Minister urges people to ‘Learn, Use, Enjoy’ our heritage

Date published: 22 August 2022

As hundreds of historic buildings prepare to open their doors for European Heritage Open Days, Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey is encouraging everyone to ‘Learn, Use, Enjoy’ our heritage.

Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey is pictured with Christopher Gill from Caledon Regneration Partnership at Caledon Wool Store in Co Tyrone 

Launching this year’s event at Caledon Wool Store in Co Tyrone, Minister Hargey explained:

“European Heritage Open Days give all of us the chance to explore our rich heritage by visiting historic buildings not normally open to visitors.

"This year over 200 properties have registered to take part in hosted tours, talks and walks on the 10 and 11 of September. There will also be digital events running all week from the 5th of September.

"European Heritage Open Days provide access to our natural surroundings from small urban green spaces and gardens, to expansive rural countryside, woodlands, waterways, and geological features.

"I would encourage you to find out more information on the Department for Communities’ website and to learn, use and enjoy the heritage across our communities that makes our places so special.”

European Heritage Open Days is an annual event celebrating local architecture, history and culture, which takes place across Europe and is run here by the Department for Communities with the support of the Council of Europe and the European Commission.

This year the event will celebrate a shared theme throughout Europe - ‘Sustainable Heritage: Learn, Use, Enjoy’.

More than 200 historic buildings, monuments, landmarks and hidden gems here will offer free entry with activities including talks, virtual tours and lectures as well as brand new places to visit this year. Some new events for 2022 include Belfast Window in Wildlife; Maginn’s Cornmill, County Down; The Emigrant’s Walk, Maghera, County Derry; Draperstown Unique Heritage, County Derry; Friel's Famine and Folklore Experience, County Fermanagh; Milford House, County Armagh; Galgorm Cottage, County Antrim.

Themed highlights include: County Derry - Creggan Country Park Nature Hub, Tower Museum Stores Tour, Hezlett House Guided tour; County Antrim - Arthur Cottage workshops, Carnlough Town Hall sustainable Heritage Walking tour, Belfast Print workshop; County Down - Blue Bell Lane Roundhouse, Castle Ward Living History weekend; County Armagh - Armagh Planetarium Astro Park Walk, County Fermanagh -Tully Castle Foraging Walk; County Tyrone - Benburb Priory, Benburb Castle Open Day and Coalisland Museum and Heritage Centre.

All of the events planned are free to the public, some venues require booking in advance. To find a full list of events for this year visit Discover NI's website.

For further info contact: Email EHOD: or telephone: 028 9082 3207

Notes to editors: 

  1. Photo captions: Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey is pictured with Christopher Gill from Caledon Regneration Partnership at Caledon Wool Store in Co Tyrone for the launch of this year’s European Heritage Open Days. 
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