Chance to explore Enfield’s architectural gems

Open House Festival launches this week with 19 events taking place across Enfield borough

Edmonton Charity School in Church Street
Edmonton Charity School in Church Street

Several of Enfield’s architectural gems will be opened to the public during the upcoming Open House Festival.

Starting on Thursday, 8th September, and lasting for two weeks, Open House is an opportunity for people to enjoy tours of buildings they might not otherwise get a chance to see, as well visit exhibitions and learn more about local landmarks and other noteworthy locations.

Hundreds of buildings will be opened up across London and in Enfield specifically there will be 19 different places where residents can discover more about their borough.

These include a chance to look inside the former Edmonton Charity School building, which has been closed to the public for ten years but is now set to be restored; King George V Pumping Station, a Victorian pump house built to maintain a huge reservoir in eastern Enfield; a tour of Modernist architecture in Oakwood; Friends Meeting House in Winchmore Hill, a 232-year-old community building run by the Quakers; the famous Royal Small Arms Factory in Enfield Lock, which produced armaments for 170 years before its closure in 1987; plus Myddelton House in Forty Hill, the former home of horticulturist Edward Augustus Bowles.

Enfield Council is also hosting two events. One is a tour of the recent slew of colourful street art that has appeared around Fore Street in recent months, which has been funded with help from City Hall, while the other is part of the ongoing outdoor exhibition, Stories of Enfield, which explores the cultural heritage of the borough.

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The Fore Street tour includes murals created by five artists from the local area and further afield, each centred around engagement with the local community. There is also a poetry trail to follow, which explores the significance and impact of the River Lea to life in Upper Edmonton through the memories of local poet Keith Mowatt.

Chinelo Anyanwu, the council’s cabinet member for public spaces, culture and local economy, said: “We are always delighted to take part in the Open House Festival and this year is no exception. I am excited that we are able to add something totally new to the agenda, with a fantastic tour of the new murals and sculptures around Fore Street and a trail inspired by the poem Our River Lea.

“This is an opportunity to explore how public art can reflect an area’s heritage and at the same time, its development and evolution.”

The full Open House Festival programme can be found online:

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