Friday, 29 July 2016 00:00

Heritage Open Days

Written by  Lindsey Roffe
Rate this item
(1 Vote)
Heritage Open Days

Heritage Open Days (HODs) is England's biggest heritage festival celebrating our fantastic history, architecture and culture. Here in Norfolk, the local 2016 festival brochure is available from Monday 1 August, bursting with over 200 hidden places and heritage events just waiting to be discovered between Thursday 8 – Sunday 11 September

The HODs festival offers a combination of drop-in and pre-book events all over the county and booking opens on Monday 1 August. Brochures will be available from The Forum in Norwich, Tourist Information Centres, libraries and many other venues across the county. The full programme of HODs events across Norfolk can also be found online from Monday via

The hugely popular annual heritage festival sees thousands of local people exploring hidden gems right on their doorstep, all for FREE! From castles to city halls, tunnels to tower tops, police cells to private homes, workshops to woodland walks, the variety of places and ways to discover them are endless.

This year’s HODs programme in Norwich and across Norfolk is being coordinated by The Forum with support from Norwich City Council and Norwich Tourist Information Centre. The programme is also delivered in partnership with Breckland Council, Broadland District Council, Thetford Town Council, Great Yarmouth Borough Council, South Norfolk District Council, Visit North Norfolk and many local organisations and individuals. Details of events across all of these areas can be found in the brochure and on the website. 

There are some fantastic new events for 2016; in Norwich, enjoy tours around the UEA’s Enterprise Centre, the recently refurbished Boardman House, for heritage and technology lovers take part in the History Mystery heritage hunt, there’s a behind the scenes look at the 140 year old Victoria Bowling Club and a 12 year boy is opening his very own museum dedicated to Lord Nelson! In Broadland, the owners of Catton Place are opening their doors for the first time and Blofield Courthouse is open for guided tours.

Thetford is presenting a number of new events including a Terrific Tanks family event, a tour of a former atomic weapons bunker, hand bell ringing at St Peters Church and a sneaky peek around Lynford Hall. In Great Yarmouth, visit Burgh Castle Fort and watch the best preserved Roman monument come alive with Roman soldiers on horseback. In South Norfolk, visit the newly refurbished Diss Corn Hall, explore the Caistor Roman Town and join in with lots of retro fun at the vintage day in Wymondham. In North Norfolk, enjoy a tour of the redeveloped 1840s Maltings Building part of the Wells Pirate Festival and meet Sir William Paston at St Nicholas Church.

Cathy Eden, HODs Coordinator at The Forum said: “We are so excited that the HODs programme for 2016 is so vibrant and varied. It features plenty of the well-loved HODs favourites as well as lots of brand new interpretations of heritage and culture from venues all across the county. This fantastic celebration of our local heritage wouldn’t be possible without the support and hard work from many individuals, venues, organisations and volunteers and we are very grateful to all of them for helping to make the 2016 festival possible. We can’t wait!”

This is The Forum’s inaugural year coordinating HODs across Norfolk, working closely with the national HODs organisers to deliver the festival. For further information on the national Heritage Open Days programme visit For local enquiries about HODs, please get in touch via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and keep visiting for updates.






Last modified on Friday, 29 July 2016 20:45

Related items

  • TV Naturalist to Headline ‘Wild About the Wensum’

    TV presenter, author and naturalist, Nick Baker, is set to open The Pensthorpe Conservation Trust’s* annual community event Wild About the Wensum on Saturday 12th May 2018.

    Intrepid explorer and natural history expert Nick, who has famously presented Weird Creatures (C5), The Really Wild Show (BBC One) and Springwatch Unsprung (BBC Two), will officially open the event, meet members of the public and even host a bug hunt for kids!

    Wild About the Wensum, now in its twelfth year, is a special one-day event held by the Pensthorpe Conservation Trust with the sole focus on encouraging people of all ages, especially families who often don’t get the chance to be outdoors, to enjoy the beautiful Wensum Valley, within which Pensthorpe Natural Park is located. 

  • Norwich homes developer urges more women to consider a career in construction

    As International Women’s Day puts the spotlight on women’s achievements, Norwich partnership homes developer Lovell is urging more girls and women to consider construction careers.

    Lovell, which has women working across its East Anglian business, would like to see more coming into an industry where female workers remain under-represented, making up just 12.8 per cent of the overall national construction workforce.

    Lovell’s local team includes Norwich-based customer care manager Daisy Foord, who ensures that all homes built by the firm meet the highest quality standards.

  • Celebrate English Tourism Week at the Maids Head Hotel, Norwich

    Celebrate English Tourism Week from Saturday, March 17 to Sunday, March 25 at the historic Maids Head Hotel in Norwich.

    A classic English Afternoon Tea will be on offer, along with special English Tourism Week cocktails, Norfolk Martini and Norfolk Raspberry Tonic.

    On Thursday, March 22, at 12noon, Peter Rye will be unveiling a photograph of his great-grandfather, Walter Rye, owner of the Maids Head from 1889 to 1895 and Mayor of Norwich, 1908 to 1909. Peter will also be officially opening eight newly refurbished bedrooms in the oldest part of the hotel. Bedrooms that Walter Rye would have known well.

  • Books to Schools Campaign launched on World Book Day

    ‘Books To Schools’ was inspired by the success of Waterstones Christmas Giving Tree campaign, an annual event in which customers at the Castle Street bookshop are invited to gift books to children in care. The scheme has proved hugely popular in recent years and in 2017 over 500 children received books for Christmas through the Giving Tree campaign, thanks to hundreds of donations made by Waterstones customers to the project.

  • Four Famous Flamingos Retire From City Life to Relocate to Norfolk

    After living the high life at The Roof Gardens in Kensington, London, four flamingos have put their high society days behind them and have relocated to Norfolk. 

    Flamingos Bill, Ben, Splosh and Pecks, have taken up permanent residence at Pensthorpe Natural Park, a 700-acre modern nature reserve in north Norfolk, which already has a dedicated Flamingo area and is home to thousands of bird and wildlife species.  

    Upon arrival the birds entered a pen adjacent to Pensthorpe’s existing flock of 25 so that the two groups could get acquainted. After a few days living as neighbours the London birds were integrated with the resident flock under the careful watch of Chrissie Kelley, Head of Species Management at Pensthorpe.