Windows to the World Festival

Mon 12 July - Fri 23 July 2021
St Mary's Parish Church

Celebrate the colourful history of Barnard Castle and its oldest church with a lively programme of art, music, history, workshops, performances, and guided tours at Windows to the World Festival this July. It’s for curious minds of all ages!

All events are being held at St Mary’s Parish Church, Newgate, Barnard Castle.

 

Art

Journeys – Teithiau: Stained Glass Exhibition

Journeys – Teithiau is a travelling exhibition of work by six contemporary stained glass artists: Jonathan Cooke, Catrin Davies,  Nicola Kantorowicz, Elizabeth Lamont, Rachel Phillips and Christian Ryan. Currently at the national stained glass museum in Ely Cathedral, the exhibition comes to St Mary’s church, where you can meet some of the artists and talk with them about their work.

12-23 July, 10am-5pm BST (Open daily except during church services)
To attend: Walk-ins only / Price: FREE / COVID-19: Masks required indoors

More info >

 

Music

Explore the sound of history through a series of special concerts that will transport you back in time.

Psalms for the Soul

Enjoy polyphonic motets from Renaissance Europe performed by a capella lower voice quartet, Scaramella.

17 July, 19:00 BST
To attend:
Book tickets / Price: £6-12 / COVID-19: Masks required indoors

More info and book tickets >

 

It fell on a summer’s day

Relax with the gentle sounds of music for voice and lute by Dowland, Campion and Rosseter, with Tristram Cooke.

20 July, 19:00 BST
To attend:
Book tickets / Price: £5-10 / COVID-19: Masks required indoors

More info and book tickets >

 

The House of Life

A lively evening concert celebrating journeys, home, and the natural world.

23 July, 19:00 BST
To attend:
Book tickets / Price: £5-10 / COVID-19: Masks required indoors

More info and book tickets >

 

History Talks & Guided Tours

Learn more about the history of Barnard Castle, and explore the fabulous architecture within St Mary’s Church

Women of the Durham Coalfield

During the 19th century, the expansion of the mining industry transformed not only the landscape of County Durham but also its population. Learn about the everyday lives of the coal miner’s wives, and about their astonishing spirit and determination.

14 July, 18:00 BST
To attend:
Book tickets / Price: FREE / COVID-19: Masks required indoors

More info and book tickets >

 

Guided History Tour

Travel back in time and learn about the history of St Mary’s Parish Church and Barnard Castle. Discover blocked up doorways and follow the story of one of England’s most famous kings.

To attend: Book tickets, some walk-ins available / Price: FREE / COVID-19: Masks required indoors

More info and book tickets >

 

Bell-ringing and Tower Tour

Or join us on a short trip up the tower and witness the ringing of the bells.

To attend: Book tickets, some walk-ins available / Price: FREE / COVID-19: Masks required indoors

More info and book tickets >

 

Family-friendly events

History isn’t just for adults! Children and families can learn more with our programme of free, hands-on workshops.

Make Your Own Stained Glass Window Design

Take a closer look at St Mary’s beautifully colourful windows and the stories they tell, and create your own stained glass window design to take home.

To attend: Walk-ins only / Price: FREE / COVID-19: This event is outdoors

More info >

 

Gruesome Graveyard Tour

Explore the hidden bits and secret sections of the St Mary’s Parish Church, and learn a little more about the grisly history of Barnard Castle. From medieval kings to the industrial revolution, we’re going on a journey through time…

To attend: Book tickets, some walk-ins available / Price: FREE / COVID-19: This event is outdoors

More info and book tickets >

 

DNA Corner

Learn about DNA and what it can tell us about Richard III, and try your hand at a real DNA experiment!

To attend: Book tickets, some walk-ins available / Price: FREE / COVID-19:Masks required indoors

More info and book tickets >

 

History Cold Case

Can you identify the cause of death on this skeleton? Learn about diseases and how people used to heal them

To attend: Walk-in / Price: FREE / COVID-19: This event is outdoors

More info >

 

Creative events for adults

Whether you’re already a creative soul or you just fancy dipping your toes into the fascinating world of arts, join us for one of our special poetry, creative writing, and dance workshops.

 

Found Words Poetry Workshop

Excavate words from the hidden corners of St Mary’s church. Bringing these found words together, we’ll share writing prompts and short exercises to tell new stories about this very old place.

To attend: Book tickets, some walk-ins available / Price: FREE / COVID-19: Masks required indoors

More info and book tickets >

 

Fiction from Fact Creative Writing Workshop

What happens when we deliberately blur the boundaries between fiction and fact? In this creative writing workshop, we will explore how to use historical facts as a starting point for speculative writing and you’ll come away armed with some useful tips for blending fiction and facts.

To attend: Book tickets, some walk-ins available / Price: FREE / COVID-19: Masks required indoors

More info and book tickets >

 

Fertile Ground Dance Workshop

Join dancers from Dance Company Fertile Ground for a two hour movement workshop.

To attend: Book tickets, some walk-ins available / Price: FREE / COVID-19: Masks required indoors

More info and book tickets >

 

View all festival events >

 

Download the full programme* >

* Change of programme:
The guided tour scheduled to take place on Sunday 18th July at 12:30pm will now be taking place at 1:30pm.
The Fertile Ground Dance Workshop scheduled to take place on Monday 12th July has been postponed.
A funeral will take place on Thursday 15th from 12am-1pm, during which the church will be closed to visitors.

Windows to the World Festival Programme of Events

How to Attend

All events are being hosted at St Mary’s Parish Church in Barnard Castle. You may need to book tickets, or be able to walk-in, depending on the event.

COVID-19 latest

The Coronavirus pandemic currently limits the type of event we can hold at the church. Learn more about the forms of worship that are possible under the current restrictions.