Ossett Pictures - Red Lion Pub

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The Red Lion is one of the oldest public house in Ossett, dating back probably to the 18th Century, but licensing records are rare before 1821. The first recorded licensee was Joseph Shepherd in 1821.

The Red Lion used to sit on the Dewsbury - Wakefield road, which was once part of the Wakefield - Halifax turnpike or toll road. John Metcalf, better known as Blind Jack of Knaresborough (1717-1810) was the surveyor for parts of the highway. Nowadays, the Ossett bypass takes the main A638 around the Red Lion and since this picture was taken, the pub has been extended to include a restaurant.

It is thought that this part of the road through to Streetside and beyond has Roman origins. The last toll bars at Ossett and Dewsbury were removed on the 14th May 1866.

The Red Lion is reputed to be haunted by the ghost of a traveller or highwayman who hanged himself in one of the bedrooms. In 1877, the inn was sold for £1,000 and included a butcher's shop!