Until further notice talks and lectures will be via Zoom.

Tuesday Sept 22nd 7pm: a Zoom lecture The International Brigade and the Spanish Civil War. Speaker Michael Crowley

Playing extracts of interviews he conducted 25 years ago, Michael Crowley tells the story of a group of volunteers from Manchester who went to fight for the Republic in the Spanish Civil War. Their motivations for going, their journeys into Spain, training undertaken, experiences of battle and of imprisonment; their lives after. To reserve a place at the lecture register with Eventbrite here

Tue, 29 September 2020 19:00 – 20:00 A practical guide to finding your ancestors in Calderdale. Speaker Ollie Robertshaw To reserve a place for this zoom lecture register with Eventbrite here

Researching your family history shouldn’t start and end with Calderdale is relatively well covered by genealogical resources going all the way back to the 13th century. Many are either available online, or found in local archives and churches. Others are indexed and can often be photographed for a small fee. The HHH-S website lists many of these resources, and Ollie Robertshaw will talk us through them, followed by a Q and A .

Tuesday October 20th 7.30pm City in the Hills Ann Kilbey and Nick Wilding describe life in Dawson City; a makeshift home outside Heptonstall for reservoir workers in the early 1900s. Register here

It was a little booklet by the late Harry Armitage that kindled Corinne McDonald’s and Ann Kilbey’s interest in the building of the Walshaw Dean Reservoirs. With Corinne’s painstaking research and Ann’s illustrations the story is brought vividly to life in this talk which tells of the trials and tribulations behind what is now a tranquil moorland scene.

Monday November 9th 7pm – 8.30pm.  ‘I Often Think About My Brother.’ Sibling Grief in the Aftermath of the First World War.  Speaker: Linda Maynard. Register here.

Remembrance Day reminds us of the seismic casualties of the Great War. The potency of sibling grief, too-often overlooked, is a recurrent theme in Great War narratives, the oftentimes trivial or apparently inconsequential acts of remembered love that haunted surviving brothers and sisters as they mourned their childhood companions throughout their lives. Public memories of the Great War often drown out these more intimate memories. Individual names became subsumed in the mass of losses. This anonymisation of the dead explains siblings’ need to mark the particular war stories and sacrifice of brothers, salvaging individual stories from the incomprehension of mass slaughter. This talk will look at the different ways surviving siblings sought to give a voice to their dead siblings, to ensure they were not forgotten. Above: Tom Sams visiting his brother’s grave 1926


Tuesday October 29th Hebden Bridge Town Hall 6pm

The Battle of Heptonstall exhibition launch. This will be a month long exhibition in the town hall foyer and café area on the English Civil War and it’s impact locally. The exhibition will also include a display on the community play of the same name produced earlier this year to commemorate the  375th  anniversary of  the battle, including photographs by Bruce Cutts and poetry by Michael Crowley from his forthcoming collection The Battle of Heptonstall.

Previous Events

September: The History of Heptonstall Council Estate  Speaker: Mary Ellen It is 80 years since plans were passed by Hebden Royd Council to build the first phase of the Estate. This talk will cover details of the two building phases (1939 and 1945) – land acquisition, architects’ plans, builders’ specifications, names of the original tenants –  alongside personal experiences of living on the Estate. The aim is to create a detailed ‘map’ of the estate’s inhabitants so please bring any photos or stories with you.

Saturday August 17th & Saturday August 24th 11am – 3pm. Meet at Heptonstall Museum

Celebrating Ted Hughes in Heptonstall: Nick Wilding’s Ted Hughes Poetry History Trail around Heptonstall. To celebrate Ted Hughes’ birthday Nick Wilding will show his 20 minute film ‘Sacred  Place’ about Hughes’ childhood in Mytholmroyd and his time with his brother in Crimsworth Dean where they used to camp. Hughes once said it was where everything he ever wrote  originated. Nick will then lead a walk around the various places that were poetic inspiration for Hughes. Places limited to 20 per day.