Why you should move to Sowerby Bridge
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Neighbourhood know-how, places and people
Situated at the confluence of the Rochdale Canal and the Calder and Hebble Navigation, Sowerby Bridge (pronounced ‘Sorby Bridge’) is a fab little spot in the Upper Calder Valley. This interesting mill town has much to delight visitors and residents alike post-lockdown, from the shops and restaurants to the meandering waterways and gorgeous surrounding countryside.
Plenty of interesting attractions can be found in Sowerby Bridge. The Calderdale town’s name derives from the actual bridge crossing the River Calder in the town centre, while nearby Tuel Lane Lock is the UK’s deepest lock. Crow Wood Park and Dixon Scar Wood are worth a visit, and Sowerby Bridge open market (‘probably the only solar-powered market in the UK’, according to Calderdale Council) is on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. If kids are with you on a visit to the town, be sure to take them to Reload Nerf Zone, where they can do battle Nerf-style.
In the Sowerby Bridge Wharf area, you’ll spot hip cafés and restaurants, as well as canals with colourful narrowboats. The Moorings is a great lunch stop, as is Temujin Restaurant above, which specialises in the Mongolian barbecue cooking style and has remained open for takeaway during lockdown. For an evening meal in the market town, try small plates restaurant Engine or visit fine Indian dining spot The Village Restaurant, which operates the largest Asian food buffet in Calderdale on Monday and Tuesday (and has offered takeaway in lockdown). Sowerby Bridge is spoilt for choice as regards pubs, so if that’s what you’re after instead, you’ll be sure to find somewhere for you. Alternatively, visit The Blind Pig for a speakeasy-style bar, cocktail teapots and live music every week.
Loving living here
Jolene Head is a solicitor and director at JH Wills, a Sowerby Bridge-based legal firm. ‘My favourite thing about Sowerby Bridge is the high street, with a great mix of bars and restaurants, and the surrounding areas, which are wonderful for walks,’ she says. JH Wills has remained open during the coronavirus crisis, with advisers seeing clients at a social distance or talking to them over the phone. ‘New work is picking up as people learn how to work around and cope with our new way of life. I am just glad that people may take this time to reflect on the need for a will and planning and put things in place,’ she says.
Town life: Fashion designer Christopher Bailey went to school in Sowerby Bridge. If you’re looking to move to the town, you might find the idea’s not a bridge too far: according to Zoopla, the average price for property in the town was £197,524 in June this year. Amenities are good: the town is served by primary and secondary schools, as well as a train station connecting it to places like Manchester, Leeds and nearby Halifax.
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