Denbigh's most loved buildings to throw open their doors this weekend for annual event

Reporter:

Shaun Davies

IT’S almost time to throw open the doors of Denbigh’s most loved buildings.

This weekend marks the annual Denbigh Open Doors weekend, with a whole host of buildings included in the programme, in addition to a number of special events.

One of the buildings that will be open this weekend is St Mary’s Church, Henllan Place.

St Mary’s was built in 1874 to replace the medieval church of St Hilary within the old town walls.

It was designed by local architects Lloyd Williams and Underwood and St Mary’s Church will be open this Saturday and Sunday, September 23 and 24.

Afternoon tea and family activities from the Mother’s Union will be on offer on Saturday, between 2.30 and 4.30pm, while the Sunday service starts at 11am.

Also open on both days of the Open Doors weekend is St Marcella’s Church, on Whitchurch Road.

Shown recently on an episode of BBC1’s popular ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’, the church was built on the site of the seventh century cell of St Marcella.

The church is a classic example of the ‘Vale of Clwyd’ twin-naved style and is largely the result of a late perpendicular remodelling of around 1500.

Exceptionally fine and well preserved, it is one of the most important churches in North Wales and contains some notable monuments.

Buried inside are the map-maker Humphrey Llwyd, members of the powerful Salusbury family and the heart of Richard Clough, the Denbigh-born merchant.

In addition, outside is the grave of famed poet Twm o’r Nant.

St Marcella’s Church is open from 10am-4pm on Saturday and Sunday, with the Sunday service starting at 10.30am.

Another building that will throw open its doors over both days will be Denbigh Museum.

The building, on Grove Road, started life as Fron Goch County Primary School in 1877, and it was built in local dressed limestone.

The building was converted into a magistrates’ court and offices in 1987, but it was closed in 2013.

The building still retains one of the magistrates’ courts and cells and it has now been acquired to create a new museum for the town.

For two days, people will have the opportunity to investigate a theatre.

Between 10am and 4pm on Saturday and Sunday, Theatr Twm o’r Nant, on Station Road, will be open.

The Grade II listed building was built and donated to the town in 1890 by Dr Evan Pierce as a memorial hall in memory of his mother.

By the 1970s it had fallen into disrepair, but it was restored and renamed Theatr Twm o’r Nant after the 18th century Welsh playwright Thomas Edwards, who is known as the Cambrian Shakespeare.

Take inspiration from one of the greatest ever children’s authors.

The Open Doors weekend will see the opening of the Beatrix Potter Garden, at Gwaenynog Hall, on Saturday and Sunday (12-4pm).

Beatrix Potter, the creator of Peter Rabbit, regularly visited Gwaenynog Hall during the 1890s, which was the home of her uncle.

Open Doors offers people a chance to see the garden and the potting shed that inspired her to write and illustrate the children’s classic ‘The Tale of the Flopsy Bunnies’.

Further gardens towards the centre of Denbigh will also be open to the public.

The Dr Evan Pierce Memorial Garden, on Vale Street, is open from 9am until 5pm on Saturday and Sunday.

Dr Evan Pierce himself built the 50ft column topped by his statue to mark his philanthropy as coroner, JP, alderman and five times as Mayor of Denbigh.

It also commemorates his work as a medical doctor during the cholera epidemic of 1838.

The setting is a small Victorian public garden with a formal layout, containing two fountains at the entrance that commemorate Victoria’s Jubilee.

An information point and a good place to start any tour would be Denbigh Library.

The building is open from 9.30am until 4pm on both days.

The library was formerly the county hall and it was erected in 1572 as a shire hall under the patronage of Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester.

As well as open buildings, a number of tours have also been scheduled.

There will be a Gwaenynog tour on Saturday, starting at 1.30pm. Meeting from in front of the Caledfryn offices, on Smithfield Road, this will last for approximately two hours.

To pre-book, contact Denbigh Library on 01745 816313.

Further information is available from www.visitdenbigh.co.uk

Email:

shaun.davies@nwn.co.uk

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