Didn’t we have a lovely time, the day we went Edwardian? As the old song goes – and all for under a pound, you know.
The fun and friendly Heritage Open Day, hosted by the Friends and staff of Haworth Art Gallery, was a huge success, thanks largely to the 500 visitors who turned out to enjoy an afternoon of Edwardian-era fun .
Some splendid period entertainment, including games, crafts and educational activities helped bring to life the beautiful old arts and crafts house and surroundings in ways its first owners the Haworths would surely have recognised.
From piles of period costumes for dressing up and snapping selfies, to great games and toys of the times, such as bagatelle and table skittles, there were free activities for old and young – and everyone in between – including giant bubble-blowing and wild welly-wanging. Wow!
And from demonstrations of the needlecrafts that were typical of the era, to making your own crafty creations – or learning how to handle some of the Haworth’s huge collection of artefacts – most of the day’s activities were absolutely free.
The hope was to provide an event where everyone would feel welcome, and we were delighted to be joined by people from a wide range of backgrounds and abilities to join in the fun.
Also free were fascinating talks about the house and its surroundings, the stables, the motor house and its very rare petrol store.
Audiences were regaled by tales of amazing inventions of which the Haworths were early-adopters – and treated to a visit from a stunning SCAT car – a contemporary of the Haworths’ motor cars.
For a small fee, visitors could chance their arm on the tempting tombola or the human fruit machine – a fun and fruity way to win a perfect prize.
For those who just wanted to sit back and take in the balmy, end-of-summer mood, the hypnotic moves of the 400 Roses and T’Thorns (see main image), entranced the crowds with their genre-defying brand of traditional dance – a real must-see.
The brilliant Baxenden Concert Band delighted everyone with their pitch-perfect performances of classics old and new, drifting through the rose garden. A wonderful way to unwind on a sunny Sunday afternoon.
A huge thank you to our many visitors, staff and volunteers, who helped make it such a memorable day in a friendly and welcoming atmosphere.
And while it may have been a day of looking back to a bygone era, we’re already looking forward to seeing you at our next event.