Opening the doors to local heritage

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Heritage Open Days is taking place in Berwick-upon-Tweed once more with 39 events all on your doorstep, and free for everyone to enjoy, between September 13 and 15.

Heritage Open Days, the largest cultural event in the UK is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year and Berwick continues to be the northern jewel in this crown.

As well as many perennial favourites, the Berwick Heritage Open Days Committee has announced several new events for all the family to explore.

Berwick Museum and Art Gallery have a host of exhibitions and fun for the little ones. Saturday and Sunday, 11am–4 pm. There is also free access to all of the Barracks site on both days.

Berwick Town Hall Gaol will be open as part of a hive of activity and exhibitions, including the Facades of the Fifties, running all day in the Town Hall. This fascinating 18th century gaol is a must see. Saturday and Sunday, 1pm–3pm.

The new Berwick Visitor Centre (the former Methodist Church) on Walkergate is home to the beautiful Tweed 1000 Tapestry created by hundreds of local volunteers and tourists.

And take a trip down memory lane with a large, detailed scale model of Berwick built in the 1970s and see how the townscape has changed. Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 10am–4pm

Nobody quite knows why it’s called Chateau Pedro, but the garden of this cottage built by the Askew family of Castle Hills House, will be open. Why not get a breath of fresh air by taking a walk along the riverside New Road, popping in at the Rowing Club on the way, Sunday, 11pm–4pm

The Berwick Film Festival Director, Peter Taylor will be introducing Cinematon, a film project, which began in 1978 and made up of more than 3000 silent vignettes being shown in the windows of some empty Berwick shops. Talk at Berwick Town Hall, Saturday 3pm.

Another first is a guided walk around Berwick’s unique Elizabethan Ramparts.

Almost every resident and tourist must have walked them, but do we understand them? Discover the most expensive Crown project with new eyes on Saturday and Sunday, 3.30pm.

Tweedmouth is now included, with two tours. Many think nothing much existed before the 18th century but this is far from the case. The Medieval Tweedmouth Tour dispels this idea completely! Saturday and Sunday, 12pm. Meet at the Tweed Dock gate on Main Road.

Medieval to modern is explored in another tour of Tweedmouth West End. Pubs and bridges, an iron foundry and ironing, motorbikes and meeting houses; there’s so much to discover. Saturday and Sunday, 1.45pm. Meet at the Tweedmouth War Memorial on Main Road.

All the walks can be booked via Berwick Tourist Information Centre.

The organising committee would like to thank a host of people and bodies for their support, including Berwick-upon-Tweed Town Council’s continued funding, Berwick Freemen Trustees; English Heritage and Iceland for in kind support, and also the wonderful volunteers, without whose help this fabulous free event could not continue to thrive.

Linda Bankier. Berwick Heritage Open Days committee chair, said: “This is a great opportunity for us to showcase the richness of Berwick’s heritage and put the town on the map as a “must visit “ destination for Heritage Open Days.”

All events can be found on www.heritageopendays.org.uk and www.visitberwick.com