Annual Heritage Open Days event draws in visitors intrigued by Lowestoft’s history and culture

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Ho

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Archant

There was a rare chance to view some of Lowestoft's hidden treasures as the annual Heritage Open Days festivities graced the town.

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Ho

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Archant

From September 7 to 10, visitors were invited to explore and experience 18 cultural beacons signifying Lowestoft's adsorbing history.

Among the highlights was an opportunity to soak up the interior of the majestic Lowestoft Town Hall, noted for its grand facade and three magnificent stained glass windows.

There was also a chance to climb aboard the last surviving fishing vessel built in Lowestoft, the Mincarlo trawler, which was retired in 1989 and is now permanently docked at Heritage Quay.

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Ho

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Archant

Paul King, who moved to Suffolk two years ago and is a Heritage Open Days organiser, expressed how determined he has been for Lowestoft people to embrace the countless heritage sites that surround them.


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'I've always been interested in heritage, but when I moved to Lowestoft I realised there was nothing much open for people to see,' said Mr King.

'There are so many lovely old buildings here and they weren't being appreciated.

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Ho

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Archant

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'Having researched some of the history, I compiled a list of possible sites that could take part in the Heritage Open Days and helped them to register.'

The annual Heritage Open Days event began in 1991 with the aim of increasing appreciation for England's cultural spectacles.

A total of 141 locations across Suffolk took part in this year's four-day celebration, during which Lowestoft also offered church tours, insights into the history of local landmarks and a chance to go behind the scenes at the Marina Theatre.

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Ho

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Archant

'This year's efforts have been about putting Lowestoft on the heritage map and people are looking at what's around them in a different way,' added Mr King.

'The celebration was very much a success and we constantly had numerous visitors looking around the sites.'

As for the future, Mr King believes the celebration of local history and culture has the potential to go from strength to strength.

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Ho

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Archant

'We definitely want to take it forward into 2018 and hopefully we can get even more sites involved next year,' he said.

'I'd like to thank everybody that took part for making it so successful.'

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Ho

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Archant

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Ho

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Archant

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Ho

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Archant

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Ho

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Archant

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Ho

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Archant

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Ho

The Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea was available to view on Heritage Open Days. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Archant

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