Heritage open days in south Lincolnshire

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Heritage Open Days are being held from Thursday until Sunday, some on the theme of Tudor Lincolnshire. See the box for details of venues that are opening to the public.

However, Aubrey played his part in World War Two, ploughing back and forth on Arctic Convoys to Russia, providing escort cover for the merchant ships taking supplies and armaments to war-torn Russians.

The story behind the name carved into the memorial will be told, together with photographs, at Long Sutton & District Civic Society’s World War Two 70 Year Commemoration exhibition being held during Heritage Open Days, which starts today.

The exhibition will contain photographs and stories from other local veterans, as well as information on groups in Long Sutton, such as the Home Guard and Civil Defence Force.

It’s at the Masonic Hall, itself an important part of the town’s war history as it served as a collection point for evacuees arriving in Long Sutton and also acted as a regimental headquarters. The Masonic Hall, purpose built 90 years ago, also contains some impressive features, such as a sweeping double staircase, stained glass windows and a horseshoe shaped oak refectory table.

The war exhibition spills over into the Scout hall across the road from the Masonic Hall, and that part of the display will focus on Sutton Bridge. Harold Payne’s mobile war museum can be found in the Masonic Hall car park.

The civic society intends to research every name on war memorials in the Suttons, and says it is about a quarter of the way through that time-consuming process.

It helps that some local veterans, such as Doug Marsh and Ken Markley, are still alive and can give first-hand information, but there are often relatives whose knowledge and memories of soldiers no longer with us can help paint a picture of their lives.

In Aubrey Cox’s case, it was his son Mike who supplied war service details, although in fact Aubrey was well-known in the town from his days spent running the family wine merchant’s business.

Heritage sites that are opening

Algarkirk: St Peter and St Paul Church – Medieval Majesty, an afternoon of medieval music and crafts plus children’s activities and refreshments, open Sunday (noon-4pm).

Bourne: Baldocks Mill, South Street – Old watermill with exhibitions about Raymond Mays and Charles Worth, open Thursday to Sunday (2-4pm).

Holbeach: Holbeach ROC Post, Washway Road PE12 7PP – Holbeach’s hidden Cold War bunker, open Sunday only (11am-3pm).

Long Sutton: Masonic Hall and the Scout Hall, Park Lane – World War 2 exhibition, open Saturday and Sunday (10am-4pm).

Long Sutton: Masonic Hall (as above) – coincides with celebrating laying foundation stone 90 years ago, open Saturday and Sunday (10am-4pm).

Long Sutton: St Mary’s Church, Market Place – 12th century St Mary’s Minster built by Cluniac monks, Parvise Room for medieval and Tudor school, Tudor panelling and stained glass, open Saturday (10am-6pm).

Lutton: St Nicholas Church, Lowgate – Tea and Fun with Tudors of Lutton, Saturday (10am-4pm).

Pinchbeck: Pinchbeck Engine Land Drainage Museum, PE11 3UW (off A16) – history of land drainage and reclamation in south Lincolnshire, demonstration of beam engine and scoop wheel pump, open Friday and Saturday (10am-4pm).

Pode Hole: Pode Hole Pumping Station – visit the diesel and electric land drainage pumping station and learn about their important role in water level management and protection of over 16,000 hectares of Spalding area, open Friday and Saturday (10am-4pm).

Spalding: Ayscoughfee Hall Museum, Churchgate – one of the finest late medieval houses in Lincolnshire and five acres of gardens, open Thursday to Sunday (10.30am-4pm).

Spalding: St Mary & St Nicolas Church, Church Street – climb spiral staircase to 14th century Parvise room once used as armoury, library and chapel, open Saturday (10am-1pm).

Spalding: Spalding Gentlemen’s Society Museum, Broad Street – 300 years of history and curiosity, open Saturday (10am-4pm).

Spalding: Spalding Gentlemen’s Society Museum (as above) – The Tudor Table, Myths, Manners and Marchpane, join a Tudor household and sample Tudor sweetmeats, plus view Tudor artefacts and have photograph taken with interpreters, Sunday (3-4.30pm) booking essential on 01778 421720.

Spalding: Chain Bridge Forge, High Street – living history museum dedicated to blacksmithing and local history, blacksmithing demonstrations and sessions, Friday (10am-2pm), Saturday and Sunday (11am-3pm).