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Gloucestershire Business News

Town ready to mark landmark date

Heritage Open Days with a twist are being held to mark a special anniversary for a Gloucestershire town.

It is 300 years since spa waters were 'discovered' in Cheltenham, when residents reputedly noted flocks of birds, possibly pigeons, gathering around a well.

It took some years before the well was commercially developed and progress was slow until 1788 when George 111 came to Cheltenham for six weeks, with his wife and three daughters.

From that date there was an explosion of activity and 26 different wells have been documented by historians. Today there is only one surviving, in Pittville Pump Room (pictured).

Although Cheltenham is best known for its Regency terraces and houses, the buildings open at some time over these four days cover one thousand years, for instance St Mary Magdalene Church with its Norman arches and the medieval Cheltenham Minster.

The walks and talks during this year's Heritage Open Days, taking place between 8 September and 11 September, will reflect life and people in Cheltenham over the years.

All the buildings are open for free, but places need to be booked on the walks.

Find full details of Heritage Open Days properties, visit www.heritageopendays.org.uk.

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