Town station to host Heritage Open Days Festival headquarters

The Lowestoft station frontage. Picture: Courtesy of East Suffolk Lines Community Rail Partnership

The Lowestoft station frontage. Picture: Courtesy of East Suffolk Lines Community Rail Partnership - Credit: Archant

Lowestoft's rail station is to host the headquarters for the town's offering for Heritage Open Days Festival over the next two weekends.

The iconic building will be home to the box office and the organising group's activities as part of train operator Greater Anglia's Community Space initiative.

The Heritage Open Days Festival in Lowestoft is within the top 20 in the country in terms of numbers of events, out of around 800 towns and cities taking part.

More than 70 free events and activities have been organised to take place, with the festival using the former station shop as this year's box office.

The space will also be used to showcase the varied events that will be taking place.

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Visitors can call in at the station any day during the festival between 9am and 5pm to find out everything they need to know, with the team also providing free festival guides, trails and maps, as well as taking bookings for any events which require free tickets.

Paul King from Lowestoft Heritage Open Days said, 'In 1843 Samuel Morton Peto addressed a public meeting in Lowestoft and promised the townsfolk that he would build a railway to Lowestoft, so fish could be transported to Manchester whilst still alive.

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Almost 200 years later we are delighted that, thanks to Greater Anglia and the local Community Rail Partnerships, the railway station itself will host our headquarters and box office for this exciting festival.'

Paul Haynes, Greater Anglia's community partnerships manager, said: 'We are pleased to be able to support the Lowestoft Heritage Open Days Festival by providing accommodation at the station as part of our Community Space Initiative which has been specifically designed to provide rooms at our network of stations to enable local charities and organisations to showcase their activities.'

A number of walks and exhibitions are also taking place during the festival including a guided history or for those brave enough, a ghost walk. Exhibitions include one by Associated British Ports, an RAF centenary display along with photography featuring damage to the town over two World Wars.

Other festival highlights include re-enactors in period dress, community singing, a day of history talks, historic reenactments and folk and classical music.

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