DISCOVER hidden treasures in Kirklees.
That was the invitation as over 40 places of worship of various faiths threw open their doors as part of the nine-day Treasures Revealed in Kirklees festival.
Some churches or chapels will be holding special events and displays, while others will be welcoming people to take a look around and ask some questions.
David Thompson, project development officer, visited St Mark’s Parish Church in Longwood on Saturday to look at the stained glass windows and enjoy a cream tea.
He said: “The aim of the programme is to give an opportunity, and to attract residents and visitors into places of worship and recognise them as hubs of the local community.”
St Mark’s Parish Church is just one of the many churches taking part in the festival.
Among its treasures, visitors to the Longwood Gate church can see a stained glass window dedicated to Mary Sumner, the founder of the Mother’s Union.
A second window depicts Richard Oastler, the famous Yorkshireman who campaigned for the rights of working children in the Factory Act of 1847.
While adults marvel at these windows, children can enjoy searching for the ‘Thompson’ mice on furniture dotted around the church.
Treasures Revealed in Kirklees runs until Sunday, May 10 and is a multi-faith event.
Jamia Mosque, in Heckmondwike and Gulzar-e-Madina Mosque in Dewsbury are both taking part in the scheme. Masoud Razaq, a volunteer at Jamia Mosque, said people of all faiths were welcome to take a look around the two storey building and meet members of the mosque.
He said: “We consider ourselves to be quite an open mosque.
“Sometimes there’s a lot of secrecy that surrounds what goes on in mosques but we don’t have that secrecy – we want people to come and feel comfortable.
“We work closely with the schools in the area and cater for children with various programmes throughout the year.”
The Vajrapani Kadampa Buddhist Centre is open to people of all faiths for teaching, private contemplation and study.
On Saturday, St James Church, Heckmondwike, had an exhibition of church weddings since the 1940s.
And yesterday All Saints’ Church, Netherthong, gave a church tour and displayed the church records for those wanting to research their family history.
Christ Church, New Mill, had an exhibition of the relationship between art and worship.
Huddersfield Parish Church opened for tours.
A spokesman for the nine-day festival said: “Places of worship have been at the heart of our communities for thousands of years yet most people remain oblivious to the vitally important social, economic and spiritual role they play in our modern society.”
For a full list of events pick up a programme from Huddersfield or Holmfirth Tourist Information Centres.
Alternatively you can log on to the website at www.treasuresrevealed.com