Heritage Open Days 2011 – Jessica Best reports

Jessica Best, one of our contributors, begins a series of reports on the local Heritage Open Days held in September, finding many interesting stories and items usually unseen by the public.  She introduces the reports here:

There are thousands of beautiful historical buildings in Wales that never open to the public. For whatever reason – be it security, private ownership or the fact that they house important day-to-day functions – these buildings that are part of our heritage are kept under lock and key, hiding away intriguing histories and fascinating objects.

But every September, the Civic Trust for Wales organises the Open Doors project as part of the European Heritage Days. Throughout the month, hundreds of otherwise inaccessible places and buildings are opened up to the public, mostly for free, with many also putting on special tours or events.

There were more than 30 buildings open across Cardiff last month, and Jessica Best went to visit three of the Roath venues that threw their doors open to a curious public.

In the first of a short series, Jessica looks at The Mansion House, Richmond Road.