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Heritage Open Days

A Europe-wide initiative providing free access to information and experiences about our heritage. Within the UK, Heritiage Open Days are run by the National trust, Civic Voice and the Heritage Alliance. Within the historic county of Lincolnshire, Heritage Open Days are co-ordinated by Lincolnshire Heritage.

Heritage Open Days

2012 Heritage Open Days. For News of this years Heritage Open Days please go to our News page

2011 Heritage Open Days - As usual, Lincolnshire Heritage has organised a theme for Open Days in the historic county of Lincolnshire. This year the theme is Victorian Lincolnshire.

The Lincolnshire Heritage Open Days booklet is available at libraries or you can download a copy By clicking here

2011 Heritage Open Days events include a slide lecture by Dr Alan Dowling on the History of the Cleethorpes Promenades at 2pm on Saturday 10th September at Cleethorpes Town Hall.

Friends of Cleethorpes Heritage will be holding a Victorian Tea Party at the Baptist Church from 10pm to 4pm on the Saturday. Both events are within a minute's walk of each other, so you can view the historic regalia and be served tea and cakes by a Victorian waitress.

See for more information about FOCH.

2010 Heritage Open Days included the exhibition, at Grimsby Town Hall, of the "Grimsby At War" DVD funded by English Heritage and a lecture by Dr Alan Dowling at Cleethorpes Town Hall.

2009 Heritage Open Days took place from Thursday 10th to Sunday 13th September 2009.

You can dowload our leaflet, in conjunction with the Cleethorpes Charter Trustees By Clicking Here

Please note due to late change St James Church Grimsby was only open on Friday from 10am to 11 am. Thursday & Saturday unchanged

Heritage Open Days 2009

Heritage Open Days were at a slight disadvantage this year as NE Lincs Council had organised and promoted several events to tie in with the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race. Nevertheless we did see some visitors from as far away as the Czech Republic at St James Church Grimsby, and a late surge of visitors at Cleethorpes Town Hall on the Saturday afternoon.

Following a suggestion from Lincolnshire Heritage, the Civic Society worked with the Cleethorpes Charter Trustees to produce a leaflet promoting the Heritage Open Days in the Grimsby and Cleethorpes area.

Available from Cleethorpes Tourist Information Centre, and Grimsby Central Library, as well as our own website, the leaflet gave a summary of the free activities at Cleethorpes Town Hall, Grimsby Town Hall, St James Church, St Martins Church, Beacon Hill Allotments, Cleethorpes Observatory and Station Road, Stallingborough.

Due to other commitments (many members were involved with Grimsby in Bloom's Gold winning entry to East Midlands in Bloom) we focussed our HODS involvement on production of the leaflet and three static displays at Grimsby and Cleethorpes Town Hall and St James Church Grimsby. Membership Secretary Teresa Bassett was able to attend at least one of the displays each day during the Thursday to Saturday period, promoting the work of the Civic Society.

Alf Ludlam and other members of the new Museum/Art Gallery Committee were also able to talk to members of the public about our new campaign, gauging public opinion of what was needed and where it should be situated.

As part of our collaboration with the Charter Trustees, Alan Dowling led a session at Cleethorpes Town Hall, giving locals an opportunity to preserve their memories of old Cleethorpes. As usual the Trustees opened up the civic regalia and magnificent council chamber with the Mayor and councillors in attendance. The display included a fascinating collection of old account books and deeds dating back to the 1960's and earlier - interesting not just for the detail but also for examples of a period when company letterheads were a work of art in themselves.

In other parts of the town, Grimsby Town Hall opened up the council chamber and archives while Doreen Whittingham gave a slide show, "A walk through the Old Town".

Beacon Hill Allotments opened up on Sunday morning, and despite a cloudy start the volunteers were busy on the village green organising displays of tapestry and sculpture alongside produce from the allotments. As usual visitors could wander at their leisure following a site map to areas such as the community orchard and wildlife pond.

The Cleethorpes Astronomical Society had also opened up their Observatory on the site - visitors were entertained in the meeting room by a powerpoint display of telescopic images of the moon and the stars, along with an animated simulation of the night sky. Members answered questions about the planets, meteorites and the best equipment for viewing them, and were also able to see a demonstration of the Society's telescope - one of the largest in the area. The observatory - built by members in the 1960's after the council gave permission to use a portion of the allotment - has become a living example of our heritage.

