Visitors can get a behind-the-scenes view of Reigate & Banstead’s town hall on Saturday 9 September (2017), as it opens its doors as part of this year’s Heritage Open Days.
The Grade II Listed building, which dates from 1901, is an example of arts & crafts architecture, and originally also housed the law courts, police and fire station.
There will be local history displays to browse, as well as a chance to meet the Mayor in his parlour, and see the mayoral robes, mace and other historic regalia.
Outside, there will be vintage vehicles including old police cars, while a samba band provides musical entertainment.
Cllr Roger Newstead, Mayor of Reigate & Banstead, says:
“Whether you’re fascinated by architecture or local history or just curious to take a look inside your town hall, it is well worth a visit.
The building boasts some wonderfully ornate art nouveau features, beautiful stained glass windows, a collection of paintings by William Tatton Winter and many historic photographs.
Please join us and celebrate our wonderful history.”
Located in Castlefield Road, Reigate (RH2 0SH), the town hall will be open from 11am-3pm on the Saturday (9 September).
Reflecting this year’s local theme for Heritage Open Days, transport through the ages, the displays in the civic rooms will trace the early history of travel and transport in the borough, including toll gates, horse-drawn coaches, railways and the 120-year history of Reigate’s Finch Cycles.
Other exhibits will explore the historic battles of Vimy Ridge and Passchendaele in 1917, and their links with the borough, as part of the council’s First World War centenary commemorations.
Local crafts will be on sale, with live demonstrations and information.
A selection of homemade cakes and savouries can be enjoyed in the Old Council Chamber, and children will have even more to do this year with a history hunt with Heritage Hattie and Heritage Henry, as well as a “come and make” area.
Across the borough, a variety of venues, walks and talks are taking place as part of 2017’s Heritage Open Days, 7-10 September. Details of what’s happening and when can be found on a council webpage, which includes a link to download this year’s brochure.