Open Cambridge: 7 - 9 September 2012

Open Cambridge 2012

A free weekend celebrating history, heritage and culture from the University of Cambridge

Event programme
Booking information

For one special weekend in September Cambridge will open its doors and welcome everyone to share in its spectacular architecture, art collections, libraries and gardens. Open Cambridge features a variety of free pre-bookable and drop in events across the Friday and Saturday. Walks, talks, tours and exhibitions will highlight aspects of the City’s history and its rich heritage. A range of libraries, gardens, museums and historic buildings normally closed to the public will open up for families, local residents and community groups to discover and explore.

This year’s Open Cambridge will offer a dip into the swimming history of Cambridge. Explore some of Cambridge’s swimming haunts, and learn about the Chancellor who warned scholars bathing in the river would be publicly whipped - and how hundreds of years later the river was teeming with swimmers including Rupert Brooke.

A tour of the Central Science Library promises to be a highlight for visitors of all ages. Built on the remains of a medieval monastery, the Central Science offers subterranean stacks, a historic collection of illustrated natural science books, and a reputation for ghostly visitors.

Other events include a behind the scene tour of the ADC theatre, home of the famed University Footlights dramatic society; combined punting and walking tours of Cambridge; and lessons in Victorian party planning, among many more. 

This year, we are again pleased to welcome a number of City venues to the programme.  Look out for tours of some of the city’s most significant historic buildings.

For a rare chance to visit several Colleges in one day while supporting local charities, consider participating in the Bridge the Gap charity walk taking place on Sunday 9 September 2012.

Event programme

Booking information

All activities are free, unless specifically stated. Advanced booking is essential on all tours, and is available online at:  Booking opens at 10.00am on Monday 23 July 2012. For information on accessibility and other inquiries, please check the event description on the website above or call us on +44 (0)1223 766766.


Date: 7/09/2012 to 10/09/2012
Location: Cambridge