Visitors will get the chance to have a behind-the-scenes look at Reigate & Banstead’s town hall on Saturday 15 September when it opens its doors for this year’s Heritage Open Days.
The grade II listed building, completed in 1901, is an example of Arts and Crafts architecture that originally housed not only the town hall but also the law courts and the police and fire stations.
The building boasts ornate Art Nouveau features, beautiful stained glass windows, a collection of paintings by William Tatton Winter and many historic photographs.
Visitors will be able to meet the Mayor and see her Mayoral robes, mace and other historic regalia; learn more about local democracy from councillors and the Youth Council; and find out about Reigate & Banstead’s “Be a councillor” campaign.
A talk about Lady Henry Somerset, philanthropist, temperance leader, campaigner for women’s rights and a former resident of Reigate Priory, will be given by author Ros Black at 12 noon.
A selection of homemade cakes and savouries will be available in the surroundings of the Old Council Chamber. Proceeds will go to the Mayor’s charities, George and the Giant Pledge and Born Free.
“I’m really looking forward to welcoming visitors to our beautiful Town Hall building”, says Cllr Dorothy Ross-Tomlin, Mayor of Reigate & Banstead.
“Whether you’re fascinated by architecture or local history, want to know more about democracy in our borough or you are just curious to take a look inside your Town Hall, please come along, it’ll be well worth the visit.”
Located on Castlefield Road, Reigate, RH2 0SH, the Town Hall will be open from 11am to 4pm on 15 September.
A car show, with modern and vintage classic vehicles, will place in the Town Hall car park, organised by George and the Giant Pledge.
The Town Hall is just one of many free venues, walks and talks across the borough for Heritage Open Days which this year run 6 – 9 and 13 – 16 September.
A free showing of War Horse the movie is being hosted by the Harlequin Theatre on Sunday 16 September. The film will be preceded by a talk by leading military historian Andy Robertshaw, who was a technical adviser on the production and had a cameo in the film.
Some of the other highlights include: Gatton Park and Barron’s Cave, Reigate; All Saints Church, Banstead; Redhill Centre for Family History and Horley town centre and history walk.
More details of what’s happening at this year’s Heritage Open Days can be found using the postcode search on the Heritage Open Days website.
(There is also a local brochure, but some of the events at the Town Hall on 15 September have changed since its publication.)