Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Churches open their doors onto rich heritage

Churches throughout West Wales are to throw open their doors this weekend (September 19th) and invite visitors from near and far to sample their rich contribution to Welsh heritage.

Guided tours, exhibitions, concerts and a host of other activities are planned as part of a drive to show tourists and locals alike some of the treasures they hold.

The initiative – now in its third year – coincides with European Heritage events taking place this month. But John Winton of the Churches Tourism Network emphasises there’s more to it than just stones and artefacts.

“Churches are becoming ever more popular as places to visit,” he says. “But this is an opportunity to connect not only with their history but also with the people that make them tick.

“Each one has its own special character, and its own special characters. We are inviting people to come and see...maybe have a cup of tea...and see what happens.”

The Bishop of St. Davids, Rt. Rev. J. Wyn Evans also welcomed the idea. “It encourages people to visit Wales’ wonderful heritage of historic churches,” he said. “They are gifts to be shared with the many; they are places of worship, but they also tell the story of our communities through the generations, reminding us who we are and where we have come from.”

A list of participating churches is available at http://www.ctnw.co.uk


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