, Barnsley is the perfect choice. 

It played a pivotal role in the Industrial Revolution and was responsible for providing coal that helped power the British economy for years. Barnsley has a long history of glassmaking, but it is best known for its coal mines. There were 70 collieries within a 15-mile (24-kilometre) radius of Barnsley town centre in 1960, but the last closed in 1994.  The National Union of Mineworkers headquarters is still in Barnsley. Today, Barnsley has reinvented itself as a centre for quality food and drink, with many local pubs and restaurants offering locally sourced produce. Barnsley now has a population of 244,600 (according to the Barnsley 2021 Census). The vibrant Barnsley Market has been a pillar of the town since the 13th century, selling everything from fresh produce to handmade crafts. If you would like to find out more, simply carry on scrolling!


Barnsley is a town in the Metropolitan Borough of Barnsley, South Yorkshire. It is located 37 min (16.5 miles) from Doncaster via the A635 by car. 

Barnsley to Meadowhall is 20 min (12.8 miles) via M1 by car.

Barnsley to Manchester Airport is 1 hr 16 min (41.2 miles) via A628 by car.

Barnsley to Leeds City Centre is 36 min (24.2 miles) via M1 by car.

Barnsley to Leeds Bradford Airport is 55 min (31.0 miles) via M1 by car.

Barnsley to Manchester City Centre is 1 hr 18 min (35.5 miles) via A628 by car.

Barnsley to Sheffield City Centre is 36 min (17.5 miles) via M1 by car.

Barnsley to Rotherham is 21 min (12.7 miles) via M1 by car.  


Shopping and Eating Out in Barnsley

Barnsley has recently undergone a complete revamp of its town centre. The new "Glassworks" has replaced the old market building and offers entertainment, food & drink and plenty of shopping and still hosts Barnsley's renowned market days. 

Best Restaurants in Barnsley

Obviously, "best" is always a matter of opinion! Here are the top 3 restaurants in Barnsley based on a mix of Tripadvisor reviews and our team's own opinions.

1. The Secret Italian

As reviewed by Tripadvisor users and our own personal experiences, The Secret Italian is a guaranteed "MUST Visit" Italian restaurant. The staff are great fun, the food is delicious and it's really good value for money. Click here to visit The Secret Italian's Facebook Page.

2. Favela Brazilian Grill Barnsley

An authentic Brazilian Rodizio Bar and Grill! They really do offer a true taste of Brazil, with great customer service, and the finest, high-quality meats sourced locally. Click here to visit Favela Brazilian Grill Barnsley's website for menu and bookings. (There are generous discounts for kids... and children under 5 years old eat free!)

3. Bistro at the Pocket

One of the best dining experiences in Barnsley - Bistro at the Pocket offers some of the best dishes around. They come highly recommended by us!

Best Fish and Chips in Barnsley

When it comes to moving to a new area, one of the things you come to realise is it's often hard to find a reliable chippy that's open when you want it to be and provides consistently good quality fish'n'chips! We've hand-picked two of our personally recommended fish and chip shops...

1. Shaws Fish and Chips in Dodworth.
2. Keelings Fish and Chips on Summer Lane, Barnsley.

Shopping in Barnsley

Shoppers will find that Barnsley is a top destination in Yorkshire for shopping. The Glass Works in Barnsley is a buzzing new destination with shops, restaurants, a cinema, and a bowling alley. Along with High Street favourites, premier chain stores, and boutiques, independent retailers add to the mix, creating a shopping experience unlike any other in Barnsley town centre.

Check out this website for a full list of shops in Barnsley and surrounding areas.


Places to go and things to see in Barnsley

Barnsley has some of the most iconic and scenic spots for visitors to explore - from the bustling market town of Barnsley itself to the tranquil yet stunning countryside that surrounds it.

One of the top places to visit in Barnsley is Cannon Hall. This stunning 18th Century country estate offers visitors a beautiful landscape and a captivating museum full of local history and culture. In conclusion, the history of Barnsley can be felt the minute you step onto the grounds of the 18th-century Cannon Hall estate. With the past being the backbone of the local culture, the museum on the grounds provides a rich experience that can't be found anywhere else. Whether you're looking to immerse yourself in the deep-rooted past or to spend a day in the beauty of the stunning landscape, a trip to Barnsley is well worth it!

RSBP Valley of the Dearne "Old Moor” The Dearne Valley in Yorkshire is home to the family-friendly nature reserve Old Moor. The park is blessed with various amenities and is home to a wide variety of wildlife, so visitors of all ages can find something to their liking, whether it be peaceful strolls, wildlife watching, pond dipping, or playing on our adventure playground. Our meadows bloom with butterflies, wildflowers, and orchids in the summer. Hundreds of ducks, swans, and geese make our home their winter sanctuary.

