Coventry UK City of Culture 2021
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3-6 Priory Row

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The Lychgate Cottages at 3-6 Priory Row are a row of timber-framed properties dating to around 1415. It is a remarkable survival of a pre-Dissolution building at the heart of Coventry’s city centre.

The building’s location and date indicate that it originally formed part of the precinct of the 12th century St Mary’s Priory, and it is the only upstanding building which survives from the priory complex. Its close-studded timbers and jettied floor make it an evocative example of a timber-framed building of the early 15th century. The principal timbers throughout show little evidence of re-use and demonstrate that the original structure survives well. For these reasons, the building has been upgraded to listed grade II*, for its architectural and historical interest.

Records from the 16th and 17th centuries mention these as cottages, but by the 19th century the cottages were in poor condition and were acquired by the adjacent Blue Coat School in 1855 when they were restored and extended. The internal fireplaces and chimneys date from this time, as does the external stair and rear room to the east end.

These buildings now have a new lease-of-life thanks to Historic Coventry Trust, who have completed a restoration of these much-loved buildings. These have been carefully restored and fitted out as four holiday cottages – visitors will be able to have some modern luxury in these 15th-century buildings. 3-6 Priory Row are also opened for all to visit on Open Days.

Address: 3-6 Priory Row (Lychgate Cottages), Coventry, CV1 5EX

https://www.historiccoventrytrust.org.uk/projects/priory-row/


Bagot’s Castle

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+44(0)7786 438711

Bagot’s Castle, in the village of Baginton on the outskirts of Coventry, is believed to originally been built in the 11th century, at the time of King Henry I. It was rebuilt around the late 14th century by Sir William Bagot, a distinguished nobleman of his time. All that remains are the ruins of this historic castle. Bagot’s Castle is open from the first week in April to the last week in October, every weekend and bank holidays. Opening times are midday until 5.00pm. Admission cost is £4.00 for adults, £2.00 for children and under 2's are free. Concessions are half price. ‘Nature Detectives’ trail also available for children.

Address: Church Road, Baginton, CV8 3AR

https://secure50.securewebsession.eu/bagotscastle.org.uk/home.html


Blue Badge Guided Tours

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+44(0)24 7669 1212

Roger Bailey is a Heart of England Blue Badge Tourist Guide, offering guided walking and coach tours for private groups, large or small. Roger covers Stratford upon Avon, Warwick, Royal Leamington Spa, The Cotswolds and much more. Roger is also a qualified Coventry Green Badge Tourist Guide, a city he specialises in, covering it's 1,000 years of history both by walking and on a coach. Roger is able to help with familiarisation tours, meet and greet services, support for conferences and airport transfers.

Address: PO Box 251, Coventry, CV5 9YT

http://www.bluebadgetouristguide.co.uk/coventry.html


Charterhouse Heritage Park

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The landscape around Charterhouse includes green fields, woodland, the River Sherbourne, the Grade II listed Sherbourne Viaduct and a disused railway line. The viaduct was designed by Stephenson in 1837 as part of the world’s first major inter-city railway.

The Heritage Park today has a surprising variety of wildlife. The river is home to moorhens, mallards, little egrets, heron, grey wagtails, kingfishers, dragonflies and damselflies. Muntjac deer, foxes, badgers, hedgehogs and rabbits roam the landscape. In the air are at least three different kinds of bat, swifts, pheasants, buzzards, sparrowhawks, kestrels, pied and grey wagtails, woodpeckers, and many butterfly species. It also provides a green lung for the city, a much-loved area for dog walking and, in winter, some of the best sledging slopes in Coventry.

At the centre of the Heritage Park is Charterhouse, the unique medieval house, garden and new café will open to the public during Coventry’s year as UK City of Culture.

