The three villages of Anlaby, Willerby and Kirk Ella, which make up the western suburbs of Hull, are flourishing in their own right. At Kirk Ella, you’ll find Hull Golf Club, and next door, the Wheatsheaf Pub has an anthology of crafted ales. Willerby Shopping Park has gorgeous homes dating from the 1700s next to its Shopping Park with all the major supermarkets. Visitors flock to Willerby's traditional pub, the Star Inn, and the Tea and Bisque-it pottery shop is popular with locals for afternoon tea and pottery painting.
Anlaby Retail Park has major retail outlets, and the Haltemprice Leisure Centre has modern courts and a swimming pool. The area has excellent transport links, like the A164 connecting Cottingham and Beverley. Considering the area's proximity to Hull, each manages to offer as much animation as its neighbouring city while retaining its quaint country living.
History of Anlaby, Willerby, and Kirk Ella
Kirk Ella is Old English and means ‘Woodland Clearing with a Church.’ It has shown human occupancy since the Bronze Age, with bronze axes and pottery from the Roman period. Anlaby shared habitation within the manor of North Ferriby, and the Domesday book recorded 19 persons, including a priest. The name Anlaby is of Old Norse origin as a personal name ‘Anlaf’ to mean ‘Anlaf’s village’. During the English Civil War, Anlaby was used as a base for Royalist forces during the siege of Hull in 1642.
Until the 20th century, Willerby was a tiny village, but the population increased when the Willerby and Kirk Ella Railway Station opened in 1885. During the post-war period, substantial development took place with the expansion of housing and roads in Anlaby, Willerby and Kirk Ella and the beginnings of industrialisation on Springfield Way.
Property Types in Anlaby, Willerby, and Kirk Ella
In Anlaby, you will find large semi-detached and detached properties along Beverley Road and terraced properties close to Springfield Way. For buyers looking for a new build, Tranby Park is a brand-new development surrounded by woodland, with an elegant collection of 2, 3, 4 and 5-bedroom homes.
In West Ella, there are some of the most desirable and sought-after properties in the whole of Hull, with large, detached houses and spacious landscaped gardens.
Further east in Kirk Ella, there are bungalows for those looking to downsize, and close to Willerby Village Centre is Ella Court Retirement Complex, with 56 flats and beautiful communal gardens.
In Willerby, south of Kingston Road, you can find well-proportioned family homes and spacious bungalows to the north, with large 4 bedroom properties. Just above the B1232 and a short drive to Willerby shopping park, gorgeous dwellings date from the 1700s and 1800s.
Schools and Colleges in Anlaby, Willerby, and Kirk Ella
Anlaby and Kirk Ella have outstanding nursery care and some good solid succession of primary schools in the whole area. The local Wolfreton School has an excellent reputation in sport, and in Anlaby, Tranby is the local independent school. The University of Hull is less than 5 miles away.
Nursery and Pre-Schools
- Building Bricks Pre-school Anlaby - Outstanding
- Willerby and Kirk Ella Pre-school Ltd - Outstanding
- FreeSpirits Kirk Ella Ltd - Good
- Tiptoes Day Nursery - Good
- Springboard Nursery - Good
- Anlaby Primary School - Good
- Springhead Primary School - Good
- Willerby Carr Lane Primary School - Good
- Kirk Ella St Andrew’s Community Primary School - Good
- Wolfreton School and Sixth Form College - Good
- Tranby School
- Hessle Mount School
Local Colleges and Universities
- Wolfreton Sixth Form College
- Hessle Sixth Form College
- Wyke Sixth Form College
- University of Hull
- University of York
Things to do in Anlaby, Willerby, and Kirk Ella
Wyke Archers is a family-friendly archery club based in Anlaby which caters to people of mixed abilities and ages. The club aims to provide facilities on-site that deal with Longbow, Recurve and Compound archery for those looking for enjoyment to competitive shooters.
Far Ings National Nature Reserve
Situated just over the Humber Bridge, Far Ings is on the banks of the Humber Estuary and is a key spot for migrating birds. You will witness the sight and sound of skeins of geese flying overhead. With more than 250 species of moths and 230 wildflowers, the area is a haven for wildlife and well preserved.
