Category Archives: History

Warley Museum included in The Telegraph’s Travel Destinations!

15 fantastic things to do in Britain this weekend…

6. Visit the ‘world’s smallest museum’

It’s not yet official, but a new museum in West Yorkshire has a reasonable claim to being the world’s smallest. Occupying a disused phone box in Warley, Calderdale, the booth is filled with local historical artefacts, including old photographs, glass etchings, and personal items such as fashion pieces and jewellery.

Warley History Archive: Wilkinson Pickles of Gads Hill in Unique Stone-laying Ceremony 1897

Continued from ‘The Warley Lantern’ newsletter Christmas 2012…

A news item from the Sowerby Bridge Chronicle: Wilkinson Pickles of Gads Hill in a unique stone-laying ceremony in 1897

(click to enlarge image)

Wilkinson Pickles in Unique Stone-laying Ceremony 1897

(Extract below from the feature in ‘The Warley Lantern’ newsletter Christmas 2012)

Gads Hill and the Astonishing Wilkinson Pickles

The steeply banked and formerly densely wooded area of Trimmingham has always been closely associated with Warley. For example, Miss Elizabeth Farrar, who lived at Trimmingham House was one of the main benefactors for the building of Warley St John’s Church. Scattered across this hillside, around and below West View Park, lie many fine houses. The grand and imposing ‘Gads Hill’ is situated on the hill-top and, as lovers of Charles Dickens will know, takes it name from that famous author’s own house in Kent. The house was built by Wilkinson Pickles owner of the nearby Steam Laundry who insisted on an exact replica of Charles Dickens’ own library being created in the house. A wonderful story and apparently a somewhat eccentric character. Amongst Wikinson’s other notable activities were globe-trotting trips to all corners of the earth studying steam laundries and a visit to the holy land – where he brought back two very heavy tablets of stone which he installed in Boulderclough Methodist chapel. Williamson was a native of Sowerby but like many before him had chosen to emigrate to Warley at the earliest opportunity and naturally, we don’t blame him. His house still stands proudly on the hilltop with some windows looking straight out to Warley Edge. Did he imagine as he gazed out to the fields beyond, that he might one day pen a work that would be as great as his hero?

Warley Green Trail: Panorama Board

The Warley Green Trail through the village encompasses nature, geography and history and in the graveyard this comes together in the new information board featuring the panorama of the Norland and Sowerby hillside.

The panorama board is designed and illustrated by Axel Abel Art with funding by Northern Gas Networks and the Community Development Foundation.

Halifax Film Society: An Evening of Short Local Films

Halifax Film Society presents an evening of short local films at The Playhouse on Sunday 21 October at 7:30 pm.

Programme to include (amongst others):

We of the West Riding (1945)

Screenplay by Phyllis Bentley and directed by Ken Annakin, exploring the daily life of a large family in Yorkshire, this film shows their work at the textile mills and their varied leisure pursuits.

Owe Bit Bog Oil (1963-64)

A film by Yorkshire filmmaker Eric Hall and with a commentary in Yorkshire dialect about the local game of knurl and spell.

Trailing Dirt (2011)

Filmed in Heptonstall and directed by Richard Cousins, a story of the bond between two boys in the 1980’s, pushed by the need to create something beautiful in their down-trodden world.

Tickets £5/£4 available at the door

Shepherds of Warley

Anthony Shepherd, a visitor from Brighton, came to the area in August to further his research into his family history. Anthony has traced his ancestors back to 1360 in Warley and Ripponden and wants to find a connection between the Shepherd name and any Warley buildings which carry the Shepherd name, e.g. Far Shepherd House Farm.

If you can help in this then do contact us at

BBC Four Drama ‘Room at the Top’ Set in Halifax

BBC 4 presents the drama ‘Room at the Top’ , an adaptation of John Braine’s 1950’s novel, set in the mill town of Warley, Halifax.

The drama tells the story of ambitious young man, Joe Lampton, who arrives in the affluent mill town of Warley, Halifax and sets about a plan to marry into high society…

This is a two-part drama broadcast on BBC Four. It stars Matthew McNulty and Maxine Peake.

Click here for broadcast dates on BBC 4.

For immediate viewing on-line with BBC iPlayer, click the link for episode 1 and episode 2.