Elsecar museum

Take a virtual stroll through Victorian Elsecar and imagine what it was like to live and work there. Soar above the picturesque Yorkshire countryside as you pass by iron foundries, coal mines, workshops, and village streets. Hear Earl Fitzwilliam address his workforce, iron puddlers at their forges, and canal-dwelling families.

Wigfield Farm

Worsbrough, Barnsley is the location of The Farm, which serves three primary purposes: Barnsley College's Horticulture and Animal Management programmes use the farm as their home base because it is both a working farm and a livestock producer. A public farm and visitors' centre open to the immediate neighbourhood and surrounding areas

Students enrolled in one of our many academic programmes perform most of the week's hands-on work, providing an authentic learning environment to apply what they've learned in the classroom. Located right next to Worsborough Country Park, which is about 2 miles southwest of Barnsley, is where you'll find the farm.

It's an excellent place for families to stop by, as it's close to the Dove Valley Trail, a segment of the Trans-Pennine Trail.

Horses, goats, miniature zebu, donkeys, pigs, sheep, chickens, guinea pigs, rabbits, and meerkats are just a few of the animals we care for on the farm.

Gardens of Wentworth Castle

All these beautiful gardens, forests, and parks were initially designed for the elite but are now open to the public. Wentworth Castle Gardens span centuries of history and offer visitors formal gardens, significant monuments, and a mysterious folly.

These unique gardens are close to Barnsley and feature a variety of exciting features, from a meticulously maintained Union Jack Garden to a recovering parkland that reflects Yorkshire's industrial heritage.

Cannon Hall and Gardens

The Spencer Stanhope family put as much care and attention into Cannon Hall's gardens as they did into the mansion. The entire landscape, down to the smallest detail, was carefully designed and built to impress. A paradise for lovers, this fairy-tale land sparkles with the awe of the Pre-Raphaelite era and is a pure joy to explore. 

Background on Cannon Hall Farm

Although it may seem like farming runs in the family, anyone from a farming background will tell you that it's not true.  You can feel it in the deepest parts of your body, in the marrow of your bones, in the skin of your fingers that is cracked and raw from spending sleepless nights in the lambing shed, in the stoop of your back from lifting heavy bales, and in the very fibres of your soul as you struggle to make it work, make a living, make a life.

The Town Hall in Barnsley

The construction of Barnsley Town Hall is a historic building with a Grade II status. The Town Hall serves as the primary administrative building for the local government.

In Church Street, a row of residential properties had previously occupied the location chosen for the new building. On April 21, 1932, Councillor Robert Plummer, a former mayor, laid the building's cornerstone. The building, which Sir Arnold Thornely designed in the classical style and which cost £148,697 to construct out of Portland stone, was formally inaugurated on December 14, 1933, by the Prince of Wales. On the first and second floors of the structure, there was a sizable Corinthian distyle with pilasters, and the central tower was 44 metres (144 feet) high with a three-stage reducing structure.

George Orwell harshly criticised this expenditure in his book The Road to Wigan Pier. He suggested that the council use the funds to enhance the housing and living conditions for the area's miners instead.


Experience Barnsley, a museum that was once housed in the building that formerly served as the Town's Central Library and is now known as the "Experience Barnsley Museum and Discovery Centre".

An axe head that is 5,000 years old and was discovered in the 1920s at the Scout Dyke Reservoir close to Penistone is one of the exhibits that is on display.

Barnsley's St. Mary's Parish church

St. Mary's is a well-kept secret that boasts a plethora of historical characteristics. The building may have been known as St. Helen's when it was first constructed in the eighth century when its foundations were laid.

A board in the porch lists Rectors beginning in the vicinity of 1180, and the building was initially a part of the ancient parish of Silkstone. It has a listing of Grade II*.

Father Bernard Smith, who was given the position of royal organ builder by King Charles II, is responsible for the magnificent organ case in St. Mary's. A leak around the year 2000 caused water damage to the pipes, meaning they could no longer be played after being replaced. When the current building was constructed in 1822 by Woodhead and Hurst of Doncaster to double the sittings, the tower that was initially part of the Medieval church was preserved.

In 1870, Bodley undertook an extensive interior redesign, which included the removal of galleries and the construction of an ornate Gothic chancel screen, the reredos, and the east window.

At this point, pew rents came to an end.  Most of the stained-glass windows in the church were put in during the 1890s and were paid for by local families. These same families also donated other items and paid for many of the memorials that can be found on the walls.

The war memorial chapel was finished in 1922 so that it could display the magnificent WWI pillar with 200 names, two unique windows (one of which was dedicated to Dorothy Fox, who was the only woman to be honoured on a Barnsley WWI memorial), and the two Barnsley Pals Colours, which had been framed with permission from the Ministry of Défense.

