Heritage Walks by Halifax Civic Trust with David Glover

Please find information on two Calderdale based heritage walks run by Halifax Civic Trust.

Local historian David Glover will be your guide as you walk through areas of Calderdale, learning the history and some not so widely known facts about the past of Halifax.

Both events are free of charge but booking is essential.

The full length of Wakefield Gate or Magna Via
Click above for full walk information and to book onto this walk
When : Sat, 23 July 2022 from 14:00 – 17:00 BST
Meet at : Norcliffe Lane, HX3 8PL

An exhilarating, challenging linear walk from Badger Lane along the eastern medieval route into Halifax, including fine views of the Shibden Valley, panoramic town views from Beacon Hill, and locations of Anne Lister interest. This is part of our Summer Season of Tours.

Rough paths and steep slopes in places – tough footwear recommended.

Click above for full walk information and to book onto this walk

When : Fri, 9 September 2022 from 18:00 – 20:00 BST

This is a Two Hour circular Town Centre walk looking at military connections , royal visits, facts & anecdotes about old buildings and projects which have won accolades. The walk is hosted by David Glover Halifax Civic Trust’s Vice Chair. The Tour is part of our Summer Season of Walks.


Heritage Events with David Glover in June

Local Historian David C. Glover will be delivering Heritage Walks with topics around various aspects of life in Halifax this month. There are two local flavour walks as part of Halifax Flavourfest and a fundraiser for St. Augustine’s Church.

David Glover from the Discover Brackenbed Walk : https://wp.me/p1719b-gKC

A Taste of West HalifaxHalifax Flavourfest Local History Walks

Walk 1 – 16th June at 19:00hrs: https://fb.me/e/1MRFsmqLw

Meet at Halifax Gibbet. Walk past t the site of two local murders and the site of the Hanson Lane Bomb,  the little-known Model Village at West Hill Park, Alms-houses, the birthplace of Speaker Whitley, People’s Park, Francis Street and finishing at the gates of Lister Lane Cemetery.

Free event, please book through Eventbrite

Walk 2 – 19th June : https://fb.me/e/1zlqFvHar

Meet opposite 3 Victoria Road, Halifax, HX1 5PT.
Rediscover vanished facilities and buildings including the Halifax Cattle Market & Fairground, ‘St Helena’ Debtors’ Gaol, St Augustine’s Church, The Workhouse, and the site of the first Halifax Slasher attack of 1938. Concludes with a tour of Lister Lane Cemetery – now a European Cemetery of Significance.

Free event, please book through Eventbrite

These are gentle walks and last about 2 hours. You are invited for a complimentary drink at Cha Cha Chai afterwards. Please wear suitable footwear.

Pellon Lane to Lister Lane via St Augustine’s Church
Fundraiser for St Augustine’s Church

Sunday 26th June at 2:30pm

Start at St Augustine’s School, Hanson Lane, Halifax, HX1 5PG

Tickets £8.00 on the door or from Shelagh Hirst on 07941 460905

A nostalgic slideshow of past photographs presented with a fascinating commentary by David Glover. Refreshments will be provided.

From the Discover Brackenbed Park Event May 7th

The pandemic highlighted, in an unprecedented way, the importance of having local and accessible green spaces in our communities. Now, more than ever, we understand the interconnection between wellbeing, good mental health and being active in and around nature. As we are bombarded with news of climate events and the destruction of biodiversity, we are called to work together to reverse some of the damage and give nature a helping hand to recover. And so it has never been a more important time to treasure our local green spaces.


Some people may know Brackenbed park by its other names – Shroggs Tip, the Ash Tips or Shroggs Valley. Others may remember it from its previous uses as a municipal waste site, or latterly as a recreation sports site which was unfortunately demolished due to the threat of methane. Or perhaps you didn’t know about this hidden gem nestled in the Shroggs valley, sitting discreetly behind the high walls in Pellon and Park ward and the dense tree line in Warley and Central Halifax, a large and beautiful green space, brimming with nature and steeped in history.

Despite its obvious potential and some previous work to install benches and paths five years ago, many areas of Brackenbed Park remain neglected, suffering from heavy littering and fly tipping as well as attracting anti-social behaviour. More recently, community groups have removed over 250 bags of litter from the area, repaired a bench at one of the entrances and cleared years of mud and leaves that had rendered another entrance difficult to navigate. Now the methane has been vented and the area is safe, it would seem an opportune time to begin the work of restoring Brackenbed Park in line with the community’s vision and reclaiming it for community use.

