Heritage Open Days is England's largest community led festival of history and culture and every year it brings people together to celebrate their heritage, community and history.
Stories are told, traditions explored, and histories brought to life. It’s your chance to see hidden places and try out new experiences – and it’s all FREE.
And with this year's theme being 'Creativity Unwrapped' what better way to celebrate the artists, sculptors, writers, musicians, architects and innovators that have made this district a hub for creativity, entertainment and culture.
The Tasting Garden at The Storey invites you to come and see its new fruit sculptures – brought to ‘fruition’ by internationally renowned local sculptor Alan Ward. Visit King Street Studios, meet the artists and chat about their processes and artworks; or sit back and listen in magnificent surroundings as Lancaster Priory celebrates its heritage through song.
Peek behind the scenes at one of the oldest theatres in Britain – the Lancaster Grand – or seek out evidence of Lancaster’s oldest toilet at The Judges’ Lodgings!
Take a trip through history as you learn about Lancaster’s hidden Mill Race waterway with guide Tom Hudson, and then call into the beautiful St John’s Church to find out how its historic and architectural significance is informing its plans for repair.
Delve into the archives of Lancaster Central Library as it showcases local people and places through its historic books, broadsheet newspapers and scrapbooks; or learn about how Lancashire Police Constabulary used their creative skills to solve some of the county’s most notable crimes at the new Lancashire Police Museum inside Lancaster Castle.
Quernmore Hall Park is joining the festival for the first time, with a chance to visit this wonderful example of Georgian architecture and perhaps even join in with croquet or archery on the lawn; and Leighton Hall invites you to visit this welcoming though impressive family home – and watch a fascinating birds of prey display!
In Morecambe, the Queen’s Market will show how a local entrepreneur is bringing this amazing building back into community use, whilst a little further afield you can take a turn at bellringing at The Church of St James in Barrow, or browse the Waterwheel Vintage Bazaar, a treasure trove of retro delights, at Heron Corn Mill.
Morecambe Bay Partnership will lead a walk to explore the mysteries of Birkrigg Stone Circle – and there are plenty of other walks, talks, tours and activities across Lancaster and Morecambe Bay from Milnthorpe to Ulverston – so come along, take part, and find out more about these incredible buildings and locations!
Please note some events require booking. For details of specific events together with opening dates and times you can pick up a programme from participating venues, or visit www.heritageopendays.org.uk, www.visitlancaster.org.uk, or www.exploremorecambebay.org.uk.
Last updated: 08 September 2023