Climb 193 steps, walk through medieval passages, see the big bells and enjoy a panoramic view of the city from the roof of the tower at The Cathedral and Abbey Church of Saint Alban.

The rare tour, on Saturday, September 9 and Sunday, September 10, is part of Heritage Open Days.

Established in 1994, Heritage Open Days is England’s contribution to the European Heritage Days and has since grown into the country’s largest heritage festival.

It brings together over 2,500 organisations, 5,000 events and 40,000 volunteers.

Every year for four days in September, places across the country throw open their doors to celebrate their heritage, community and history.

There are 193 steps at the cathedral, mostly in a steep and narrow medieval staircase.

Visitors taking this tour need to be fit enough to manage such a climb and anyone who suffers from vertigo or claustrophobia should not attempt it.

Other venues in St Albans who will open their doors include Dagnall Street Baptist Church, built above a lower hall circa 1885, with adjacent meeting rooms and cafe built in 1989. Visitors may be particularly interested in the Baptistry which is located in the Apse, the mosaic floor of the Choir and the Bevington organ. The building also contains an interesting stained glass window, unusual for non-conformist churches of the time.

Marlborough Road Methodist Church is offering a self-led trail which explains key features. There will be a special display of the church’s history, from its origin as a gathering in a bakers outhouse in 1793.

Also taking part is Redbournbury Watermill, St Albans Signal Box which wasbuilt in 1892 and Grade II listed, and St Peter’s Church with views over views of the Wembley Arch and Canary Wharf as well as the city.