• Heritage skills - a man working with wood product on the machine

Heritage Skills Festival 2023

Gainsborough’s historic Market Place is undergoing a transformation to restore the listed buildings, reinstate historic shopfronts and bring back this area’s original charm. As part of the National Lottery Heritage Fund’s mission to save local heritage, Gainsborough is hosting a Heritage Skills Festival.  It is vital to encourage heritage skills and craftsmanship for our future. To bring this into the public eye, we are planning a week of activities headlined by a Heritage Skills Fair to showcase traditional and rare crafts that are thriving in our region.

Heritage Skills Fair – Saturday 16th September
9am until 3pm

Applications are open to join us at this huge outdoor fair in Gainsborough’s historic Market Place.  We are interested to hear from those working in traditional building crafts, makers of traditional items, decorative arts, restoration and conservation.

We offer a covered market stall with a 9ft x 5ft footprint for your display.  Alternatively, you may pitch your own tent/marquee or request an open-air space for your bespoke display.

Joining us at the Heritage Skills Festival is FREE of charge! What we ask from you is a willingness to demonstrate your skills and/or allow visitors to try it themselves.  You are welcome to sell items you have made yourself.


The festival continues throughout the following week with bookable workshops for adults to learn a heritage skill.  Please let us know if you would be interested in running a workshop at one of our heritage venues.  We are particularly interested in hearing from tutors experienced in repair and maintenance of traditional sash windows, traditional roofing or stone masonry.

How to Apply

Please contact us here with an outline of your proposed demonstration accompanied by a photograph or webpage address and include your contact details. We will follow up to discuss your application individually before making a formal offer of a place.

Heritage Lottery Fund