The Shambles

Built in 1811 by the Duke of Devonshire for butchers shops, each was let for three guineas a year.

In 1888 it was converted into a open market while sold poultry and dairy produce, At the beginning of the Great War these shambles were used for miniature rifle practice.

Colonnade originally enclosing butchers’ stalls but now various shops and
public conveniences. 1811; northern facade onto Market Place added 1911.
Single storey, 11 x 1 bays. Bays 1 and 11 have round arches whilst other
bays all have basket arches springing from square piers without imposts.
Paired wooden gutter brackets to monoclinal roof with hip at left end and
shaped gable to right. Right return: shop front flanked by tall channel-
rusticated pilasters with plinths, bands, entablatures and ball finials
within a stone panel above the shop is an ashlar aedicule with apron panel
and moulded sill beneath plaque inscribed

An old painting of the Market Place pre 1811 shows two rows of permanent stalls, one thatched, occupying a big part of the large market place. In that year the young 6th Duke of Devonshire began planning a face lift with the aid of the Atkinsons, architects of York. These new shambles were one of the earliest features built. Unfortunately the scheme was not completed when, for reasons not fully understood, he decided to sell all his properties in Wetherby in 1824.

Click on any of the plaques below to see more detail.