Artist call-out for new cultural trail in Halifax

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An image of the central clock in Halifax Borough Market, one of the existing points of interest that will be included in the Art and About Trail.


The unique heritage and culture of Halifax will be showcased as part of a new trail around the town’s centre, mixing existing landmarks with new art installations.

The ‘Art and About Trail’ is part of Future High Streets Fund work in Halifax, funded by the Government and being delivered by Calderdale Council. 

The trail is being created in partnership with local arts organisation, Everybody Arts (formerly Artworks) and will showcase brand-new art installations along with existing points of interest such as the Borough Market and the Victoria Theatre. This will create a trail taking in 21 locations around Halifax with works inspired by the town’s history, but with modern techniques and influences.

Artists are now invited to submit their ideas for two of the locations on the trail, at Hatters Fold and George Square.

Hatters Fold is a well-used paved footpath in the town centre leading from Charles Street to the entrances of both the Piece Hall and The Woolshops Shopping Centre. The artwork being commissioned for this location is to focus on the theme of Textiles and Community, especially recognising the contribution of South Asian communities to the borough’s industrial textiles past and present.

In George Square, the artwork will be an environmental themed commission and would particularly suit ambitious sculptural work.

More information about both opportunities is available at The deadline for submissions for Hatters Fold is Monday 11 March 2024, and the deadline for George Square submissions is Friday 22 March 2024. Information about further commissions will be available as the project progresses.

Each point on the trail will feature on a new map which will be created by local illustrator, Talya Baldwin. The locations will also include a plaque and QR code for visitors to find out further information.

Following the routes will create opportunities for people to explore Halifax town centre by walking, wheeling and cycling and also support increased footfall for the high street. The trail is being designed with input from Visits Unlimited and other accessibility groups to ensure it’s accessible and inclusive.

Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Tourism, Towns and Voluntary Sector, Cllr Sarah Courtney, said:

“There are some wonderful visitor attractions and beautiful historic buildings across Halifax town centre and the Art and About trail will guide visitors on a route around the town, taking in these key locations and hidden gems.

“In partnership with Everybody Arts, we’re looking for artists to bring the rich history of Halifax to life and create works which will highlight the town’s past and also look towards its future.

“With work also progressing well on other Future High Streets funded projects, including at the Victoria Theatre, this is an exciting time for arts and culture in Halifax with improvements also supporting celebrations for the Year of Culture, taking place this year.”

Calderdale Council’s Deputy Leader, with Cabinet responsibility for Halifax master planning and regeneration, Cllr Tim Swift, said:

“The Art and About Trail will support better connections across Halifax town centre, with new art installations encouraging footfall across key locations. It will be really interesting to see the development of the works which will take place in partnership with local organisation, Everybody Arts.

“The trail is part of Future High Streets investment within the town and will complement major improvements works already underway at the Borough Market and the Victoria Theatre and upcoming works at George Square and George Street.”

Lauren Iredale, Creative Director at Everybody Arts, said:

“We are thrilled to be working with Calderdale Council to deliver this exciting and ambitious project.  

“Halifax is a town with a rich but sometimes overlooked cultural history so this project has been a great opportunity to take a fresh look at those stories. Together with local and national artists we have been discovering Halifax’s hidden gems and developing ideas for new public art, just for Halifax.

“We hope that Art and About will make our cultural heritage more visible and accessible to the many people who like to visit, live and work in the town. It will combine creativity and civic pride to spotlight the many stories of our town’s resilience, curiosity and imagination.”

The Future High Streets Fund is transforming Halifax town centre, with the funding of £11.7million also being used to regenerate Halifax Borough Market, George Square and the Victoria Theatre. Work is focused on renewing and reshaping the town centre to support an improved visitor experience, enable growth and ensure future sustainability.

Work on the historic market is progressing well, with the newly refurbished public toilets now open and redecoration work soon due to take place on the central clock. The area around the clock will become a seating space, with new display boards showcasing the market’s unique history.

Listed building consent has also been granted for works to the Albany Arcade. These improvements will allow the space to be used for events, outside of market opening hours.

The transformation of the Victoria Theatre is also well underway, with initial works focused around the new box office, which will be in the former Ivor Burns shoe shop on Commercial Street and the former newsagents next to the theatre entrance, which will become part of a new café/bar.

Plans are also in place to create a new public square, events space and greener area in George Square and George Street. This will make this area more welcoming, safer and greener will encourage more people to visit the top of the town centre to shop, meet, socialise and relax. Work is expected to start later this year.