Yorkshire (; abbreviated Yorks), formally known as the County of York, is a historic county of Northern England and the largest in the United Kingdom. Due to its great size in comparison to other English counties, functions have been undertaken over time by its subdivisions, which have also been subject to periodic reform. Throughout these changes, Yorkshire has continued to be recognised as a geographical territory and cultural region. The name is familiar and well understood across the United Kingdom and is in common use in the media and the military, and also features in the titles of current areas of civil administration such as North Yorkshire, South Yorkshire, West Yorkshire and East Riding of Yorkshire.
Within the borders of the historic county of Yorkshire are vast stretches of unspoiled countryside. This can be found in the Yorkshire Dales and North York Moors and with the open aspect of some of the major cities. Yorkshire has also been nicknamed "God's Own County".
The Cottingley Fairies appear in a series of five photographs taken by Elsie Wright and Frances Griffiths, two young cousins who lived in Cottingley, near Bradford in England. In 1917, when the first two photographs were taken, Elsie was 16 years old and Frances was 10. The pictures came to the attention of writer Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, who used them to illustrate an article on fairies he had been commissioned to write for the Christmas 1920 edition of The Strand Magazine. Conan Doyle, as a Spiritualist, was enthusiastic about the photographs, and interpreted them as clear and visible evidence of psychic phenomena. Public reaction was mixed; some accepted that the images were genuine, but others believed they had been faked.
Interest in the Cottingley Fairies gradually declined after 1921. Both girls grew up, married and lived abroad for a time. Yet, the photographs continued to hold the public imagination; in 1966 a reporter from the Daily Express newspaper traced Elsie, who had by then returned to the UK. Elsie left open the possibility that she believed she had photographed her thoughts, and the media once again became interested in the story. In the early 1980s, both admitted that the photographs were faked using cardboard cutouts of fairies copied from a popular children's book of the time. Yet Frances continued to claim that the fifth and final photograph was genuine.
Today, the photographs and two of the cameras used are on display in the National Science and Media Museum in Bradford.
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List of churches preserved by the Churches Conservation Trust in Northern England describes the 50 churches cared for by the Churches Conservation Trust in Northern England, covering the counties of Northumberland, Tyne and Wear, Cumbria, North Yorkshire, South Yorkshire, West Yorkshire, Lancashire, Merseyside, Greater Manchester, and Cheshire, spanning a period of more than 1,000 years. The oldest is St Andrew's Church, Bywell, which dates from about 850; the most recent, Old Christ Church, Waterloo, was built between 1891 and 1894. All but one of the churches have been designated by English Heritage as listed buildings. Some stand in the centres of cities or towns and their functions have been taken over by nearby churches; these include St John the Evangelist's Church, Lancaster, Christ Church, Macclesfield, St John the Evangelist's Church, Leeds, St Stephen's Church, Low Elswick, Church of All Souls, Bolton, and Old Christ Church, Waterloo. Others stand in remote or isolated positions in the countryside. Some fell into disuse because the village they served was deserted, or the local population moved elsewhere; examples include Ireby Old Church, St Mary's Chapel, Lead, and St Thomas' Church, Friarmere. Alternatively the church once served the estate of a country house, as with All Saints' Church, Harewood, Church of Christ the Consoler, Skelton-on-Ure, and St Martin's Church, Allerton Mauleverer. In some cases the churches have only been partially conserved. Only the tower of Old St Lawrence, York, the tower and part of the aisle walls of Christ Church, Heaton Norris, and the tower, chancel and walls of the nave of Old Holy Trinity Church, Wentworth have survived. Most of the churches remain consecrated and are used for occasional services where practical; some are venues for concerts and other purposes. One church still vested in the Trust, St James, Toxteth, Liverpool, which was at one time derelict, re-opened in 2010 for regular worship. (read more . . . )