History comes alive in special heritage tours

Berkhamsted Castle - by Jason Hawkes
Berkhamsted Castle - by Jason Hawkes

HERITAGE Open Days will reveal the history behind important sites in Berkhamsted.

The free tours, organised by Berkhamsted Local History and Museum Society, are part of a national programme sponsored by English Heritage.

Tours will be at Berkhamsted Castle on Sunday at 10.30am, 12.30pm and 3pm.

The other events, which will take place on Monday, include tours around Berkhamsted School’s Old Hall and Chapel at 10.30am and 2.30pm.

The Old Hall was founded by Dean John Incent and built in 1544. It is the original school hall, and was one of the largest in the country at that time.

The chapel was built in 1895.

A tour around St Peter’s Church in High Street and Court House in Church Lane is at 3pm.

The church was consecrated in 1222 and the Court House dates back to the Tudor period.

There will also be a tour around Ashlyns School, which was the base of the 1739-established Thomas Coram Foundling Hospital School from 1935-55.

The foundling school catered for abandoned children, and its former pupils will lead the tour at 1.30pm and 3.45pm. You will have to book in advance for these.

To do this or learn more about the tours, call society chairman Jenny Sherwood on 01442 865158, email KSherw9100@aol.com or visit www.berkhamsted-history.org.uk

Mrs Sherwood said: “Don’t miss this valuable opportunity.”