Staffordshire Moorlands
Peak District
Antique Centre

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 Introducing Leek

Situated close to the head of the Churnet river in North Staffordshire and on the southern uplands of the Pennines, Leek is built on the slopes and crown of a hill surrounded by some of the finest hill, moor and dale scenery to be found in this part of the North Midlands. Much of the town stands at or over the 600 ft. contour and it is close, on the north and east sides, to the even higher country that is now within the Peak District National Park.

Often described glowingly as the "Queen of the Moorlands", Leek is now the administrative centre for the Staffordshire Moorlands District Council although it has its own town council to look after local matters. It has had a lengthy history and retains a number of old and interesting buildings. It retains, too, its essential character as a market town serving a wide area although it grows in importance as a residential area. Numerous bus services link it with the rest of Staffordshire and much of nearby Derbyshire, Cheshire and Manchester.

Leek has long been linked with the textile industry but, in recent times, has seen silk replaced by man-made fibres although links with the original industry are retained through the dyeing and finishing trade. Leek now houses the head office of the Britannia, one of the largest building societies in the country. Extensive areas of new housing have been built and several of these estates enjoy views across the green moorlands. The town has modern schools, an excellent shopping centre that includes a new pedestrianised area and the traditional open market. Recreational facilities include many parks and open spaces, including tennis and squash courts, two golf courses, bowling greens, running track, cricket and football pitches. Leek also has a large indoor swimming pool. The Nicholson Institute houses an admirable museum and art gallery in addition to a well-stocked county library.

Tony Smith 1998

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