From Birdoswald Roman Fort on Hadrian’s Wall in Cumbria to Dover Castle in Kent, this festive season will see English Heritage lower the drawbridge at many of its properties across the country for the first time on Boxing Day.

The charity has extended the opening days of some of its finest historic properties to include the national holiday this year.

Locally, this means Beeston Castle will be open to visitors on December 26.

Taking its name from the Victorian tradition when servants and tradesmen would receive their ‘Christmas Box’ tips from their employers, this Boxing Day is the perfect opportunity to blow away the cobwebs at over 20 properties across England, including Elizabeth I’s favourite Kenilworth Castle in Warwickshire or the art deco splendour of Eltham Palace and Gardens in London.

Liz Page, English Heritage’s historic properties director, said: “We hope that by opening a number of beautiful historic properties this Boxing Day we’re giving visitors an opportunity to get outdoors and enjoy the calm after the storm of Christmas day where they can unwind and explore with their families.”

To carry on the festive spirit after Christmas Day, English Heritage will be running a competition on its Twitter account (@EnglishHeritage) from Thursday, December 19, where the public will be able to re-tweet for a chance to win a range of great special offers: from 2 for 1 entry to discounts in the gift shop.

For specific opening days and times between Christmas and New Year visit:

To enter the competition, keep an eye on the English Heritage Twitter account: