You can see the sights at sites unseen

Tour the iconic Lancashire Archive

Tour the iconic Lancashire Archive

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Heritage Open Day events this Saturday offer a chance to uncover hidden gems across Lancashire

Have you ever wondered what lies beyond the doors of some of the area’s most impressive or little knownbuildings?

Photo NEIL CROSS'Army chapel at Fulwood Barracks

Photo NEIL CROSS'Army chapel at Fulwood Barracks

From now until Sunday you have the perfect chance to find out for free.

This weekend, Heritage Open Days will give local residents the chance to go through the keyhole of scores of historic sites around Preston – both important and, in some cases, previously rarely seen.

The scheme, England’s biggest voluntary cultural event, was set up to celebrate local historical and architectural treasures by allowing free access to those normally closed to the public, or with charged admission.

The four- day project also encourages attractions nationwide to display their activities in new and innovative ways, making them fun for all the family.

In Preston, among several sites participating, the Lancashire Infantry Museum will be providing guided tours of Fulwood Barracks.

As well as taking in parts of the grounds usually prohibited, the tour will include exhibitions on the history of local servicemen, and a visit to the redeveloped Somme Room in the First World War’s centenary year.

The Lancashire Archives will also be offering free tours of their 1970s Bow Lane office. Once again, the guide will include access to parts of the building not normally available to the public.

There to be explored too will be the 19th century Amounderness House.

The Grade II listed former magistrates’ court has been left redundant since the construction of more modern courts, but local artists will now lead tours of the Lancaster Road site.

In less regal settings, the public will also have the chance to learn about the process of dealing with Preston’s rubbish at the city’s cleansing department, near Deepdale Road.

Tours will help visitors to understand the evolution of local waste management, from the original ‘manure depot’ of the 1880s to present practices.

Tours will all operate throughout Saturday, but numbers are limited so pre-booking is recommended through emailing tourism@preston.gov.uk

For more information on this, and to see more sites participating in the scheme, visit www.heritageopendays.org.uk

Lewis Holden