Doors Open Days 2018

If you have always wondered what lies beyond Scotland’s historic and interesting buildings, then now is your chance to find out! That’s because the annual Doors Open Day 2018 events are upon us, inviting us to ‘get into buildings’ and discover some best-kept secrets about many of Scotland’s fascinating landmarks. Doors Open Day is Scotland’s largest free annual architectural festival brought to you by coordinators at the Scottish Civic Trust

From town halls and castles to mosques and fire stations, you can explore the inside of these buildings – for free – for this month only. As well as having a look around the buildings – many of which are not normally open to the general public – you can also take advantage of talks, tours and trails.

There are more than 1,000 venues across Scotland throwing their doors open this year, so naturally you will be spoilt for choice, so here No.1 brings you just a few ideas to get you started on your must-visit list for the week ahead:

Doors Open Day 2018: Glasgow (10-16th September)

  • Britannia Panoptican Music Hall in Glasgow’s Merchant City is the world’s oldest surviving music hall, perhaps most famous for being where Stan Laurel (of Laurel & Hardy) made his stage debut in 1906. Today it is undergoing a major restoration, pop in and see what’s happening there (Monday to Sunday, 10am to 5pm), for more information, click here.
Stan Laurel

Stan Laurel launched his career at the Panoptican Theatre in Glasgow.

  • Caledonia Road Church at the Gorbals junction opens its doors so you can step inside the ‘Greek’ Thomson place of worship that was burnt out in 1965. The remains of the listed building is now a space for local community and artists’ events. It is also hosting The Happenstance exhibition to coincide with Doors Open Days. (Saturday 15th September, 2-6pm). Booking is not required. For more information, click here.
  • Scottish Ballet moved to its purpose-built headquarters on Glasgow’s southside nine years ago, now Scotland’s national dance company is taking part in a Doors Open Day 2018 to allow you to visit the wardrobe department and the dance studios where its talented dancers rehearse. Tours last 30 minutes and are between 11am and 4pm on Saturday 15th September, to book online, click here.
    Dancer at the Scottish ballet

    See behind the scenes at the Scottish ballet


  • Woodlands Workspace was built in Invergordon and installed in Glasgow last year. The sustainable new building, which is located in a gap site of an old tenement block, was brought to Glasgow on a lorry. Today it hosts community events and is worth a visit. Held Saturday 15th and Sunday 16th September from 10am to 5pm, for more information, click here.

Doors Open Day 2018: Scotland

Doors Open Day 2018 events are running all across Scotland including in Aberdeenshire, Falkirk, Fife, Highlands (Caithness & Sutherland), Perth & Kinross and Stirling. For the full programme of events visit the Doors Open Days 2018 website and plan your trip!


  • The Smiddy: Centre of Excellence of Silversmith and Jewellery, Banff is giving you a sneak peek of Vanilla Ink’s new enterprise, a purpose built workshop at the Old Smiddy, which will be a centre of excellence for silversmithing and jewellery. (Saturday 15th 10am to 4pm and Sunday 16th 11am to 4pm).


  • Falkirk Football Stadium, home to Falkirk FC, opened in 2004 and this Sunday you can visit the 6,000 seater stadium on a non-match day. (Sunday 16th – check website here for details)


  • Carnegie Hall, Dunfermline invites you to go backstage at this famous music have and performance venue. The tour will allow you to tread the boards, and find out the technical aspects of theatre. (Sunday 16th, 11am to 4pm)


Carnegie hall jazz

Carnegie Hall, Dunfermline


  • Mugdock Castle, Strathblane is located in Mugdock Country Park and dates back to the 1300s. You can venture inside the castle tower and climb the stairs to the top, before admiring the views on Saturday 15th and Sunday 16th Setpember from 2pm to pm.


Doors Open Day 2018: Mugdock Castle, Stirling

Mugdock Castle, Stirling

Don’t forget to use the hashtag #dodscot and #doorsopendays on your trips around Scotland!

Doors Open Days 2018 is sponsored by Aberdeen Standards Investments and RIAS’s Festival of Architecture 2018.

Written by Laura Coventry.

Sophie Lambert

I am No.1's features editor and I love writing about everything from the latest trends and beauty brands to the local restaurants you absolutely have to try!