Open days at his­toric build­ings

Middleton Guardian - - FRONT PAGE -

ENG­LAND’S largest and most di­verse fes­ti­val of his­tory is set to re­turn again early next month.

Her­itage Open Days sees count­less his­toric venues around the coun­try open their doors to the pub­lic, so they can dis­cover their sto­ries.

This year’s event, which runs from Fri­day, Septem­ber 8 to Sun­day, Septem­ber 10, will fo­cus on the hid­den sto­ries and his­tor­i­cal se­crets from towns, vil­lages and re­gions across the coun­try.

In Mid­dle­ton, Long Street Methodist Church is among the venues tak­ing part.

The Grade II listed build­ing was de­signed by Edgar Wood and fea­tures Arts and Crafts, Art Nou­veau and mod­ern stylis­tic el­e­ments.

It will be open on Fri­day 8 and Satur­day 9 Septem­ber, from 10.30am to 4pm and on Sun­day, Septem­ber 10, from 1pm to 4pm.

The Hop­wood Hall Es­tate will be open to the pub­lic for the first time in 30 years.

St Leonard’s Par­ish Church will also be open. The Grade I listed struc­ture dates from 1100 and its fea­tures in­clude Nor­man arches, Flod­den win­dows and rare brasses.

It will be open be­tween 10am and 4pm on Fri­day and Satur­day and 1pm to 4pm on Sun­day.

St Mary’s Church in Birch, mean­while, is open from 1pm to 3pm on Satur­day.

The mod­ern church build­ing in­cludes many orig­i­nal fea­tures from the old church.

The event will in­clude a dis­play of old pho­to­graphs show­ing the old church and Birch Vil­lage.

An­nie Reilly, man­ager of Her­itage Open Days, said: “This is a land­mark year for us.

“We have artists look­ing at Alan Tur­ing with a fresh lens and un­cov­er­ing the love story of WWII sol­diers Gil­bert and Gor­don, as well as the story of the first mosque in Eng­land and the open­ing of se­cret tun­nels used by mills work­ers in Ship­ley. His­tory is sto­ries and this year, more than ever be­fore, Her­itage Open Days is a cel­e­bra­tion of that.”

Her­itage Open Days is co-or­di­nated and pro­moted by the Na­tional Trust with fund­ing by the Peo­ple’s Post­code Lot­tery.

Events are run by a large range of or­gan­i­sa­tions, in­clud­ing civic so­ci­eties, or­gan­i­sa­tions and lo­cal coun­cils and en­thu­si­as­tic vol­un­teers.

See her­ita­geopen­days. org.uk

St Leonard’s Par­ish Church

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