West Sussex Nature Reserves

West Sussex Nature Reserves are open all year and provide a great opportunity to see local wildlife

The nearest smaller reserve to Steyning is at Woods Mill;BN5 9SDFree admission. Open all year. A 12 minute drive by car; a 15 minute ride on the 100 bus (Mon to Sat).

nature reserves sussex

West Sussex Nature Reserves

I love the Wildfowl and Wetland Centre in Arundel. Don’t miss their excellent guided Wetland Boat Safari. Centre and cafe open all year (except Xmas Day).  Free parking. 15 miles from Steyning – a 30 minute drive. You may need to book https://www.wwt.org.uk/wetland-centres/arundel/bookings/

Another local reserve is the RSPB centre at Pulborough Brooks. Also close by and a great place for a day out!

Fishbourne Roman Palace

Fishbourne Roman Palace has a wonderful collection of Roman mosaics – some of the earliest and best preserved examples in the UK.

fishbourne roman palace

Fishbourne is the largest Roman residence north of the Alps. At about 500 feet (150 m) square, it has a larger footprint than Buckingham Palace.

Like several Roman sites, the palace was discovered by accident. In 1960 a farmer was digging a water main trench when he uncovered remains of Roman mosaics. Investigation during the next nine years, established Fishbourne Palace as one of the most extensive in the UK. It contained some of the finest mosaics in the country.

The first Roman presence at Fishbourne was a military fort – from just after the invasion in 43AD . By the end of the 1st century, there was a magnificent palace, containing some of the earliest mosaics in the UK.

The palace had about 100 rooms, most with mosaics. Some 20 of these earliest mosaics still survive. They rang in size from small fragments to almost entire chambers.

Many of the first mosaics were of simple black on white geometric designs. During the early 2nd century much more vivid and elaborately designed ones were created. Motifs used classical motifs such as a head of Medusa, flowers, knots, and urns in many colours.

One of the most famous of these shows Cupid on a Dolphin, bearing a trident. You can see this in the photograph above.

At the time or writing in mid October 2020 the Palace in open sat and Sun from 10.30 to 4 p.m. You don’t need to pre book.

More details at https://sussexpast.co.uk/properties-to-discover/fishbourne-roman-palace

Read about things to see and do in Sussex https://steyningcottages/sussexguide

Where To Eat Outside

Where to eat outside in Steyning. Several pubs and cafes have seating outside. Take a seat and relax!

Where to Eat Outside in Steyning

Cobblestone Tea House


A lovely venue just off Steyning High Street, where you can enjoy a snack or afternoon tea. A nice sunny spot!

The Star Inn


The Star Inn in Steyning has a lovely garden where you can relax and enjoy some tasty food. It is on Steyning High Street, very close to Rosebud Holiday Cottage

Where to Eat Outside Within a Few Miles

The Fountain Inn

This traditional pub has some tasty food and an attractive outdoor space. Just a couple of miles from Steyning in the village of Ashurst. Best to book if you would like to eat there.


Local Accommodation

Read about Rosebud Holiday Cottage


The Steyning Stinger

The Steyning Stinger is a multi-terrain marathon. It was first run in 2002 and usually takes place on the first Sunday of March each year. There is also a half marathon race.

The 20th anniversary event is now due to take place on the 6th March 2022, with entries due to open in November 2021.

steyning stinger

The undulating / hilly race takes place the South Downs between Steyning, Storrington and Shoreham-by-Sea. The route covers countryside and roads, including four hills (or ‘stings’) up towards the top of the Downs. Walkers, joggers and runners can take part.

Steyning Stinger Free Breakfast

There are several drink stations en route, one approximately every three miles.

All runners get a “free” breakfast at the end of the event at Steyning Grammar School.

Up to 500 people can take part. You must be over 18 and can’t run with a dog!

The start time is between 7.30 a.m. and 8.30 a.m.

Steyning Athletics Club

Book your place through the Steyning Athletic Club


Stay in Steyning

Rosebud Holiday Cottage provides cosy, comfortable local accommodation for up to 3 people. A lovely place to unwind after the race.

Many keen hikers are guests at the cottage. You will find local maps and walks guide books there. The South Downs Way is within a mile away and country footpaths start almost on the doorstep!

Find out about the cottage:


Where to Eat in Steyning

Where to Eat in Steyning?

There is a choice of places where you can eat in Steyning High Street. They are all within a very short walk from Rosebud Holiday Cottage so there’s no need to drive!

Steyning Cafes and Restaurants

Chez Joel

This cosy cafe is open Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings with an excellent French menu. It’s the ideal place to go if you would like to brush up on your French language skills. Thursday is the best night for this as Sarah, who runs the cafe, tries to avoid speaking English this evening!

Book on 01903 813311

chez joel cafe steyning
Chez Joel Cafe

Steyning Pubs

The White Horse

This pub has an attached restaurant which opens each evening.

