Plan your stay
Ann Walker’s grandfather, William, largely funded the Georgian Lightcliffe Old St Matthew Church, which was erected in 1775 and replaced a...
Ann Walker’s grandfather, William, largely funded the Georgian Lightcliffe Old St Matthew Church, which was erected in 1775 and replaced an earlier, Tudor foundation.
William also built Cliffe Hill just a short walk away, where Ann Walker lived. Ann and her family worshipped at St Matthew’s Church and had family pews.
After becoming the companion and wife of Anne Lister of Shibden Hall, the couple had a green velvet-lined pew installed at St Matthew’s so they could worship together there.
Ann died in February 1854 and was buried in the church, according to her memorial plaque “under the pulpit”. The exact location of this pulpit is the subject of debate, as the church was replaced in 1880 with the current church building.
The old St Matthew’s church was used as a mortuary chapel, but it fell into decay after suffering serious damage from a storm in the 1960’s. Vandalism and theft followed and the church was demolished in the early 1970s.
Fortunately the ‘Friends of Friendless Churches’ rescued the memorials from the walls of the church and they are now stored in Lightcliffe Tower, the only remaining part of the old St Matthew Church.
A memorial stone has been placed on the spot where it is thought that Ann lies and the brass memorial plaque to her now hangs high inside the tower. The plaque is hard to decipher but reads:
In memory of Ann Walker of Cliffe Hill who was born May 20th 1803 and died February 25th 1854
and is buried underneath the pulpit in this church.
And of her niece, Mary who died June 6th 1845 and is buried in this churchyard.
And of her nephews George Sackville (Sutherland) who died in 1843 aged 12,
John Walker who died in 1836 aged 1 year and are buried in Kirkmichael, Rosshire,
the children of George MacKay and Elizabeth Sutherland
Sadly there are no known images of Ann Walker. Most of what we know about her comes from Anne Lister's diaires and letters. Ann Walker is portrayed by Sophie Rundle in the BBC ONE/ HBO drma Gentleman Jack.
You will find Lightcliffe Tower along Wakefield Road, in Lightcliffe, Halifax. The tower is located on your left (as you are driving out of Halifax) just before Till Carr Lane, opposite the Sun Country Inn, HX3 8TH.
The Tower will be open to the public on set days between May and August 2021. You can find full details here.
A Museum since 1887, Bankfield tells the story of Halifax and Calderdale, using its rich and diverse collection...
A Museum since 1887, Bankfield tells the story of Halifax and Calderdale, using its rich and diverse collections.
Bankfield Musuem is set in the attractive surroundings of Akroyd Park, at the centre of Akroydon model village conservation area, a Victorian mansion that was the home of local mill owner, philanthropist and MP, Colonel Edward Akroyd.
Bankfield’s exhibitions cover local history, costume, art, toys, military history, jewellery and textiles from around the world.
Our collections contain objects from Ancient Egypt through to the 21st Century as we continue to collect and preserve items for future generations.
We are located a short distance from the centre of Halifax, with free parking and close to public transport links.
Entry to the Museum is FREE, but you must book online. You can book your admission to Bankfield Musuem here.
Numbers are being limited to ensure that we can keep visitors safe. Please have your ticket ready to show staff either on your phone or as a printed copy.
Sanitiser will be provided at various points and we will be frequently cleaning the venue in line with government guidance. You must wear a face covering whilst inside inline with Government guidance on face coverings.
Tue - Sat: 10:00-16:00
Hebden BridgeSnug is a leading contemporary craft gallery in the North of England. Showcasing contemorary craft and design by some of the most prominent designe...Snug is a leading contemporary craft gallery in the North of England. Showcasing contemorary craft and design by some of the most prominent designer-makers from the UK and Ireland alongside a selection of photography and lovely things.
Imagine a market day in Halifax. Two thieves are being led from the gaol and in turn, forced to lie with their ...
