Going Out 16-21 September 2021 – including Heritage Open Days

Nusrat Ghani
HISTORIC GEM: Tunbridge Ware pictured in The Pantiles Arcade

This Week’s Heritage Open Days Free Passes

Online: Tunbridge Wells Heritage Open Days Photographic Competition Gallery


Tonbridge Castle


Sep 16: Tonbridge Castle Castle Street, Tonbridge TN9 1BG. Kent’s best example of a Motte and Bailey Castle and dates back to 1066. The mighty gatehouse is amongst the finest in England. Follow in the footsteps of the Red Earl as the gatehouse comes under noisy attack! Pre-booking required.

Sep 16: National Trust, Knole House, Knole, Sevenoaks TN15 0RP. Take a walk through the showrooms to appreciate centuries of history and Knole’s world-class collection. Explore the Gatehouse Tower. Climb the spiral staircase to discover a former resident’s private rooms and enjoy the magnificent views of Knole Park when you reach the top. Pre-booking essential. Free tickets still available.

Sep 16-18: Barsleys: From Tailor to Department Store – Four Generations, Barsleys Department Store, 16-20 Commercial Road, Paddock Wood TN12 6EJ. A display of the archives at this family-owned department store.

Sep 16, 17 & 19: Hoppers, Five Oak Green Road, Five Oak Green, Tonbridge, Kent, TN12 6RL. The restored former Hoppers’ Hospital, which these days offers self-catering accommodation. Please Note: Closed Saturday Sep 18.


John Brunt VC Pub Sign


Sep 16-19: John Brunt VC: Remembering a WW2 Hero, John Brunt VC,  24 Church Road, Paddock Wood TN12 6HB. A history of the pub and the World War 2 hero.

Sep 17: An Archeological Walk Around Barnett’s Wood, Barnetts Way, Tunbridge Wells TN4 9DW. Join Nigel from WKD Archaeology and the Kent High Weald Partnership for an Archaeological Walk around the wood. Meet at 11am by Wheelers Field to explore the archaeology and history of this local nature reserve. No booking required. Max 20 people per tour.


Tunbridge Ware: A further selection pictured at The Hoard in The Pantiles Arcade


Sep 17-18: Walk: The Story of Tunbridge Ware, Tunbridge Wells Museum & Library , Royal Victoria Place, Tunbridge Wells TN1 2SR. The Times has an exciting update on this walk, which is led by Clive McAllister and focuses on a world-famous cottage industry unique to the town. It will now end in The Pantiles Arcade at The Hoard@scottishantiques.com, which has acquired as much Tunbridge Ware as possible for display and sale. Here you can view all the examples in close-up, and Hoard Chairman Eric Knowles (of Antiques Roadshow fame) will be on hand to welcome walkers with complementary wines and nibbles! He will also be happy to talk about the Tunbridge Ware and any of the other fine objects on display. The walk starts at the Library at 2pm. No booking required.


Antiques Roadshow star Eric Knowles giving a valuation at The Pantiles Arcade


Sep 17-19: Walk: Two Churches, Four Chapels and a Burial Ground, Church of King Charles the Martyr, London Road, Tunbridge Wells TN1 1YX. Meet David Wakefield at King Charles the Martyr Church at 2pm for a walking tour incorporating the outside of the buildings of the established church and the non-conformist chapels and second oldest cemetery of Tunbridge Wells. No booking required.

Sep 18: Visit Hawkenbury Allotments Site, 1 Halls Hole Road, Tunbridge Wells TN2 4UA. A guided walk at 2pm to see the vegetables, fruit, flowers and hens on this normally closed ‘secret garden’. No booking required. Max 10 people per tour.


Southborough Archaeological Site


Sep 19: Georgian and Victorian Corn Milling in the Southborough Valley, Mill House Barn, Powder Mill Lane, Tunbridge Wells TN4 9EG. Iron, Gunpowder, Corn and Railways in the Southborough Valley – an opportunity to investigate an archaeological site rarely open to the public. Tours every 30 minutes. No booking required. Max 12 people per tour.


Grosvenor & Hilbert Park’s Boardwalk Wetlands


Sep 19: Grosvenor & Hilbert Park Exhibition, Grosvenor & Hilbert Park, Auckland Road, Tunbridge Wells TN1 2LN. Find out about the park’s fascinating history with photographs and information of historic interest drawn from the Friends of Grosvenor and Hilbert Park’s archives and research. No booking required. See also a guided walk in the park, below.


Grosvenor & Hilbert Park’s Dripping Wells


Sep 19: Grosvenor & Hilbert Park Guided Walk, Grosvenor & Hilbert Park, Auckland Road, Tunbridge Wells TN1 2LN.  Meet at 2.30pm at The Hub to explore the historic and renewed features of the park, and the plants and animals of its varied natural habitats, with Dr Ian Beavis, Research Curator at The Amelia, Tunbridge Wells. The park’s wetland, flower-rich grassland, and ancient woodland still support a wide range of flowering plants, butterflies, dragonflies, bees and other creatures, some of them nationally scarce. Pre-booking preferred. Max 30 people per tour.

Sep 19: Walk: Public and Commercial Buildings in Tunbridge Wells 1890-1914, Grosvenor Park, Tunbridge Wells. A walk led by local historian Helen Mitcham, MA, to reimagine the town of the time. Includes places of worship, education, entertainment, shops, a railway station, a post office and a factory. Booking essential. Max six people per tour.


Woodbury Park Cemetery


Sep 19: Woodbury Park Cemetery, Woodbury Park Road, Tunbridge Wells TN4 9NH. Meet at 3pm to explore this beautiful Victorian Mortuary Garden containing 600 tombs and gravestones of local and national people together with shrubs, trees and flowers. Among the notables buried here are Henry Thomas Austen (favourite brother of Jane Austen), artists such as the local Charles Tattershall Dodd and John Engelheart, architect Sydney Smirk, Jacob Bell, and philanthropist Jeffery Hale and his brother Bernard, who helped save the Ashdown Forest for common use. No booking required. Max 25 people per tour.


• For full details of all the Heritage Open Days, and to check for any updates, visit: tunbridgewellsheritageopendays.org and heritageopendays.org.uk


Meanwhile, at the Theatre…


Assembly Hall Theatre, Crescent Road, Tunbridge Wells TN1 2LU


Sep 16: The Best of Frankie Valli And The Four Seasons

Sep 17: The History of Rock

Sep 19: The Magic of Motown


Professor Brian Cox


Sep 21: Professor Brian Cox – Horizons Warm Up

Book at: https://www.assemblyhalltheatre.co.uk


Trinity Theatre, Church Road, Tunbridge Wells TN1 1JP

Mountaineer Kenton Cool


Sep 16: Talk by mountaineer Kenton Cool – Everest the Cool Way


Dirty Dancing


Sep 17: Film – Dirty Dancing

Sep 18: Community – Repair Cafe

Sep 18: Ben Hart Live

Sep 19: Film – Paddington


Who Framed Roger Rabbit


Sep 19 Film – Who Framed Roger Rabbit

Sep 21: Film – The Sound of Metal

Book at: https://www.trinitytheatre.net


Photos: Tonbridge Castle © Heritage Open Days
John Brunt VC Pub Sign: © MJ Roots/wikimedia.org (CC BY 3.0)
Eric Knowles, Tunbridge Ware and Grosvernor & Hilbert Park: © Sarah Bond
Woodbury Park Cemetery © Caroline Auckland

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