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I can’t believe I’ve never heard of – never mind been to – West Wood. It’s pretty much on my doorstep, a mere hop-skip-jump from both Leeds and Bradford.

Tucked in between Calverley and Lodge woods, and once part of a Victorian estate, it’s nothing short of a little gem. It’s on the site of ancient woodland, which is why the good folk at the Woodland Trust, who own it, describe it as ‘exceptionally special for this part of the country’; woodland is scarce enough as it is in Yorkshire.

It’s on a steep slope, with outcrops of millstone grit, remains of steps and walls. This makes it great for ninjas (who must track their parents secretly, silently and stealthily from one end of the wood to the other). This picture was taken by Alun Burnett, who chanced upon West Wood during his ‘West Yorkshire in 10 Squares’ series.

We nosed around the remains of the sunken spring house; no meat or dairy food in there now keeping cool, just a couple of empty packets of Roast Chicken flavour crisps glinting in the dappled sunlight.

Another great place to laik outdoors and let the children loose. Man, my washing machine earns its keep.

Maps: OS Landranger 104, Explorer 288; grid ref SE197373

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