Heritage Open Days is England’s largest festival of history and culture, bringing together over 2,000 organisations, 5,000 events and 40,000 volunteers. Every year in September, places across the country throw open their doors to celebrate their heritage, community and history. It’s a great chance to see hidden places and try out new experiences – and it’s all free, including a number of sites that usually charge an admission.
Heritage Open Days 2019 will be from 13-22 September.
Established in 1994, Heritage Open Days is England’s contribution to the European Heritage Days and celebrates its 25th anniversary this year, having grown into the country’s largest heritage festival.
In fact with over 5,700 events, 2019 is officially the biggest year yet, with over 3 million visitors expected to take part across the 10 days of the festival. To celebrate the festival’s 25th anniversary, 25 new places are opening their doors, from country houses, museum archives and gardens, to theatres, wildlife reserves, distilleries and even a solar farm.
Heritage Open Days is coordinated and promoted nationally by the National Trust with support from the People’s Postcode Lottery, and is run locally by a large range of organisations (including civic societies, heritage organisations, and local councils, community champions and thousands of enthusiastic volunteers).
Highlights for 2019 include the Vajrapani Kadampa Buddhist Centre in Huddersfield where visitors have an opportunity to join a short meditation session with the resident teacher, the chance to take a tour of one of the few remaining Brutalist offices in Newcastle, Commercial Union House and a behind the scenes tour of the Sainsbury Centre at the University of East Anglia, Norwich, one of the filming locations for the Blockbuster ‘Avengers: Age of Ultron’ film.
Closer to home there is a chance to visit St Thomas Church in Pear Tree Derby. Designed by the London-based architect Joseph Peacock in the neo Norman style, and opened in 1881, there are stunning mosaics and a gallery of stained glass windows by different designers to be seen.
With its roots dating back to 1852, W. W. Winter’s photography studio is the oldest running photo studio business in the UK, and has been operating continuously on the same site at 45 Midland Road, Derby since 1867.
Last but by no means least there is a the chance to walk on the wrought iron Bennerley Viaduct some 60 feet above the Erewash Valley. As well as enjoying the magnificent views, there is the opportunity to learn about the fascinating history of this “Iron Giant”.
To find out about more open days near you please visit: https://www.heritageopendays.org.uk/
At Planning & Design we recognise the importance of the built heritage in our towns, villages and rural areas.
We have worked on numerous schemes affecting Listed Buildings, Conservation Areas and the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site. Director Jon Millhouse specialises in heritage planning and design team leader Lindsay Cruddas is a registered Specialist Conservation Architect.
We use our experience to provide the right level of detail to accompany applications for planning permission and listed building consent.