King’s Lynn set for biggest-ever Heritage Open day

Clifton House, the Custom House and River Ouse taken from the south tower of King's Lynn Minster. Pi

Clifton House, the Custom House and River Ouse taken from the south tower of King's Lynn Minster. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: IAN BURT

More than 50 of King's Lynn's historic buildings will be open on Heritage Open day.

For the first time, the event will include a classic car fair, with hundreds of vehicles lined up on the Tuesday Market Place.

There will also be live music, open gardens, exhibitions and re-enactments around the town on Sunday, September 14 (10am - 4pm).

Alsion Gifford, chair of King's Lynn Civic Society, said: 'The amount of Grade 1 and II listed buildings we've got would rival anywhere in Europe. Lynn was such a rich town - it's hard to imagine now.

'My idea of an open day is a community thing, where we all get together and enjoy ourselves in our own town.'

As well as some of the town's best-known buildings, many private properties and homes will welcome visitors on the day.

'These are houses that are domestic spaces and lived in by families, who are looking after them for the future,' said Ms Gifford.

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She added some were opening for the first time - including Lath Mansion, in Nelson Street.

'The Browne family, the dynasty of merchants who lived there were millionaires,' she said. 'The people who own it now are opening up the grand hallway.'

Air raid shelters beneath the Tuesday Market Place, the town's Jewish Cemetery and walled gardens at Hampton Court are among the more unusual attractions.

The bar will be open all day at the Ouse Amateur Sailing Club - known locally as the Ouse Booze - whose decked terrace offers panoramic views of the river.

Bank House will be opening up its tunnels, which run beneath King Staithe Square. Visitors will also be able to take a rare glimpse inside the Masonic Temple hiddden down a spoof corridor at the Duke's Head Hotel, on the Tuesday Market Place.

More than 150 classic cars are expected to fill the Tuesday Market Place, from a Model T Ford to an E-Type Jag.

Joining them will be the Cooper car - the last surviving example of six cars built at Cooper Bearings in the early 1900s.

Inshore Fisheries Conservation Authority boats can be boarded at the mooring pontoons by Marriott's Warehouse and the Hanse House.

Lynn Town Band will be playing in The Walks, while the will be Baroque Dance at the Town Hall and Boogie to Big Band Sound in the Tuesday Market Place.

The event is the 20th to be organised by Lynn Civic Society working with West Norfolk council, the Red Badge Town Guides, friends groups, businesses and residents.

Programmes can be obtained at the Custom House, or by clicking here.