Discover Brackenbed Park event, organised by colleagues from North Halifax Partnership and Halifax Opportunities Trust, aimed to bring people into the space who might not have known about it, or encourage people to come back, and together, imagine a new future and identity for this wonderful asset sitting at the heart of several of our communities.

We were fortunate to have David Glover host a fascinating history walk that led participants from an already well known and loved People’s Park to show just how close it is to Brackenbed Park, and to find out about the history of the surrounding area as well as the history of Brackenbed Park itself. It couldn’t have been a better way to provide a grand entrance to the park, as when turning the corner from the snicket on Pellon Lane across from James Chambers, the group gasped an audible ‘wow’ as the full park came into view.

When the walking party arrived, they were greeted by artist Frank Darnley (and his giant penguin sculpture!) to have a go at creating art from the things found on site such as packets, plastic and cans, highlighting both the issues with littering and reimagining a use for the things that would otherwise go to waste.

Alison Jones, from Halifax Opportunities Trust, offered kite making for families from colourful recycled things. Dan Marham, from North Halifax Partnership hosted a bug finding activity – it was wonderful to see the children really engage with this, excitedly sharing the wide array of different insects they found on site. Dan also brought Tommy and Shellby the Horsefield Tortoises which both the adults and children in attendance enjoyed holding and learning a little bit about the species. Natalie Ratner, also from North Halifax Partnership, was on hand to record people’s thoughts and ideas for the space, helping to imagine how it could be in future.

Leah Greig, from Positive Impact Sports, brought music and sports with lots of people having a go at archery which hinted at the possibilities of bringing sports facilities back to the park. Along with Leah, Charley, from CLT Creations, helped to create a fun party atmosphere with face painting.



To see families engaging in different activities and taking part in this sporting opportunity, utilising the green space it was lovely to see.

Leah says: ‘The potential power of archery in communities to support wellbeing is massive. Archery is not only one of the most inclusive sports, it is also the perfect activity in our socially distant times and there are many benefits to Archery:

  • Improves your focus : For mental health, archery provides active meditation, which can improve your mood, and ease anxiety and depression. Because archery requires focus, archers with post-traumatic stress disorder often find relief by practicing. It quiets the mind and helps them focus on something they can control.
  • Improves your hand-eye coordination.
  • Improves your upper strength.
  • Improves your social skills.
  • Improves your confidence.

From speaking to the families who attend they showed a key interest of getting the space back in use with different active opportunities such as a park, MUGGA, courts for juniors session such as Netball and Basketball. Additionally, on the back hand of this the Archery session went down a treat as one child in particular mentioned they didn’t like sport however they “really enjoyed the Archery”.

From a sport perspective I believe it’s a matter of urgency to get this space in use again with sporting opportunities for families in the local community. This would have such a positive impact to the local community activity levels. To progress in the right direction, we need to build on the awareness and a clear up of the area (litter pick) before we can formally put sporting activities on for the community to engage with. There are many benefits of Urban green spaces, such as parks, playgrounds, and residential greenery, as they can promote mental and physical health, and reduce morbidity and mortality in urban residents by providing psychological relaxation and stress alleviation, stimulating social cohesion, supporting physical activity, and reducing exposure to air. But most importantly it’s the active element that brings the community together.’

It was fantastic to see people really enjoying the activities and using the space in a different way, helping us all to imagine a different future for Brackenbed Park as place to play, have fun, engage with nature and connect with neighbours and our communities.

Liz Kenny described discovering Brackenbed Park for the first time at the event in an article for the Halifax Directory: ‘Last month, I attended an event that took me to a beautiful, green open space in Halifax that’s steeped in history and full of potential for our wider and local community.

I joined a Saturday morning walking tour that led me from People’s Park, across Park Ward via Queens road and over to a surprising part of the town that I’ve never seen before. I walked down a snicket, just off Pellon Lane opposite Queens road and was rewarded with a WOW moment view over the top of what was Shroggs Tip. It is now open land with park benches and paths.

I returned the next day with my family, we walked the dog there and it was still so lovely.’

Zain Ghani from Staying Well reflected on the event: ‘I attended the Heritage Walk led by David from Calderdale Heritage Walks who was incredibly proficient and detailed in leading the walk. I attended the event at Brackenbed Park which seemed to have gone really well and with lots of people attending. The event had a lovely community feel to it, and of course snacks and treats on offer went down well! It was great to see a range of ages present and an active listening project in capturing local voices on their thoughts about the space. I think the space at Brackenbed Park can be used for various things such as events, physical activity, orienteering, a place of expression and discovery, and more! From a Staying Well perspective, I believe this space can encourage adults to access green spaces to move more, socialise, learn about wildlife and feel part of their local community. There is lots of interesting history about this place and bringing people to share history and displaying this could be a purposeful and mindful activity.’

