Calderdale residents are a cultured bunch

An image from last year's Valley of Lights parade in Todmorden
An image from last year's Valley of Lights parade in Todmorden

Calderdale residents “hold their own” in engagement with the arts, a research project has revealed.

The Vital Signs report, compiled by the Community Foundation in partnership with the University of Huddersfield, explored ten core themes in Calderdale including ‘Arts, Culture and Heritage’.

The initiative combines a range of existing statistical data with feedback from a community consultation to give a complete picture of life in the borough,

The foundation’s research shows the cultural amenities score for Calderdale is above the national average, but the lowest across West Yorkshire.

But if Calderdale’s neighbours in the county have more local and cultureal amenities, residents have a healthy appetite for a range of cultural activities.

The borough came a close second to Leeds for visits to museums, galleries and libraries, with Calderdale’s statistics above the national average.

Steve Duncan, CEO of the Community Foundation for Calderdale, said “3.7 per cent of working people in Calderdale work in the arts, entertainment and recreation industries.

“It would appear that there is an appetite for cultural activities in Calderdale and an opportunity to extend the provision of amenities and build on the heritage of our area.”

The report also revealed that 50 per cent of people in Calderdale have used a library in the last year.

The foundation strives to fund cultural activities in the borough. Handmade Parade were awarded a grant from the foundation to stage the ‘Valley of Lights’ festival in the upper Calder Valley.

Its aim was to boost the town and create a positive community spirit following the devastation wrought by the 2012 floods.

It has since evolved into the fantastic Lamplighter Festival which is held in Todmorden.

For more information about the Community Foundation for Calderdale and the work it does, visit