YORKSHIRE was part of the Kingdom of Northumbria but fell to the Vikings who made York their capital in the North of England. It was the Danes who divided their Kingdom of 'Jorvik' into three 'Ridings' that survived as administrative divisions of Yorkshire until the 1970s. Yorkshire is a vast region with a wealth of beautiful countryside although large areas of western and southern Yorkshire have an important industrial history. Coal mining was carried out over a wide area and iron and steel have long been important in the Sheffield area. But it was undoubtedly the wool and textile industry that set in motion the growth of large towns like Leeds, Bradford, Huddersfield and Halifax in the valleys of Aire and Calder. This is where much of Yorkshire's population is still concentrated to this day, but even in these districts there is plenty of neighbouring scenery and much heritage to cherish. However, many visitors opt for North Yorkshire, England's biggest and arguably its most scenic county, with miles of beautiful coastline, countless dales, romantic monastic ruins and impressive stately homes. At the heart of it all lies the wonderful city of York, one of the oldest and most historic places in Europe.