Every September some 40,000 volunteers across England organise 5,000 events to celebrate our fantastic history and culture. It’s your chance to see hidden places and try out new experiences – all of which are FREE to explore!
The 2020 festival is running for ten consecutive days from 11th to the 20th of September.
There is lots on offer in Wharfedale & Craven this September, we are so lucky to live in such a historically interesting place!
Discover the history, ecology, flora and fauna of this hidden gem in the centre of Guiseley.
In 2011 a group of local residents began a campaign to regenerate a derelict and neglected piece of land in their midst. The Friends of Parkinson’s Park have transformed the area into a much valued and beautiful community open space. The Park has been an invaluable asset during lockdown. The Friends are sorry not to be able to welcome Heritage Open Days visitors in person this year so they hope you enjoy their story online. Visit their website – www.parkinsonspark.co.uk – to find out more.
Use the Ilkley Blue Plaques sketch map to enjoy a walk around some or all of Ilkley’s blue plaques
For the last 15 years, Ilkley Civic Society has been commemorating Ilkley’s notable citizens and important historic buildings in a series of blue plaques. The 20th blue plaque is about to be unveiled.
This year for Heritage Open Days, why not take a walk around Ilkley’s tree lined streets and visit the site of each blue plaque? From the leafy, spacious boulevards of Wells Road and Queens Rd to the artisan town below the railway, you can discover our hidden history.
We suggest that you make your own way between the blue plaques, taking account of the weather, the steep roads and social distancing. You may need more than one walk to see all of the blue plaques.
No booking required
Access is as for any visit to Ilkley Town centre with need to be aware of current Covid-19 and normal restrictions to pedestrian movement.
This event will run in line with local & national government guidelines at the time of the festival.
Go to the website to download the Blue Plaques sketch map. There is also an example walk: Ilkley Inland Spa which can be downloaded. Contact for the day: Alex Cockshott 07791 608062 civicsociety.ilkley.org/
Manor House Art Gallery & Museum, Castle Yard, Ilkley, West Yorkshire, LS29 9DT
Come and learn about the historic Manor House set in its courtyard garden. At the back is a grass expanse with trees over the remains of Olicana, Ilkley’s Roman fort. As you walk round look for images of visiting birds in the garden.
As part of Ilkley Manor House’s response to Covid19 we have put together a programme called “Inside Out” where we have been animating the courtyard space that fronts the medieval manor house. The Heritage Open Days theme of nature allows us to expand this offer to focus on visiting birds to the garden. We plan to have a beautifully created bird pebble trail for our visitors to enjoy. We also plan to offer some activities for our younger visitors to create some origami birds that will be distributed round the garden for all our visitors to enjoy.
Our heritage learning offer is a film and commentary featuring a well known local historian taking you round the outside of the manor house telling you about its history and the key architectural features that can be seen.
The paupers’ graveyard which closed in 1969 which belonged to High Royds Psychiatric Hospital (closed in 2003) was restored in 2011 to create a tranquil garden of remembrance. The Heritage Chapel, which contains details of the 2861 people who are buried there, remembers those who have gone before and helps with the campaign to remove the stigma and discrimination surrounding mental health. Its loving restoration has created an oasis of peace.
Sunday 20 September: 10-00 -1700 / Thanksgiving Service starts at 1630.
No booking required
Wheelchairs can use front entrance but double yellow lines and other restrictions apply. The grounds and paths of the garden have been designed for wheelchair use.
This event will run in line with local & national government guidelines at the time of the festival. The Chapel will open as will the garden/woodland. However the Service in the Chapel is dependent upon any COVID-19 related instruction that may apply at that time. Further details will be published nearer the time.
Max 16 people per tour/session. Service takes 35 minutes approximately Contact for the day: Quentin Mackenzie – 01943-876625 – email: firstname.lastname@example.org:
On-line storytelling for both children and adults. Stories based on cases heard at Otley Courthouse in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
‘Hidden Nature’ can be found at Otley Courthouse in many of the cases which were heard at court. Animals featured in cases include sheep, mice, pigs, chickens, horses and dogs. Poaching cases also include rabbits and pheasants. All these and more will be featured in two on-line storytelling sessions, one for children and one for adults. Stories, which have been researched by volunteers at the Courthouse Arts and Resource Centre, will be told by local storyteller Vickie Orton. Each session will last not more than one hour.
A Victorian mansion, built for William Ackroyd and overlooking his former Mill complex on the outskirts of Otley. Converted to use as a Masonic Hall in the 1960s, the building retains some features of the original house and a friendly ghost!
Although large parts of this building are usually closed to the public , Westbourne House has opened its doors on HODs since 2016, welcoming more than 200 visitors to the property over the last three years. Due to Covid 19 restrictions, this year the tour of the building will be by video only, although a complimentary guide to the history of the building and its current use can be obtained by emailing the organiser.
The tour of the house and gardens includes all currently accessible rooms, including the extensive cellars, with a commentary which has been completely revised for 2020. The house has seen many changes, both in form and function, since its construction in the mid 1800s for William Ackroyd and his successors. Today, the building is a thriving Masonic Centre, home to 6 ‘craft’ Lodges and a host of side degrees, as well as a popular venue for weddings and other events.