Seven Arches in Scotland Wood

Scotland Wood

A hidden local secret. Perfect for a walk along the Adel Beck.

Viaduct with seven arches surrounded by trees and green undergrowth

Scotland Wood is a bit of a local secret. A smaller part of Adel Wood, is a heavily woody area along part of the Meanwood Valley Trail.

Full of history, Scotland Wood used to be a fairly busy place to be. With a Mill and Tea Room. These are now long gone – with only remnants of features left.

Location Details

Take a look around

Things to Note

Scotland Wood has the following on-site or nearby:

  • Nearby Food & Drink
  • Nearby Parking
  • Nearby Shops
  • Nearby Toilets

Location

Scotland Wood is located in north Leeds, between Adel, Alwoodley and Moor Allerton. Standing at 93.5 meters above sea level, it is perfect for nature lovers who enjoy bird-watching and all kinds of outdoorsy activities particularly walking, mountain bike riding (lots of man-made jumps have been constructed) and running.

If you fancy the feel of fresh breeze caressing your face and the shuffling sound of the leaves from majestic trees wafting in the air, then get your trekking boots ready. Scotland Wood is a heavily wooded part of the Meanwood Valley Trail.

Things to Do

Scotland Wood offers exciting opportunities for those who desire to get closer to nature and need relief and complete freedom from the hustle and bustle of the fast-paced city life.

Great Place for a Picnic

The location also gives you several serene and unique picnic spots. It is great for long family walks and you can let the kids run free and discover nature (without a gadget or device in sight).

Paddle in Meanwood Beck

On a summers day, alongside Meanwood Beck in Scotland Wood is the place to be. Generally quiet, plenty of areas to sit and set up base. Here the water is good enough to paddle in.

Fishing in Meanwood Beck

Adel Beck turns into Meanwood Beck as it approaches Leeds City Centre. There is a stream which may be suitable for fishing if you’re willing to give it a try. It may be possible to find trout in some areas.

Walk the Meanwood Valley Trail

If you’re ready for a real trekkers challenge, why not try the Meanwood Valley Trail? Walk up from Woodhouse, all the way up past Adel, then finally right up to Golden Acre Park.

Several historic sites can be seen along the way such as the Seven Arches (a 19th century aqueduct) as well as the remains of an old flax mill. Also lookout for the Slabbering Baby which was previously the location of a 1950s café but now it’s a small drinking water fountain refurbished by the local council back in 2017.

History

If you do decide to explore Scotland Wood, you may come across the ruins of an old mill. Built in 1785 as a wool mill Scotland Mill was leased to John Marshall to become a flax mill. The businesses became successful John so moved to Holbeck Mills for a less isolated location with more space to grow. Eventually in 1906 there was a fire in the mill, and it was never reopened.

There is also the Seven Arches Aqueduct. Built in 1842, this was the first public piped water supply for the city of Leeds. It has been disused for over a century, but is now a Grade 2 Listed Structure. Before the Aqueduct was built, Leeds locals relied on bore holes and the River Aire for their water. Unfortunately by 1830 the water in the river had become unfit to drink due to the waste passed from the mills and sewers further upstream.

After much political struggle, it was agreed that the Aqueduct should be built. The cost of water dropped from 10p a week, to 0.4p a week. However as the water was connected to more properties, there was increased pressure on the system and a massive drought  in 1851 caused complaints about water shortages.

Further down the path from the Seven Arches Aqueduct, there are the remains of the Slabbering baby next to the old Verity Tea Rooms. Nothing much remains of the tea rooms, which was originally a small mill.

The Slabbering Baby was a drinking fountain that people would travel from far away to drink from. It passed spring water from the ground through the babies mouth and into the fountains bowl below.

Amenities

If you fancy a bite to eat, there are a few nice cafes like West Park Lounge in West Park and the delicious Mediterranean bistro in Adel, Tuana.

Parking

If you don’t fancy walking all the way from Adel, or the city there are several options on where to park. A slightly longer route is to stop at Adel Woods car park on Stair Foot Lane, and starting your walk from there and working your way along Adel Beck, exploring all the different footpaths.

Another option is the small layby just off the Ring Road (A6120), at Scotland Mill Lane.

Access

The nature of the woods means that it is not particularly accessible via wheelchair or pushchair. That is not to say you should not visit! Just ensure that care is taken, especially after it has rained.