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Take a closer look at Britain's heritage

A street in Brighton will host the launch of Heritage Open Days 2009, Britain’s biggest and most diverse celebration of architecture, history and culture.

Over 4,000 places across the country are opening their doors for free which takes place between 10th and 13th September 2009.

Brighton’s My House My Street initiative, the focus for this year’s launch, has seen home owners from the vibrant North Laines area researching the history of their street, as well as the people and families who lived there over a 100 year period.

This year for the first time, Heritage Open Days is being run by English Heritage who stepped in to rescue it when the previous organisers, the Civic Trust went into administration earlier this year.

Barbara Follett, Minister for Culture, said: “Heritage Open Days gives everyone the chance, without paying any admission fees at all, to get a glimpse of life behind the scenes of their well-known local institutions. This is a very interesting and enjoyable activity and this year we expect more than a million people to take advantage of this marvellous opportunity to get to know parts of Britain’s rich and varied heritage better."