Pictures of Halifax
Two fine buildings show the connection between the past and present of Halifax. One is the opulent gleaming glass modern office block belonging to the Halifax Building Society, founded here in 1853 and the other is the Piece Hall which was initially built during the heady days of the "wool trade" and rebuilt in the 1770's. The Piece Hall, thus called because weavers took their pieces or lengths of cloth, to the hall to be sold, is the only surviving manufacturers hall in England, it is clearly identifiable from its domed roof topped with a dramatic weathervane in the shape of a sheep.
Halifax is an industrial city close to the famous Pennines and the route of the Pennine Way in what is known as Yorkshire's "Bronte" country. For such a built-up city, Halifax retains a surprising number of old historic buildings, these range from humble weavers cottages to the grandeur of the Piece Hall and the 15th century parish church dedicated to St.John. The church is a beautiful Perpendicular building which incorporates the remains of an earlier Norman church.
Although Halifax has no real association with the Bronte's, it has links through two nearby villages, these are Ludden Foot where Branwell Bronte was station master for a time, and Southowram, where Emily Bronte worked as a tutor at Law Hill House. It is believed that whilst here, in the sparse countryside, she gained her inspiration for her novel Wuthering Heights.
Of interest is Bankfield Museum, this houses a fine collection of textiles, Wainhouse's Tower - this is considered to be the best folly in the country, it was built by John Wainhouse (1817-1883) and Shibden Hall, a fascinating timber-frame building which houses a folk museum.
Halifax has all the usual large stores, plenty of pubs, lively markets, a wide choice of hotels both in the centre and the lovely surrounding countryside which is well worth exploring, especially the picturesque villages along the Pennine Way.