Wensleydale is The Valley (dale) of The River Ure on the east side of the Pennines in North Yorkshire, England. Wensleydale lies in the Yorkshire Dales National Park – one of only a few valleys in the Dales not currently named after its principal river, but the older name, "Yoredale", can still be seen on some maps and as the Yoredale Series of geological strata. The Village name 'Wensley' is a derivative of Woden's ley, or meadow of the pagan god Woden, while the valley itself takes its name from the village which was formerly a market town. The valley is famous for its cheese, with the main commercial production at Hawes.
Wensleydale was the home of one of Yorkshire's most famous clans, the Metcalfes, after they emigrated from Dentdale. The Metcalfe Society hold records dating back to Metcalfes living in the area during the 14th century. They were one of the most prominent families in Yorkshire for over five centuries. Sir James Metcalfe (1389–1472), who was born and lived in Wensleydale, was a captain in the army which fought with King Henry V in the battle of Agincourt in 1415. Metcalfe is still one of the most common surnames in Yorkshire.