View of the Orangery building with the grounds in the foreground
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Beam is an arts, architecture and learning centre and is dedicated to the imaginative understanding and improvement of the public realm – our urban and rural streets, buildings, parks, housing estates and public spaces.

Beam Education
Beam has many years experience of working with children & young people helping them to gain a better understanding of the public realm through creative processes.

Beam Gallery
The public realm has a unique visual language. Equipping people with greater insight into how this language works is at the heart of Beam Gallery's changing exhibition programme.

Beam's Heritage
Beam is based in a grade II* listed Orangery set in beautiful grounds which include listed trees, historic monuments and gravestones.

Work with Beam
Beam can work with you to develop specific projects linking to the curriculum, visit the Gallery and encourage people of all ages to understand and enjoy architecture, the built environment and creativity or provide an opportunity for your group to explore the Orangery's heritage.

Beam Conference Facilities
Two rooms plus break out space are available with the capacity to hold up to 60 people. An extensive range of equipment is also offered for hire, with facilities for digital projection. A range of cold buffets are offered to delegates. And if you fancy something a bit different for your social event or wedding reception - then The Orangery may be just what you're looking for! Within this distinctive venue there is opportunity to visit the Beam Gallery. The historic grounds of the Orangery, with its trees and monuments, are also available for breaks and break-outs in fine weather.

Venue Type:

Gallery, Heritage site, Architecture centre

Opening hours

Mon - Fri 10:00-16:00
Closed: Sat - Sun

Admission charges


Additional info

If you are interested in visiting the Orangery or Beam Gallery with a large group please contact us in advance.

Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.

Wakefield Lit Fest 2016

  • 23 September — 2 October 2016 *on now

Wakefield Lit Fest is back for 2016 and celebrates its 5th anniversary - Beam and the Lit Fest team are looking forward to sharing another packed programme celebrating all things reading and writing taking place across the district from 23 September – 2 October 2016.

Highlights for 2016
As usual there are a sprinkling of pre-festival events followed by 10 days filled with more than 60 events to whet everyone’s literary appetite from writing workshops to talks, music to comedy, film screenings to history walks, spoken word to storytelling - and even a quiz.

A few highlights for 2016 include best-selling author and MP Alan Johnson; international best-selling author of the sensationally successful Skulduggery Pleasant series Derek Landy and West Yorkshire’s very own authors Jack Sheffield and Annabel Pitcher. There are plenty of spoken word events including an evening with Roger McGough, Unity Words present Hollie McNish along with festival favourites A Firm of Poets. Kate Fox returns to the festival for 2016 with her unique brand of poetry, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Red Shed the festival presents an evening of Ranting poetry called Stand Up and Spit hosted by Matt Abbott with Janine Booth, Ralph Dartford, Helen Mort and Tim Wells. Comedian and activist Mark Thomas also makes an appearance at the Red Shed for an evening of socialist comedy and satire.

Everyone has a story...
Don’t miss a full programme of events with storytelling, workshops and special events programmed by our partners at Wakefield Libraries and Museums; the inaugural Pontefract Festival of Stories presented by the Tap and Barrel - themed around Ian Clayton’s best-selling music memoir Bringing It All Back Home, in celebration of its tenth anniversary - as well as lots of exciting events presented by our festival partners and seed funded community events.

Festival in a Day at Altofts and Lightwaves
This year’s Lit Fest in a Day offers a fun-packed day and evening taking place at The Brig, Altofts on Saturday 24 September called Our Treasures and features free family-friendly activities and performance with That Poetry Bloke, Craig Bradley, pop-up poetry readings and a Treasured Stories Trail with artist Becky Cherriman as well as an evening of music, spoken word and a 5-a-side slam with A Firm of Poets.

Drop in to Lightwaves Leisure and Community Centre on Saturday 1 October for a one-day festival of reading and writing with free events and activities for all the family including children’s storytelling with Manasamitra, poetry and dance, and a performance of a new comedy Reservoir Rami currently in in development by Wakefield writer Azar Ashraf.

Suitable for

  • Any age


Speaking Volumes presents Stand Up and Spit

  • 30 September 2016 From 7:30pm

Speaking Volumes and A Firm of Poets bring Ranting poetry to Wakefield’s Red Shed as part of their 50th anniversary celebrations.
Accessible, protesting, diverse, inclusive, political, working-class, humorous yet also deadly serious, Ranting poetry was closely allied with punk and reggae and was the vibrant precursor to today’s spoken word and performance poetry.
Hosted by Matt Abott, come and listen to Janine Booth, Ralph Dartford, Helen Mort and Tim Wells ‘keep the Red Shed standing here’ through poems that appeal to all and pack a powerful political punch.


£6 (£5)


Lightwaves Festival in a Day

  • 1 October 2016 12-9pm

A one-day festival of reading and writing activities and events at Lightwaves Leisure and Community Centre celebrating the theme of ‘This is my story…now tell me yours’, linking with the annual Lightwaves street party fundraiser.


Lightwaves Leisure and Community Centre
Lower York St


Tickets are £5 for Reservoir Rami.


Alan Johnson - In Conversation

  • 1 October 2016 From 7:30pm

Join Alan Johnson, former Home Secretary and Labour Shadow Chancellor, as he discusses the third volume of his bestselling, award-winning memoirs, taking us into the corridors of power and lifting the lid on the life of a hard-working constituency MP.

Suitable for

  • 18+


£10 (£8)


An Evening with Roger McGough

  • 2 October 2016 From 7:30pm

Join festival favourite Roger McGough – described by Carol Ann Duffy as the ‘patron saint of poetry’ – for a talk and reading from a selection of poems, some old, some classic, some topical and several hot off the back of a referendum voting card.


£15 (£14)


Resources listed here may include websites, bookable tours and workshops, books, loan boxes and more. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all.

People Changing Places Website

Beam have now completed the 12-month People Changing Places programme in York. Throughout the programme we aimed to engage the general public in the regeneration of their city, raise people's aspirations about good design in the public realm, provide opportunities for multi-disciplinary working and engage communities in the regeneration of their local environment. Participants said the experience was "Inspirational, enlightening, enjoyable and a good networking opportunity".


  • Beam

The Orangery
Back Lane
West Yorkshire

logo: Heritage Open Days 2014




Projects & Marketing Manager


01924 215 550


01924 215 560

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.