Imagine a market day in Halifax. Two thieves are being led from the gaol and in turn, forced to lie with their heads between two upright posts. Above, a fearsome blade is glinting in the sunlight. A horse, yoked to a rope, wrenches out the security pin and the blade slices down..! The date was 30th April 1650 and Halifax Gibbet had claimed its last victim.
The Halifax gibbet was an early guillotine. The Lord of the Manor possessed the authority to execute summarily by decapitation any thief who was caught with stolen goods to the value of 13½d or more, or who confessed to having stolen goods of at least that value.
Decapitation was a fairly common method of execution in England, but Halifax was unusual in that it employed a guillotine-like machine that appears to have been unique in the country, and it continued to decapitate petty criminals until the mid-17th century.
A 15 foot high replica of the Gibbet has been constructed on the original site at the bottom of Gibbet Street. To find the Gibbet; from Halifax town centre, take Pellon Lane, turning left onto Bedford Street North. The Gibbet is at the end of the street, to your left, on the junction with Gibbet Street.
The Gibbet’s original blade has been preserved and is on display at Bankfield Museum, Halifax.
Welcome to the valley of the sheep - schep dene - the home of the Lister family for over 300 years. Shibden Hal...
Welcome to the valley of the sheep - schep dene - the home of the Lister family for over 300 years. Shibden Hall was the home of the noted 19th century diarist Anne Lister (1791 - 1840). The Hall, dating originally from circa 1420, is a distinctive half-timbered building furnished in the styles of the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries, adapted and extended throughout the centuries by the families who lived here.
We are looking forward to welcoming you back from the 17th! All tickets must be booked in advance (click here for online booking). We will release a few weeks at a time so we can monitor the situation.
We would recommend that all visitors use the main carpark for Shibden Park accessed via the A58 (Halifax to Leeds road), as the small car park situated at the top of the park (off Lister’s Road) soon becomes full and parking on the main road in that area is illegal. Please allow plenty of time to find parking and walk to the Hall (approx. 10 mins) to arrive during your allocated time slot. There are several routes to Shibden Hall which are well signposted at the bottom of the park.
On arrival at the Hall there may be a queue due to staff managing visitor numbers and checking tickets, please be patient as this is for the safety of all visitors, staff and volunteers, so that safe, social distancing can be maintained for everyone. Hand sanitiser will be supplied at various points around the Hall, but it is also recommended that visitors bring their own supplies. Enhanced cleaning will be undertaken around the site, throughout the day in line with government guidance.
Anne Lister is the focus of the BBC drama series 'Gentleman Jack' written and directed by Sally Wainwright. The series explores Anne's life and the lives of those who lived in the Hall and Estate. Suranne Jones plays the role of Anne Lister and Shibden Hall is one of the main filming locations featured in the show.
Shibden Hall is set in a 32 hectares of informal park and woodland, which have won the Green Heritage Award. Explore the beautifully restored historic grounds which offer cascades, pools, tunnels, terraced and fruit gardens and "Paisley Shawl" inspired Victorian bedding designs by Joshua Major.
Hidden within the depths of Shibden Park is a small wooded area known as Cunnery Wood. This Local Nature Reserve is on the footprint of Anne Lister's kitchen garden, fish pond, top up of the cascade and rabbit warren (hence the name Cunnery from Coney-rabbit). The area is rich in wildlife from stunning displays of bluebells under English oak, elm and birch to a multitude of songs from birds, healthy butterfly and moth populations and numerous small mammals throughout.
Click here to Watch a short video, 'Shibden: 500 Years of History.'and click here to watch a second short video about 'The Anne Lister Story', with Helena Whitbread (you can see the video in full at Shibden hall).
You support Shibden Hall and the Museums Service by purchasing through our online shop, with a range of Shibden Hall and Anne Lister themed gifts, cards, books and merchandise
There are frequent buses every 15 minutes or better from Monday to Saturday passing Shibden Hall, between Halifax and Bradford, Halifax and Todmorden/Burnley and Halifax and Brighouse. with other regular and less frequent services throughout the week. Up to date timetables are available from West Yorkshire METRO.