Although we weren't able to get round to every HODS event (such as the woodlands crafts at Stallingborough) the Society was represented at another event which was in the spirit of Heritage Open Days. On Friday 11th September, the Friends of the Barton Line unveiled restored historic name boards at Thornton Abbey station. The 5 metre long boards, a remnant of the old London and North Eastern Railway, were falling apart and in danger of being lost. However, the Friends of the Barton Line received permission to have the name boards restored by local craftsmen and on Friday they were unveiled with the Surveyor of Monuments in attendance. Further details here at the English Heritage Site

and photo's here;

Heritage Open Days 2008.

Saturday 13th & Sunday 14th September.


The Civic Society was the guest of the Griffin Hall Museum of Cleethorpes Coast Light Railway on Saturday and Grimsby Town Football Club on Sunday. The theme was Lincolnshire At Play. Thanks to everyone who came along.

Grimsby Cleethorpes & District Civic Society and friends explored play and past-times through the ages in the historic county of Lincolnshire. Displays included photographs and paintings on the theme of play and pastimes, model rail layouts, the history of Cinemas in Grimsby and Cleethorpes and the hidden delights of the Cleethorpes to Barton railtrack by the Friends of the Barton Line.

Heritage Open Days celebrate England's fantastic architecture and culture by offering free access to properties that are usually closed to the public or normally charge for admission. Organised by English Heritage and the Civic Trust, a full directory of national events can be found at their website on

The Heritage Trust of Lincolnshire has been co-ordinating Heritage Open Days in the historic county of Lincolnshire since 1994. The Trust actively seeks out a mixture of interesting and unusual walks, talks, buildings and events, developing a theme each year to bring variety to the programme of events. The theme for Lincolnshire Heritage Open Days 2008 is "Lincolnshire at Play".

Although North East Lincolnshire is part of the Yorkshire and Humber administrative district, Grimsby, Cleethorpes and District Civic Society has been supporting the Lincolnshire Heritage theme for several years. In 2008, we have been actively seeking out local groups to join the Lincolnshire At Play theme. We are proud to say that a number of new participants from the Grimsby and Cleethorpes took part in Heritage Open Day including Grimsby Rugby Club, Grimsby Global Twirlers and Grimsby Town Football Club.

Check out Lincolnshire Heritage's website for the latest details:

Heritage Open Days 2007 - Humbertone Fitties

Heritage Day September 9 2007


The Civic Society welcomed over 100 visitors to their stand on Humberston Fitties as part of national Heritage Weekend on Sunday 9 September. The Society teamed up with the Fitties Resident's who kindly provided space in their garden as our base for the day's events.

Our photo shows Alan Dowling, pausing with the Mayor and Mayoress, and Pauline Cook of NE Lincs Council, during his historic guided tour of the Fitties.

2006 - Beacon Hill Allotments

The Civic Society joined forces with the Beacon Hill Allotments and Leisure Gardener's Society and the Grimsby Astronomical Society to present a fun day on Sunday 10th September. The gates opened at 11am and there was a constant supply of visitors to the site throughout the day.

The display boards were set up early and we were kept busy with visitors commenting on the photographs and Grimsby/Cleethorpes in general. The "just for fun" quiz was also tested by many.

In the afternoon, David Robinson took a large group to Cleethorpes Cemetery to give a talk on the Bronze Age burial mound and the war graves.

The "village green" where we were situated felt a little like a garden party, with the sounds of classical guitars and Samba bands. The weather was perfect too. Our main aim was to make the Civic Society known to a wider community, and I think we have done this. And if we attract new memembers, then even better. Thanks to all who helped out on the day and the members that came along

Transport Heritage 2005

For the National Heritage Weekend in September 2005, the Fishing Heritage Centre offered the society a venue to celebrate Transport through the ages.

Although blustery British weather did its best to dampen the event, the area around the museum was enlivened by classic vehicles (including one of the few surviving examples of Grimsby's own Lloyd's Cars). Inside the museum a display of transport memorabilia was complemented by the Society display boards inside the cafeteria and talks and slide shows from Dave Cowell and Dr Alan Dowling.


On Sunday afternoon, David Robinson led a tour of historic Grimsby, pointing out long neglected examples of architectural history around central Grimsby.

In our photo, the tour pauses to admire the Grecian details and domed extruded corner of the former Savoy Cinema (now McDonalds).

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