White Wells is situated half way up Ilkley Moor, above the little town of Ilkley. The story goes that in the 1700s a local shepherd badly hurt his leg, which refused to heal. He found that it began to do so after he bathed it daily in Ilkley's spring waters. Word spread, and soon other visitors came to bathe in the (cold) healing waters. Between 1840 and 1870, hydrotherapy clinics were built in the area and, taking advantage of the new railway, wealthy Victorians flocked to the town to 'take the waters', cementing Ilkley's reputation as a place of genteel elegance. Charles Darwin was famously a visitor, at the time that his book "Origin of the Species" was being published.
White Wells was originally a two roomed cottage but was developed as a small spa. You can still see the spa bath - which nowadays seems to be used as a wishing well! It is owned by the Council, let to tenants and run as a tea room but these days it seems a bit neglected. It is a shame, as it's a lovely walk up to the viewpoint and a very pleasant place to sit with a drink. You would think that with an injection of cash to spruce it up and some entrepreneurial flair, it could be quite an attraction.