In Cottingham, the Skidby Mill is open to visitors all week, with milling taking place from Wednesday to Sunday. It’s the last working mill north of the Humber, which creates its own wholemeal flour from locally grown wheat. Originally built in 1821, the mill is six stories high, has four sails and provides splendid views over Yorkshire.
Anlaby Woods is a national forest that the people of Anlaby have enjoyed since before and after the second world war. The area is filled with ancient trees, bats, and the woodland provides a habitat for owls, deer, woodpeckers, and hedgehogs!
A 5 mile drive to Hull takes you to the MKM Stadium and has a seating capacity of 25,000, hosting rugby and football matches. The venue serves food and drink and holds family events and concerts - perfect for a night out.
Well Lane Play Park
Well Lane Play Park in Willerby is a well maintained, safe and popular local amenity with soft grounding for children under eight. There are swings, slides, climbing apparatuses and more, with plenty of benches around the parameter for the adults to sit and watch.
Willerby’s skatepark is perfect for skaters from novices to advanced and has all the equipment any skater needs with half-pipes and ramps of various depths. Older and younger children have plenty of space to practice and socialise with friends.
The Secret Village
The Secret Village of Anlaby is a place for children to role-play, from firefighters to vets, and learn to play and create using their imaginations. The centre offers 10 play areas to get lost in and a café for refreshments for the adults.
Bridlington South Beach
From Hessle Train Station, there is a train service to Bridlington, which takes around one hour, and is within walking distance is South Beach. South Beach is a pristine sandy beach with plenty of space, even at the busiest times. There is a lovely promenade to walk along and beach huts to hire.
Cayton Bay Beach
Trains from Cottingham Station take just over an hour to arrive at Scarborough, and this is where you’ll find Cayton Bay Beach. The beach is a favourite for fossil hunters as the cliffs were formed in the Jurassic period. The North Sea makes the beach popular with surfers and windsurfers, too.
Shopping and Leisure in Anlaby, Willerby, and Kirk Ella
The Anlaby Retail Park includes an Marks and Spencers Foodhall, ASDA Living, Argos, Peacocks, and The Food Warehouse by Iceland that has exclusive products from offers on food to homeware. Willerby Shopping Park has Waitrose, Iceland Foods, a Morrisons, Lidl and ALDI nearby, a Tesco Express on Kingston Road and a Sainsbury’s Local on Anlaby Road. There are plenty of independent shops, such as the WISHES gift shop and Love Birds Gifts, Chic Kidz, full of beautiful children’s shoes and clothes, and Ella Bellini for ladies designer fashion. Feathers Country in Kirk Ella has the comfiest jumpers!
In Willerby, Da Lucia Mediterranean Restaurant may look small but is spacious and has a relaxed atmosphere with carefully crafted Italian cuisine; and That’s Amore on Kingston Road is a friendly family-run Italian restaurant. The Hop Pole Hotel Bar and Grill has hot sizzling food cooked to perfection, and on Ella Way, Lounge Southella prides itself on providing fresh home-cooked food with great cocktails. Crofters Restaurant has locally sourced ingredients with sticky toffee puddings to die for, and the Bella Rosa Italian Restaurant has a versatile, unique menu. There are many highly rated takeaways such as Frydays fish and chips and the Express Grill House with traditional Parmo and delicious kebabs, and not forgetting Hearth Family Ltd Takeaway, which comes with recipe cards with each meal.
In Kirk Ella, by the Hull Golf Club, The Wheatsheaf serves nibbles, main courses, and an anthology of expertly crafted cask ales to distilled gins. Kirk Ella also includes The Beech Tree with a beer garden perfect for socialising and has a wide selection of fixed-price lunch and dinner menus that include vegan and children’s options. The traditional Star Inn at Willerby will give you a warm welcome the second you step through the door, with real ales and private rooms to hold up to 40 people, and The Springhead of Anlaby is a very spacious place that hosts live music entertainment.
