Gentleman Jack: Anne Lister’s Shibden Hall extends hours

Anne Lister Image copyright Calderdale Museums
Image caption Anne Lister lived at Shibden Hall between 1791 and 1840

The manor house where lesbian diarist Anne Lister lived is to extend its opening hours to cope with an influx of tourists following the success of the TV series Gentleman Jack.

Shibden Hall in Halifax, which was a filming location for the BBC show, will now also open on Fridays.

Opening the hall during winter is also being considered, the council said.

Born in 1791, Lister is known for her coded diaries which detailed her life and lesbian relationships.

Described as the “first modern lesbian”, she was a prolific diarist who penned some five million words in her lifetime.

Her journals were recognised as a “pivotal” document by the United Nations in 2011.

The drama, starring Suranne Jones, was watched by almost six million people each week and has led to a trebling of visitors to Shibden Hall.

Calderdale Council said it was hoped the new opening times would be in effect before 23 August.

Image copyright Steven Haslington/Geograph
Image caption Shibden Hall belonged to the Lister family for more than 200 years

It said it was also reviewing the opening days and times at nearby Bankfield Museum, which has a display of outfits and accessories from the show.

The council said people had travelled from America, where the show is broadcast by HBO, to see Lister’s home.

Councillor Susan Press said: “We want to ensure that visitors continue to have a positive experience at our museums and we are working on a number of plans to improve our offer.”

Image caption A second series of the show has been confirmed



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