Inside it is decorated in a contemporary classic style. Outside there’s a large verandah covered with huge parasols from which you can enjoy views of the countryside as you dine.

Book on 01903 814084


white horse restaurant
White Horse Restaurant

The Star Inn

This traditional pub has a lovely garden outside beside a stream. It serves food every day apart from Sunday evening.

Book on 01903 813078

Star Inn Garden

Prefer to Eat at the Cottage?

Mamma Mia

This Italian restaurant currently offers takeaways: Pasta, fish and meat dishes are available.

mamma mia restaurant steyning

Chez Joel

Chez Joel is also selling takeaway food at present.

Find out more about historic Steyning


Steyning Food and Drink Festival

Read about the annual festival which is held each September


Gluten and Dairy Free Cakes

Gluten and dairy free cakes are on sale in Steyning High Street.

Both Victoria’s Sponge and the Steyning Tea Rooms offer these. Non gluten and dairy free options are also available!


I took this photo at Victoria’s Sponge. There are new cakes to try each week. If you are lucky you may see Pumpkin, vegan Peanut Butter, gluten free Lemon Curd and Sussex fruit cake!

Details at https://www.facebook.com/VictoriasSpongeSteyning

The Steyning Tea Rooms usually has 3 gluten free cakes every day. They are especially well known for their scones.

“If you try and avoid gluten in your diet, afternoon tea can usually be a little bit of a disappointment. Not here ! The best gluten free scones and cakes I have ever eaten out.The tea is really good too, and the people that run it and serve you are lovely.”

The tea rooms are offering a delivery service during lock-down.

Details at https://orders.thesteyningtearooms.co.uk/

They have recently been been voted as one of Sussex’s top 10 places for afternoon teas for 2020!

Gluten and Dairy Free Cakes on the Doorstep

Both Victoria’s Sponge and the Steyning Tea Rooms are just a few minutes walk from Rosebud Holiday Cottage.

Find out more about Steyning


West Sussex Vineyard Tours

West Sussex Vineyard Tours are usually on offer through the summer months. The number of successful vineyards in Sussex have been growing in recent years. Locally produced wines often do very well in international competitions.

I have paid enjoyable visits to both Upperton and to Nutbourne Vineyard and Winery

My First Visit

Upperton Vineyard Shop West Sussex
Upperton Vineyard Shop

There is an attractive terrace with views over the Downs where you can sit and try a glass of wine.

Upperton Vineyard West Sussex
Upperton Vineyard in August

You can visit Upperton without paying or join a tour. The vineyard is near the town of Petworth and a 40 minute drive from Steyning on the A283 (18 miles away)

Upperton Farm
West Sussex
GU28 0RD
T 01798 343695

Find out more

You could combine a trip here with a visit to Petworth House or to Bignor Roman Villa.

West Sussex Vineyard Tour at Nutbourne

On our tour at Nutbourne we sampled grapes on the vines as we walked around so we could compare the flavours. We learnt all about the work involved in growing the grapes and producing the wine.

Bridget provided generous samples of many of the different types of wines with excellent explanations about how they differed. Finally we walked around the winery to understand the work involved in arriving at the final product.

Nutbourne Vineyard Wine Tasting
Bridget pours the wine for us to try

If you enjoy wine – especially sparkling white – do fit in a visit here! https://www.nutbournevineyards.com/

West Sussex Vineyard Tours at Stopham

Stopham Vineyard Tours are held on every other Saturday from April to October, with an optional lunch at the lovely White Hart Pub by Stopham Bridge

White Hart Pub Stopham Sussex
White Hart Bar
Pub Stopham Bridge West Sussex

The vineyard, winery and wine tasting tours start at 11 am or 2 pm. Tours are led by the winemaker and last about 2 hours.

Read more about Stopham Vineyard

Find out about 10 of my favourite places to visit

Steyning Food & Drink Festival

Steyning Food & Drink Festival takes place every year. It usually runs throughout September and in early October.

The 2021 Food & Drink Festival should take place to celebrate the wonderful local produce, with the area’s best artisan food and drink producers and venues.

The programme is normally available from the middle of June.

steyning food and drink festival

The Festival starts with the Farmer’s Market on the first Saturday in September. The market is held a few minutes walk from Rosebud Cottage in the High Street car park.

Typical Programme of Events Throughout the Festival

Venues: Gorilla Kitchen (The Star Car park), Chez Joel, The Chequer Inn, The Star Inn, The Cobblestone Tea House, The Sussex Produce Cafe, Truffles

Steyning Museum Exhibition throughout festival. FREE ENTRY

St. Mary’s House & Gardens, Bramber: Special festival open days.

Steyning Food and Drink Festival Events

FARMERS MARKET – with music, live cooking demonstrations, Ready, Steady, Cook sessions and special offers from stallholders.  

