Heritage Open Days will be taking place nationally and locally from Thursday 11th to Sunday 14th of September 2014. Heritage sites will open their doors for free to reveal their hidden historical gems.

Heritage Open Days is in its 20th year and is England’s biggest and most popular voluntary cultural event. Attractions include bus trails, photography exhibitions, tours, walks and talks that bring to life local history and culture.

The aim is for all residents and visitors to discover some of the county’s hidden heritage treasures, for free. This is part of a national dedication to England’s architecture and heritage. Hexham open days are as below but please see here for Northumberland’s broader list of openings.

Hexham House of Correction
Dates and Times:

Thursday 11th | 2pm
Friday 12th | 2pm
Saturday 13th | 2pm
Sunday 14th | 2pm
Event Type: Guided walk

Location: Burn Lane, Hexham

Suitable for children: Yes (From age 5)

Booking required: Yes

Information about the event:

Take a guided walk through Hexham’s historic tannery area en-route to the House of Correction and see the ‘prison like’ two storey institution where inmates were encouraged to move to a different parish so as not to be a local financial burden. Meet outside Hexham Abbey shop NE46 3NB.

How to book:

Tel: 01434 606034
Email: richard410simons@btinternet.com
House of Correction – Hexham on the Edge
Dates and Times:

Thursday 11th | 1pm – 2.15pm & 2.40pm – 4.30pm
Friday 12th | 1pm – 2.15pm & 2.40pm – 4.30pm
Event Type: Guided walk

Location: Tyne Green Road, NE46 3NH

Suitable for children: Yes (From age 5)

Booking required: No

Information about the event:

From notorious arsonists to obscure unfortunates; come and see how 19th century Hexham responded to people “on the edges” of town life. (Between 2.15 – 2.40pm the Hexham Guild of Guides will be showing people around the building as part of their guided walks.)

More information: http://www.tynedaleheritage.org

Hexham’s Leatherwork Heritage Part I
Dates and Times:

Saturday 13th | 9am – 1pm
Event Type: Demonstration/Activity

Location: Market Place, NE46 1XG

Suitable for children: Yes

Booking required: No

Information about the event:

For over 25 years Andy Bates has been making bespoke leather goods, works of art and historical reproductions. See leatherwork demonstrations with opportunities to craft your own item.

More information: http://www.visithexham.net

Hexham’s Leatherwork Heritage Part II
Dates and Times:

Saturday 13th | 2.30pm
Event Type: Activity/Event

Location: Lockhart Room, Moothall, NE46 3PB

Suitable for children: Yes

Booking required: No

Information about the event:

An illustrated talk by craftsman and industry historian Andy Bates about this once-important industry in Hexham, with its roots going back centuries to the Roman occupation. This event follows the morning’s demonstrations and have-a-go sessions.

More information: http://www.visithexham.net

Hidden Hexham Concert
Dates and Times:

Saturday 13th | 11.45am – 1pm
Event Type: Concert

Location: Hexham Abbey, Beaumont Street, NE46 3NB

Suitable for children: Yes

Booking required: No

Information about the event:

Under the magnificent windows of the north transept, Alistair Anderson will lead Core Music’s Hexham Village Band and the Jazz Jammers in a special performance of his composition “Hidden Hexham”. The concert will also include some recently written songs about some of the more quirky of Hexham’s characters from 17th-19th centuries. With support from Waitrose Hexham. In partnership with Hexham Abbey Festival.

More information: http://www.visithexham.net

Hidden Hexham Concert
Dates and Times:

Thursday 11th | 9.30am – 5pm
Friday 12th | 9.30am – 5pm
Saturday 13th | 9.30am – 5pm
Sunday 14th | 11am – 4pm (TIC Only)
Event Type: Self guided walk

Location: Hexham Tourist Information Centre, NE46 1QE

Suitable for children: Yes (From age 5)

Booking required: No

Information about the event:

This walk shows the currently known WWI memorials. The walk takes in many of the churches and other public buildings. This will be of particular interest to people who have ancestors listed on memorials.

More information: http://www.experiencewoodhorn.com/hexham-old-gaol

Hexham’s Arches and Doorways
Dates and Times:

Thursday 11th | 9.30am – 5pm
Friday 12th | 9.30am – 5pm
Saturday 13th | 9.30am – 5pm
Sunday 14th | 11am – 4pm (TIC Only)
Event Type: Self guided walk

Location: Hexham Tourist Information Centre, NE46 1QE

Suitable for children: Yes

Booking required: No

Information about the event:

This walk focuses on some of the intriguing archways and old doorways that can be seen around the town. Some of them have moved over time, here’s where you can find out why! Children may well be interested in this trail as there is a range of different arches and doorways, each with their own story.

