BROMSGROVE welcomes Heritage Open Days will celebrate its 25th anniversary with ten days of free activities, writes Eve Watson.
More than 400 events are planned in the West Midlands region for England’s largest festival of history and culture which is coordinated with the National Trust.
The open days include free access to many sites that usually charge for admission.
All Saints Church on Burcot Lane will be open to visitors on September 14 and 15.
Albert Lemmon’s two church windows along with his other designs will be featured and Mary Long’s books, paintings and study of the wildlife in the Spadesbourne Brooke, which runs through the churchyard, will also be on show for the first time since she died.
There will also be a display of fans and the opportunity to make one.
Call Suzanne Thompson on 01527 836142 or Tessa Carrick on 01527 873135 for more information.
St John’s Church will also be opening its doors for the event on September 21 from 10am to 4pm.
Visitors will enjoy a free concert followed by coffee and cake, as well as a chance to go into the church organ and learn the history and heritage of the church.
There are 13th century and early 16th century monuments in the north chapel and people can enjoy a self-guided walk around the cemetery and the tree trail.
There will also be a chance to take a rare guided tour of St Michael and All Angels’ ancient bell tower and have a go at ringing them.
The building dates back to the 11th century with evidence to suggest that it has been a religious site as far back as 700 AD, there is lots of history to explore.
The Vicar of St Michael’s and All Angels Rev Wyn Benyon joined us on this week’s Standard Podcast.
He chatted about the campaign to return the tower to its former glory which, after three years of fund-raising is only £25,000 off its target.
If that is raised by the end of the year, it will unlock £333,000 worth of National Lottery funding to pay for the much-needed repairs (below).
Hanbury Hall is another stop on the map, with guided tours around the building and formal gardens as well as viewing original wall-paintings by Sir James Thornhill.
A programme called ‘The Artist, The Gardener and The Queen’ allows people to learn more about Queen Anne and her life.
On the Saturday, the churches will welcome sponsored cyclists who are raising cash for their own places of worship and the Worcestershire and Dudley Historic Churches Trust.
Visit heritageopendays.org.uk for more information on the events in Bromsgrove.