The verdict is out and lesbian film is a big hit

Producer Alison Thompson, director Carolyn Reid and star Jan Walker at Hebden Bridge Picture House. Picture by Gloria Fletcher
Producer Alison Thompson, director Carolyn Reid and star Jan Walker at Hebden Bridge Picture House. Picture by Gloria Fletcher

AROUND 200 people packed into the Picture House to see the United Kingdom premiere of a documentary film partly shot in Hebden Bridge.

After the success of the screening of Jan’s Coming Out, its director, Carolyn Reid, said she plans to return to the Calder Valley to make a follow-up film.

“It was a great screening. We had a good responsive audience,” she said.

“Ten men went to see the film and one of them told me he was ‘quite stunned by the fact there was a lot of information that he didn’t know’.

“A lot of people were also saying that they would like to see more films like Jan’s Coming Out in Hebden Bridge.

“It was the right decision to have the premiere here. It’s a really good community.”

The film follows the life of its presenter Jan Walker, a 50-year-old lesbian, who has just “come out”. During the film, which was produced by North East based Village Films. Jan asks other women about their experiences of coming out, gets tips on flirting and meets some of her heroes, including her first crush, Meredith Baxter.

Jan, who also attended the premiere, along with producer Alison Thompson, said: “It was really good. The reaction we got was very positive and very warm. Everyone really seemed to like the film, so it was a great night.”

Around 100 people attended the after-show party at b@r place on Crown Street, where there was live comedy from Jen Brister.

Included in that number was Liz James, founder of lesbian dating website www.pinksofa.com, who said: “I think it was a film that all lesbians can relate to. We have all got similar stories to share.

“I was also exciting to come back to Hebden Bridge because it’s a wonderful little town.”

Carolyn also said that there are plans for a dvd release of Jan’s Coming Out and that copies would be available throughout the upper Calder Valley. She also thanked Lesley Wood from b@r place for her hospitality.

“Thank you to Hebden Bridge. You did us proud,” she added.