Heritage Open Days (HOD) are England’s biggest festival of history and culture, involving over 40,000 volunteers. Each year in September, thousands of sites across the country invite you in to explore local treasures of every age, style and function, and many special events are held. It’s your chance to see hidden places and try out new experiences – and it’s all FREE. There’s lots going on in our area, see here for our highlights and follow the link to the website at the bottom of the article.
Check out the best view in Huddersfield at Castle Hill
Saturday 15 and Sunday 16 September – 12 noon – 4.30pm
Perched on Castle Hill, Victoria Tower was completed in 1899 to celebrate the 60th anniversary of Queen Victoria’s reign. The cornerstone of the tower was laid on 25 June 1898. The tower was renovated in 1960 when the top seven feet were removed, and now reaches almost 997 feet above sea level. The site contains a diverse mosaic of wildlife habitats and, working with Natural England, Castle Hill is a designated Local Nature Reserve, and a Green Flag Award winner, 2018/19.
See objects from all over the world at Bagshaw Museum
Saturday 15 and Sunday 16 September – 12 noon – 5pm
Immerse yourself in an atmospheric Egyptology gallery in a gothic mansion, where dramatic lighting effects help to recreate the interior of a tomb, and the ‘Gods, Divine Creatures and Mythical Beasts’ gallery, showcasing beautiful decorative arts from India, China, Africa and Japan.
Celebrate 150 years at Batley Town Hall
Saturday 8 September – 10am – 3pm
We’re celebrating the 150th anniversary of the foundation of Batley Borough Council in 1868. Come and share your ideas as we launch Batley 150 at Batley Town Hall. Enjoy exhibitions, displays, heritage tours and refreshments.
Go ‘behind the curtain’ at Huddersfield Town Hall
Friday 7 September – tours at 1.30pm and 3pm
Saturday 8 September – tours at 10am and 11.30am
Huddersfield gained its Royal Charter as a Borough in 1868, and the first meeting of the new Corporation was held on 7 September 1868. The Town Hall dates from 1875-81. Join us for an extensive and interesting tour.
Visit Beaumont Park and search for the secret grottos
Saturday 15 and Sunday 16 September – walk starts at 2.30pm
Visit our lovely Victorian Heritage Park and about how the park came into being, its formal opening and how it looked 135 years ago.
Go behind the scenes at Huddersfield Library
Thursday 6 September – tours start at 11am and 3pm
This Grade II listed building, designed by E.H. Ashburner, opened in 1940. The Art Gallery on the top floor of the building hosts ‘Perspectives: Aspects of the Kirklees Collection’, with major works from the collection. There will be 90 minute tours of the Library, including West Yorkshire Archives and areas (and material) normally closed to the public.
Get revved up for the Tolson Museum Historic Motorbike Show
Sunday 9 September – 11am-4pm
A wide range of new and classic motorbikes gather on the forecourt of Tolson Museum, organised by the Friends of Tolson & Ravensknowle. On display this year in the Museum for this event will be a ‘Panther Motorcycle’. Panthers were made in Cleckheaton and promoted as the ‘perfect motorcycle’. There will a be a variety of stalls and refreshments. The Museum itself offers fascinating collections reflecting Huddersfield’s past, from Bronze Age remains to the impact of the textile industry, and an innovative toddler trail.
Learn about the fascinating history of Greenhead Park
Friday 14 September – walk starts at 6pm
Greenhead Park is an attractive Grade II listed Victorian town park which has been restored to its former glory thanks to a multi-million pound Heritage Lottery funded project. An early evening guided walk (60 to 90 mins), starting at the Trinity Street gates, will visit the main features of the park and reveal its history.
For more information about Heritage Open Days visit the website.