THE Shibden Hotel Halifax – Top Choice to Eat, Drink and Stay 2023

Our candid view on THE Shibden hotel, a pub and restaurant that’s great for a treat at any time of the year, come rain or shine: Shibden Mill Inn 2023

Where is Shibden?

You may have heard of Shibden from the BBC/HBO series Gentleman Jack, the acclaimed series about the life of Anne Lister of Shibden Hall. Shibden is a quiet picturesque valley very close to Halifax town centre and its 1779 Piece Hall, in scenic Calderdale, West Yorkshire. The delightful Shibden Mill Inn is located in the rural Shibden Valley, Halifax.

Shibden Mill Inn Michelin Guide

The Shibden Mill Inn Restaurant is in the Michelin Guide and this is what the Michelin Guide says about the Shibden Mill Inn… “Tucked away on the floor of a steep, wooded valley, this former corn mill is full of rustic character, with cluttered, low-beamed rooms, open fires and cosy snugs. Monthly changing menus offer hearty, flavoursome dishes made with Yorkshire produce. The young team are organised and welcoming – and boutique bedrooms add to the appeal...55 GBP • Modern British”

Shibden Hotel Halifax – easy to find?

Yes, this hotel in Shibden in Halifax, the award-winning The Shibden Mill Inn, is surprisingly straightforward to find – it is only 6 miles from the M62, Junction 26, then using the A58 for 5 miles towards Halifax and with only one further turn once you leave the A58. It is also clearly signed with a brown direction tourist sign off the main road and their own sign when approaching.

Shibden Mill Inn Halifax Michelin Guide Restaurant

Shibden Hotel Halifax –The Shibden Mill Inn – What to Expect

  • A picture-postcard multi-award winning hotel, restaurant and bar in a building dating from the 1600s with Anne Lister – Gentleman Jack connections
  • Secluded, relaxed countryside valley position
  • Twice voted Yorkshire’s favourite pub
  • Les Routiers Inn of the Year
  • Best British Freehouse of the Year
  • White Rose Yorkshire Pub of the Year
  • Great British Pub of the Year
  • Michelin Guide Restaurant
  • A large car park with an equally large overflow car park
  • 12 unique boutique bedrooms
  • Classy, cosy and genteel; an oh-so English country bar and restaurant atmosphere
  • UK Food Pub of the Year Winner
  • Traditional log fires
  • Traditional stone floors
  • Atmospheric lighting
  • Good choice of real ales
  • Guinness
  • Ciders
  • Fine lagers
  • Wide choice of gins and other spirits
  • Extensive wine list
  • Drinks served in quality glasses
  • Attentive, well-trained local long-serving staff
  • An extensive covered/uncovered outdoor area
  • Outdoor heating and blankets
  • Outdoor woodfired pizza oven at weekends for the terrace
  • Close to all Calderdale attractions including Anne Lister’s Shibden Hall, Shibden Park and film Locations, The Piece Hall, Dean Clough, Bankfield Museum, Victoria Theatre, Halifax Ski Slope, Eureka, Yorkshire countryside and heritage walks including walks to Shibden Hall and the Calderdale Way
  • The Shibden Mill Inn is 400 metres from the Shibden Wall, the classic cobbled cycling climb up Lee Lane

Shibden Mill Inn Real Ale

The Shibden Mill Inn has a range of real ales including those from Vocation, their own Shibden Mill bitter by Moorhouses and rotating guest beers. The Shibden Mill Inn also serves quality lagers including Estrella.

The Shibden Mill Inn’s extensive drinks list covers a range of gins, including the local award-winning Speight’s Shibden Valley Gin, whiskies and other spirits.

The Shibden Mill Inn’s public bar has 400-year-old beams, stone walls, stone flag floors and a log fire, making it a welcoming place during your stay, or if you call in for a casual drink at any time.

The Shibden Mill Inn has a range of real ales including those from Vocation, their own Shibden Mill bitter by Moorhouses and rotating guest beers.
Shibden Mill Inn Foodies Favourite Award Winner
Shibden Mill Inn Bar with awards

Meals can be served in the bar area should you wish

Shibden Mill Inn Wines

The Shibden Mill Inn has an extensive wine list to be enjoyed by the glass or bottle.