Address: London Road Coventry CV1 2JR

https://www.historiccoventrytrust.org.uk/projects/charterhouse-heritage-park/


Cook Street Gate

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Cook Street Gate is one of only two surviving 14th century gatehouses of an original twelve that once punctuated Coventry’s medieval city wall. Today, Swanswell Gate and Cook Street Gate stand in the city centre, separated by one of the last surviving sections of medieval city wall and surrounded by Lady Herbert’s Garden. The gates are Grade I listed and have recently been brought back into use by Historic Coventry Trust. Both buildings have been fully restored, with each gate being adapted into unique holiday accommodation in a modern style.

Cook Street Gate can be found at the very top of Lady Herbert's Garden and looks out across Chauntry Place. The gate was built around 1385 and presented to the city by W.F Wyley in 1913. If you look at the top of the gates you may notice that the battlements look like they have been restored or added recently - in fact these were built around 1931-32. As you pass through the gate, if you look up, you will see an exquisite wooden carving of the Coventry emblem inside.

As well as being available for a unique stay in a fairy-tale medieval gatehouse, the gates are also opened for all to visit on Open Days.

Address: Cook Street, Coventry City Centre, CV1 1JN

https://www.historiccoventrytrust.org.uk/projects/city-gates/


Coventry Cathedral

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+44(0)24 7652 1200

Coventry Cathedral is a place where splendid medieval history meets modern architecture to stunning and poignant effect. Explore the Ruined Cathedral, destroyed in the Coventry Blitz during WW2, standing proudly alongside the magnificent ‘casket of jewels’, the iconic ‘New’ Cathedral. The New Cathedral features works by some of the greatest artists of the 1950s and 60s. Internationally recognised as a beacon of hope, Coventry Cathedral embodies a spirit of peace and reconciliation in a truly breath-taking setting.

Address: Priory St, Coventry CV1 5FB

http://www.coventrycathedral.org.uk


Coventry Visitor Information Centre

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+44 (024) 7697 7001

Please note, this service has now moved from the Herbert Art Gallery & Museum.

Our Visitor Information team can provide the very best in local knowledge, history and recommendations on how to make the most of your stay in Coventry. With advice on what to see and do, the finest places to eat and sleep, a trip to the Visitor Information Centre should really be your first port of call when visiting our city.

Opening Hours:

Mon-Fri: 10:00 – 5:00 
Sat: 10:00 - 5:30
Sun: 11:00 – 4:00

Address: Station Square, Coventry CV1 2FL 

Email: vic@coventry.gov.uk

http://www.visitcoventry.co.uk


Coventry Young Explorer’s Discovery Trail

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+44 (0) 7697 7001

Pick up your free explorer’s trail from either the Coventry Tourist Information Centre (located inside the Herbert Art Gallery & Museum) or Coventry Cathedral and discover the answers to the 10 questions as you search some of the very special city centre attractions to win your exclusive Coventry Young Explorers badge! The trail is suitable for children of primary school age (4-11 years) and gives the perfect opportunity to explore Coventry city centre and it's fascinating history. The trail should take approximately 60 minutes to complete, allowing for walking time between venues but you could easily extend your stay and spend a little extra time in each venue talking with our local experts to find out more about Coventry should you wish to. There's plenty to discover along the way - good luck explorers!

Address: Station Square, Coventry CV1 2FL

https://bit.ly/2YDo52Z


Coventry's New Cathedral

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Priory Street, Coventry City Centre, CV1 5AB

The New Cathedral is a work of inspiration. Work started a day after the Old Cathedral was bombed during the Blitz of 1940, and the Cathedral is now recognised as a beacon of hope, fellowship, peace and reconciliation. The decision to rebuild the cathedral was taken the morning after its destruction. Rebuilding would not be an act of defiance, but rather a sign of faith, trust and hope for the future of the world. It was the vision of the Provost at the time, Dick Howard, which led the people of Coventry away from feelings of bitterness and hatred. This has led to the cathedral's Ministry of Peace and Reconciliation, which has provided spiritual and practical support, in areas of conflict throughout the world.

