Hebden Bridge Visitor
and Canal Centre
Hebden Bridge HX7 8AF
Tel: +44 (0)1422 843831
E-mail: Visitor and Canal Centre
The old packhorse bridge
Known as the
Pennine Centre, Hebden Bridge takes its name from the packhorse bridge
over Hebden Water. The town developed in late medieval times as a river-crossing
and meeting point of packhorse routes from Halifax to Heptonstall, Burnley and Rochdale.
Textiles have been important in the Upper Calder Valley for centuries, but it was not until mechanisation and steam power were introduced from the late 18th century that Hebden Bridge began to grow significantly.
The arrival of the canal and railway attracted industry to the valley bottoms, but
with limited flat land and a growing army of textile workers, dwellings were ingeniously
built on the valley sides, giving the town its characteristic
Hebden Bridge has seen great change in recent years. Traditional industries are no longer a major force, but buildings have been stone-cleaned and revitalised, the Rochdale Canal has been restored, and the locality has become a desirable place to live and visit.