Concession £5.00 (Children 5 - 16 years / Senior Citizens /Passport to Leisure)
Family ticket (2 adults and 2 children): £21.00.
PLEASE NOTE: All tickets must be purchased online in advance. There will be no ticket sales on site. Full details are above.
The Piece Hall is unique. A Grade I listed Georgian masterpiece and the oldest remaining cloth hall in Britain.
Following a multi-millio...
The Piece Hall is unique. A Grade I listed Georgian masterpiece and the oldest remaining cloth hall in Britain.
Following a multi-million pound transformation project, Britain's magnificent and last surviving cloth hall is ready to welcome visitors again.
The Grade I listed structure has stood at the heart of Halifax since 1779 and has now re-opened as a world class cultural, heritage and leisure destination.
The huge open-air courtyard is surrounded by a mix of independent bars, restaurants, cafes, galleries and shops. The stories of Georgian Halifax are told in the specially created exhibition spaces, while the central courtyard plays host to a year-round events programme of music, dance, film and spectacle for up to 7,500 people at a time.
Click here to watch a short video about the reopening of The Piece Hall.
HalifaxHalifax's ornate town hall was designed by Charles Barry, who also designed the Houses of Parliament. This Grade ll* listed building has a magnific...Halifax's ornate town hall was designed by Charles Barry, who also designed the Houses of Parliament. This Grade ll* listed building has a magnificent 180ft tower and spire which is enriched with sculpture. Free guided tours of Halifax Town Hall can be arranged to help you learn more about its fascinating history. Please contact the Mayor's Office on 01422 393022.
HalifaxThe Halifax General Cemetery, Lister Lane, was opened in 1841. Today, the Cemetery has Grade II listed status and has many interesting monuments, p...The Halifax General Cemetery, Lister Lane, was opened in 1841. Today, the Cemetery has Grade II listed status and has many interesting monuments, particularly the gothic spires and obelisks along the main pathway. The Cemetery has been recognised as a Significant Cemetery in Europe, one of only 13 in the UK, putting it alongside such famous cemeteries as Highgate in London. Lister Lane Cemetery covers three acres of land, laid out around a now derelict neo-classical chapel and a raised terrace with views across Halifax to Beacon Hill. The Cemetery is open to the public on Wednesdays from 10am - 3.30pm and most Sundays (weather permitting) from 10am - 12pm when the Friends of the Cemetery are working there.
TodmordenWater Street Gallery is a vibrant and inspiring gallery for contemporary art, showcasing and selling original art from leading artists and committe...Water Street Gallery is a vibrant and inspiring gallery for contemporary art, showcasing and selling original art from leading artists and committed to promoting the work of up-and-coming talents.
Calderdale Industrial Musuem reopens for the May Bank Holiday weekend. We will be open on Saturday 29
Calderdale Industrial Musuem reopens for the May Bank Holiday weekend. We will be open on Saturday 29th May and Monday 31st May 2021 from 10am to 4pm. No booking is required, and the last admission will be at 3pm.
The Museum houses a collection of industrial machinery and artifacts over four floors. Some of the machines are the only surviving examples in the country and have been placed in settings to give a close representation to the time when they were fully operational in the not too distant past.
Down in the basement, the oil engine ‘Sadie’ provides motive power for part of an extensive collection of locally-manufactured machine tools, including lathes, drills and planers. You can take in the experience of nineteenth century Mytholm Coal Mine, learn about stone extraction and the exploitation of clay in the fireclay industries.
The Power Gallery on the ground floor illustrates the story of power generation, from the water wheel to the internal combustion engine, by way of steam and electricity. The availability of power, initially from the numerous well-fed streams throughout Calderdale, was key to the growth of local industry.
The first floor displays products that were made in Calderdale. World-famous names such as Mackintosh’s Toffees and Crossley’s carpets were everyday brands originating in Halifax.
The top floor is still to be renovated and will be opened progressively over the next few years. The objective is to develop and present the story of how worsted cloth is manufactured from sheep’s wool.
