Our History
The Ring O Bells claims to be the oldest pub in Shipley and dates back to 1821. The buildings we originally built as a farm and upon close inspection the structure of these original building lines can clearly be seen. The pub is known locally as ‘The First & Last.

There are also many original features – beams, fireplaces, etched windows and the Ring O’ Bells retains much of it’s character although it has changed over the years. There are also many interesting documents and photographs of the pub adorning the walls of the establishment.

Our Historic Surroundings
Close to the Ring O’ Bells Hotel is Saltaire Village. Saltaire lies slightly to the North of the city centre of Bradford in the heart of the fields of heather and the moors of Bronte Country.

Saltaire got its name from Titus Salt, a successful weaver of beautiful fabrics that were used to make expensive dresses for the ladies of England. Titus moved his woollen mill from the centre of Bradford to just outside the city on the River Aire. This location along the river was important because it gave his mill access to what is now known as the Leeds-Liverpool Canal and to the railway. Along with this mill that was built in the mid-nineteenth century, Salt also built a planned, self-contained community especially for the workers in his new mill.

His planned Victorian village was his way of getting his people away from the “dark satanic mills” of Bradford to a place with more space and fresh air.
The mill opened in 1853 after our pub which opened in 1841 and the village around it thrived with cozy stone houses for the workers that were a vast improvement over the slums found throughout Bradford. The little town also had shops, bathhouses with running water, and a church – another rarity in Bradford. A school, a hospital, a library, a billiard room, a concert hall, and a park were all part of the little Victorian village that Salt built. Salt named the village Saltaire, combining his name with that of the river on which the village sat.

In 1869, Queen Victoria gave Salt the title of baronet and he became Sir Titus Salt. Upon his death he was given a mausoleum in the Saltaire Congregational Church across from his mill.

Saltaire Today
Today, Salt’s Mill has been made into a complex of shops and eating establishments. It also houses the “1853 Gallery”. This gallery is home to the collected works of David Hockney, who is thought to be one of greatest living artists in the world. Hockney was born and raised in Bradford and still stays closely connected to the city, although he now lives in California. One of his paintings on display here is of Salt’s Mill.

The village today has a very Bohemian atmosphere. Because of this and its connection to David Hockney, artists, writer, poets, and musicians flock here to work and to display their art. In 2003, Saltaire hosted the first Saltaire Festival to commemorate the town’s 150th anniversary. Since then, the festival has become an annual September event, providing an opportunity for artisans of every type to display and sell their work.

In 2001, the Village of Saltaire became a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site falling under the protection of the government. There is a great view of the mill and the village from across the road from the Ring O’Bells.