Address: Priory St, Coventry CV1 5FB

http://www.coventrycathedral.org.uk/


Drapers’ Hall

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The Grade II* listed Drapers’ Hall is one of the few Regency buildings in the city and was built in 1831-2 as the headquarters of the Coventry Drapers’ Guild. Opening in Autumn 2021 as a venue for music and music education and brought to you by Historic Coventry Trust.

The current building is the third Drapers’ Hall on the site, replacing the previous medieval and post-medieval buildings which the wealthy Guild of Drapers constructed as places to do business, to socialise and to hold events.

Designed by Thomas Rickman and H W Hutchinson, the current building is in Greek Revival style and consists of a series of grand ceremonial spaces lit by rooflights: a Ballroom, Tea Room and Reading Room. Each of these has decorative plaster ceilings and chimneypieces. In the basement the original kitchens, plate store, wine store and sculleries survive with all their fittings. Parts of the basement were also used as air raid shelters in both World Wars.

Working with The Princes’ Foundation, Historic Coventry Trust has restored the building as a home for Coventry Music Service and a music and events venue. A programme of great music events, Drapers' Hall boasts three fully restored performance and meeting spaces; the Ballroom, Tearoom and Card Room., all of which are also available for corporate, wedding or concert hires.

Address: Bayley Ln, Coventry CV1 5RN

https://www.historiccoventrytrust.org.uk/projects/drapers-hall/


Holy Trinity Church

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+44(0)24 7622 0418

From the 15th Century stone pulpit to the 16th Century Bible and the world-renowned Doom painting, Holy Trinity Coventry is certainly a 'must visit' place in our great city. The church also has part of the carpet Queen Elizabeth II was crowned on. It is the only large historic building left intact after the Second World War, due to the outstanding bravery of Canon Clitheroe and three others; who actually went onto the roof whilst the bombs were falling to save the church from catching fire. It worked, and here it is today! This church, soaked in history, is also a living worshipping community of over 300 people a week.

Address: 5A Priory Row, Coventry CV1 5EX

http://www.holytrinitycoventry.org.uk/


London Road Cemetery: Paxton’s Arboretum

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London Road Cemetery: Paxton’s Arboretum is one of the earliest garden cemeteries in the country, designed by Joseph Paxton and now a Grade I listed park and garden.

By the 1840s Coventry’s provision for burials had not kept pace with the growing city and the Board of Health stated that the city’s high mortality rate was aggravated by the inadequate city centre burial grounds. In 1845 Joseph Paxton (who also designed the Crystal Palace) was appointed to design and lay out a new public cemetery on a former quarry on the edge of Coventry. During the 1800s Joseph Paxton brought back many exotic plants and trees from America and many of these are featured in the cemetery including notable candelabra limes, purple beech, oak and elm trees. A contemporary account described the cemetery as having ‘more the air of gentlemen’s park than a city of the dead’. Two cemetery chapels, a non-Conformist chapel designed to look like a classical temple and an Anglican Chapel in a Norman style, survive. In the south-east corner there is a Jewish cemetery with a 20th-century brick chapel.

London Road Cemetery had fallen into disrepair and thanks to National lottery players and working with Historic Coventry Trust, Coventry City Council recently completed a restoration project including repair of the Anglican Chapel, restoration of the promenade, mortuary chapel and bier store.

The beautiful and newly restored 19th Century Anglican Chapel is available for weddings, corporate or private hire.

Address: London Rd, Coventry CV1 2JT

https://www.historiccoventrytrust.org.uk/projects/london-road-cemetery/


Lunt Roman Fort

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+44(0)24 7623 7522

It's A.D. 60; the Iceni of East Anglia led by the legendary Boudica have rebelled against Roman rule, and have just been defeated in a terrible battle fought somewhere in the Midlands. As a result, the Romans are building a series of fortifications across the Midlands, including the Lunt. Come and explore this partially-reconstructed timber fort. Stand on the ramparts, explore the exhibition in the granary and imagine yourself training horses in the gyrus - a feature not found anywhere else in the Roman Empire. The Lunt Roman Fort is only open during select Coventry school holidays. Please visit www.luntromanfort.org for more information about opening hours. Members of the public are not able to access the site during Coventry term times.