St. Mary's Garden is an oasis located close to Graham Ibbeson's wonderful Oaks Colliery 1866 memorial, which honours more than 360 victims and their families. The garden is located next to the church. Churchfields Peace Gardens are located directly across the street from St. Mary's Church, on the former site of the churchyard extension, where hundreds of people who died from the cholera epidemic in 1832 are buried.

The sculpture known as "Light Lines" was placed in this location to honour the centenary of the deaths of 300 men from Barnsley on July 1, 1916.

The priory of Monk Bretton

The historic Monk Bretton Priory can be seen in the small community of Bretton, located on the outskirts of Barnsley. The Cluniac order was initially responsible for founding the monastery, and today people who visit can view an outstanding historic structure. The Priory's grounds are open to the public and provide a breathtaking panorama of the surrounding area.

The location is remarkable for its lack of noise. In 1154, the Priory was built; it was initially known as the Priory of St. Mary Magdalene of Lund.

After some time, the settlement adopted the name of its neighbouring Town, and today it is known as Monk Bretton Priory.

Museum located in Cannon Hall

Over two hundred years, the Spencer-Stanhope family called Cannon Hall their home.

The building is now a museum that displays various collections, including beautiful furniture, paintings by Old Masters, stunning glassware, and colourful pottery. These collections are displayed in historically accurate rooms like the Victorian Parlor.

In addition, it is home to "Charge," the Regimental Museum of the 13th/18th Hussars (Queen Mary's Own), which is an absolute necessity for anybody enthusiastic about the history of the military.

It was renovated with assistance from the Heritage Lottery Fund. It shows the Regiment's role in many significant battles, such as the Charge of the Light Brigade. It also contains memorabilia that is dedicated to Lord Baden Powell.

Wortley Hall Wortley Hall is an early 19th-century park that spans 242 hectares and features gardens and pleasure grounds that date to the middle of the 19th century.

Joseph Harrison, the founder of several horticultural journals, was employed at the site as head gardener in the middle of the 19th century. It is said that W. S. Gilpin was involved in the improvement of the estate.

The Wortley Top Forge

Although the Wortley Top Forge was established in the seventeenth century, there is evidence that iron was worked in the area as early as the fourteenth century. As a result, the Wortley Top Forge is a historic former ironworks.

It is in the metropolitan borough of Barnsley, which is found in South Yorkshire, England, on a loop of the river Don close to the South Yorkshire village of Wortley.

Thomas Andrews, an engineer and metallurgist, is credited with carrying out some of the earliest metallurgical experiments ever performed anywhere in the world at this location.

During the nineteenth century, this location was known for producing the highest possible-quality railway axles, then shipped worldwide.

What well-known movie was created in Barnsley? 

The story of a boy and his kestrel, directed by Ken Loach in 1969, is considered a classic in British cinema. Billy Casper is Kes's protagonist, a young boy who endures hardship in the Yorkshire mining town of Barnsley. He is failing in school but finds solace in the company of a small kestrel.


Golf courses in Barnsley

The best-rated recommends the following top three Golf Courses in Barnsley. They are Barnsley Golf Club, Silkstone Golf Club, and Sandhill Golf Club each of these golf courses has faced a rigorous 50-Point Inspection, which includes local reviews, history, business standards, ratings, satisfaction, trust, price, and trading excellence that can be checked here.

Swimming in Barnsley

Barnsley Metrodome Waterpark (Calypso Cove)

Metrodome Leisure Complex

Queens Ground,

Queens Rd

T: 01226 730060

Swim Now

Swimming instructor

The Peel Centre, Harborough Hill Rd In Everlast Gyms


T:01226 337547

Deborah Yule Swim School

Swimming instructor

Gillott Industrial Estate,

Station Rd,

Barnsley S70 6DE

T:07917 540929


Parking in Barnsley Town Centre

The Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council (BMBC) provides a variety of car parks throughout the borough, some of which are free while others are pay-and-display or pay-on-exit.

On Saturdays and Sundays, the town centre offers free parking for up to three hours. Additionally, it is free after 5 o'clock every day of the week, with fees being reinstated at 7am You must always have a parking ticket, even if the parking spot is free. If you have any questions, please make sure to look at the signs that are posted in the car parking areas.


Education in Barnsley

Barnsley has a fantastic reputation for its excellent educational facilities. So here's a summary of the educational services available to families in and around Barnsley in age order.

Nurseries and Childcare in Barnsley

There are quite a few providers to choose from and with the decision of where to send your children to nursery being a very important one, we would obviously advise you to carry out a search for nurseries in Barnsley of your own. You can carry out further due diligence on each one before making a decision by searching for their Ofsted Reports.


Primary Schools in Barnsley

Primary Schools in the UK are for children aged 4 to 11 years old. Most children start school full-time in September after their fourth birthday. This means they'll turn 5 during their first school year. Some primary schools also provide pre-school nurseries or child daycare services. 

