According to locals, the scenery starts to ‘get bigger’ in Addingham. Green fields mingle with a wealth of old and interesting buildings.
Slow down. Listen to the river or the call of the curlew.
Have a look for Addinghams’ classical style Piece Hall, built in 1826 to store and display cloth by local cotton merchants and manufacturers.
The world’s second oldest and first successful worsted spinning mill was built at nearby Low Mill village in 1787 by John Cockshott and John Cunliffe. It was later the site of a Luddite rebellion.
Soak up the special atmosphere of one of the earliest Quaker meeting houses. The recently restored Farfield Friends Meeting House was built in 1689.
Do the Dingham Dash. Work your way through every pub in the village and back again (but make sure you eat something on the way…)
Watch out for the Addingham ducks crossing the road (we mean seriously watch out – the locals are very fond of them.)
It’s an unusually steep climb up to the hilltop settlement of Heptonstall from Hebden Bridge but definitely worth the effort. Best way is ‘up the buttress’ – a cobbled path rising up from Old Gate.
Visit the Octagonal Methodist Chapel, where John Wesley was a frequent preacher. It is one of the oldest Methodist churches in continuous use today.
Find the double-sided gravestones in the 13th century ruin of St Thomas a Becket churchyard. In the other Heptonstall church – the later St Thomas the Apostle, which was struck by lightning in 1875, you’ll find the grave of American poet Sylvia Plath.
Learn to write in stunning surroundings. A mile or so away from the centre of the village is Lumb Bank, a former home of poet Ted Hughes and now a residential creative writing centre managed by the Arvon Foundation.
Visit the near-legendary May’s Shop at nearby Colden. Full of local produce and everything else worth buying.
Mytholmroyd & Cragg Vale
Surrounded by dramatic hills and moorland, Mytholmroyd is famous for being the birthplace of the late Poet Laureate, Ted Hughes.
Mytholmroyd has a rich industrial history, and was the home of celebrated coin counterfeiters. It is now home to Walkley’s Clogs, one of the last places in the UK to make and sell genuine clogs.
The longest continuous incline in England, the steep and winding Cragg Road leading out of Mytholmroyd towards Blackstone Edge, provides a major challenge for cyclists (and some drivers.) It will feature as part of the route of Le Grand Depart of the Tour de France in 2014. Why not come and see if you can master it? There’s a couple of pubs on the route…