We went ‘mad’ for new festival

Busy making and doing at Hebden Bridge Town Hall
Busy making and doing at Hebden Bridge Town Hall

People went “mad” about arts and crafts at a new South Pennines Making and Doing (MAD) festival, which centred heavily in the upper Calder Valley.

More than 50 interactive workshops, taster sessions and “meet the maker” events sessions were held across Hebden Bridge and Todmorden over the weekend of October 5 and 6.

Knitters, wood whittlers, potters and other craftsmen and women showcased artefacts in a series of public workshops, talks and open-studio sessions.

Sue Mellis from Made in the Valley, who organised a Meet The Maker Market which showcased a range of crafts and businesses from the Todmorden and Hebden Bridge areas at Hebden Bridge Town Hall, said: “We have a wealth of creative talent here in Hebden Bridge and surrounding areas. The festival, with focus on interactive activities for the public, has been brilliant.”

Cheeky Sew and Sew cafe, Todmorden, was a textile hub, hosting ‘bag for life’ and ethical “upcycling” workshops.

A record-breaking bunting challenge was held at The Birchcliffe Centre, Hebden Bridge, and a raku pot firing workshop was hosted by Tod Studios. Events were held Water Street Gallery, Platform One Gallery, Brooklyn Studio, Ribbon Circus Hat Therapy and many more.

The festival was organised by Pennine Prospects to highlight diverse creative talent in the region and to encourage the public to get crafty.

Pennine Prospects’ local distinctiveness co-ordinator Rebecca Yorke said: “We have an incredibly rich independent creative scene in the South Pennines and this new, family-friendly festival will showcase the best of what we have to offer.

“We hope the interactive sessions will inspire the public to try different things at home and continue to support the wide range of talented craftspeople in our area.”