Morley is a market town suburb and civil parish in the City of Leeds metropolitan borough, West Yorkshire, England. It is south-west of Leeds City Centre. A population of 47,579 was recorded by the 2001 census; this included also Drighlington, Gildersome, Churwell, Tingley and West and East Ardsley. By the census definition, Morley is larger than Pontefract, Castleford, Batley and Keighley. It is in the LS27 (Leeds (Morley)) postcode area, while the telephone numbers area code is "0113", the Leeds prefix.
Morley, like Rome, is built on seven hills: Scatcherd Hill, Dawson Hill, Daisy Hill, Chapel Hill, Hunger Hill, Troy Hill and Banks Hill.
Morley, mentioned in the 1086 Domesday Book as Morelege, Morelei and Moreleia, is traditionally famous for its textile industry, notably the cloth "Shoddy", which was worn by both sides in the American Civil War.
Schoolgirl Sarah Harper was murdered by Robert Black in Morley in 1986, giving the town brief, national notoriety.
A fuller description of the history of the town is provided by the West Yorkshire Archaeology Service and Morley Community Archives - see external links below.
Morleians were strongly opposed to their Borough's incorporation into the new City of Leeds Metropolitan District in 1974. In 2000 a town council was established, partially reversing this situation, although the council no longer governs Drighlington, Gildersome, Tingley and West and East Ardsley. The former Morley Municipal Borough area also includes the smaller villages of Drighlington, Gildersome, Churwell, Tingley and West and East Ardsley. Historically, Morley was the centre of one of two divisions of the wapentake of Agbrigg and Morley; the Morley division included Bradford and Huddersfield.
Morley is represented on Leeds City Council by three wards for the Morley area. They are: Morley North; Morley South and Ardsley; and Robin Hood. Each ward has three Councillors in it.
In May 2006 the electoral ward of Morley South voted for a councillor from the British National Party. The town had previously faced negative publicity following a controversial speech in 2004 by BNP leader Nick Griffin at Morley Town Hall where he allegedly aired racist views. Griffin was later unsuccessfully tried on suspicion of incitement to racial hatred following the speech.
Three main secondary schools take in pupils from Morley: Morley High School (formerly Morley Grammar), Bruntcliffe High School and Woodkirk High School (technically in West Ardsley but has a large proportion of students from Morley due to its catchment area). The Joseph Priestley College offers Further Education and has one of its sites in Morley.
Morley railway station is half a mile from the town centre.