Heritage Open Days 2019

Heritage Open Days is England’s biggest festival of history and culture. Every year, in September, thousands of sites across the country invite you in to explore local treasures of every age, style and function, and many special events are held. It’s your chance to see hidden places and try out new experiences — and it’s all FREE. In 2019 it will run from 13 to 22 September. All events nationwide are posted on the Heritage Open Days website.

Locally the programme is coordinated by the Kirklees Heritage Open Days Committee, a Borough-wide partnership, supported by Discover Huddersfield. In 2019 the Kirklees programme offers a record total of 68 events, including 30 new ones.

The local brochure can be viewed here and will be widely available in print from about 19th August.

Discover Huddersfield will be offering several free walks, which must be pre-booked. Bookings will open on 24th August.

Discover Huddersfield Walks

Several of the upcoming Discover Huddersfield walks may be of interest to our members:

Huddersfield’s Significant Buildings

What do Huddersfield’s town centre buildings tell us about its history?

Chris Marsden, architectural historian and author of ‘Huddersfield in 50 Buildings’ will lead a guided walk on Thursday 20 June at 7.00pm.

Based on his recently published book, ‘Huddersfield in 50 Buildings’, author and architectural historian, Chris Marsden, will provide an authoritative insight into a wide variety of structures and offer an insight to how they form a critical record of the town’s development.

The walk, organised by the Discover Huddersfield partnership, starts at St. George’s Square (Harold Wilson statue), will last between 1.5 and 2 hours and costs £3 per person. No booking is required.

Lindley Chapels, Grand Houses and Mill Workers

One of the Discover Huddersfield partnership’s most popular guided walks over the past few years will again take place on Sunday 7 July. Local resident, David Verguson, will lead a walk through Lindley’s history, revealing the variety of historical features within one of Huddersfield’s most bustling urban communities.

The walk will uncover the story of the community’s development and the people and stories behind its growth. Following some lesser known footpaths, passing pubs, mills, chapels and grand houses, David will unveil the lives of mill owners and millworkers, Methodists and their memorials, a tinsmith and a sculptor.

The walk, which starts from Lindley Methodist Church on East Street, Lindley, at 2.30pm, will last between 1.5 and 2.0 hours.

The walk costs £3.00 per person but no booking is required.

Sculptures, Statues and Mosaics

An evening guided walk around the centre of Huddersfield will highlight the often overlooked wealth of sculptural and other public art in the town.

Led by Chris Marsden, former chairman of Huddersfield Civic Society and author of the recently published, ‘Huddersfield in 50 Buildings’, the walk will begin at 7.00pm on Thursday 18 July from the Harold Wilson statue in St. George’s Square and last approximately 1.5 hours.

The walk features a number of features of national importance, including the world’s largest ceramic panels at Queensgate Market and the stone figures outside the library as well as superbly carved figures such as on the Kirkgate Buildings, Lloyds TSB and Britannia Buildings.

Chris will reveal the background and artists responsible for the works as well as the stories behind various mosaics including ‘Systematic Sequence in Line and Shade’ and ‘Development of the Woollen Industry’.

The walks costs £3 per person but no booking is required.

Discover Huddersfield 2019

The Discover Huddersfield season of guided walks for 2019 has been announced. Please see the PDF leaflet for full details and remember to keep an eye on the Discover Huddersfield web site and Twitter feed for details of any changes to the announced programme.

  • Sunday 31 March — Literary Huddersfield Walk
  • Sunday 14 April — The University Campus Trail
  • Sunday 12 May — Punks, Parratt and St Peter’s: Musical Sites of Huddersfield
  • Thursday 23 May — Exploring Greenhead Park
  • Sunday 9 June — Huddersfield’s Historic Transport Systems
  • Thursday 20 June — Huddersfield’s Significant Buildings: A Personal Selection
  • Sunday 7 July — Lindley Chapels, Grand Houses and Mill Workers: A Walk through Lindley’s Story
  • Thursday 18 July — Public Art Walk
  • Thursday 25 July — Hidden Highfields
  • Sunday 11 August — Huddersfield’s Architecture: What Did the Romans (and Greeks) Do For Us?
  • Thursday 22 August — Building Stones
  • Sunday 15 September — Walking with Women’s Suffrage
  • Thursday 19 September — Almondbury’s Astonishing Past
  • Saturday 21 September — Surprising Lockwood: From a Beautiful Spa Village to an Industrial Hub
  • Sunday 22 September — Huddersfield’s Radical Heritage
  • Sunday 13 October — Huddersfield History with a Caribbean Flavour
  • Sunday 27 October — The Changing Face of Birkby: From Green Hamlet to Global Suburb

New Discover Huddersfield Trails

If you’ve not already spotted them, there are two new Discover Huddersfield Trails waiting to be explored…

Firstly, as part of the Huddersfield 150 events, our own David Griffiths has prepared a new Civic Celebration Trail (PDF) which covers 11 locations including the Town Hall, Somerset Buildings, the Waterworks Office and Greenhead Park.