Judging of Best Food Theme Shop Window Competition – Steyning High Street 

Riverside Brewery Open Day – 2 tours.  11am & 1pm

Steyning Downland Scheme – The Big Picnic – The Rifle Range, Steyning. 

Wiston House Garden Tour & English Sparkling Wine Tasting – Wiston House

Festival Open Day – Lunches (incl Charity Dish) & Afternoon Teas – The Artisan Bakehouse, Ashurst  

Ladies Cocktail Making Evening – at The White Horse Smokehouse & Grill

Drinks, Nibbles & Antique Valuations – with Henry Nicholls at The Artisan Bakehouse

Wiston Estate Winery Tour, Tasting & Canapes

Fawlty Towers Dinner – Tottington Manor, Edburton

Mad Hatter Tea Party with Jazz Singer – The Artisan Bakehouse, Ashurst


Stan’s Big Breakfast & Craft House Coffee Single Origin Coffee Tasting – Stan’s Bike Shack


Festival Open Day – Lunches (inc Charity Dish) & Afternoon Teas – The Artisan Bakehouse, Ashurst

CCC Morning – Coffee, Cakes & Chestnut Tree House – Springwells Boutique B&B, Steyning. 

Ashurst Tasty Walk – The Fountain/Country Walk/Artisan Bakehouse

Sussex Gin Tasting & Nibbles – The Artisan Bakehouse, Ashurst

BEER FESTIVAL – Steyning Cricket Club      

West Grinstead Ploughing Matches – Applesham Farm, Coombes.

Mulled Wine & Star Gazing – Star Inn & Wiston Big Picnic Field.

Pubs & Breweries of Steyning Walk – led by Dr Janet Pennington  FREE ENTRY  

 Steyning Community Orchard Apple Day – Fletchers Croft Village Green, Steyning

Daylands Farm Walk & Cream Tea – in aid of Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution

Harvest Festival Service & Lunch – Steyning Methodist Church   

Food Theme Pub Quiz – The Star, Steyning  

Wood Fired Pizza & Pud Supper Club Night – at The Artisan Bakehouse            

Adur Brewery Open Day 

Pick It Cook It – Hedgerow Booze, Daylands Farm

GREAT STEYNING BAKE OFF – Steyning Centre        

Pastures New – Optional Tea at St Mary’s House & Gardens

Daylands Farm Walk & Cream Tea – in aid of Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution

Festival Breakfast

Some local cafes offer a special festival breakfast. Part of the money paid goes to a local hospice.

How to get there

Many events take place in Steyning High Street, just a few minutes walk from Rosebud Holiday Cottage

Read more about the festival https://steyningdistrictfooddrinkfestival.co.uk/

Read more about Steyning https://steyningcottages.co.uk/steyning-west-sussex/

Steyning Country Fair

Steyning Country Fair takes place every other year on the Bank Holiday Monday at the end of May. The next fair will be in 2021.

Steyning county fair

What happens at the fair?

This is always a wonderful day out for all the family. Steyning High Street is closed to traffic and lined with stalls, entertainment and displays. There is a special sense of times past, with traditional costumes, crafts, food, Morris dancing, music, magicians, puppet shows and livestock.

There are fair rides and raffles, the dog show and the traditional cricket match. The Steyning Centre becomes an exhibition hall. You can treat yourself to food and drink all day from street stalls, local pubs, shops and restaurants.

A lovely event. Make sure you are at the next one!

Steyning Country Fair Location

Just a few minutes walk from Rosebud Holiday Cottage

Read more about Steyning https://steyningcottages.co.uk/steyning-west-sussex/

Brighton Festival

‘Brighton Festival has been at the forefront… an arts festival that makes connections with the real world’ The Times

Brighton festival
Performers with the pavilion in the background

Brighton Festival is a popular annual event: It usually takes place in a variety of venues across Brighton & Hove each May. Join the celebration of music, theatre, dance, circus, art, film, literature, debate, outdoor and family events!

Leading Arts Festival

Established in 1967, the festival has become one of Europe’s leading arts festivals. It has an ambitious and daring programme which makes the most of the city’s distinctive cultural atmosphere. It draws on some of the most innovative artists and companies from the UK and across the world.

Festival 2021

Hopefully Brighton Festival will be able to run in 2021. It usually opens with the popular Children’s Parade, produced in partnership with a Brighton based community arts charity.

Find out more at https://brightonfestival.org/about/about_brighton_festiva

‘Brighton Fridge’ events usually run throughout May from the 1st to 31st.

Stay in Steyning at Rosebud Cottage

Find out about Rosebud Cottage in Steyning: https://steyningcottages.co.uk Brighton is just 10 miles away. Trains run from Shoreham to Brighton every 10 or 15 minutes. There is also an hourly bus service from Steyning.

Read more about Brighton


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