This is the South Pennines

The South Pennines - a wild, wonderful and occasionally wuthering landscape at the place where Yorkshire and Lancashire collide. A land of steep-sided valleys, heather-covered moorland, canals, reservoirs and packhorse trails. The people who live here describe it as 'spectacular', 'inspiring', 'breathtaking' and 'dramatic.' It's a place where you'll find intense local pride - people who are passionate about the area and want to share what they know. And so we’ve obliged. We’ve gathered their recommendations of South Pennines places, people and pastimes and created this website.

You may have already heard about some parts of the South Pennines. ‘The Times’ recently declared Hebden Bridge as "the coolest place to live"; Holmfirth is known worldwide thanks to Nora Batty and ‘Last of the Summer Wine’; the former spa town of Ilkley still draws visitors for its gentle elegance and visitors flock to Haworth to connect with the Brontes.

But the South Pennines are also the dramatic setting for other hidden gems including Todmorden, the Saddleworth villages, Marsden, Slaithwaite, Littleborough and Ripponden. Many people come here for the beer, others to seek inspiration from the area's creativity, take part in a festival or walk, cycle and ride across our rugged landscape.

The South Pennines is full of surprises. But don’t just take our word for it. Come and discover it for yourself. And if you find something you think we’ve missed - tell us!

Spring festivals & events

St George, Heptonstall Pace Egg. Photo: Craig Shaw

The South Pennines in spring is a magical place to be. As the landscape starts to stir after the winter,  events celebrating the season of rebirth and fertility fill the […]

Summer festivals & events

Hebden Bridge Handmade Parade. Photo Darren Fleming

Summertime is a busy time in the South Pennines.  In June the colourful Handmade Parade takes to the streets of Hebden Bridge, followed a week or two later by the well-established Hebden […]

South Pennines creativity – where to buy it!

Meet the Maker Market, Hebden Bridge(Photo:Steve Morgan)

Many towns and villages in the South Pennines host events and opportunities to meet artists and buy their work.  These include Hebden Bridge Open Studios held each July, the Art Markets and […]

The Grandest of Grand Départs!

get on yer bike in the South Pennines. (Photo: Joolz Diamond)

Stage 2 of the Grand Départ of the 2014 Tour de France came to the South Pennines on Sunday 6 July. Millions of people stood in the glorious sunshine to watch the […]

The South Pennines: A Textile Tale

The South Pennines: A Textile Tale. Photo by Steve Morgan

We may have mentioned that we love the South Pennines.  That we are passionate about this landscape and its industrial past.  We have also been known to mention the wealth of creativity we […]

We came, we saw, we did making and doing…


On Saturday 5 and Sunday 6 October 2014  hundreds of people –  men, women, children; local residents and visitors – rolled up their sleeves and took part in the first ever South […]



The South Pennines Local Distinctiveness Handbook We’ve produced a handbook full of practical tips and marketing advice for visitor-facing businesses in the South Pennines.  Copies are free and if you’d […]


Haworth Parsonage  (Photo: Mark Davis)

Haworth is known the world over as the home of the Brontës.  Which it is.  It would be strange not to mention them when telling you about Haworth.  But there are […]

Hebden Bridge

Photo: Sarah Mason

Hebden Bridge takes its name from the packhorse bridge over Hebden Water. Recently declared ‘the coolest place to live in Britain’ by The Times, and one-time winner of the Best Town in Britain […]


Holmfirth - not just  wrinkled stockings (Photo: Andy Leader)

Visitors from across the world come to Holmfirth in search of Nora Batty and her wrinkled stockings, but there’s more to this pretty town than its links with Last of the Summer […]