York Unlocked 2023

Sadie Pearson
York Unlocked

York Unlocked 2023 at York Castle Museum, York 8 October 2023 Entrance is free — Visit now

After a massively successful first ever York Unlocked in 2022, the weekend of open doors and exclusive access for all is returning. Over 7 and 8 October, up to 70 buildings will be welcoming the public in to look around and learn about the heritage of each site, completely free of charge.

Spaces that are often closed to the public, but hold a significant place in York’s history, will be allowing tourists and residents alike to explore their rooms, hallways and gardens. Often these “hidden gems” are in fact hiding in plain sight. Some locals may be surprised by one or two of the locations on the map, no matter how well they think they know the city.

The event itself is totally unique in the scope of people it’s managed to engage in heritage activity. What’s even more incredible is that the entire weekend is run by a group of passionate volunteers who all have full time jobs. Last year they attracted visitors from as far afield as the USA and Australia as well as welcoming people into buildings that they’ve walked past for years but never knew the cultural significance held within the walls.

Some of the favourite sites from last year’s event included Duncombe Place Masonic Lodge, Kings Manor and the Assembly Rooms. This year they’ll be joined by the new additions of The Archbishop’s Walled & Pleasure Garden, St Marys Tower and the Minster Refectory. These places might look familiar from the outside, but their character and history can be much better appreciated from the inside.

Kathy M King the founder of York Unlocked says “Whether you are an architecture buff with a tick-list of specific buildings or a family seeking to see the city in a different light, York Unlocked is guaranteed to inspire, delight and intrigue.”

York Unlocked 2023 at York Castle Museum, York 8 October 2023 Entrance is free Visit now

Where to go near York Unlocked 2023

Spark:York
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Museum
Fairfax House

With a reputation as a classical architectural masterpiece of its age, Fairfax House was originally the winter home of Viscount Fairfax.

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Shop
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Independent plant themed shop in York. House plants and more!

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The York Dungeon

Prepare for an exciting adventure as you delve into the chilling history of York at the York Dungeon! The York Dungeon offers an immersive exploration of 2,000 years of the city’s most haunting tales.

Bish Bash Pot
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Event venue
Bish Bash Pot

Pottery painting and glass making for everyone in York city centre.

JORVIK Viking Centre
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Jorvik Viking Centre

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Fossgate Social

Coffee shop by day, bar by night – Fossgate Social is a small but vibrant independent venue serving speciality coffee, craft beer and cocktails.

York Gin
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York Gin

York Gin shop is based in the centre of York and the team creates their own range of six world-class gins in the city’s only distillery.

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Tourist Attraction
St Mary’s Church

Construction of this wonderful church began on July 13th 1852. Much has changed since then, but the historical value and pleasure of visiting has only increased.

York
Restaurant
Valhalla

Valhalla is ‘a venue that paid homage to York’s Viking heritage and somewhere with purely Rock ‘n Metal music in its soul’.

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