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Plenty On Offer At Guildford Cathedral’s Heritage Open Days

Published on: 1 Sep, 2021
Updated on: 1 Sep, 2021

Guildford Cathedral’s Heritage Open Days will run from Friday, September 10 to Sunday, September 19.

There will be free tours of the building, talks and a treasure hunt.

Next Friday, September 10, is literature day at the cathedral, with three free talks. At 11am local historians Geoff Burch and David Rose are giving their illustrated talk, Dave Salmon, A Man And His Camera.

Guildford man and photographer Dave Salmon on the top of the cathedral.

Dave was a Guildford man who took photos of just about everything: local street scenes, trains, aircraft, buses, Guildford City Football Club, people and events, the cathedral, and more.

This talk is a nostalgic trip back in time to see Guildford as it used to be while giving lots of details about this well-known local character.

At 1pm, Juliet Dunmur, the grand-daughter of the architect of Guildford Cathedral, Sir Edward Maufe, will give her talk titled The Architect and his Wife.

It is a tale of an early power couple of impact and influence. Maufe spent his early years in Yorkshire, followed by his family’s move to William Morris’ Red House, which exposed him to different styles of art and architecture.

The architect, Sir Edward Maufe (left), shows Bishop Macmillan around the unfinished cathedral in 1939.

His wife Prudence, who later became a director of Heal & Son, had a very different privileged upbringing, looking at art, travelling and having fun. She was extremely attractive, with long golden hair, and delighted in attracting young men, but was less good at relinquishing them.

This is the story of an unconventional pair who worked as an early example of a ‘power couple’.

At 3pm, David Rose and Geoff Burch will be giving another illustrated talk, Bottles and Bygones.

David’s part of the talk is based around items our forebears would have filled their shopping baskets with. Hear why they loved drinking ginger beer from stoneware bottles and how they cleaned their teeth with a paste that was packaged in a ceramic dish with an attractive lid and medicines came in bottles of all shapes and sizes.

Bottles and bygoens, plus some railwayana will be the topic of David Rose and Geoff Burch’s talk.

Geoff is a retired railwayman and will be adding stories about his career that began on steam engines while showing items of what today is called railwayana. They will also be displaying some of these items.

Each talk will be followed by a question session and a book signing, and books and DVDs will be available to buy on the day.

The talks are free, but booking is recommended via the cathedral’s box office on 01483 547881 or click here to book online.

Guildford Cathedral under construction.

On Saturdays, September 11 and 18, there will be tours of the crypt, the tower and the cathedral at ground level.

The crypt tours are new and take visitors through the underbelly of the cathedral, and it’s not the traditional crypt you will see in most cathedrals!

The tower tours are one of our most popular tours and must be booked in advance via the cathedral’s box office on 01483 574881 or online by clicking here. Climb the 249 steps to the top of the tower with one of the guides. You will have the chance to explore the hidden spaces including the bell ringing room and the bell chamber.

Also on Saturday morning, September 18, there will be a family focused heritage activity morning, and all through the week there will be a diamond treasure hunt in the building.

Visitors are also welcome to explore the cathedral using its range of tour leaflets. Choose from seven options including sculpture, textiles and pilgrimage.

There will be talks on the cathedral’s famous kneelers at 10.30am and 11.15am, an items from its treasury at 10.15am and 11am, and other fun activities including brass rubbing.

Talk times are fixed but you can attend any time before or after the talk to experience the other activities, and it’s not necessary to join a talk if you just want to explore the cathedral and the activities on offer. Come and help us celebrate our Diamond Anniversary and our

Throughout the whole period there will be a heritage exhibition as a celebration of the cathedral’s diamond jubilee of its consecration in 1961.

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