AUG 00] HERITAGE OPEN DAYS NEWS
Coventry Characters Come Out For Heritage
do Queen Isabella, Coventry's Lord Mayor and a strolling Medieval
minstrel have in common?
answer is - they're all playing a part in this year's Heritage Open
Days, which is sponsored by CWN.
weekend on 16 and 17 September, promises to be the biggest yet for the
event in Coventry as several buildings are being opened to the public
for the first time.
year sees 12 properties open to the public free of charge as part of
the national Civic Trust initiative to open buildings that are not
normally open or are charged for on a free basis for a weekend.
include the oldest building in the city - St Mary Magdalene with Risen
Christ Church, Wyken.
buildings that can be seen for the first time this year are:
Manor Register Office; Swanswell Gate, which is one of the city's two
remaining city gates; Kirby House and the Varsity, which are both
Georgian town houses; the Lord Mayor's suites in the Council House;
the Bishop Haigh Memorial chapel in the cathedral ruins.
Isabella' will be out on show during the weekend, played by local tour
guide Barbara Bickerton in her one-time home, Cheylesmore Manor.
will be music from various periods by Richard York, one of the
country's leading Medieval musicians.
members of the public will be able to see what life is like for
Coventry's Lord Mayor, Cllr Sheila Collins, who will be welcoming
guests to the Lord Mayor's suites.
building which is back by popular demand is Drapers Hall, which was
used as a gentleman's club for the Drapers Guild.
was last opened for an open day in 1996, and was voted the building
most people wanted to see in a survey last year.
popular favourites open again this year are St Mary's Hall, which is
one of the finest preserved medieval guildhalls in the country, Blue
Coat School, which has recently been restored, the Council Chamber and
ante-chamber in the Council House, and the cathedral tower.
city's two main museums are also involved in the weekend with special
Herbert Art Gallery will be putting on live entertainment and tours of
its Godiva paintings and extensive stores.
Museum of British Road Transport will be putting on special events and
providing an old Daimler bus to tour the heritage route.
Open Days co-ordinator Hilary Hopker said:
Open Days is a great opportunity to get a real feel for the history
of Coventry through the buildings and people of its past.
year's programme is the most extensive yet and reflects the interest
of local people in their city."