Heritage Open Days 2016

From 8 to 11 September 2016, Heritage Open Days is back to shine a light on England’s fascinating historic places. This annual festival celebrates our diverse history, architecture and culture, offering you the chance to see hidden places and try out new experiences all for free.

Here's some of our highlights, but many more places are involved. To find out more and search for events see the Heritage Open Days website.

Please note not all Trust sites are involved, and the days and times vary.

Buckland Abbey

Buckland Abbey, Devon 

Visit Buckland Abbey on Heritage Open Day for a special chance to climb the Abbot’s Tower. See Buckland from a new perspective and enjoy the peace and tranquillity of the estate. From the garden you can admire views of the Tavy Valley and beyond or head indoors to uncover tales of Drake and Rembrandt.

• Free entry on Saturday 10 September, 12pm - 4pm

A view of Croft Castle, Herefordshire

Croft Castle, Herefordshire  

Head down to Croft Castle for a weekend of living history. Hundreds of demonstrators will bring to life one of the most significant battles of the Wars of the Roses, with gunpowder, archery and swordfights. See the Yorkist and Lancastrian camps in situ, depicting civilian and soldier life with crafts, cooking, period costume, weaponry, dancing, battles and music displays.

• Free entry on Saturday 10 September, 10am - 5pm

Fog Horn Station, St Bees Head, Whitehaven

St Bees Head Fog Horn Station, Cumbria  

Discover what’s inside the iconic Fog Horn Station, open for the first time over Heritage Open Days. Enjoy far-reaching views over the Irish Sea towards the Isle of Man. Weather permitting, visitors can head up to the roof of the building to enjoy uninterrupted views, blustery winds and the sound of waves crashing against the cliffs below.

• Free entry Friday 9 - Sunday 11 September, 11am - 3pm

The Drawing Room at Peckover House and Garden, Cambridgeshire

Peckover House and Garden, Cambridgeshire 

For those interested in dolls houses, head down to Peckover House on Heritage Open Days weekend to meet local craft business Anglia Dolls Houses. These craft specialists will be on hand to talk about the Georgian architectural model of Peckover they are producing and showcase some of their work.

• Free entry on Saturday 10 September, 11am - 5pm

The Marble Hall at Petworth House and Park

Petworth House and Park, West Sussex 

The 3rd Earl of Egremont was a passionate art collector and patron of the renowned British artist JMW Turner. Turner spent many years at Petworth and two of his paintings can be seen in the Carved Room. To celebrate Heritage Open Day the Old Library, also known as ‘Turner’s Studio’, will be open to visitors. Step inside this rarely opened room and imagine the artist at work.

• Free entry on Saturday 10 September, 11am - 4pm

View of Quarry Bank Mill from the Upper Garden

Quarry Bank, Cheshire 

Quarry Bank is one of Britain's greatest industrial heritage sites. Visitors on Heritage Open Day can find out more about how Quarry Bank is transforming due to our Heritage Lottery Funded project. See LipService Theatre Company perform sketches about Quarry Bank’s past owners, the Greg family, who were influential figures in Manchester's past.

• Free entry on Saturday 10 September, 10.30am - 5pm

Steam Yacht Gondola with steam

Steam Yacht Gondola, Cumbria 

Hop on board this rebuilt steam-powered yacht to learn more about luxury travel in the Victorian age. Have a chat with the crew and quiz the boat’s engineer on the Gondola's workings. With seldom seen archive material on display for one day only, it’s the perfect chance to delve into the history of this unique boat.

• Free entry on Saturday 10 September, 5pm - 6.30pm

The mosaic domed ceiling at the Gothic Temple sits high above the buildings central room

Stowe and The Gothic Temple, Buckinghamshire 

Experience a new view of Stowe as we open up the garden's temples and monuments for Heritage Open Day. Admire the intricately painted ceiling of the Gothic Temple, built in 1741. Wander through the glorious gardens, designed by the great landscape gardener Capability Brown.

• Free entry on Saturday 10 September, 10am - 6pm

Interior of the National Trust Textile Conservation Studio

Textile Conservation Studio, Norfolk 

See conservation work in action at our very own Textile Conservation Studio in Norfolk. You’ll be able to see unique historic textiles up close and personal and learn how they are cared for. Book onto one of four free tours around the studio through Heritage Open Days.

• Free entry on Saturday 10 September, tours 10am, 11.30am, 2pm & 3.30pm (Booking required)