Take A Turn Behind the Scenes of Bristol's Cultural Treasures

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By AnnaClark | Wednesday, June 20, 2012, 16:39

The Bristol Doors Open Day 2012 website launched this week (18 June), listing all 60 of the venues taking part in this year's event on Saturday 8th September. Coinciding with the website launch, a detailed leaflet is now available at the Harbourside Tourist Office, local libraries and many of the venues.

Bristol Doors Open Day, a highlight of the city's cultural calendar for the past 19 years, offers the chance for visitors to lift the curtain and go behind the scenes of some of Bristol's most iconic contemporary and historic buildings. Entry to all buildings is free.

Including the ever-popular mix of old and new venues, the event presents an unrivalled opportunity to explore the length and breadth of Bristol's cultural history, from the very top of the Wills Memorial Building tower down to the depths of the Redcliffe Caves.

New venues for 2012 include Albion House in Broad Street, an intriguing 1840s elaborately decorated building, now an art gallery and tutorial centre; Avonmouth and Portbury Docks (booking essential), where visitors can trace how the imports Bristol needs for daily life reach our shelves; and the new St Mary Redcliffe and Temple School.

The RAC Supercentre (booking essential) and the popular Müller Museum in Cotham, a tiny museum examining the life and work of George Müller, founder of Müller Homes for Children in 1836, are both returning to the event after a number of years away. The Concrete House in Westbury-on-Trym, a regular favourite for architects and design lovers alike, is returning after a year's break.

Other participating venues in 2012 include St Mary Redcliffe, putting on tours up to the roof allowing for unmatched views of the city; the Bristol Heart Institute, where visitors can peek into operating theatres; and Horizon House, the Environment Agency's striking HQ. The recently redeveloped Glenside Hospital Museum returns for its first year since receiving lottery funding.

Penny Mellor, organiser of Bristol Doors Open Day, said: "The event is really going from strength to strength and I'm thrilled by the quality of the venues involved this year. If you've ever wanted to know what was going on behind the doors of Merchants' Hall, St Vincent's Works in Temple or Spike Island, here's your chance.

The best thing about Bristol Doors Open Day is how it attracts all sorts, all different age groups and social classes are represented. It's such a positive event; it really represents the city's great universality."

Organised in partnership with Bristol City Council and GWE Business West, Bristol Doors Open Day attracted some 50,000 visits in 2011. The 2012 event has received sponsorship and support from Alder King, Alec French Architects, Burges Salmon and Brandon Hill Communications.

For further information on Bristol Doors Open Day 2012 and the participating venues, or to book a place at a site with limited availability, please visit www.bristoldoorsopenday.org or pick up a leaflet from local libraries or the Bristol Tourist Information Centre on the Harbourside.

      

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