Hundreds set to enjoy Heritage Open Days


Heritage sites across Weston are getting ready to open their doors as people discover the impressive buildings and cultural heritage of Weston, as part of the national Heritage Open Days.

The free event, which is England’s largest heritage festival, will be held Friday 10 – Sunday 19 September.

Events will include virtual and physical tours around off limit areas and cultural events, highlighting Weston’s heritage and celebrating this year’s Edible England theme, including:

  • Whirligig – in Weston’s Italian Gardens, this free outdoor arts event will include a multi-sensory beehive installation, providing an unusual reference to the West County’s honeyed heritage
  • Grow Feral, Eat Feral - a community allotment day and cook up, led by Weston-based artist Sam Francis and UHBW Poet in Residence, Beth Caverley
  • Hero & Leander – a proud nod to Weston’s Greek community, this bittersweet outdoor ‘gig show’ tells an epic seaside tale through folk, indie, sea shanties and choral music in a contemporary version of the classic Greek myth
  • History of Drag - hosted by Brighton’s Stephanie von Clitz at Weston’s Proud Bar
  • Opening of parks including Grove Park and Ellenborough West
  • Access to St Paul’s and All Saints’ Churches

Mark Canniford, Executive Member for Placemaking and Economy, at North Somerset Council, said: “Following a reduced festival last year, HODs will be coming back with a bang this year, with ten days of free tours, talks, walks, open days, exhibitions, performances and shows across Weston. We’re delighted to be working with Culture Weston and other local businesses, such as Walker and Ling, Loves Cafe and The Proud Bar, and look forward to hosting this fantastic festival for all ages”.

North Somerset Council’s Heritage and Regeneration Champion; Cllr John Crockford- Hawley said: “Everyone is interested about where they live, but don’t always know the stories behind their town. Heritage Open Days allow the public to find out more about Weston and its heritage in a fun and creative way.”

Fiona Matthews, Creative Director at Theatre Orchard and Culture Weston, said: “The events being presented by Theatre Orchard and Culture Weston during Heritage Open Days invite people to celebrate this year’s Edible England theme and the heritage of food in a creative way, by engaging in a variety of cultural activities, some more unexpected than others.

“There’s never been a better time to bring everyone together and nourish them through the shared, universal experience of food, whatever that form may take.”

Ross Simmonds, Acting Regional Director at Historic England, said: “We’re delighted that the Heritage Action Zone (HAZ) has supported this year’s HODs with resources like the online Heritage Tour of Weston and the ‘In the Steps of Hans Price’ guided walk.  It’s also a great way to showcase some of the fantastic conservation work going on as part of the HAZ, such as the newly restored Walker & Ling shopfront.”

For a full list of Heritage Open Days venues, visit the North Somerset Council Website.

Photo - Hero and Leander by Chelsey Cliff