The Museum is operated by the Calderdale Industrial Museum Association (CIMA). a registered charity and dedicated group of enthusiastic volunteers.
A great opportunity to witness the rise of the Industrial Revolution in the Calder Valley!
Adults: £5 Concessions (senior citizens & students): £4 Accompanied Children aged up to 16: FREE
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Ted Hughes (1930-1998) was born at 1 Aspinall Street, Mytholmroyd, on the 17th August 1930. He lived there unti...
Ted Hughes (1930-1998) was born at 1 Aspinall Street, Mytholmroyd, on the 17th August 1930. He lived there until he was seven, when his family moved to Mexborough. During his childhood he spent many hours exploring the countryside around Mytholmroyd, and these experiences and the influences of the landscape on him were to inform much of his later poetry.
One of the greatest poets of his generation, Hughes also wrote stories, plays, reviews and essays. He translated the work of, amongst others, Ovid, Racine, Aeschylus and Euripides. He wrote extensively for children, including the story The Iron Man, which was turned into the Disney blockbuster The Iron Giant. Hughes's interests in other art forms led to many collaborations, most famously with the artist Leonard Baskin.
Although best known in the UK, Hughes was a writer of international standing. He won numerous awards throughout his career, including four for his final collection, Birthday Letters. Hughes became Poet Laureate in 1984 until his death on 28th October 1998.
BrighouseThe Harrison Lord Gallery is fast earning a reputation as one of the best places to see and buy contemporary art in West Yorkshire, specialising in...The Harrison Lord Gallery is fast earning a reputation as one of the best places to see and buy contemporary art in West Yorkshire, specialising in contemporary art with a local bias. Famous Brighouse artist Peter Brook was one of the first artists to be represented and to this day his work still sells in large numbers through the gallery. The Gallery features a wide range of styles, so there is something for everyone. Regularly-held exhibitions showcase the talents of individual artists.
Please note that the Gallery & Library will be closing to the public from 20th March until further n...
Please note that the Gallery & Library will be closing to the public from 20th March until further notice.
This purpose built Art Gallery and public library, known as ‘The Rydings’, is surrounded by a beautiful park and gardens.
The front gallery hosts an exhibition of oil paintings, based on People and Places, including works by Atkinson Grimshaw, Marcus Stone and Thomas Sydney Cooper. The rear gallery hosts changing displays, covering a wide variety of themes from local artists to touring exhibitions, including photography, mixed media and sculpture, ensuring there is always something new and different to enjoy.
The gallery was built by Alderman William Smith and donated, along with his collection of artwork, to the people of Brighouse in 1907.
The Smith Art Gallery provides a pleasant atmosphere to meet your friends, interact with beautiful paintings and do the family gallery hunt/trail.
There is also an exciting programme of temporary exhibitions in a range of media from paintings to photography and textiles, providing a wonderful experience each time you visit.
Please note that Victoria Theatre will be closing to the public from 20th March until further notice.
Please note that Victoria Theatre will be closing to the public from 20th March until further notice.
Situated in the heart of the bustling Halifax Town Centre, this thriving theatre prides itself on an exciting and varied programme of live events.
From no-holds-barred rock 'n' roll, chart-topping pop and sumptuous ballet, to cutting-edge comedy, fantastic family shows, annual pantomime and unmissable drama - there's entertainment for everyone to enjoy.
Whether you're looking for an unforgettable rollercoaster of emotions, uncontrollable laughter and maybe to shed a tear; to lose yourself in the greatest rock and pop concerts; to marvel at true talent and sensational skills; or simply to spend an evening of relaxation and entertainment with family and friends - it's all happening at the Victoria Theatre!
With a choice of 1,512 seats over three levels: Stalls, Circle and Balcony, no obstructive pillars and raked seating on every level, the Victoria Theatre has the size and magnificence for a sensational theatre experience for everyone.
