How to celebrate birthdays of Anne Lister and Shibden Hall - ahead of Gentleman Jack series 2

Online celebrations for Anne Lister’s 230th birthday will connect thousands of people across the globe to the story of this remarkable woman and her historic home.

Wednesday, 24th March 2021, 8:34 am
Updated Wednesday, 24th March 2021, 8:38 am

On Saturday, April 3, Anne Lister of Shibden Hall, Halifax (1791-1840) would have been 230 years old.

It’s also a landmark year for the Hall, which has now reached its 600th birthday.

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Shibden Hall, Halifax.

Whilst the Calderdale Council-run Shibden Hall will remain closed for Anne Lister’s birthday for the second year running due to COVID-19, the celebrations will be in full swing online.

The council’s Museums Service will release exciting new content and films on social media on April 3.

Posts on @ShibdenHall on Twitter and the Shibden Hall Facebook page will mark the legacy of the scholar, traveller, lesbian, businesswoman and landowner, whose story became world-famous through Sally Wainwright’s BBC and HBO series, Gentleman Jack.

Links to other events in the region to celebrate Anne’s birthday and legacy will be shared over the Easter weekend, including a new podcast by Calderdale Libraries with three episodes about Anne Lister and Shibden Hall on April 2 and 3.

The council’s commitment to sharing Anne’s story and harnessing the ‘Gentleman Jack effect’ has continued during the pandemic.

Whilst Shibden Hall has been closed in line with government restrictions for COVID-safety, the Council has created and shared a 3D virtual tour of the iconic house, where you can walk in Anne Lister’s footsteps from the comfort of your own home with a free online tour.

You can explore the room where Anne wrote her diaries, move freely around the main house, venture through the Victorian gardens and get up close to one of the world’s oldest surviving carriages in the 17th century barn. There are expert virtual guides in every room to share the fascinating features of the house and the stories of people who lived there.

Anne Lister’s diary entries from her birthdays have been transcribed and shared from 1818 to 1840, so you can read what Anne Lister got up to.

Visit www.calderdale.gov.uk/museums to access the 3D virtual tour, the diary entries, a full biography of Anne and other resources to learn more about her extraordinary life.

Shibden Hall is also celebrating a landmark birthday this year.

The first reference to the Hall was 600 years ago, back in 1420/21. It was a family home until 1933, when it became a public museum, and was the home of Anne Lister from 1815 until 1840 when she died.

There are plans to celebrate Shibden600 later in the year when museums can hopefully start to reopen safely, including special exhibitions and a showcase of clothing and textiles from the time of Anne Lister.