Hebden 500

Celebrate 500 years of creativity

Join in the biggest birthday bash the town has ever seen.

Hebden’s old packhorse bridge was built in stone exactly 500 years ago. In the centuries that followed, the town grew around it, gradually becoming what it is today – a community-spirited, creative and unique place to live, work and visit.

And that’s definitely something to celebrate! Walks, talks, food, film and festivals – there’s a whole year of special HB500 happenings to look forward to.

          
Fri, April 2           

Easter Pace Egg Play
Heptonstall Pace Egg Play
           
Mon, April 5           
Duck race
Pics and a video clip from last year's Duck Race
           
April 15
Hebden Royd at the Movies
Our very own film festival opens with Nick’ Wilding’s story of local films and film-making. Picture House.

April 29
My Summer of Love
Hebden Royd at the Movies film festival. Picture House

May 1, June 12, Sept 4 and Oct 30
Walk in the footsteps of Ted Hughes
A guided walk around the historic village of Heptonstall to discover the places and landscape that inspired the poet and writer Ted Hughes. The event begins at 11am with a screening of the short film Sacred Place, which introduces Hughes and his childhood years in Mytholmroyd. A strenuous 1½ walk, led by Nick Wilding (shorter walks available on May 22, July 3 and Sept 25). £3.00 (£1.50 concessions). Booking essential. Call Heptonstall Museum on 01422 843738 or 843831.

May 3
Communications. A walk exploring how Hebden Bridge has been a focal point for communications over the centuries, covering packhorse routes, early turnpikes, the coaching era, the Rochdale Canal, the Manchester-Leeds Railway, trams and buses and one or two less obvious aspects of communication. Meet Ed Westbrook in Bridge Gate by the old bridge at 2pm. There is a charge of £3.

May 13
Nicholas Nickleby – film
Hebden Royd at the Movies film festival. Picture House

May 13-16
St Pol 30th anniversary twin town visit, including celebration at the bridge and civic presentation.

May 20
27 Years of How We Used to Live.
Part of the  Hebden Royd at the Movies' film festival. Little Theatre at 7.30pm.
Freda Kelsall, writer of the entire popular TV series, looks back at some of the interesting and funny things that happened behind the scenes in the course of filming the series with the help of some illustrative extracts from the programmes, which over 27 years featured many local locations and quite a surprising number of local people!

May 31-June 5
Pennine Spring Music Festival. Chamber, orchestral and vocal concerts, piano recitals and more for the festival’s silver jubilee year. www.penninespringmusic.co.uk

May 25
Keep Safe, Keep Well
9.45am to 2pm at the Town Hall in Hebden Bridge. Information and advice from more than 20 agencies. Free personal alarms, window locks, fire safety checks, benefit entitlement checks and low-energy lightbulbs. Free admission, prize draw and hot drink for all visitors. Judith Guy, Calderdale Carers Project. 01422 369101

May 27
A Boy, a Girl and a Bike – film
Hebden Royd at the Movies film festival. Picture House

May 29-30
Launch of the Transition Town
Celebrating the 500th anniversary and the beginning of the next 500 years of sustainability. The official launch weekend includes a Transition Zone, with solar and bike powered stages, solar cinema, food growing, workshops, cafe and stalls. www.hebdenbridgetransitiontown.org.uk

May 29-31
Big Green Weekend
www.biggreenweekend.org.uk

May 31-June 5
Pennine Spring Music Festival. Chamber, orchestral and vocal concerts, piano recitals and more for the festival’s silver jubilee year. www.penninespringmusic.co.uk

June-July
Bridges photo exhibition. Trades Club. Craig Shaw’s collection of photos of the historic bridges in the area, their history and folklore, along with photos from the past. www.hebden500bridges.co.uk

June 2-6
Warstein 15th anniversary twin town visit
Celebration at the bridge and civic presentation. Thursday, June 3 at 10.30am, performance by the Warstein choir.

Until June 19
Bridges Book Quiz
The Book Case has devised a Bridges Quiz with a prize of a £20 book token. And for children, a special HB500 family quiz with prizes for naming 10 characters from children’s fiction that features bridges and the best illustrated short story based around the packhorse bridge. Winners will be announced on June 19 and a selection of the stories published on www.bookcase.co.uk. As well as the quizzes, Book Case literature experts have drawn up a timeline of books marking each decade from 1510 to 2010. More details and forms from the shop on Market Street.