Address: Coventry Rd, Baginton, Coventry CV8 3AJ

http://www.luntromanfort.org/


Old Blue Coat School

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Located within the Cathedral Quarter of the city centre, this chateau-style Blue Coat School is believed to have been founded in 1714 as a charity school for girls who spent their last two years being trained in the rigours of domestic service. The present building is built over the ruins of the Cathedral and Priory of St Mary's. It dates from the 1850's and was restored in 2000.

Address: 5a Priory Row, Coventry City Centre, CV1 5EX

https://www.holytrinitycoventry.org.uk/life-at-holy-trinity/church-centre-the-old-blue-coat-school/


Revival Cars

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+44(0)24 7663 5818

Revival Cars puts you in the driving seat of some of the best classic cars available without the headache of ownership. Tailored for classic car enthusiasts or simply for those who would like to drive something different or arrive in style. Vehicles are maintained to the highest standards by in-house mechanics and offer customers a comprehensive vehicle hand-over service. Why not combine the experience of hiring a classic car with an overnight break in Coventry? Revival have teamed up with some of our best hotels in the area and negotiated competitive room rates to offer hire/hotel packages.

Address: Unit 33, Bilton Industrial Estate, Humber Avenue, Coventry, CV3 1JL

http://www.revivalcars.com/


St John the Baptist Church

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+44(0)24 7655 2491

As one of Coventry’s most historic buildings, St John’s holds a special place in the heart of the city. St John’s was built by Medieval Religious Guilds in 1344 on land given by Queen Isabella. Located on the corner of Medieval Spon Street, this Grade I listed masterpiece of architecture is one of the most beautiful churches in England. Carved from rose sandstone, the church is steeped in history. During the Civil War the building was used to house Scottish Royalists, giving rise to the saying ‘Sent to Coventry’.

Address: Fleet Street, Coventry CV1 3AY

http://www.stjohnthebaptistcoventry.org.uk/


St Michael's Tower Climb

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+44(0)24 7652 1248

Climb the Cathedral Tower for the best view in Coventry! Open 7 days a week except during bell ringing sessions*. The Cathedral Tower Climb costs an additional £4, and £2 for U18’s. (Children are permitted to climb at their carer’s discretion and we do not recommend the climb for younger children due to the amount of steps and the nature of the climb, no climbers under the age of 8 will be permitted) The Tower will ordinarily be open from 10am – 3.30pm from Monday to Saturday and closed on Sundays but sometimes events in the Ruins or inclement weather conditions may mean reduced opening hours, so please check in advance by calling 024 7652 1248 if you are planning on making a special trip. *Subject to staff availability and events taking place which may mean that the tower is not accessible.

Address: Priory Street, Coventry City Centre, CV1 5FB

http://www.coventrycathedral.org.uk/wpsite/tower-climb/


St. Mary's Guildhall

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+44(0)24 7683 3328

Death, intrigue, scandal and spilt custard...are not compulsory when you visit St. Mary's Guildhall, but can be discovered in more than 600 years worth of stories from the finest medieval guildhall in the country. Located in the city's historic Cathedral Quarter, St. Mary's Guildhall miraculously survived the Second World War bombing raids, and stands as a monument to the power and wealth of medieval Coventry. With magnificent interiors, collections of armour, historic furniture, artworks and internationally important tapestries, the Guildhall offers a window into Coventry's glorious past. A prison to Mary, Queen of Scots, a theatre for Shakespeare and an inspiration to George Eliot, St. Mary's Guildhall is a fascinating free experience for all ages, at the historic heart of the city of Coventry.

St. Mary's Guildhall is currently closed for renovations and will reopen at the beginning of 2022. You can find out more about this project on St. Mary's Guildhall website. 

