Sunday

Days Out in Sussex - Weald and Downland Open Air Museum

After having spent quite a lot of time staring at computer screens and feeling stuck inside, the first chance I had to enjoy a spring-like day I was bouncing to get out and go somewhere.

This is what made us travel west to the Weald and Downland Open Air Museum in Lavant. Covering 40 acres there are 50 buildings to wander in and out of for tantalising glimpses into the past.


Weald and Downland Open Air museum



Weald and Downland Open Air museum


Bayleaf at Weald and Downland Open Air museum


inside Bayleaf at Weald and Downland Open Air museum


laying live hawthorn hedge at Weald and Downland Open Air museum


Weald and Downland Open Air museum


bedroom at Weald and Downland Open Air museum


beehives at Weald and Downland Open Air museum




Each building had its own story to tell and was saved from destruction to be carefully reconstructed at the Weald and Downland Open Air Museum.

They come from all over south east England and represent different periods in history from Medieval, and Tudor through to Victorian and Edwardian.

There were two cute cottages from Ashtead in Surrey (where I went to school), a medieval hut from Hangleton and a Toll house from Beeding in Sussex. Inside were wood burning fires, beds left crumpled as if someone had just got up and jugs and plates to show how previous generations used to eat and drink.

As we walked around we saw men laying a live hawthorn hedge, a stonemason at work and a smithy bashing out a new tool.

There were ducks by the pond having a fine time of it as well as three plump looking hens and their very proud cockerel pecking the earth opposite a shire horse in a shed.

It was quite empty when we were there, which was lovely as it felt really peaceful! But I have a feeling this was only because we're at the end of winter and everyone's still waking up from hibernation mode.

They have lots of special events, including Mothering Sunday next month on 15th March, when mums and grans get discounted entry and a bunch of daffies.

Expect to see some new-born lambs and spring buds bursting into life. There will be demonstrations in brewing and baking in an authentic Tudor kitchen, along with period music for an immersive experience.

And if you're feeling peckish head to the Ashtead cottages for some freshly prepared simnel cake, a traditional Mothering Sunday, mid-lent treat.

Check out their website for more events and opening times, Wealddown.

Weald and Downland Open Air museum

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Where would you recommend for a day in the country? Please let me know and share your tips.

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