June 2-6
Warstein 15th anniversary twin town visit, including celebration at the bridge and civic presentation

June 5-24
Handmade Parade Open Workshops
Come along to make costumes, giant puppets and parade art ahead of the Handmade Parade on June 26. www.hebdenbridgeparade.org.uk

June 6
Boundary Walk
Join fellow walkers on four routes through spectacular South Pennines scenery.

June 10
Helen of Four Gates
Restored thanks to the work of local film-maker and the support of local people, the film Helen of Four Gates will make its debut in the UK after 90 years of being considered ‘lost’. Screening with live orchestral accompaniment – and ahead of the BFI Film Festival in London! Picture House.

Mid-June
History for your wall
Hebden Bridge Local History Society’s colourful new poster (that’s also a leaflet) is to be published mid-June. Lots of fascinating information about the packhorse bridge and the surrounding area. Watch out for more details of when and how to get a copy.

June 12, Sept 4 and Oct 30
Walk in the footsteps of Ted Hughes
A guided walk around the historic village of Heptonstall to discover the places and landscape that inspired the poet and writer Ted Hughes. The event begins at 11am with a screening of the short film Sacred Place, which introduces Hughes and his childhood years in Mytholmroyd. A strenuous 1½ walk, led by Nick Wilding (shorter walks available on May 22, July 3 and Sept 25). £3.00 (£1.50 concessions). Booking essential. Call Heptonstall Museum on 01422 843738 or 843831.

Until June 19
Bridges Book Quiz
The Book Case has devised a Bridges Quiz with a prize of a £20 book token. And for children, a special HB500 family quiz with prizes for naming 10 characters from children’s fiction that features bridges and the best illustrated short story based around the packhorse bridge. Winners will be announced on June 19 and a selection of the stories published on www.bookcase.co.uk. As well as the quizzes, Book Case literature experts have drawn up a timeline of books marking each decade from 1510 to 2010. More details and forms from the shop on Market Street.

June 19-20
Hebden Bridge Band Heritage Weekend, beginning with a concert at the Picture House on Saturday evening featuring the Hebden Bridge Band and guest soloist Joe Cook on tuba. Sunday will see a whole host of traditional brass bands taking part in the third Hebden Bridge marching contest.
           
June 19
The Bridge Birthday Bash
Get your glad rags on for the bridge’s 500th birthday party. The fun starts from 1.30pm – who knows when it’ll end!

  • Packhorse procession over the bridge
  • Madcap mediaeval capers with Will Tease the Jester and the dramatic, dancing King’s Troupe of local children
  • Mediaeval music, dance and merriment
  • A chance to swot up on bridge facts and fiction with snippets to fascinate even the unfascinatable
  • A jolly big batch of birthday buns
  • Some jolly loud bangs
  • The Handmade Parade Samba Brigade
  • And some jolly surprising surprises!


June 26
Hebden Bridge Handmade Parade
Spectacular street parade with hundreds of handmade costumes, giant puppets, samba and parade bands, stilt-walkers and more. Preceded by three weeks of open workshops and masterclasses for would-be paraders, puppet-makers and stilters (no experience required!). www.hebdenbridgeparade.org.uk
           
June 26-July 11
Hebden Bridge Arts Festival
Hebden Bridge Arts Festival promises another packed fortnight of music, drama, comedy and literature events, many of which will celebrate the creative roots set down by artists and performers with links to the town. The Festival exhibition this year is Martin Parr – the Albert Street Years, which will run in the Festival Box Office and Gallery June 12 to July 11. Other events to look out for include music from the 1500s and a festival of new 15- and 10-minute plays. And don’t forget the converted Routemaster bus, which will provide an intimate and unusual venue for emerging artists and performers of all kinds! Keep up-to-date with information at www.hbaf.co.uk.

July 3
The Hepton Singers’ summer festival concert
Spanning 500 years: music from 1510 to 2010 in Heptonstall Parish Church at 8pm. A varied selection of sacred and secular music connected with the year 1510 by composers including Josquin des Pres, Clemens non Papa, and William Cornysh.  The programme will also include Delius' To be sung of a summer night on the water and the premiere of Afresh, seven times by Alison West, which sets a sequence of haiku-like poems by Donald Atkinson in a musical composition of shifting moods – reflective, witty and watery! More info at www.heptonsingers.co.uk

July 4
500 voices: As part of the Arts Festival and the Hebden 500 celebrations, there will be a choir of 500 voices singing on and around the old Packhorse Bridge on Sunday 4th July. Download a pdf of the score for Daniel Bath's specially commissioned piece for 500 Voices, Cross the River. Listen to Daniel and his family singing Cross the River (just an informal recording to give people an idea of the song). Anyone is welcome to just turn up and sing at 500 Voices, but large groups and choirs should register their intention to attend by calling Rebecca Yorke on 07796 958657 or emailing hbfestival@gmail.com.

