Can’t quite believe that I began this countdown more than two months ago. Where has the time gone? At the same time feeling excited as next Thursday – the 7th September – our festival begins. So I thought I better get on and share entries twelve thru one, and where better than to start but at the beginning of time. New for this year is the University of Winchester’s Cosmic Walk and Labyrinth, hidden away on the King Alfred Campus. Perfect for those of us wanting to take a moment out of day to reflect and reconnect, and also a great spot for picnics!
If you enjoy the arts and literature then I’d certainly recommend having a closer look at pages four to six of our printed programme. It is here you will find an Antiques & Asian Arts Valuation Evening, Antiquarian Books including rare examples of books and pamphlets printed in Winchester, and Jane Austen’s novels brought to life. You will also discover antiquarian horology, an opportunity to peep behind the scenes at the Chesil and an exhibition of paintings of Winchester.
Entries one to twelve also include the beautiful Friends Meeting House, King Alfred buses, the Gieves and Hawkes archive, our fabulous Chesil Theatre, Archaeology at St Cross Hospital and the Barter Memorial Chapel. The latter will be of particular interest to those of you who have taken part in our Monopoly competition!
Remember everything is free to visit during Heritage Open Days but you do need to book your place(s) for the Carter Marsh workshops and the University’s Cosmic Walk. Click here for booking details, or continue reading for more event information.
|Andrew Smith’s Antiques & Asian Arts valuation evening – on Thursday.||Come and listen to Asian Art specialist James Hammond, on the changing nature of the market in Asian Art, and Andrew Smith who will give an insight into the modern auction world. A full team of specialist valuers will be on hand for informal valuation advice on any antiques or works of art brought in on the evening. Talk starts 17:30 at Pilgrim’s Hall|
|Antiquarian Bookselling in Winchester over the years – exhibits on Saturday & Sunday||Step back into history in Winchester’s very own ‘Dickensian’ shop & discover the history of antiquarian book selling and printing in Winchester over the last hundred years. You may be surprised by how many second-hand book-sellers there once were! Our small static display will also include uncommon specimens of Winchester printing|
|Archaeology at St. Cross Hospital – on Friday||WARG’s exhibition will show recent archaeological work in the Winchester area, including work done within the park land of St. Cross itself. Visitors will be able to gain a deeper appreciation of the Hospital’s history as well as a chance to handle archaeological finds and talk to the excavators.|
|Aspects of Winchester – exhibits open on Thursday, Friday & Saturday||The City of Winchester Trust has invited a group of artists in Winchester, who meet regularly to paint and sketch around the city, to produce an exhibition at the Winchester Heritage Centre representing their work. Limited edition prints and cards will be available for sale.|
|Austen abridged – performances on Saturday||Celebrate the life of Jane Austen through her novels. See scenes from all six of Austen’s novels brought to life in the heart of Winchester, close to where the great author died and was laid to rest 200 years ago.|
|Barter Memorial Chapel – tours on Saturday||Rarely open to the public, come and explore the original hospital chapel designed by William Butterfield and its beautiful stained glass windows. Learn more about the history of the RHCH and see historical artefacts, including Florence Nightingale’s lamp, and photos through the ages. No booking required but numbers limited. Meet at the main hospital entrance|
|Carter Marsh & Co – pre-booked workshops on Thursday & Friday||Carter Marsh & Co are renowned dealers of antique clocks and watches and will be celebrating their 70th anniversary in the city this year. Come and watch skilled craftsmen at work and delight at some of the finest examples of antiquarian horology on display in the showroom.|
|Chesil Theatre – Open House on Saturday & Sunday||Discover the delightful 12th century church of St Peter’s Chesil, converted to an intimate 75 seat theatre about 40 years ago. See behind the scenes, the stage and lights along with costumes, set designs and photos which will also be on display. Members of the Winchester Dramatic Society will be available to answer your questions.|
|Cosmic Walk and Labyrinth – on Thursday & Friday||Stroll with us from the beginning of time as we discover the unfolding story of the Cosmos and reconnect with our world. The Cosmic Walk features a Labyrinth and offers visitors the opportunity to reflect upon their relationship with the Earth and the Divine. Families and picnics welcome, but please pre-book.|
|Free Vintage Bus Service on Saturday afternoon & evening||The Friends of King Alfred Buses will operate an evening of free vintage bus services, recreating some of the authentic ‘King Alfred’ routes and featuring several historic vehicles which ran in Winchester in the 1950s to the 1970s. Unsuitable for wheelchairs. Bus stops will be located on The Broadway unless indicated otherwise|
|Friends Meeting House – Open House on Saturday & Sunday afternoon||Visit our 18th Century 3 storied town house which was once the rectory house of the Parish of St Bartholomew, Hyde and St Lawrence with St Swithun. Feel free to roam around the house and grounds. Cream teas in the garden, access to the warden’s top floor office with stunning views of Wolvesey Castle and St Catherine’s Hill. Visit includes art installation, exhibition of Quakers contributions to the world, labyrinth and croquet on the lawn.|
|Gieves and Hawkes Archive – open daily||For more than two centuries Gieves and Hawkes has been the world’s foremost in bespoke tailoring and has dressed every British Sovereign since George III. Come and learn about the company’s military history and view some of their archive pieces, including Princess Diana’s original Hampshire Regiment colonel in chief uniform jacket.|