Shibden Mill Inn Wines

You can view and download The Shibden Mill Inn’s Wine list here

For celebratory events corporate meetings or private dining, the Shibden Mill Inn Wine Loft Room can be hired with catering.

Shibden Mill Inn Restaurant

Multi-award winning, The Shibden Mill Inn is renowned for its quality food and drink with fresh, seasonal dishes using the best locally sourced Yorkshire ingredients combined with produce from their own kitchen garden.

A Shibden Hotel - Shibden Mill Inn Starter Scallops
A Shibden Hotel - Shibden Mill Inn Fish and Chips
A Shibden Hotel - Shibden Mill Inn Trout Fish Dish
A Shibden Hotel - Shibden Mill Inn Sweet Pudding

The Shibden Mill Inn has several seasonal menus, including its vegan menu, taster menu, a la carte menu, breakfast menu, children’s menu plus the Shibden Shack menu and the wood-fired pizza oven menu on spring-summer weekends.

Shibden Mill Inn Restaurant with ancient beams and stone floors
Shibden Mill Inn Restaurant - 17th century Mullion Windows
Shibden Mill Inn Bar Dining Area

Dine in the Mill Room restaurant, the bar, or an area adjacent to the bar

or dine outdoors in the patio garden which has heated covered and uncovered areas

Shibden Hotel - Shibden Mill Inn Shibden Shack Menu Outside
Shibden Hotel - Shibden Mill Inn Beer Garden

The Shibden Mill Inn also has its Crust and Craft Pizza Trailer

Shibden Hotel - Shibden Mill Inn Crust and Craft Trailer outside Shibden Mill Inn

Shibden Hotel Halifax – Shibden Mill Inn Bedrooms

The Shibden Mill Inn has twelve en-suite bedrooms, each individually decorated and available as standard, superior or the Anne Lister Suite, formerly known as the Bower suite.

Blending comfort and character, The Shibden Mill Inn has AA 5-Star status and combines the history of the original building with modern luxurious touches designed to have a cosy boutique feel with individually styled and decorated bedrooms.  All rooms have a flat-screen TV, a DVD player with access to the DVD library, a tea and coffee facility and bathrobes.

Bedroom 9 at the Shibden Mill Inn - Shibden Hotel

Bedroom 9 Shibden Mill Inn

Bedroom 9 at the Shibden Mill Inn. Photo Showing TV, Teas and Coffee Facilities - Shibden Hotel

Bedroom 9 Shibden Mill Inn – showing TV, Tea and Coffee Facilities

Bedroom 8 Shibden Mill Inn - Shibden Hotel

Bedroom 8 Shibden Mill Inn

Bedroom 12 Shibden Mill Inn

Shibden Mill Inn Bedroom 12

Bedroom 12 Shibden Mill Inn Facilities - Shibden Hotel
Bedroom 12 Shibden Mill Inn high window in wall - Shibden Hotel

Shibden Mill Inn Room 12. Note this room has a high window in the wall with no direct view and an electric Velox roof window

Shibden Mill Inn Room 12 electric Velox roof window - Shibden hotel

Are dogs allowed at The Shibden Mill Inn?

Dogs are welcome and popular with day visitors at The Shibden Mill Inn, but dogs are allowed in public areas but NOT in the bedrooms or restaurant areas.

The Shibden Mill Inn Public Areas

Shibden Mill Inn public space seating near toilets

This public area is at the end of the restaurant

Shibden Mill Inn public space seating near bedrooms

Shibden Mill Inn public space seating near to the bedrooms

Shibden Mill Inn and the Gentleman Jack-Anne Lister Connection

The Shibden Mill Inn building was once in the ownership of the Lister family and in the extensive property estate of Anne Lister’s partner, Ann Walker, as depicted in BBC’s Gentleman Jack of the nearby Shibden Hall.

From Norse origins, the name Shibden was formerly spelt ‘Scepe-Dene’ meaning sheep valley. There are records from the reign of Edward II in 1308 when the area was known as Shibden Milne. 

Originally the mill ground corn on their water wheel on their Shibden Brook / Red Brook stream.  In 1562 the Lord of the Manor of Brighouse ruled that Halifax people could take their corn to Shibden for grinding in addition to the corn mill at Rastrick. 

