English Heritage re-opens

By | Category: Travel news

Virtually all heritage sites have been restricted in what they can offer to members and to the rest of us during lockdown. My local castle hasn’t had a paying visitor since last March and there is still no re-opening date.

image of Stonehenge
Stonehenge – perhaps one of the most recognised sites in the world and soon to be open for visitors again.

In England, English Heritage has had only ten staffed properties open during lockdown and that was primarily for use by locals to use for exercise. Now that will change.

In about a week’s time, March 29th, properties will start to re-open again but, entry must be booked in advance. That day is important because it is the day from which it should be possible to travel outside your local area. If you live in Portsmouth, for example, and you suddenly get the urge to visit Barnard Castle in Durham for the day, then you should be legally able to do so.

Booking at present is only up until 16th of May and you will be allotted a timed slot. After that, most will be hoping that things begin to get back to normal.

The ten already open – Audley End House, Brodsworth Hall, Eltham Palace, Kenilworth, Kenwood, Marble Hill House, Osborne, Tynemouth Priory and Castle, Walmer Castle and Wrest Park will be joined by another fifty from March 29th.

By opening, English Heritage mean that the grounds will be open. Very few will allow indoor entrance unless government guidelines alter regarding social distancing.

Kenilworth Castle Gardens. Image copyright Peter Martin

On the 12th of April, Stonehenge and Boscobel House will re-open to be followed by a further 23 sites from the 27th of May.

The 17th of May is a key date because from then it should be possible to go inside properties rather than just visiting gardens. This is still dependent on government rules in England.

In Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, word is awaited from Historic Scotland, Cadw and the Department for Communities respectively on what can re-open and when. In Northern Ireland many of the outdoor heritage sites are open by only for exercise by locals.

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