Hebden Bridge and Haworth: Day trip guide

Polly Checkland Harding
Photo of Howarth moor at night, with a full moon above it

Introducing our day trip guide to Hebden Bridge and Haworth, a literary getaway with a difference.

Two literary destinations, both alike in dignity: Hebden Bridge and Haworth have hosted to poets and writers for centuries. Now, they attract visitors who wear their love of books on their sleeves – and walking boots on their feet. The village of Heptonstall (which overlooks Hebden Bridge, further down the hill) is, for some, a site of pilgrimage; Sylvia Plath’s grave lies here, chosen by her ex-husband Ted Hughes. It’s a site of controversy, partly because Plath – unlike Hughes who was born in nearby Mytholmroyd – had no personal connections to the area, and partly because the headstone also bears Hughes’ surname, despite their divorce. Unhappy disputes aside, Hebden Bridge has a thriving writerly scene, boasting the annual Hebden Bridge Arts Festival, alongside attractive pubs, craft and bookshops.

They attract visitors who wear their love of books on their sleeves – and walking boots on their feet

Haworth, on the other hand, was once home to the Brontë family. Its streets and surrounds will prompt historical memories both good and bad: you can stand in the room where Jane Eyre was drafted, or visit the pub were Branwell Brontë descended into addiction and debt. If you’re after more savoury fare, there are tearooms a plenty to nourish a tramp across on the moors. These wild, heather-spread hills are really the best place to get closest to the area’s past: walk beyond sight of civilisation and you’ll find yourself transported to the wind-harried setting of Wuthering Heights. There’s a lot in both places to pack into a day, so we’ve launched our very own day trip guide to the area, curating the best walks and retreats, pubs, shops and places to stay for a weekend away. Have a read, book a train, and pack your bag full of books.

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Things to do right now

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3 December 2022 10:00 am, FREE

Winter Art and Craft Fair at Heart

Activity Until 3 December 2022, from £35.00

Wreath Making Workshop at Leeds City Museum

Image credit: Maryna Makarenko, Sun-Eaters, 2022
Cinema Until 4 December 2022, from £5

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Red Squirrel at Lightwaves
Festivals Until 4 December 2022, FREE

Lightwaves at Salford Quays

Cinema Until 8 December 2022, from £7.95

Aftersun at HOME

Elizabeth Gaskell's House garden. Photo by Chris Tucker
Literature Until 11 December 2022, from £4.50

Book sale at Elizabeth Gaskell’s House

Cinderella at Hope Mill Theatre
Families Until 11 December 2022, from £27.00

Cinderella at Hope Mill Theatre

Music Until 17 December 2022, from £5

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Flecky Bennett’s HALLOWEEN 2018 Ghost Walk
Activity Until 17 December 2022, from £15

Flecky Bennett’s Ghost Walks