HeptonstallBuilt in 1764, the design and construction of this Grade II listed Octagonal Chapel were overseen by John Wesley, who frequently preached here. One...Built in 1764, the design and construction of this Grade II listed Octagonal Chapel were overseen by John Wesley, who frequently preached here. One of the first octagonal chapels, it is one of the oldest Methodist churches in continuous use today. This unusual octagonal chapel is open every day. It’s tucked away at the bottom of a flight of steps off Northgate. Entry is free, with donations to the upkeep of the Chapel welcome. Please email Circuit Heritage Officer Mr. John Wilson regarding visits and other activities, at firstname.lastname@example.org. Methodism in Heptonstall began with the firebrand Scot William Darney. He founded many societies on both sides of the Pennines as he travelled, preaching as he went. The Heptonstall “Darney Society” was visited by Charles and John Wesley in 1747. In these early days, Heptonstall had a preacher every sixth Sunday, with the travelling preachers receiving no stipend or allowance, eating where they could. John Wesley continued to visit Heptonstall and there were always immense crowds to hear him. The society was so successful it was decided to build a chapel. The octagon shape was then fashionable for Methodist preaching houses, as it avoided conflict with the established church. The building was finished in 1764. It was intended to hold 200 people, but by 1802 there were 337 members and over 1000 scholars. The solution was to knock down the far end of the chapel, lengthen the walls and rebuild it, preserving its octagonal shape. Heptonstall is located on The Calderdale Way, a 50 mile walking route that circles the borough of Calderdale. Please call in to visit the Chapel if you're passing by.
The apparent tranquillity of Mytholmroyd belies a murky past involving an 18th century counterfeiting gang, the...
The apparent tranquillity of Mytholmroyd belies a murky past involving an 18th century counterfeiting gang, the ‘Cragg Vale Coiners’.This gang's activities were said to be so damaging that they threatened to wreck Britain's currency!
David Hartley learnt his trade as an ironworker in Birmingham, before getting into trouble and moving back to Mytholmroyd to escape the authorities. Once returned to his home at Bell House farmhouse David used ironworking as a cover to clip or file the edges from gold coins, milling the edges back so the change was all but unnoticeable, and making counterfeit coins from the shavings whilst returning the clipped coins into circulation.
The activity soon spread to other farms, with families at nearby Hill Top Farm and Keelham Farm soon becoming involved; forming the beginnings of the gang of Cragg Vale Coiners. Local publicans also helped by placing the counterfeit coins into circulation.
David Hartley seems to have been an enigmatic leader, becoming known as 'King David' Hartley. The gang’s numbers grew considerably until well over 30 individuals were involved. Rumours of the gang's activities reached the authorities, who sent an excise man named William Deighton to investigate.
One of the coiners turned King’s Evidence and betrayed the gang, leading to Hartley's arrest at an Inn in Halifax on 14th October 1769. Hartley's brother Isaac offered £100 to anybody who would kill Deighton. It is alleged that the plotters planned Deighton's murder at an Inn in Mytholmroyd called Barbary's, which is now gone, but was located on the opposite side of the road to the present day Dusty Miller.
On November 10th 1769 at Bull Close Lane near Halifax, Deighton was approached by two men, Matthew Normanton and Robert Thomas. Deighton was shot dead, his body also showing signs of having been stamped on. Just days later, the Government offered a reward of £100 for information leading to the arrest of the murderers and a pardon for anybody, bar the killers, who would turn King's Evidence.
Over 30 people were subsequently arrested, including 'King David' Hartley, who was sentenced to death on April 6th 1770 and hanged at Tynburn, near York, on April 28th. His body is buried in the graveyard of the village of Heptonstall, above Hebden Bridge. Robert Thomas was acquitted of Deighton's murder, but was later hanged in 1774 for being a highwayman. Matthew Normanton initially fled the authorities, but was later caught and hanged in 1775. Isaac Hartley was never brought to trial due to a lack of evidence and died in 1815, aged 78.
Heptonstall Museum has on display some of the original dies used by the Coiners to stamp their gold discs into coins, as well as panels telling more of their story.
The award-winning novel 'The Gallows Pole' by Ben Myers tells the Coiner's story.