Address: Bayley Ln, Coventry CV1 5RN

https://www.stmarysguildhall.co.uk/


Swanswell Gate

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Swanswell Gate is one of only two surviving 14th century gatehouses of an original twelve that once punctuated Coventry’s medieval city wall. Today, Swanswell Gate and Cook Street Gate stand in the city centre, separated by one of the last surviving sections of medieval city wall and surrounded by Lady Herbert’s Garden. The gates are Grade I listed and have recently been brought back into use by Historic Coventry Trust. Both buildings have been fully restored, with each gate being adapted into unique holiday accommodation in a modern style.

Swanswell Gate is also known in times gone by as ‘Priory Gate’. A large portion of wall still extends from this gate, finishing its run just short of Cook Street gate situated one hundred yards north. Its earlier reference as Priory Gate was because it gave entrance to the prior's own land and fishing pool.

As well as being available for a unique stay in a fairy-tale medieval gatehouse, the gates are also opened for all to visit on Open Days.

Address: Hales St, Coventry, CV1 1JD

https://www.historiccoventrytrust.org.uk/projects/city-gates/


The Charterhouse

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The Carthusian Priory of St Anne-a unique Grade 1 listed building and grounds, surrounded by parkland in the centre of Coventry. Charterhouse is a grade I listed 14th Century Carthusian Monastery, one of only nine ever built in Britain. The Carthusian order was a silent order. The interior contains unique medieval and Elizabethan wall paintings, and the gardens are surrounded by the original monastic precinct walls. The Charterhouse is owned by Historic Coventry Trust who are working in partnership with Coventry City Council and the National Lottery Heritage Fund to restore the building and the house, garden and new café will open to the public during Coventry’s year as UK City of Culture.

Address: London Road Coventry CV1 2JR

https://www.historiccoventrytrust.org.uk/projects/charterhouse/


The Weaver's House

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+44(0)24 7625 7117

In Spon Street, one of the most historic streets in Coventry, The Weaver’s House has been restored to show how it would have looked in 1540. Experience how John Croke, a Coventry narrow-loom weaver and his family would have lived and worked. You can also see a full-size replica of the loom he would have used. At the back of the Weaver’s House is a medieval garden showing the plants that would have been grown for food, flavouring, medicine and household use. The house is very close to the city centre and therefore other local places of interest. If you are planning to bring your group to Coventry, a visit to The Weaver’s House would be an ideal complement to larger sites. Visit the website for more details and to find out how the property was rescued from impending destruction and carefully restored. The house is open to the public on selected open days. Private group tours can be arranged at any time, subject to availability.

Address: 121 Upper Spon St, Coventry CV1 3BQ

https://theweavershouse.org/


Ventures with Verity

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07425179053

Verity is a Blue Badge Heart of England Tourist Guide offering offer guided walking tours in Coventry. Cathedral Quarter tours are Saturdays at 10.00 am and 2.00 pm and Wednesdays at 2.00 pm and 7.00 pm.

This guided walk explores the history of Coventry’s 3 cathedrals and the buildings around where Coventry Castle used to be, including St Michael’s Cathedral, Holy Trinity Church, the Guildhall, the Council House and Drapers Hall.

The walk starts in Broadgate by the statue of Lady Godiva and lasts about 1.5 hours with the exact route taken depending upon what else is happening in the city centre on the day.

Other themed tours including City Walls Walk, Coventry Canal Basin, Public Art are offered as advertised. 

All tours are pre-bookable via Eventbrite.

https://ventureswithverity.co.uk


West Midlands Police Museum

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This pop-up museum houses some of the historical artefacts from West Midlands Police and from the archives relating to the old Coventry Police Force. It tells some of the incredible stories of the officers and staff who have served in Coventry over the years - inspiring accounts of trailblazing people, acts of bravery and innovation. The amazing people who paved the way and led us to where we are today.

The Museum will be open for one year, 10 am to 3 pm, every Thursday, Friday and Saturday f

Address: 26 Hertford Street, Coventry 

https://www.wmpeelers.com/