Some of the ideas imagined for Brackenbed Park included an enclosed dog park, wild flowers and butterflies, cycling tracks, orienteering, sports facilities, a playground or adventure park and a large festival type event.

If you would like to join with other members of the community as part of a group to create a vision for the space and oversee its development, please join the Whatsapp group here: https://chat.whatsapp.com/FMUk1ewhFLdAOeo6mSw3wq or scan the QR code. You can also follow the Facebook page ‘Brackenbed Park’ to keep up to date with developments. If you have any ideas or suggestions, please contact Natalie.ratner@nhpltd.org.uk or alison.jones@regen.org.uk.

We hope this is just the beginning and look forward to everyone being involved in the next chapter!

Illustrated Historical and Heritage Talks at the Square Chapel with David Glover

Halifax’s very own local historian David Glover will be hosting a series of Illustrated Historical and Heritage Talks and what a more appropriate venue than the Square Chapel of the Arts to host these.

These talks will be running throughout the year and they are a fantastic opportunity to learn a variety of little known facts that have shaped the borough. See Halifax as it was and get a flavour of what life was like.

Tickets are £6.00 per person.

You can purchase via Quaytickets or book Online via the Square chapel website or by calling 0343 208 6016

List of talks:

Next up: Wednesday 27 April at 2.15pm
The Halifax slasher – panic and vigilantism on the street in 1938.

For aficionados of true crime, find out how in the brink of the 2nd World War, Halifax entered an unprecedented and scary lockdown during the last week of November 1938.  As war clouds gathered over Europe, a mysterious attacker had been cutting the clothes of local people (mainly women) in the dark, sometimes causing wounds. Dubbed ‘The Halifax Slasher’, his description varied, and the story was publicised by Press across the UK.  Paranoia and resulting vigilantism in the district were astonishing, and it took a team from Scotland Yard to identify what was happening and prosecutions followed.

May 25th : Old Halifax Photos – 10 – New Selection!

August 31st : Halifax in the 1970s

September 28th : Father to Gentleman Jack : The life of Captain Jeremy Lister

October 26th : The life story of Halifax Parish Church – Now Minster

November 30th : Fine Halifax Houses for Men, Small Flats for Women – and Almshouses

Full events description (Word document)

Find out more at the Square Chapel website

Suffragette Walk March 8th for International Women’s Day 2022

Halifax Central Initiative would like to invite the women of Calderdale to celebrate International Women’s Day with a heritage walk, dedicated to the Suffragettes of Halifax.


Follow in the footsteps of these pioneering women, led by local historian David Glover.

The walk starts at Hanson Lane Enterprise Centre, HX1 5PG at 11am and it lasts approximately 2 hours.


For more information and to book, contact:
Shebana Sadiq – shebana.sadiq@calderdale.gov.uk
01422 365948

Upcoming Illustrated Local History Lectures from David Glover

David Glover, the president of the Halifax Antiquarian Society will be presenting a number of local history lectures in June and July 2019.

On Thursday 20 June, 6:00pm-7:30pm at Central Library, Square Road, Halifax HX1 1QG there will be a talk on The Brontës & Halifax Parish: Links Old & New. Calderdale has an amazing variety of little known connections with the Brontës. Did you know Charlotte bought her wedding dress in Halifax? Hear about this and much more.

On Tuesday 25 June, 7:30pm, David is speaking at The Grayston Unity Bar (opposite Halifax Town Hall Porch) about Emily Bronte, Wuthering Heights and High Sunderland.  Tickets at £5.00 must be booked in advance on 07807 136520 as seating is very limited.

On Thursday 27 June, 7:30pm, at St. Matthew’s Church, Wakefield Road, Lightcliffe, there will be a talk about John Crossley & Sons of Dean Clough 1803-1982.  Entry is  £5.00 and tickets can be obtained from Tony Hillam on 01274 675405.

A talk about the Young Anne Lister, 1791-1811 will take place on Friday 12 July, 7:00pm at Halifax Minster where Anne is buried. Tickets are available through Eventbrite or from Halifax Minster on 01422 355436.

The following day, Saturday 13 July, 3:00pm there will also be an Anne Lister themed tour of Halifax Minster. Tickets again £5 may be obtained from the Minster on the number given above.