Heritage Open Days returns this autumn for its fifth year, with this year’s events scheduled for Friday 3th – Sunday 5th October and Friday 10th – Sunday 12th October. The two weekends offer the Manx public and visitors to the Island the opportunity to explore some of the unusual or less publicity accessible historic properties, lands and buildings that celebrate the Isle of Man’s rich heritage and culture.
Heritage organisations and private owners of exciting collections Island-wide have joined together to open their doors and share their knowledge of these historic treasures and offer cultural tours and activities. There is something for everyone and best of all everything is FREE to explore! The promotion of Heritage Open Days is kindly supported by the Trustees of the Manx Museum and National Trust (charity no. 603).
Edmund Southworth, Director of Manx National Heritage said;
“This event is growing year on year, we have more venues and partners than ever before and we are hugely grateful to all the participants involved who have filled the programme with amazing opportunities to explore.
The Manx Museum and National Trust is proud to support this network of volunteer organisations, heritage centres and societies, government agencies and private individuals – together we are opening the doors to the Island’s collective past.
All Heritage Open Days events are free, although you can support participants by making a donation or volunteering your time. Buildings and collections in particular need maintenance, care and protection. Your support is always appreciated. Heritage Open Days really highlights how lucky we are to have such a diverse range of heritage on the Isle of Man.”
Last year over 2,000 visitors took part in 81 separate tours and events. This year there are 135 separate tours over the 6 days. The 2014 programme includes Geocaching along the former railway lines of Peel, a behind the scenes tour of the National archive at the Manx Museum, guided visits of the ARE Motorcycle collection in Kirk Michael, a walk and talk around Industrial Laxey, an opportunity to learn about Seafarers in Old Kirk Braddan graveyard and a chance to learn more about Internment in the First World War. There are too many highlights to name them all!
A programme featuring all of the FREE activities can be picked up from all Manx National Heritage sites and the Welcome Centre as well as participating venues. Or to print a copy of the programme.
All event listings can also be found online here. You can book many of the tours by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or with some venues directly, but please note many tours require pre-booking and have limited numbers so please book early to avoid disappointment.
Image caption: Industrial Laxey Upper Laxey Valley © David B Jones