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The Churches Conservation Trust launches National Church Tourism week in Shrewsbury

Church Tourism week, a nationwide celebration of England’s historic churches will take place between, 22nd - 31st July 2016.

Launched by The Churches Conservation Trust, the week-long programme of special events will celebrate the vibrancy of England’s ancient churches and invite the public to explore the fascinating buildings in new ways.   

Crispin Truman, CEO of The Churches Conservation Trust, said, “England’s treasured churches not only tell the fascinating histories of their communities, but also host some of the country’s most extraordinary and imaginative events and activities. Our first Church Tourism Week is about celebrating the incredible events and experiences on offer in our churches and inviting people to explore these extraordinary buildings. There’s something on offer for everyone, from new music in partnership with Dave Stewart Entertainment to our Champing™ church camping adventures, historic tours, family trails, craft activities, art exhibitions and tea parties in Shropshire and around the country. Plus, I’ll be getting on my bike for a sponsored bike ride touring heritage churches in Worcestershire.”

As part of this exciting celebration of England’s ecclesiastical heritage, St Mary the Virgin, St Mary’s Street, Shrewsbury is hosting two fascinating events:

23rd July-13th August, daily 10am-4pm: ‘WW1 Monuments Remembered’ Exhibition

Free entry- Donations Welcome.

This unique artwork brings together a photographic collection of the hundreds of WW1 monuments across Shropshire and was designed to coincide with the 100 year anniversary since the start of the Battle of the Somme. The project is by international artist Carl Jaycock and is supported by the National Lottery through Arts Council England.

Carl Jaycock’s photographs record some of the estimated 900 listed monuments in Shropshire. These come in many types and variations from small intimate objects to large scale memorials. He brings the poignant images together to create a large temporary sculptural object which is crowned with a half sphere of soil from the Somme. The soil creates a connection to the ‘Lochnagar Crater’ from the Somme battlefields of WW1 which is a now a place of peace and reconciliation.

30th July, 2pm at St Mary’s: Spire to Spire Medieval Walking Tour.

Tickets £5.00

Discover the medieval past on a walking tour of Shrewsbury with an experienced guide who will open your eyes to the medieval churches in the town, as well as their associated pubs. The tour starts at St Mary’s at 2pm and visits the medieval churches of St Alkmund’s and Old St Chad’s. Participants will weave their way through the ancient shuts and passages of the Bear Steps, Grope Lane and The Golden Cross Passage with their associated public houses, once linked to each church. Explore the cobbled streets of Fish Street and Butchers Row, once owned by the Abbots of Lilleshall, with butchers shops set below the Abbot’s accommodation, where the offal was thrown onto the street at the end of the working day for the poor to fight over!

The Churches Conservation Trust (CCT) protects historic churches at risk and has saved over 340 buildings; there are 10 churches in Shropshire. All CCT churches are Grade II* or above and hold the key to much of our history; they are open and ready for visitors all year round.

To check opening times and find out more about the Churches Conservation Trust, visit their website

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