Secondly, Dave Verguson has prepared a Lindley Trail (PDF), which includes the Mechanics Institute, St. Stephen’s church, Field Head House and (of course!) the famous Clock Tower.

Discover Huddersfield 2018

The Discover Huddersfield guided walks programme for 2018 has just been announced and is summarised below:

  • 8 April — Chapels, Grand Houses and Mill Workers: A Walk through Lindley’s Story (David Verguson)
  • 22 April — Huddersfield’s Historic Canals (Trevor Ellis)
  • 6 May — The University Campus Trail (Lindsay Ince)
  • 24 May — Milnsbridge Transport Walk (Trevor, Eric and Robert)
  • 10 June — Punks, Parratt and St Peter’s: Musical Sites of Huddersfield (Rachel Cowgill)
  • 21 June — Getting to Know our Historic Buildings (David Wyles)
  • 8 July — Huddersfield 150: Celebrating Civic Initiative (David Griffiths)
  • 8 July — Walking with Women’s Suffrage: 100 Years of Votes for Women (Jill Liddington)
  • 19 July — The Building Stones of Huddersfield (Ailsa Burrows)
  • 9 August — Exploring Greenhead Park (David Griffiths)
  • 9 September — Exploding Huddersfield (Chris Marsden)
  • 15 September — Walking with Women’s Suffrage in the Colne Valley (Jill Liddington)
  • 16 September — Discover Historic Almondbury (Vivien Uff)
  • 7 October — Exploring Huddersfield’s Caribbean Heritage (Heather Norris Nicholson, Denzil Nurse and Natalie Pinnock-Hamilton)
  • 28 October — Shuddersfield Halloween Walk (Rebecca Winwood)
  • 11 November — Commemorating World War 1 (Dave Verguson)

With the exception of the three walks in September (which are free but require pre-booking), there is a charge of £3 per person.

Full details can be found in this PDF brochure but we would encourage you to keep an eye on the Discover Huddersfield web site or on their Twitter feed (@discover_hudds) in case there are any amendments to the above details.

Meltham’s Old Ale Trail Walk

The Meltham Walkers are Welcome group have organised a historic ale trail guided walk around Meltham, which will take place on Sunday 20th May 2018.

From Loose Pulleys to Stiff Shackles – join us for a 4 mile walk round some of the 30 sites of Meltham’s old, curiously named, alehouses and inns from the 17th century to more recent times.

The walk also includes a visit to Meltham’s newest microbrewery, The Three Fiends and finishes at Waggon and Horses which is one of the original licenced public houses in Meltham.

Meet at 10am at the Carlile Street Car Park, Meltham HD9 4AE.

Refreshments available after at the Waggon and Horses.

Further details can be found on the group’s web site: walkingmeltham.com/events/

The walk is based on recent research by the society’s web site administrator Dave Pattern, which is available as a free 150 page PDF — “Stiff Shackles and Loose Pulleys: The Beerhouses and Inns of Meltham“.

Wilshaw Welly Walk

Wilshaw Village Hall Committee are currently raising funds in order to acquire the village hall (formerly St. Mary’s Schools) as a community asset.

St. Mary the Virgin, Wilshaw

As part of the fundraising activities, a 5.2 mile circular “Welly Walk” is taking place on the afternoon of Sunday 29 October 2017 and will offer walkers a chance to view the scenic countryside surrounding the small village. The route for the afternoon is detailed in this PDF document.

If you would like to take part and make a donation towards this worthy cause, the walk starts at 1pm from Church of St Mary the Virgin (postcode HD9 4DZ), Wilshaw.

Donations can also be made online via PayPal to wilshaw.village.hall@outlook.com.

The industrial heritage of Wilshaw is discussed in David Griffiths’ article Industrial Villages South of Huddersfield.