Sowerby Bridge has been a crossing point on the Calder and Ryburn rivers since the Middle Ages and probably long before that. Domestic weaving in the hilltop villages of Sowerby and Norland gave way to the building of large water powered mills by the River Calder. Transportation was provided by the building of roads, canals and later, the railway.
Most of the mills are now closed, many have found a new lease of life as engineering premises and more recently the those in the town centre have been converted into living accommodation. The canal, once closed and partly filled in, has now been re-opened as a leisure waterway.
The town can be found on the A58, the former main route between Yorkshire and Lancashire, about 3 miles south west of Halifax.