Cinema and Theatre
The nearest cinemas to the villages are in Hull and include the ODEON Luxe Theatre, the Vue Cinema for family deals, and Reel Cinema which has special offers for OAPs and children. The Hull Truck Theatre brings local people, artists, and audiences closer together with substantial drama productions with unique human tales of imaginative perspectives of the world. Looking out over the River Hull is Stage @ The Dock, a 350-seater amphitheatre of cultural space for creators and artists. The Hull New Theatre is just over five miles away and stages musicals, operas, ballet, and children’s shows.
Gym and Health
The fitness possibilities are endless with the Haltemprice Leisure Centre, a council-run sports complex with brand new squash courts, football pitches, a gym, and a swimming pool. At Willerby, the Feel Good Health Club also has an indoor swimming pool, and the Costello Stadium nearby has outdoor tennis courts and an eight-lane floodlit athletics track. On York Way, the Goldstar Active has fitness for the whole family with fitness classes, dance, trampolining, and supervised soft play for kids. Anlaby has the CrossFit Humber with a Pilates studio next door. The PureGym Anlaby is excellent value for money, and there are also self-defence classes at KFM Hull and martial arts at Hull Kung Fu Martial arts school.
There are three nearby golf clubs, the nearest of which is Kirk Ella’s Hull Golf Club, offering a course of variety and challenge and a notably tricky 8th hole ringed by numerous bunkers! The club has a proud history of hosting regional tournaments. The Spring Head Park Golf Club on Willerby Road was established in 1930 and is famed for its undulating and tight fairways, surrounded by trees. The course is delightful, with three ponds, lots of ditches, and is guaranteed to test a golfer’s skills. Hessle Golf Club up in Cottingham, just over four miles away, was designed by professional golfer Peter Alliss, and the course is amongst Yorkshire’s best.
In Willerby, the Tea and Bisque-it pottery shop has lovely cakes and coffee. There is a fantastic selection of things to paint for all occasions. Anlaby’s children centre has lots of activities for children and free classes for pre-schoolers and babies, with fun projects to take home. Less than five miles away, Go Karting at Teamsport has indoor go-karting - great four-wheeled fun for the whole family.
Two local train stations are within easy driving distance and can take you to neighbouring villages, coastal towns and further to York and Sheffield. There are excellent transport links to motorways, with the A63 merging onto the M62. Many buses cover the whole of Hull, and local buses like the 151 Willerby and 152 Anlaby take you to more local destinations.
Train The nearest train station is Hessle which has a northern line train service to York, Doncaster, and trains to Hull Central. Cottingham Train Station is an 11-minute drive away and has a Hull train service to Beverley village and northern line service to Sheffield, Scarborough, and Bridlington.
Road The area has excellent access to essential A-roads like the A164, which goes up to Cottingham and Beverley, down to the Humber Bridge, and the A1079 that goes on to York. There is easy access to the A63 to Leeds via the M62 and links to major motorways like the M1 and A1 motorways.
Air Over the Humber Bridge, and in less than 30 minutes, is the Humberside Airport, and in just under an hour via the M62 is the Doncaster Sheffield Airport. Also, via the M62 is your route to the Leeds Bradford Airport.
Ferry In less than 30 minutes by car, you can travel to P&O Ferries services for ferries over to Rotterdam.
Bus The 25 bus goes to Hessle town. The 151, 152, and 153 are all Hull buses, with the 82 Sutton Ings by East Park. The 152 Humber Bridge Country Park takes you to the reservoir, the 25 to Beverley town, and the 154 to Cottingham village. For more localised buses, the 152 travels all around Anlaby and the 151 around Willerby.
5 quirky facts!
- Hull Golf Club was the first golf club in the Hull area and was founded by nine local golfers.
- In the Domesday Book, Anlaby was an ancient village, home to just 19 people.
- During the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012, the entire village held a party in its centre and a féte at St Andrew’s Church.
- School staff at Wolfreton School travel to Uganda to help develop the Rushanje School there.
- Robert Levet, who was famously eulogised in Samuel Johnson’s poem, was born in Kirk Ella.