Explore Calderdale's Heritage
There’s a rare chance to get a peek inside some of Calderdale’s historic buildings this September, with the launch of Heritage Open Days. The event, from Thursday 10 to Sunday 13 September, is a national celebration of England’s culture. English Heritage is encouraging interesting historical and cultural properties to open their doors for FREE.
More than 20 Calderdale properties are opening up or running activities to celebrate the event. Buildings of every age and style will be bringing local history and culture to life – from museums and theatres to churches and town halls, and even a Victorian cemetery.
- Twilight ascents of Wainhouse Tower, which will open from 10-12 September from 6pm, last ascent at 7.30pm.
- Free guided tours of the Victoria Theatre, Piece Hall and Halifax Town Hall.
- A chance to visit some beautiful historic churches, including a Living History event at Halifax Parish Church – a medieval church with Jacobean woodwork and a 1766 organ (Sat 12 Sept, 9am-4pm).
- The 18th Century, Grade I listed St Peter’s Church in Sowerby will hold a flower festival, art exhibition and Songs of Praise celebration on Sunday evening, as well as opening to the public over the weekend.
- Take a tour of the disused Victorian cemetery at Lister Lane with memorials to interesting people from Halifax’s past (Sun 13, noon-4pm).
- The 1920s Hebden Bridge Picture House will open free to the public and show local films and documentaries on Saturday 12, 11am-1pm.
- Special heritage tours on the Shibden Land Train (small charge applies).
- Many other civic and historic buildings opening their doors to the public for free, including Todmorden Town Hall, Somerset House Grand Salon in Halifax, the 12th century St Mary’s Church in Elland, and the 15th Century Tudor Shibden Hall.
- Craft trails and activities at museums including Bankfield Museum in Halifax, the Smith Art Gallery in Brighouse and Heptonstall Museum
- Test your 3Rs with the Victorian teacher at Heptonstall museum on Sunday 13, 11am-4pm (booking essential).
For full details of all events, tours and opening times, visit www.heritageopendays.org.uk – or pick up a leaflet from participating venues, libraries and Tourist Information Centres.
Councillor Ian Cooper, the council’s Cabinet member for Community Services, said:
“With so much history and culture on offer, Calderdale is the ideal place to celebrate Heritage Open Days. There’s going to be lots to see and do, with plenty to entertain families and people of all ages. So don’t miss the opportunity to get ‘behind the scenes’ at some brilliant buildings and attractions!”
Hilary Barber, the Vicar of Halifax, added:
“I’m delighted that so many churches are taking part in Heritage Open Days and encourage people to come along and enjoy the peace and beauty of our historic buildings.”
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