Heritage Open Days 2023 in South Yorkshire

This September, explore some of the region’s most historically interesting places with Heritage Open Days.

Heritage Open Days is England’s largest festival of history and culture which sees places across the country throw open their doors to give people the chance to visit them for FREE!

This year’s theme is Creativity Unwrapped, with venues delving into their colourful history of art and creativity.

You can find a full list of events via www.heritageopendays.org.uk, but here are just some of the events happening locally.

Wentworth Pewter Factory Tour

Monday 11th – Friday 15th September

Monarch Works, Catley Road, Darnall, Sheffield S9 5JF

Tours at 10.30am and 1pm (Friday just 10.30am)

Visit the family-run pewter factory to see the creation process and maybe even have a go yourself.

Pre-booking required

Call 0114 2447693 or book online via Eventbrite

Barnsley Main Colliery guided walks

Monday 11th September 10am-1pm

Oaks Lane, Barnsley S71 1HT

Colliery grounds and pop-up museum will be open for visitors to look around the Engine House, Winding Gear, ‘tub track’ trail, and Timber Yard. Or join historian, Joshua Daniels, on a guided tour at 10.30am and 11.15am.  

No booking required

Valley History Museum Stocksbridge

Tuesday 12th September 10am-12pm

Stocksbridge Town Hall, Manchester Road, Stocksbridge S36 2DT

Discover a unique collection of 17th C. Bolsterstone glassware, 18th C. Midhope Pottery and find out why Stocksbridge is the birthplace of the modern umbrella. Talks from local historians plus showings of the restored iconic 1958 film, ‘Steel Town’.

No booking required

Wentworth Woodhouse

Tuesday 12th September 10am-5pm

Off Cortworth Lane, Wentworth, Rotherham, S62 7TQ

Explore selected state rooms and 50 acres of gardens at Wentworth Woodhouse, one of the grandest Georgian houses in England.

Pre-booking required. Call 01226 351161 or book online


A Walk in Sheffield’s Little Chicago Quarter

Tuesday 12th – Thursday 14th September from 10am

Meet at National Emergency Services Museum, 101-109 West Bar, Sheffield S3 8PT

A two-mile walk exploring the myths and reality of Sheffield’s Little Chicago Quarter from 1925. Author John Stocks details how Sheffield briefly became the most turbulent city in Britain because of an escalating gang war.

Pre-booking essential. Contact John Stocks on 07958462091 or email johnstocks1861@gmail.com

Creativity Unwrapped: Art Endures

Friday 15th and Saturday 16th September 10am-4pm

Wombwell Cemetery, Cemetery Road, Wombwell, Barnsley S73 8HY

Learn about Wombwell’s architects, artists, dancers, musicians, and poets who gave the town its creative sparkle.Learn more about headstone symbols and their meanings and get creative by designing a stained-glass window.

No booking required

Worsbrough Local History Days

Friday 15th 10-2pm and Saturday 16th September 10am-4pm

Worsbrough Welfare Hall, Park Road, Worsbrough, Barnsley S70 5LJ

Based on the theme ‘Working Worsbrough – Women in Industry’ showcasing the different jobs and social impact of women in the workplace over the last 100 years.Several exhibitions, family friendly activities and a short film featuring Worsborough people’s stories.

No booking required

The life and times of Archbishop Thomas Rotherham

Saturday 16th September 10.30am-2pm

Chapel on the Bridge, Bridge Street, Rotherham S60 1RB

Celebrating the life of Archbishop Thomas Rotherham 600 years since his birth. Display boards detailing his life and career, with a chance to see the crypt and learn the history of the chapel.

No booking required.

Hoylandswaine Nail Forge

Saturday 16th September 11am-3pm

Barnsley Road, Hoylandswaine, Barnsley, S36 7JA

See England’s last working nail forge with its original hearth and chimney.

No booking required.

Reyt Royal Tours

Saturday 16th and Sunday 17th September 2pm

Elsecar Heritage Centre, Wath Road, Elsecar, Barnsley S74 8HJ

Follow in the footsteps of royal visitors to learn about the heritage of Elsecar village on this guided tour.

Pre-booking essential, call 01226 740203

Hemingfield Colliery

Saturday 16th 10.30-4pm and Sunday 17th September 11am-3.30pm

Hemingfield Colliery, Hemingfield, Barnsley S73 0NX

Explore the heritage of this scheduled Victorian colliery, once part of Earl Fitzwilliam’s Elsecar Collieries. Regular guided tours of the site, its coal working, railway and canal history, and connections to Elsecar, Wentworth and the wider world.

No booking required

Yellow Arch Studios

Sunday 17th September 10.45am, 12.45pm and 2.15pm

30-36 Burton Road, Sheffield S3 8BX

Take a tour of one of Sheffield’s top live music and recording venues that has been used by artists such as Kylie Minogue, Jarvis Cocker, and Richard Hawley. See the studio where Arctic Monkeys wrote their first album. The tour also looks at the 1870s origins of the building as a blacksmiths and wheelwright, before it was used as screw and bolt factory for the bridge and ship building industries.

Pre-booking required via Eventbrite.

Conisbrough Castle

Sunday 17th September: 10am-5pm

Castle Hill, Conisbrough, Doncaster DN12 3BX

A chance to visit one of South Yorkshire’s most striking landmarks for free. The castle was the centre of a great Norman lordship dating back to the 1100s, became a picturesque ruin in the 18th and 19th centuries, and inspired Sir Walter Scott’s famous novel, Ivanhoe.

No booking required

Roche Abbey

Sunday 17th September 10am-4.30pm

Off A634, Maltby, Rotherham S66 8NW

Enjoy a free visit to the ruins of a 12th century Cistercian monasteryset in a valley landscaped by ‘Capability’ Brown. Guided tours and family activities throughout the day.

No booking required