This September, Heritage Open Days will give families and friends across the nation an opportunity to get out, enjoy themselves and learn a little about their local history.
The museums and heritage sites of Barton-upon-Humber will be playing a major role in Lincolnshire’s Heritage Open Days by throwing open their doors to the public and putting on a whole range of special events.
The Open Days, which take place between September 7 and 10, have been steadily increasing in popularity, with hundreds of people flocking to Barton’s one-off events and rarely opened buildings, and 2017 looks set to be no exception.
There’s also a lot for children to do, with a celebration of comics marking Desperate Dan’s 80th birthday at the Wilderspin National School Museum, an Isaac Pitman themed treasure trail linking many of the Heritage Open Day sites and a free children’s quiz sheet about The Ropewalk’s history on offer.
As part of the weekend, visitors will get the rare opportunity to look around the only Anglo-Saxon tower in England at St Peter’s Church, which is open for free viewing and guided tours on Sunday.
There’s also another chance to look back into Barton’s distant past at Tyrwhitt Hall, a medieval great hall just next to St Peter’s.
The Ropewalk is another jewel in Barton-upon-Humber’s historic crown. The industrial rope factory turned modern cultural arts centre will be opening for a free film archive exploration night on Thursday.
The Joseph Wright Hall, formerly a Methodist chapel and Salvation Army citadel, will also be open to the public on Saturday and Sunday, giving people a chance to see how much restoration has changed a fine example of Victorian Methodist architecture.
Barton’s library will also be featuring a display on its history as a private home, orphanage and school building.
Samuel Wilderspin, the educational pioneer who founded a ground-breaking model school in Barton, or one of his agents, will also be giving lectures on the teaching methods that helped him change British education in the museum that bears his name on the Saturday.
Cartoonist, Ken Harrison will be celebrating the 80th birthday of Desperate Dan, the comic figure he drew for 25 years at an exhibition in his honour from on Sunday.
For those who want a little taste of everything, there are two interactive Hidden History Walks filled with characters, costumes and activities for children and adults and supported by Barton’s new historical exploration app.
Of course, the town’s heritage goes beyond its buildings, with countryside shaping and influencing it throughout its history from the verdant habitats of the riverside at Far Ings National Nature Reserve, to the pleasant acres of Baysgarth Park.