A chance to see the district’s hidden heritage

Re-enactors were on site at Fountains Abbey for Heritage Open Day last weekend. (S)
Re-enactors were on site at Fountains Abbey for Heritage Open Day last weekend. (S)
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Tourist attractions around the area flung open the doors of some of their unusual and hidden places last weekend.

Heritage Open Days saw locations around Ripon open to the public on Saturday and Sunday, with some places giving people their only chance to visit all year.

Ripon’s Courthouse Museum opened their secret underground holding cell to the public for the first time ever, with more than 130 people seeing the last stop for many convicts on their way to court.

With free admission on Saturday Fountains Abbey staff welcomed 1,500 visitors to the site’s Quebec garden, an overgrown area with a live archaeological dig working to discover how the garden may have looked in the past.

The Lace Wars re-enactment group were on site to fire their muskets.

At the cathedral, visitors had the chance to get a rare view of the bell ringing chamber.

The cathedral opened up the south-west tower on Sunday and gave tours throughout the afternoon.

“We had about 60 visitors, including some families, aged from eight to 80,” said Head Verger Andrew Aspland.