Sowerby, West Yorkshire

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Not to be confused with Sowerby Bridge or Sowerby, North Yorkshire.
St Peter's Church - Sowerby.jpg
St Peter's Church, Sowerby
Sowerby is located in West Yorkshire
 Sowerby shown within West Yorkshire
OS grid reference SE042234
   – London  170 mi (270 km) SSE 
Metropolitan borough Calderdale
Metropolitan county West Yorkshire
Region Yorkshire and the Humber
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Postcode district HX6
Dialling code 01422
Police West Yorkshire
Fire West Yorkshire
Ambulance Yorkshire
EU Parliament Yorkshire and the Humber
UK Parliament Calder Valley
List of places

Coordinates: 53°42′26″N 1°56′08″W / 53.707234°N 1.935608°W / 53.707234; -1.935608

Sowerby /ˌsɔrbi/ is a village in the Metropolitan Borough of Calderdale, in West Yorkshire, England. It lies in the Pennines, contiguous with Sowerby Bridge, 3.7 miles (6.0 km) west-southwest of Halifax and 7.6 miles (12.2 km) west-northwest of Huddersfield.


Historically a part of the West Riding of Yorkshire, Sowerby appears in the Domesday Book of 1086, and was an important settlement long before Halifax began to dominate. The ancient district of Sowerbyshire, a stretch of forest centred on the town leading down the Ryburn and Calder valleys and almost up to Halifax, was a Royal chase.

The name Sowerby, is made up from the Norse Sor for sour and suffixed with by representing a parished area.[1] The local pronunciation follows the original Norse. (saw+bi).

A local legend described a castle in Sowerby abnd its presence was confirmed by excavations on 'Castle Hill' at the high end of the old town. Archaeologists uncovered the foundations of a Norman motte-and-bailey castle.


Sowerby was the centre of the Sowerby parliamentary constituency until the 1983 general election, when the constituency was expanded and renamed Calder Valley.


Once home to many chapels and churches of several Christian denominations, the Anglican St Peter's Church is of architectural interest and the main focus of religious worship in the town.

Notable people[edit]

John Tillotson, 'The people's priest', Archbishop of Canterbury between 1691 and 1693, was a native of Sowerby. A statue of Tillotson exists in St Peter's church and an avenue is named after him in the lower end of the town.

The summer home of the MP for Great Grimsby, Austin Mitchell, is situated in the town, and the mansion of Fieldhouse was the seat of the Stansfeld family, who contributed much to the local community, including building St Peter's church. Sowerby Hall, close to the church, was built by Josiah Horton in 1650 and the Rawson family who owned Brockwell contributed a lot to the town in the 18th century.

See also[edit]


External links[edit]