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Shrewsbury Castle and Shropshire Regimental Museum

Shropshire offers exciting programme of free Heritage Open Days events

Shropshire's heritage enthusiasts and organisers have prepared an exciting programme of free events for the public from Thursday 10th to Sunday 13th September. The programme which is part of the national Heritage Open Days initiative includes a chance to see sites which are not normally open to the public as well as tours, talks, film screenings, living history re-enactments and exhibitions.

The theme of this year's Heritage Open Days is 'try something new' and Shropshire has responded.

Events will take place all over the county and include: an exhibition of photos and posters from Buffalo Bill's final tour of Great Britain in 1904 (Oswestry); a chance to meet Medieval Mummers and Ladies of the Night (Shrewsbury) and an audio visual re-enactment of a WW2 small wireless intercept station in action (Whitchurch). There is also the chance to see inside Shrewsbury Prison with a limited number of 'Jailhouse' tours available free of charge.

Shropshire Council is offering free visits on 13th September to Shrewsbury Museum & Art Gallery, Shrewsbury Castle and Shropshire Regimental Museum, as well as free places on a guided tour of the town. Tickets for the latter need to be booked as the walk is normally very popular.

Tina Woodward, Shropshire Council's deputy Cabinet member responsible for museums, said:

"This is a fantastic opportunity for people to get behind the scenes of some of the county's most precious historic places, with Shropshire once again offering a wealth of venues hosting a mix of the interesting and the unusual. I hope the many free events on offer attract visitors from across Shropshire, and also encourages people from outside the county to spend a weekend in our beautiful county."

Shrewsbury Flaxmill Maltings with four Grade 1 historic buildings, including the first iron-framed building in the world, will offer guided tours and displays as well as art and music.

All Shropshire's Heritage Open Days events are free of charge but some need to be booked.

Heritage Open Days is the largest heritage festival in the country; in 2014, over 4,600 events welcomed around three million visitors across England. Heritage Open Days operates as part of the National Trust with funding from players of People's Postcode Lottery and Historic England. Every single Heritage Open Days event is free, including over 150 National Trust properties, which waive their entry fees on the Saturday of the Heritage Open Days weekend.

Loyd Grossman, Patron of Heritage Open Days, said:

"After last year's triumphant event, we're looking to make 2015 another superlative year. New funding sources and a higher profile means we are in a stronger position than ever before to celebrate our wonderfully diverse local heritage, and to encourage local communities to engage with the hidden histories on their doorstep."