By Leah Conway-
September 10 – 19 marks the national Heritage Open Days event. It is an annual celebration of history and culture. Organisations and charities across the UK organise free events to take part in across the Heritage Open Days.
This year, Huddersfield town centre will become a hive of history-inspired activity for the annual Heritage Open Days festival.
There will be lots of local activities available to take part in over the coming days; it is part of the broader picture of the Huddersfield High Street Heritage Action Zone (HSHAZ) Cultural Programme. The Huddersfield HSHAZ Consortium runs the programme in partnership with Kirklees Council and Historic England.
What’s happening across Huddersfield?
The HSHAZ-led Heritage Open Days’ activities kicked off on Saturday, starting with an introduction to the HSHAZ’s history and a family signwriting event in Byram Arcade.
There will also be an opportunity to enjoy Huddersfield Carnival performances and visit Chol Theatre’s Cholavan, which will be in St. George’s Square to provide information on events and hosting activities for children.
A range of other activities will be ongoing across the ten-day festival, including:
- ‘Huddersfield Heritage Mile’ walks
- ‘Run For The Mills’ talk by Historic England
- Townsounds Street Party run by Let’s Go Yorkshire
- The Town That Bought Itself. by Proper Job Theatre Company’s – An animated walk through the history of Huddersfield
- Discover Huddersfield guided walks and a talk on W. H. Crosland – architect to many of Huddersfield town centre’s key buildings.
- The Huddersfield Local History Society will host a ‘Memories of our Square’ exhibition.
As well as a range of events the public can also share their stories of the Square at the Huddersfield Heritage Hub, which is located in the piazza opposite the library.
A range of 30 activities will be delivered by the HSHAZ Consortium across the national 10-day festival. In Huddersfield, all will be centred around St. George’s Square, an area full of Huddersfield’s rich history and heritage and the focus of the HSHAZ funded by Kirklees Council and Heritage England.
“Celebrating and sharing.”
Councillor Peter McBride, Cabinet Member for Regeneration, says:
“The work of the HSHAZ is to breathe new life into St. George’s Square and the surrounding area – which is already one of the most important and iconic parts of Huddersfield.
“Through this programme of events, we’re fuelling the local economy and culture, bringing together the local community within Huddersfield, and attracting more footfall from visitors as local tourism booms across the UK.
“Huddersfield has so much to offer, and the Heritage Open Days festival is a fantastic way to showcase this whilst giving our high streets a boost. The amount there is to get involved with over the course of the festival is a testament to Huddersfield’s beautiful and varied heritage.
“Celebrating and sharing our cultural offer – which is at the heart and soul of our communities and local economy alike – is just as important as the many exciting physical improvements we’re currently making to our town centre. I encourage residents and visitors alike to get involved and learn more about Huddersfield, past and present.”
Dr. Tosh Warwick, Huddersfield HSHAZ Cultural Programme Coordinator, says:
“Heritage Open Days is a fantastic opportunity to showcase Huddersfield’s history and through the HSHAZ Cultural Programme we are re-engaging communities with the historical heart of Huddersfield in exciting and imaginative ways through a range of collaborations with artists, creatives, historians, societies and local venues.”