For a full list of Primary Schools in Barnsley, visit the Schools page on Barnsley Borough Council's website.

Secondary School in Barnsley

For a full list of Primary Schools in Barnsley, visit the Schools page on Barnsley Borough Council's website.

Barnsley College

Barnsley College offers A-Level courses plus opportunities for volunteer work, apprenticeships and adult courses.

Links: Barnsley College


As mentioned previously, Barnsley is in an IDEAL location when it comes to commuting to either work or university. Here are the closest universities to Barnsley:

1. Sheffield University and Sheffield Hallam University (~16.4 miles / 28 minutes driving / 42 minutes by train).

2. Leeds University and Leeds Metropolitan University (~24 miles / 33 minutes driving / 1hr 4 minutes by train).

4. Manchester University and Manchester Metropolitan University (~38 miles / 1 hour driving / 1hr 34 minutes by train).


Healthcare Services in Barnsley

Barnsley General Hospital 

Gawber Rd, Barnsley S75 2EP

T: 01226 730 000

Gold Street Surgery

1A Gold St, Barnsley S70 1TT

T: 01226 731298

Victoria Medical Centre

7 Victoria Crescent

West Barnsley S75 2AE

T: 01226 282758

Out of hours T: 01226 282758

Woodland Drive Medical Centre

Woodland Dr, Barnsley S70 6QW

T: 01226 244946


Burleigh Medical Centre

Burleigh Street

Barnsley S70 1XY

Telephone:01226 704343

Out of Hours:111


Chemists in Barnsley

Lloyds Pharmacy
Barnsley Transport Interchange,
32-34 Midland St · 01226 289620

Cohens Chemist
Victoria Health Centre,
3 Victoria Cres W, Barnsley S75 2AE · 01226 320597

Ellison's Chemist
92 Park Grove,
Barnsley · 01226 203447


Barnsley not only has great road access, it also has regular bus and train services. Links: View Barnsley Bus Timetable | View Barnsley Train Timetable.


Here are some taxi services serving the Barnsley area.

1. Blueline Taxis
2. Platinum Travel Barnsley
3. Thurgoland Travel (Private minibus transport service for groups to special events)



Here's a list of the closest airports to Barnsley. Please do not rely on these times to plan your trip!! Always make sure to check the traffic on the roads a few hours before setting off to the airport! 

1. Leeds Bradford Airport (31 miles / 50mins driving)

2. Manchester Airport (42 miles / 1hr 6mins driving)

3. Doncaster Sheffield Airport (20 miles / 34mins driving)

4. East Midlands Airport (62 miles / 1hr 5mins driving)

What food is Barnsley famous for?

Though Barnsley's heritage is rooted in the industry, and the town has a tradition of brass bands that originated in mining social clubs. However, it is also well-known for its food, 'The Barnsley Chop'!

Microbreweries in Barnsley

Craft beer is beer produced by artisanal breweries. Typically, they produce less beer than large breweries and are privately owned. In general, these breweries are perceived and marketed as emphasising enthusiasm, novel flavours, and diverse brewing techniques.

The microbrewery movement began in the 1970s in both the United States and the United Kingdom, although traditional artisanal brewing existed in Europe for centuries before spreading to other regions. As the movement grew and some breweries expanded production and distribution, the concept of craft brewing grew to encompass a broader scope. A brewpub is a pub that brews and sells its own beer on-site. Below is a list of three of the numerous microbreweries located in Barnsley.


Combining the concepts of a brewery and a pub or public house, the word "brewpub" is an abbreviated form of the phrase. A pub or restaurant that also brews its own beer on the premises is known as a brewpub. Enjoy!

The Jolly Boys' Brewery
Unit 16a, Redbrook Business Park,
Wilthorpe Rd,
Barnsley S75 1JN

Nailmaker Brewing Co
Unit 9, Darton Business Park,
Barnsley Rd, Darton,
Barnsley S75 5NH
Phone: 01226 380893

Geeves Brewery Limited
Unit 12, Grange Lane Industrial Estate,
Carrwood Rd,
Stairfoot, Barnsley S71 5AS
Phone: 07859 039259


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Your Local Trusted Barnsley Estate Agent with over 30 years of experience

Butcher Residential Estate Agents specialise in selling and letting residential and commercial properties throughout Barnsley. Our expert team specialises in the local Barnsley property market, including towns and villages from Mapplewell to Crow Edge. We sell properties in Barugh Green, Redbrook, Gawber, Darton, Higham, Staincross, Cawthorne, Howbrook, Wortley, Inbirchworth, Millhouse Green, Oxspring, Barnsley, Stocksbridge, Silkstone, and Silkstone Common. Instructing the sale or letting of your property or purchasing a home in Barnsley through a local and well-respected estate agent can drastically increase the chances of a successful sale or let in the quickest time and for the best price. 

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