July 9
Sealed Knot school days
Ahead of the Battle of Hepstonstall re-enactment weekend, members of the Sealed Knot will be visiting local schools to bring history to life.

July 11
Churches Together celebrate of 500 years of Christianity in the valley at the packhorse bridge. Hear the story of Christianity in Hebden with hymns and music. From 4pm

July 10-11
Relive the Battle of Heptonstall
The Battle of Heptonstall organised by Hebden Bridge Local History Society
and Lt. Col. John Lilburne’s Regiment of The Sealed Knot. Eight displays over the weekend, starting with a display of pike and musket drill in St George’s Square, Hebden Bridge at 11.15am. At 1.30pm on Saturday and 1.15pm on Sunday, a skirmish at the old bridge; at 3.30pm on Saturday and 3pm on Sunday, pike and musket drill with explanations of drums and colours, followed by a chance for children to try pike drill in Weaver's Square, Heptonstall. Troops then march to Heptonstall Social and Bowling Club. 4pm on Saturday and 3.30pm on Sunday, display of musket firing at the Bowling Club. St Thomas will be open for light refreshments on both days. Parking in Heptonstall is very tricky, so take the bus if you can! (With financial support from Calderdale Council)

July 17
Hebden Bridge Folk roots festival. The Trades Club, Stubbing Wharf and Fox and Goose will host gigs, workshops and join-in sessions to celebrate the best of folk and roots music with a mixture of local, national and international talent on show. A celebration of Hebden Bridge's creativity, especially in the field of music.

July 17
Heptonstall Festival
An afternoon of live music, magic and storytelling, featuring actress and storyteller Ursula Holden Gill, Hebden Hill Millies, TC & the Swingcats, the Fat Rascals, children’s entertainment and much more. 12-6pm in Weavers Square, and then at the Cross Inn. More details on Facebook or email heptonstallfestival@googlemail.com.

July 23-25
The first Hebden Bridge Festival of Faith and Spirituality
Fairtrade eat and greet, songs of praise, talks and exhibitions – all with the theme of building bridges. Hope Baptist Church and other venues.

July 26-August 27
500 Faces exhibition. Arts Festival shop, Albert Street. A collection of 500 portraits of local people – the largest photo project of its kind being undertaken in the UK. www.500faces.co.uk

July 31-August 1
Vintage Weekend

July 31-August 1
The Clown Crossing
Will he set a new record? Crazy clown (alias Tim Gibbons) will be crossing the packhorse bridge 500 times over the weekend. Come along and cheer him on.

August 15
Poetry Slam
At the Hole in the Wall, Hebden Bridge. Great fun whether you’re sharing your own poems or just listening. From 8pm.

August 27-28
Ale proclamation and The Hebden Howl
Town criers from all over the UK compete for the title of the Hebden Howler 2010.
8pm on Friday: tour of the local public houses for The Ale Proclamation. The Ale Proclamation is a traditional responsibility of a town crier. They used to taste the ale for quality in the town and the public houses that passed the test had a proclamation posted on their door. Saturday: procession to the bridge and from 11am-1pm, business cries (local businesses pay for each town crier to perform a cry for their business). 2pm to 4pm, bridge cries. Organised by Hebden Bridge Business Association.

September 10-12
Treesponsibility Celebration Weekend
Join the group at the halfway point in their 25-year tree-planting programme. Meal and celebration on Friday, planting 500 trees on Saturday and a walk round previous planting sites on Sunday. www.treesponsibility.com or 01422 845418.

October
Calderdale Theatre School Festival

Exploring how young people can bridge different cultures and experiences. More than 50 young people and their teachers from international schools will be joining in the celebration.

November 24
Bridging Centuries
How residents and visitors crossed our waters. Hebden Bridge Local History Society (Visitors £2). Methodist Hall in Bridge Lanes at 7.30pm.

And projects on the web:

www.500faces.co.uk– a collection of 500 portraits of local people – the largest photo project of its kind being undertaken in the UK.

www.hebden500bridges.co.uk – a gradually building collection of photographs of bridges throughout the area.

www.fivehundredwords.co.uk – Hebden Bridge memories, anecdotes and more – all exactly 500 words long.

www.500views.co.uk – A pictorial record of the town, including the streets and snickets, the buildings and the open spaces.

The celebration carries on right through till Christmas and more events are being added all the time.


The Hebden 500 website is hosted by Pennine Pens who created the site in collaboration with frogs design