500 Words pieces

Two Petrol Pumps
David H Bridges

Little-shopped and unhorrored
Angie Cairns

Seedy river had fun
Lynn Breeze

Hebden Bridge Snapshot
Fenella Berry

The Bridge Parties
Brian Wells

Changing the world
Chris Reason

The Bridge Lanes community of yesterday
Leah Coneron

Ruth Robson-King

Hebden Bridge My Tūrangawaewae
Jo Collinge

Communing with angels in the heart of the UK
June Smith

500 years this bridge has stood
Emma Timewell

Jake takes Billy for a walk
- Jason Elliott

Where there's brown rice, there's brass
- Daily Telegraph

4th funkiest town in the world
- highlife

500 Words pieces

Hebden: a Bridge between Worlds
Sarah L. Long

My spiritual home
Gill Smith

Star Reborn
Adrian Lord

Take it to the Bridge
Mike Barrett

"I want two queues!"
David Binns

The Long Haul
Rachel Pickering

The Bridge
Alastair Graham

Walking with History
Graham Ramsden

A pin in the map
Andi Butterworth

Extracts from a Tudor time travellerís letter
Frances Platt

Her Diverse Fun Day
Lynn Breeze

William Darney (maverick preacher)
Glyn Hughes

Breakfasting on the Bridge
Graham Barker

Hermetic Hebden

Take it to the Bridge
- Leeds Guide









Little-shopped and unhorrored

We have a conundrum in Hebden Bridge: we have more coffee shops, hairdressers and accessories shops than you could toss a stick at, yet struggle to keep an electrical goods store open and even to kickstart a cobblers. We’d all love to never to hit the superstores of the larger towns - we grumble if local service falls short and threaten a mutinous trip to the ‘giants’ when we can’t get a loaf of rye or a jar of artichokes.

But wait! How lucky are we? We are blessed: we can live wealthily in Hebden Bridge without getting into the car or even onto the bus. We are not hemmed around with chain stores like every other British high street; and, despite the present shocking rate of pub closures, we can eat, drink, dress and be shod in our very own town. All it takes is a walk about our charming network of streets and a willingness to wait for the market days.

It’s put me to poetry.

It’s a horrid prospect:

If Vicky and Heidi were to slip well-shod away and never return
Peter pack his books from the Case and flee
the girls in Market Street Spiral outwards
the bike boys jump into the Saddle for a Blazing escape
the jewellers yearn to feel in their true Element and 
Holts dessert the fruit

If the Pennine girls should picnic on cheese and Sauce on other hills
the Crabtree girls feel that life is more than window dressing 
David – and Stephen - mount their beasts and head for pastures new
Sue skid Wildly off to climb a different Mountain
Mr and Mrs Bonsall pull up their tacks and
Duncan stop his pots 

If Pennine Provisions decide that sandwiches aren’t cutting the mustard
SK News feel that life’s not springing off the page
the Apothecary dream of a tonic from another source
Valet Stores itch to give life in general a brush-up 
Mrs Duranzcyk head to far-off gold in them thar ‘ills and Silly Billys play a different game

And if Colour Yorkshire want the greener side and choose the wild blue yonder
Gareth and Elaine forget our pets and run off untethered and free
Peter ache for the bigger picture in his eighth Studio
Mr Mamtora set his sights on another view
The PO wish to stamp a different mark and
Lamberts bemoan that life’s gone stationery -

If they were all to up sticks
and leave us then
where would we be? -

- only half-well fed and watered,
well coiffed and coffered
and brimful of charity, but
ravenous for all else -

We could forage Co-operatively in an Oasis of calm but where else would we be? -

- unlettered, unread,
underfed and uncheesed,
unadaorned and unseeing,
unexercised and unpetted,
unclad and unembossed,
unframed and

unamused ….

Love them as they are
demand their best
give them back in shoals of gold and
the richest town in England
we will remain:

little-shopped and unhorrored.

Angie Cairns