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Heritage Open Days – 9th – 11th September 2016

Visit and learn about local places of interest free of charge !

The following places are open during the Heritage Open Days. See each listing for opening times.

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Newcastle Cemetery, Lymewood Grove, Newcastle-under-Lyme, ST5 2EH

Newcastle Cemetery Chapel will be open from 10.00am to 3.00pm on Saturday 10th September.

Members of Newcastle Civic Society will be in attendance to talk about the chapel and the Society.

Newcastle Cemetery Chapel is a Victorian Grade II listed building of architectural and historical interest. It is set on a hill just outside the town centre in 33 acres of burial ground surrounded by trees and shrubs.  The interior has a beamed ceiling, half tiled with Minton tiles and is set out with wooden pews and chairs indicative of the era.

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Unitarian Meeting House, Lower Street, Newcastle-under-Lyme, ST5 2UA

Unitarian Meeting House will be open from 11.00am to 4.00pm on Saturday 10th September.

Non-conformist meeting house or chapel built in 1717 in the shadow of the Parish Church (St Giles) original building dated c.1650 burnt down by rioting mob. Attended by master potter Josiah Wedgwood and Joseph Priestley: chemist, theologian and discoverer of oxygen. Charles Darwin also known to have visited.

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St Giles Parish Church, Church Street, Newcastle-under-Lyme, ST5 1QS

St Giles Church will be open from 9.00am to 12.00 on Friday 9th September and from 10.00am to 4.00pm on Saturday 10th September.

Soaring architecture, glorious glass and many notable features including Medieval Pelican lectern, fine organ and churchwarden’s chest. This beautiful Gilbert Scott church has many gems. This year see the work undertaken with Heritage Lottery Fund to improve and beatify the church grounds and show to great advantage the fine collection of memorial stones.

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Holy Trinity Catholic Church, London Road, Newcastle-under-Lyme, ST5 1LQ

Holy Trinity will be open from 10.30am to 5.00pm on Saturday 10th September.

Built in 1834 in blue brick, an outstanding example of local Gothic architecture, with original altars and fittings, stained glass and other features, including life size statues of St John Fisher and St Thomas More, with engraving by Eric Gill. A church of national importance as it was one of the first Catholic churches built on a main road after the Catholic Emancipation Act. Open this weekend for visitors to explore. Guide book and parish history available. Church has been extensively repaired and re-decorated, including a new (restored) pipe organ. This year we are celebrating the 400th anniversary of local martyr, Blessed Thomas Maxfield, born in Red Street Chesterton, and who was put to death in Newgate in 1616. There will be a display of information about his life and death available in church, and the Martyrs Chapel contains a relic of his forearm bone, brought from Spain in 2000.

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St Margaret’s Church, Church Lane, Wolstanton, Newcastle-under-Lyme, ST5 0EH

St Margaret’s Church, Wolstanton will be open from 10.00am to 4.00pm on Saturday 10th September.

There will be tours within the church and churchyard, advice on researching the baptismal, marriage and burial records and two special exhibitions – the centenary of the Battle of the Somme 1916 and the soldiers from the Wolstanton area that fought and died there and the life and achievements of James Brindley. 2016 is the 300th anniversary of his birth and the 250th anniversary of the cutting of the first sod for the Trent and Mersey Canal. James Brindley and Anne Henshaw were married at St Margaret’s Church on 8th December 1765.

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Keele Hall, University of Keele, Keele, Newcastle-under-Lyme, ST5 5BG

Keele Hall will be open from 10.00am to 3.30pm on Sunday 11th September.

The Keele estate was owned by the Sneyd family from 1540 to 1949. The first Keele Hall was built in 1580 and was rebuilt to the design of the celebrated Victorian architect Anthony Salvin in 1855-1860. It is a Grade II listed building. In 1949 the University College of North Staffordshire was founded on the site, which received the Royal Charter as Keele University in 1962. Keele Hall houses an outstanding collection of Mason Ironstone ceramics.

The Raven Mason Collection in Keele Hall outlines the development of Mason ceramics. Curator Harry Frost will be available and offers a free identification service for ceramic items.

There will be guided tours of the heritage areas of Keele Hall.

The Chapel is open to visitors around service times (i.e. afternoon only). Designed by George Pace and consecrated in 1965, it is the first purpose-designed ecumenical place of worship in the UK.

The campus has over 600 acres of landscaped grounds, farmland, woodland and University buildings and facilities.

There are leaflets for self-guided walks around the campus and arboretum. The arboretum includes a national collection of cherry trees.

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Kidsgrove Heritage Walk

Starting at Harecastle Tunnel, Kidsgrove Canal, Kidsgrove, ST7 1EA at 10.45am on Saturday 10th September.

James Brindley was one of the country’s most famous engineers. With his pals Josiah Wedgwood and Erasmus Darwin, he was responsible for bringing the Trent & Mersey canal into being. The mile and a half long Harecastle tunnel where our walk starts is acknowledged to be one of his finest achievements, although sadly he did not live to see its completion.

This heritage walk, in the company of a knowledgeable and engaging local historian, takes you from the mouth of the tunnel that bears his name, to his final resting place at St James Church in Newchapel. Your guide will regale you with stories of the life and achievements of Mr Brindley along with other fascinating insights into local history. If you are very lucky, the great man himself may even join you for the walk !

Nearby Kidsgrove Library in The Avenue will have a display of local history books available to peruse before and after the walk.

The walk is about 4 miles long (round trip) with a slight incline at the end and 4 stiles to negotiate. Much of it is along paths but the final section crosses a field so may be muddy if it has rained. Sensible footwear and suitable clothing is recommended. This event is NOT SUITABLE for children under the age of 5.

PRE-BOOKING IS PREFERRED

BOOKING CONTACT – Trudi Barnard – Call 07946 339110    or  Email  gokidsgrove@gmail.com

Booking closes 2.00pm Friday 9th September

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