In 1665 the mill and cottages were owned by Samuel Lister of Shibden Hall and for many years it remained part of the Lister estate until it was sold to Ann Walker’s grandfather, William Walker in 1772. Ann Walker was Anne Lister’s lover and partner. Anne Lister is now known as the first modern lesbian.

Archive records of 1818 show that Shibden Mill was being used by George and John Holdsworth and they sold their serge cloth at the nearby Piece Hall in Halifax town centre. Opened in 1779, the Piece Hall to sell ‘pieces’ of cloth, it is now a magnificent must-see attraction during your stay.

The Piece Hall Halifax

The Piece Hall in Halifax town centre is 2.5 miles from the Shibden Mill Inn. The outdoor canopies and seating belong to Trading Rooms Restaurant in the corner.

Alongside the Shibden mill was a small inn, then called ‘The Board Inn’ used by trade travellers to break the journey over the hills.

John Holdsworth went on to be a major figure in the English textile industry and built the huge Shaw Lodge Mill in Halifax, which is still standing to this day and is in multi-occupancy use. Shaw Lodge Mill has been featured in the Gentle Jack TV series, along with its cobbled sett lanes and the 1644 pub ‘Paris Gates’ signed ‘The Saddle Inn’ during filming.

Shears Inn,Paris Gates, Halifax
The Shears Inn Paris Gates Halifax

Dating from 1644, The Shears Inn, Paris Gates, Halifax satnav HX3 9EZ was signed the ‘The Saddle Inn’ during the filming of Gentleman Jack

At the division of the Walker’s Crow Nest estate after 1830, the inn was assigned to Elizabeth Walker, Ann Walker’s sister, who married Captain George Mackay Sutherland. The building passed to Evan Charles Sutherland Walker, their son and the nephew of Ann Walker, Anne Lister’s partner. He lived at nearby Lightcliffe before retiring to Scotland and later encountered distressing financial problems.

As the woollen and worsted textile industry became mechanised, the water mill fell into disrepair and the premises became the Shibden Mill Inn on the 5th of August 1890, when it was purchased by the Halifax brewers Samuel Webster and Sons Ltd. 

Shortly after the purchase, the main mill pond above The Shibden Mill Inn, which was used for pleasure boating during Victorian times, was filled in. (This area is now used for overflow car parking at the Shibden Mill Inn).

The pond was probably filled in to prevent flooding in nearby coal mines. The local Springfield mines were challenging drift mines reaching shallow and short coal seams surrounding the Shibden Mill Inn. Fireclay was also extracted.

Anne Lister established two coal mines in the area (naming one ‘Walker Pit’ after her partner). Her wealth and status as a gentlewoman undoubtedly offered Anne Lister a degree of freedom and status unavailable to the vast majority of women of her time.

However, Christopher Rawson, who in the 1830s was one of Halifax’s most powerful men, also had an interest in coal and he was accused by Anne Lister of stealing her coal.

Christopher Rawson as a bank owner, Halifax magistrate and Lord of the Manor of Southowram, disapproved of Anne Lister’s unusual for the era, lifestyle and her relationship with Ann Walker – the daughter of wealthy merchant John Walker, of Crow Nest Mansion, Lightcliffe. Christopher Rawson raised a drunken mob to make effigies of Anne Lister and Ann Walker and burned them in Halifax.

Another local contemporary of Anne Lister and Ann Walker was Emily Brontë, who was briefly a schoolmistress at Law Hill School, now Law Hill House, in the nearby village Southowram at the top of Beacon Hill.  There is a possibility that Anne Lister and Emily Brontë met when Emily Brontë took her school children to visit Shibden Hall.

Circular Walks from The Shibden Mill Inn

View and download here circular return walks from The Shibden Mill Inn including Shibden Hall, (3 miles circular), Shibden Dale (2 miles to 3.75 miles circular choices) and Calderdale Way Taster (7.5 miles circular).

All 3 walks were devised and published by

The Shibden Mill Inn Interactive Location Map

Shibden Mill Inn Telephone Number

Book The Shibden Mill Inn Halifax phone number 01422 365840.

Shibden Mill Inn Michelin Guide

The Shibden Mill Inn email address

The Shibden Mill Inn’s email address is