VISITORS and locals had the opportunity to see Cirencester from an entirely new perspective on the weekend.

The Parish Church tower was open to the general public and both tourists and local residents took advantage of the special opening.

People only get the chance to climb the 204 steps of the old church tower three times a year but church sacristan Dan Bristow, who organises the day, said there are still two more opportunities for people to climb the tower in 2014.

"You can see 15-20 miles away from the top and you're about 50 metres above ground," said Dan. ""The bell ringers also come along on the day and let people have a go on the bells."

Dan went on to say it was great to see a mix of tourists and locals climb the steps to the top of the church.

"On Saturday we had some tourists visiting but we also had a local couple who have lived in the area for 40 years and had never once been up the tower. We also had another couple who have lived here for 22 years and who have not been up."

The tower will be open on Saturday, August 30 and Saturday, September 27 this year. Adults cost £3 and students and children aged over eight cost £1.50. Children under the age of eight are not allowed up to the tower for safety reasons. All money collected goes towards the church fund.