European Heritage Open Days - Get Involved

Date published: 07 June 2017

As part of Volunteers Week, European Heritage Open Days, organised by the Department for Communities, are seeking volunteers to help out at different properties on Saturday 9 and Sunday 10 September 2017.

This is the 20th year that Northern Ireland has taken part in this free European-wide event, which aims to reflect our common and varied European Architectural Heritage across 50 European countries.

2017 will see over 370 properties open their doors for free with many exciting events across Northern Ireland.

To ensure the adequate support and smooth running of these days, the Department works closely with Volunteer Now to recruit a large number of volunteers and ensure an enjoyable day out is had by everyone involved.

Volunteering can give you the opportunity to try something new, gain valuable experience, share your knowledge and skills, build confidence, help others and meet new people while supporting our economy through tourism. 

Wendy Osborne, CEO of Volunteer Now, said:  “Having recently worked with major public events such as the Balmoral Show, North West 200 and the Gran Fondo, we recognise that volunteers are key to helping deliver an authentic and positive Northern Ireland experience. Volunteers make a difference, they love getting involved and it shows in their smiles, commitment, humour and friendship. Volunteer Now is delighted to be once again recruiting volunteers for the European Heritage Open Days. With a wide variety of opportunities available across Northern Ireland at various locations and events, this will be a great opportunity to experience and appreciate many wonderful buildings not normally open to the public."

Nicola Golden, who volunteered last year with European Heritage Open Days, said: “I have volunteered for this event a number of times now. I recently showed people around Ballywalter Estate, which hosts a magnificent Georgian country house in Co Down remodelled by Sir Charles Lanyon in the mid 19th century, and Townsend Street Presbyterian Church, Belfast with its spectacular horseshoe gallery. One of the key benefits is witnessing the reaction of visitors when they experience the inside of buildings not usually open to the public. It is heart-warming to see them inspired and an encouraging reminder of why such buildings are protected and considered special.”

If you are interested in volunteering, registration is now open and you can register online at the Volunteer Now website.

Notes to editors: 

1. European Heritage Open Days 2017 listings will be available from all Tourist Information Centres and Libraries from 14 August.

2. Volunteer Now works to promote, enhance and support volunteering – connecting with individuals and organisations to build healthy communities and create positive change.

3. Follow us on Twitter @CommunitiesNI or Facebook by searching EHODNI

4. Media enquiries to DfC Press Office on 028 9082 3509 or email: Out of office hours please contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 07623 974383

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