Top Ten Family Friendly Events

There’s so much in store for all the family this double weekend extravaganza, so here’s a selection of events to inspire you...

© National Trust / Jonathan McMeekin - Join in this September and celebrate heritage that is fun for all the family

Arts and crafts and a giant dragon 

Leeds, West Yorkshire

Creativity will run wild in Left Bank Leeds, open over the second Heritage Open Days weekend for an arts-and-crafts experience. They will be exploring the story of St Margaret of Antioch, who forms part of their amazing building's heritage and bring the story to life in the shape of a dragon sculpture.

What can we uncover about medieval queens?

Winchester, Hampshire

In Winchester Great Hall, not one, but two interactive workshops will be taking place to help understand what it took to be a medieval queen in England. Whilst children can take part in these educational workshops, other members of the family will have free entry into the Great Hall to ensure that everyone can learn something new.

Go back in time with a Victorian school experience

Reading, Berkshire

Learn the ‘3-Rs’ and experience what it was really like to be a 19th-century school child. Time-travelling will become a reality! Open for both adults and children, this event is now in a brand new setting in the middle of the historical Abbey Gateway.

Understand more about England’s industrial heritage

Bristol, Gloucestershire

Explore an ancient water mill on the River Avon, used as a brass mill with water-powered hammers, shaping industrial and domestic hollow-ware from 1720-1925. With brass rubbing for younger visitors, the opening of the mill itself and a garden full of sculptures, this is a fabulous event sharing England’s industrial heritage.

Combining manor heritage and outdoor fun  

Keighley, West Yorkshire

At East Riddlesden Hall National Trust site not only are the stories of the family who once lived here shared, but acres of outdoor space can be enjoyed. From a mud pie kitchen, den building corner, to relaxing tea room next to the house and barn, there will be something for anyone who wishes to explore their heritage this September.

Explore Wordsworth’s childhood home

Cockermouth, Cumbria

Free for you to discover, the childhood home of William Wordsworth holds many stories, secrets, and sights. Learn how one of the country’s best-loved poets grew up, his relationship with his sister and many other fascinating stories. Why not tag along to learn more for yourself?

Uncover policing since the 19th century

Warrington, Cheshire

The Museum of Policing throws open its doors for you to discover a replica Tardis style police box, a CID custody office, a full size working police car, Victorian cell with prisoner and custody officer, police uniforms from around the world and much, much more. Then take part in dress up and solve the mystery of the missing prisoner.

Witness a theatrical exploration of the Paston Family

Norwich, Norfolk

Described as a theatrical walking tour across the city of Norwich, you will follow in the footsteps of the medieval Paston family. Retold through the letters exchanged by the family, this event will encourage you to take part in the action. History will come to life (literally)!

Come and explore a unique manor park

Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire

With discovery trails, arts and crafts, scavenger hunts and fossil foraging you wouldn’t be wrong for thinking the Great Linford Manor Park has it all. This is a unique chance to explore the 18th-century water gardens and several Grade II listed buildings. With so much to see and do, this is certainly a highlight.

The streets are alive with the sounds of the 20th century

St. Albans, Hertfordshire

St. Albans will be transformed into all the decades of the 20th century this September. Holywell Hill will be themed WW1 to 1920s, St Peter’s Street WW2 and 1940s, George Street 1950s and 1960s and Catherine Street 1970s and 1980s. What's more, this is all accompanied by music, performance and activities for children as well.

And for luck

Okehampton, Devon

As there is so much for families this September, we couldn’t quite keep it down to a top ten. Especially when Finch Foundry is as exciting as this, an old water-powered Victorian forge full of activities, sights, and sounds for everyone to enjoy. As well as the waterwheels, working forge, grinding house, carpenters’ workshop and gallery museum, there is also a pretty cottage garden and a Quaker burial ground to visit.


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