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Monday/Friday boats Huddersfield

Midweek Break boating holiday to Dewsbury - from Sowerby Bridge

For everyone

Midweek boating break to Dewsbury on the Calder & Hebble Navigation

Yorkshire Canal Map Four night midweek break 30 miles 40 locks 21 hours

A midweek break which takes you down the sleepy Calder Valley, past Brighouse, home of the famous brass band.

Navigation notes

This is one example of routes which our customers enjoy. Distances and times shown are for the return trip. You can vary the distance to suit you, because there are plenty of turning points ('winding holes') marked in the guides on your boat. Information we provide about specific waterways or suggested routes is for general reference only. Please see more about route availability.

This route is largely on river navigations. In normal conditions the rivers are placid but in prolonged wet weather they can flow too fast for safe navigation. In such cases boats wait at safe moorings while flood water recedes - usually quite quickly.


Lock instruction with Shire Cruisers Boating near Halifax on the Calder & Hebble Navigation

Elland 3 miles 5 locks 3 hours

Arrive at our base in one of the 200-year old canal warehouses at Sowerby Bridge. After a thorough briefing, you set off, and travel along the side of the valley to Salterhebble Locks, where we meet you and take you through your first three locks. You then do another two locks on your own, hidden away in the trees. At Elland you have a choice of two canalside pubs, one with food, or lots more in the town up the hill - along with shops, takeaways and a Co-op supermarket. and of course good pubs and restaurants.


Brighouse on the River Calder Mirfield Boatyard

Dewsbury 12 miles 15 locks 8 hours

Next day you head down, past glimpses of lakes, to Brighouse, a busy small town with interesting shops and a Sainsbury's with its own moorings and of course good pubs and restaurants. From Brighouse you go down into the River Calder. Pass under a towering motorway viaduct, a reminder of the world you left behind - and who cares which motorway it is? The river provides a sweeping contrast to the canal cuts with which it alternates, as it winds its way down the wooded valley to Mirfield. The locks grow further apart and the whole landscape is gentler. A dramatic cutting leads to Double Locks (which are not joined). Turn left at the bottom and go along the short arm to Dewsbury Basin, where The Leggers pub awaits you. Ask whether you can moor in the basin - if not, there will be space on the arm or at the bottom of Double Locks. From the basin, it's quite a walk into the cntre of town.


Double Locks, near Dewsbury, on the Calder & Hebble Navigation in Yorkshire Working the locks at Kirklees Low, on the Calder & Hebble Navigation

Brighouse 9 miles 9 locks 5 hours

From Double Locks, return up the valley. Pause at Shepley Bridge for shopping, various pubs or the proper ironmonger's shop. Then carry on to Brighouse. Quiet moorings in the basin between the two locks, or outside Sainsbury's above them. It's a very short walk into town, with good pubs and restaurants, two supermarkets and shops.


Brighouse, boating on the Calder & Hebble Navigation Brookfoot near Elland on the Calder & Hebble Navigation

Salterhebble 4 miles 11 locks 4 hours

On your return journey, you can take in more details of this historically important navigation, significantly older than most of the canal system - partly designed by John Smeaton, of Eddystone Lighthouse fame. You have splendid views of the hills. At the top of the last lock, detour right along the short Halifax Arm, and overnight here (Brewer's Fayre and ordinary pub). From Salterhebble, you can take the bus up to Halifax; you should not miss the recently restored Piece Hall, where merchants used to buy and sell cloth, and you now have interesting little shops, and lots of events.


Salt Warehouse, Sowerby Bridge Wharf Sowerby Bridge Wharf

Sowerby Bridge Wharf 2 miles 0 locks 1 hour

A short sail without locks brings you back to base by 0900.
This trip gives you plenty to see and do, with the highlight of the Hepworth gallery.

How to Book

Use this form to check availability. When you find the boat you want, click 'Book this holiday now' and you can pay your deposit or hold for 48 hours - or ring 01422 832712.

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Trip Reviews

"Everyone we met was very friendly & helpful. The waterways (to Wakefield) were much less industrial than expected. Very green and luscious with many herons & kingfishers." the Masters - Worcester

"Picture postcard weather & loved the blend of country, town, industry & wildlife. Everyone really friendly & real cameraderie with other Shire's users. Pubs mixed (Colliers Arms - 5*). just loved the meandering & all things canal." - Slater - Devon

"Beautiful scenery, very friendly helpful people." - Mrs Nozedar, Buckingham

"The scenery was a mixture of urban and woodland. People were always keen to help whether at locks or where to find somewhere to eat." - Joanne, Suffolk

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