Save the Date! - Heritage Open Days returns 6-15 September 2024

Breckland Highlights

Breckland spans over miles of idyllic countryside with picturesque market towns!

The Breckland district is alive with heritage events throughout the festival!

We're delighted to have Dereham Windmill part of the HODs festival with a new event for this year! Dereham Windmill is Grade II listed set in dog friendly grounds that are connected by a number of rural walks in and around the Dereham area, so perfect for a day of exploring. On each of the five floors of the Windmill there are illustrated explanations on what happened in each area, when the mill was in use and full of noise & floor dust! Explore on Friday 8, Saturday 9, Friday 15 and Saturday 16 September 10am-3pm. No booking required!

Next, experience Dereham’s Fiery Dragon... the steam train - and Other Railway Relics; with talks, tours, steam train action and more... There will be something for everyone, including crafty kids! You'll see the steam engine arriving and departing from the station, and might even get a glimpse of the fireman replenishing the tank from the water crane. Head down to Dereham Train Station on Saturday 16 September 9.30am - 4pm. The first talk, which is history based, is planned for 9.45am. All are welcome!

Did you know you can visit the popular Gressenhall Farm and Workhouse for free during HODs? Explore the fascinating site and get a feel for what life was like in the Victorian workhouse. They'll have a new temporary exhibition on for viewing, and you can take part in activities across the site - for one day only! You can take a stroll down to the heritage working farm to see rare breed animals, including 6 Suffolk Punch Horses. This is a fabulous opportunity to learn about the history of farming and have fun, taking in the beauty of the 50 acre site on a trailer ride. Go behind the scenes in the Norfolk Museums Collection Centre where objects from across the county are stored and cared for. Drop in for this great day out 10am-4pm on Sunday 10 September.

Discover the town of Brisley, and St Bartholomew's Church where you can enjoy a morning of outdoor sketching in the grounds! You're encouraged to sketch, paint, draw and create in the company of artists, but no need to be one yourself as all abilities are welcome. During your visit, be inspired by the rare remains of medieval wall paintings and carvings, and explore the crypt where prisoners were once lodged on their way to the Assizes in Norwich, making a perfect historical and creative morning! If the weather is looking a bit iffy, sketching can continue inside the church, with refreshments available too! Drop-in 10am-12.30pm on Wednesday 10 September.