Celebrate Town’s Heritage at Free Events

Posted on: Monday, September 4, 2023

A wealth of cultural attractions around Newark will be opening their doors for free and holding special events over the next few weeks, all as part of the national Heritage Open Days scheme.

Newark Castle gets the ball rolling this Saturday 9 September with a fun day of activities in the Castle grounds, held in partnership with Polish Village. Visitors can experience a Polish harvest festival and learn about the country's heritage and culture, along with the rich history of Newark Castle. The event will include polish heritage crafts, traditional Polish music by Birmingham band Poppies, and an opportunity to uncover almost 1000 years of Castle history.

There’s something for all ages to enjoy with Castle-tastic Tales from Newark Creates' Nicky Rafferty who'll be sharing stories of foolish kings, fiendish queens, magic, mayhem and murder; a chance to make traditional salt dough decorations with the National Civil War Centre team; a creative workshop and play with Polish Village as well as a raffle to support their work; face painting; a collection for Newark Food Bank; fascinating tours of the tower with amazing views across town; and stalls including candy floss, Polish food and Polish clothing.

One of the aims of Heritage Open Days is to open up spaces not usually accessible to the public and the National Civil War Centre is doing just that, inviting people to go behind the scenes on a tour of their Resource Centre on the evening of Wednesday 13 September. Visitors will discover some of the 95,000 objects in the reserve collection, from art to social history, military history, archives and much more across the Anglo Saxon, Roman and Victorian periods, in this rare opportunity to see the inner workings of a museum. Places on the tour are strictly limited so should be booked in advance at www.nationalcivilwarcentre.com/seedo/events

While entry to the Centre is now free for Newark and Sherwood residents, they’ll be opening their doors to everyone on Saturday 16 September with a fantastic opportunity to meet their current Artist in Residence Samantha Jayne. After working in the museum all summer, Samantha will have lots to share in her art studio on the 5th floor, inviting guests to discover the virtual reality technology she uses to bring her art to life. Visitors over 11 will be able to pop on a virtual reality headset and have a go at creating their own artwork inspired by the museum.

Also on Saturday 16, there’ll be a chance to find out how some of the beautiful buildings around the town centre are repaired and maintained at a Heritage Building Skills Demonstration in the Market Place. Organised by Nottinghamshire Buildings Preservation Trust and Newark Civic Trust, in conjunction with the High Streets Heritage Action Zone team at Newark and Sherwood District Council, the event will see a number of experts on hand to demonstrate the skills required to maintain and repair historic buildings as well as a chance to get hands on, trying out some of the techniques.

Councillor Rowan Cozens, Deputy Leader and Portfolio Holder for Heritage, Culture and the Arts at Newark and Sherwood District Council said: “We live in an area rich in history and culture, it is fantastic to be able to offer free access to so many exciting events.”

For more information about Heritage Open Days and to view all of the events taking place locally, visit www.heritageopendays.org.uk.