More information: http://www.experiencewoodhorn.com/hexham-old-gaol

Forum Cinema Hexham Projection Room Tours
Dates and Times:

Friday 12th | 4pm – 5.30pm
Saturday 13th | 11am – 4.30pm
Sunday 14th | 2pm – 4.30pm
Event Type: Opening/Tour

Location: Market Place, NE46 1XF

Suitable for children: Yes

Booking required: Yes

Information about the event:

Take a guided tour up 2 flights of narrow steep steps to see the projection room at the art deco cinema in the town centre.

How to book:

Tel: 01670 620450 (Between 10am & 12pm)
Email: hexham.tic@northumberland.gov.uk
More information: http://www.visithexham.net

Forum Cinema Hexham Projection Room Tours
Dates and Times:

Friday 12th | 6pm
Event Type: Activity/Event

Location: Forum Cinema, Market Place, NE46 1XF

Suitable for children: Yes

Booking required: No (Advised)

Information about the event:

Cinema a century ago was a new and exciting form of entertainment. One hundred years on, this special compilation from BFI archives recreates the glorious miscellany of comedies, dramas and newsreels from 1914.

How to book:

Tel: 01434 601144
More information: http://www.forumhexham.co.uk

Forum Cinema Hexham Projection Room Tours
Dates and Times:

Sunday 14th | 1.15pm & 4.15pm
Event Type: Event

Location: The Forum Cinema, Market Place, NE46 1XF

Suitable for children: Yes

Booking required: No

Information about the event:

Have a go at looking through the lens of a camera of 19th century design. See how early photographers saw the worldupside-down! Have a look at the glass plate the image had to be exposed on to, and the sort of enlarger used to print the pictures. How different is this old photography technique to using today’s digital cameras/camera phones and printers with instant results?

More information: http://www.visithexham.net

Gibson’s Poems and Photographs
Dates and Times:

Thursday 11th | 4pm – 8pm
Friday 12th | 4pm – 8pm
Saturday 13th | 12pm – 8pm
Sunday 14th | 1.30pm – 8pm
Event Type: Activity/Event

Location: The Forum Cinema, Market Place, NE46 1XF

Suitable for children: Yes

Booking required: No

Information about the event:

An exhibition of J. P. Gibson’s photographs and W. W. Gibson’s poems about Hexham and the surrounding area on the eve of the first world war. On Sunday at 3.30pm Iain Duncan will give a performance of Charles Butterworth’s evocative song cycle “A Shropshire Lad”, interspersed with readings of W. W. Gibson’s poems.

More information: http://www.visithexham.net

What Happened to Hexham Abbey’s Monastic Buildings?
Dates and Times:

Thursday 11th | 3pm
Friday 12th | 3pm
Event Type: Property opening/Tour

Location: Hexham Abbey, Beaumont Street, NE46 3NB

Suitable for children: Yes (From age 7)

Booking required: Yes

Information about the event:

Find out what happened to the Monastic Buildings after Henry VIII gifted them to Sir Reynold Carnaby in 1537. See the changes made by some of the different owners, including Mrs Beaumont, who created the beautiful Regency Ballroom, the highlight of the tour.

How to book:

Tel: 01434 602031
Email: heritage@hexhamabbey.org.uk
More information: http://www.hexhamabbey.org.uk

Sounds and Sights of a Tynedale Market Town
Dates and Times:

Thursday 11th | 10am – 2pm
Friday 12th | 10am – 2pm
Saturday 13th | 2pm – 5pm
Sunday 14th | 10am – 4pm
Event Type: Activity

Location: Moothall, NE46 1XF

Suitable for children: Yes (From age 7)

Booking required: No

Information about the event:

See and hear how the historic Moothall stood at the centre of 18th century Hexham life: managing the Market Place, fixing the fines, creating a community.

More information: http://www.tynedaleheritage.org/Resources/MootMain.htm

Dukesfield Arches
Dates and Times:

Sunday 14th | 10am – 4pm
Event Type: Activity/Event

Location: Between Slaley & Whitley Chapel, NE46 1SG

Suitable for children: Yes (From age 1)

Booking required: No

Information about the event:

See the remains of the Dukesfield Lead Smelt Mill Arches and learn what they were used for. Our guides will explain the recent archaeology and how it fits into the whole site. There will be display boards detailing the history of the Dukesfield Smelt Mill and its association with the lead mines of the Pennine hills.

More information: dukesfield@outlook.com