Heritage Open Days 2017 ran from Thursday 7 to Sunday 10 September.
Our theme this year was Changing Faces – Buildings Then and Now. This promoted the town’s outstanding architectural heritage, focussing on how old buildings have been preserved by changing their use to meet modern day needs.
New this year
Several properties were open to visitors for the first time under Heritage Open Days, including:
Adult Learning Centre, a 19th century Gothic style building, which has at times been the Old Grammar School and the Farnham School of Art.
Farnham Vineyard Cburch, one of Farnham’s few Arts and Crafts buildings, orignally a Church Hall for St Andrew’s.
The Giggling Squid, now a restaurant by once the office for a builder’s yard.
Full deails about venues, guided walks and other events appear in our 2017 brochure, which can be obtained at locations throughout Farnham. It is also available online. Click here to view.
The 2015 Heritage Open Days ran from 10 to 13 September.
This year our theme was Hops. Farnham has a long tradition of a local hop industry. Numerous local buildings – for example Farnham Maltings and Daniel Hall – are associated with the industry, and many of the fine Georgian houses were built using profits from the industry. Our programme included venues and events linked to this tradition.
Full details about venues, guided walks and other events were listed in our 2015 brochure, which is still available online. Click here to view.
Heritage Open Days celebrated its 20th birthday in style this year. Not a drop of rain was seen in Farnham for the entire four days and there were about three and a half thousand visitors to the numerous local events.
It was great to see so many enthusiastic Farnham Society members joining in and helping out. HODS is a fantastic opportunity for the people of Farnham to come together and celebrate our heritage and the vibrancy of our community.
The Farnham Society and The Farnham Town Council jointly fund HODS, but really, it is the hard work and generosity of everybody involved that makes it happen. The volunteers led by Gloria Dyche who give out brochures and help at venues. Sue Farrow’s countless hours of hard work to create the brochure with the help of Preface Studio Operations Director and photographer Stu Burnett, who gave his services for free! The owners of private houses - Michelle Quinlan, Lou James, Catriona McCloud and Sarah Swarsbreck for letting everybody invade their beautiful homes, albeit under the watchful eye of Cathy Cook. Our photographer David Fisher, of the A.F.&F. Camera Club, who magically seemed to be everywhere at once and took over 600 photographs. All the tour guides and speakers - Erica Wilkinson, Michael Blower, Brian Pittuck, Roger Jude, Chris Cleeland, Robert Blower, Angela Peers-David, Robin Crowther, David Graham, Rod Wild, Richard Sandars, Janet Jude and the Castle Guides. Gillian Ward who masterminded the delightful tea at the Castle. The Museum of Farnham and the Farnham Maltings who hosted the launch party and talks. The Mayor, who came to so many different events and Jeremy Hunt who was due to visit the Pottery but had to cancel due to a Cobra meeting (we will hold him to his promise to come next year!).
There were over 3 million visits to HODS events this year and public awareness is growing. Here in Farnham we are already starting to plan next year. We are lucky to have a rich cultural heritage and Heritage Open Days is a great way to get people of all ages to explore and discover it. Please get in touch if you’d like to get involved - the more people who help, the more we can do.
Please have a look at the gallery of pictures taken by David Fisher of the Aldershot, Farnham and Fleet Camera Club. They are better than words at conveying the fun of the festival.
HODS Pictures by David Fisher of The Aldershot, Farnham and Fleet Camera Club
We show a selection of David’s photographs below and will be showing more of the 600 in coming months.
Please click on each picture to bring up a larger image which in most browsers can be further enlarged to show fine detail that is not obvious in the smaller pictures, for example the people on top of St Andrew’s Church tower in the third to last picture.