Standen House

Standen House is a wonderful Arts and Crafts family home!

Still open to visitors provided you book in advance (Oct 2020)

The building was designed between 1891 and 1894 by architect Philip Webb, who was a friend of William Morris, for a prosperous London solicitor, his wife and their family of seven children. The house is constructed in the Wealden vernacular style with sandstone quarried from the estate and locally made bricks and tiles. The interior is decorated with Morris carpets, fabrics and wallpapers, with furnishings also by Morris, and the garden complements the beauty of the house. The house had electric power, originally generated by a donkey engine in a shed by the old barn. The house still has its original electric light fittings.

National Trust

In 1972 Standen House was given to the National Trust.

Standen House Location

The property is near East Grinstead and within easy reach of Steyning.

December Treat

Go into the house past the lit fireplace in the hall. You will find each room dressed for a different decade in which the family celebrated Christmas at Standen. Once you have enjoyed the festivities in the house, check out the Arts and Crafts inspired gifts in the shop. After that enjoy a warming drink and Christmas treat in Barn Café.

Find out more details at

Read about 10 of my favourite things to see and do in my Sussex Guide

Parham House

Parham House and Gardens

Parham House is a wonderful example of an Elizabethan building with a great hall and long gallery. It also has the most fantastic gardens and an excellent plant shop.

The house and gardens are currently closed. The gardens are due to reopen in 2021.

Parham house sussex

The house and gardens are usually open from April until the mid October.

Visit on Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, Sundays and Bank Holidays.

House | 14:00 – 17:00

Gardens | 12:00 – 17:00

Big Kitchen Restaurant | 12:00 – 17:00

Last Admission | 16:30

It is a short drive from Steyning by car or you can catch the number 100 bus. This runs every hour in the daytime, except on Sundays.

Find out more about places to visit in locally in our Sussex Guide

Arundel Castle and Gardens

Arundel Castle and Gardens

Open Tues – Sun until 1st November 2020.

Gardens 10-4, Castle 12-4. Gardens £10, Castle and gardens £15. Pre booking essential

I recommend visiting Arundel Castle and it’s attractive gardens. This restored medieval castle overlooks the River Arun and was built at the end of the 11th century by Roger de Montgomery, Earl of Arundel

The oldest feature is the motte (an artificial mound) which dates from 1068. You can see it in the photo below.

Arundel castle west sussex

Whilst you are in Arundel make sure you explore the small historic town. I also recommend visiting the museum, which is almost opposite the castle.

The castle and grounds are usually open from April until November on Tuesday to Sunday each week. They are also open on some Mondays.

Details at

Arundel is just a half an hour’s drive from Steyning and well worth a visit.

A great day out if you stay at Rosebud Cottage

Arundel – Just half an hour away!


I particularly recommend visiting the small town of Arundel –  just a half an hour drive from Steyning. This famous West Sussex market town is most well-known for its 11th century Castle and its Victorian gothic cathedral.

There are nearly 1,000 years of history at the castle, situated in magnificent grounds overlooking the River Arun. It was built at the end of the 11th century by Roger de Montgomery. The oldest features are the motte and the gatehouse. The motte is an artificial mound, over 100 feet high from the dry moat, and was constructed in 1068.

The castle is open from Good Friday to the end of October on Tuesdays to Sundays, May Bank Holiday Mondays & August Mondays. Admission costs: Adults £9 (gardens) to £18; Seniors £9 to £15.50; Children £9.

arundel castle south downs sussex

You can visit the cathedral at any time of year and admission is free.

Explore more of the area’s history and heritage at Arundel Museum or look at the town from a different perspective at the Arundel Jailhouse and Ghost Experience!

If you enjoy art you will be happy at one of the superb galleries. Interested in antiques? You’ll find plenty of shops with collectables.

If shopping is your ‘bag’ then you’ll enjoy the wide range of contemporary and traditional independent shops.

Water enthusiasts can hire a rowing boat on Swanbourne Lake or take a boat trips on the River Arun.  If you love nature I particularly recommend a visit to the  Wetland Centre.
Perhaps you will just want to relax in one of the many cafes, bars and restaurants or in a traditional English pub!
Read more about places to visit locally my ‘Local Top 10’



Bramber and St Mary’s House


Bramber and St Mary’s House

Bramber and St Mary’s House are well worth a visit.



Bramber  is a pretty village with some nature walks at Bramber Brooks. You will also find a pub and a Chinese restaurant! 

Catch the no 2 bus to Bramber or drive and leave your car in the car park. It is just a mile from the centre of Steyning.

St Mary’s House

St Mary’s is a timber framed building constructed in around 1470 by the bishop of Winchester.  At that time pilgrims used the house as an inn on their way to the tomb of St Thomas of Canterbury.

The house has some most attractive gardens which you can explore. There are also some lovely cottage style tea rooms.

Both the house and gardens are usually open from the end of April to the end of September.  You can go there on Sundays, Thursdays and Bank Holiday Mondays (& Wednesdays in August) from 2 – 6 p.m.

Read more about St Mary’s House




Find out more about other local places to visit

The Best Pier in Sussex

worthing pier sussex

The best pier in Sussex has to be Brighton Pier. It is one of five that are still standing and that you can walk along.

British seaside piers date from the early 1800’s. Generations of holidaymakers and local residents have enjoyed visiting them.

Brighton Pier

Brighton Pier

Certainly the most popular pier in both Sussex and the UK is Brighton Pier. It is the last surviving intact pier on Brighton’s seafront. Built in 1899, it was designed as the replacement for the older, more utilitarian Chain Pier that used to be slightly to the east.

The main pier building has a lovely dome, and stained-glass windows along the sides showing Brighton-related images. It’s totally free to walk along the pier and look at the Brighton scenery, and the pier is a great way to see the Brighton seafront.

Read more about Brighton Pier

Other Sussex Piers

You can also find piers in East Sussex at Hastings and Eastbourne and in West Sussex at Worthing and Littlehampton. Worthing Pier is certainly worth a visit and is the nearest to Steyning.

Worthing Pier

worthing pier sussex

This was the thirteenth pier to be built in England at a cost of £6,500. Designed by Sir Robert Rawlinson, it was officially opened in April 1862.

The Pier continues to bring enjoyment to visitors and residents. The Pavilion Theatre sits at the northern end and the southern end pavilion has recently been totally renovated and returned to its former glory as a cafe & venue. There’s an amusement arcade in the middle. It is a regular attraction for people to take a stroll along the deck and for fishing. Admission is free!

Worthing is just 6 miles from Steyning & Brighton is 10 miles away. Read about Steyning

5000+ years of history at Cissbury Ring!

cissbury ring sussex

Cissbury Ring

Just north of the coastal town of Worthing, Cissbury Ring is one of the jewels in the crown of the South Downs National Park. It’s the largest hill fort in Sussex and has a history dating back over 5,000 years.

cissbury ring sussex

Set high up on a chalk promontory, its ditch and ramparts enclose about sixty-five acres. It dates from around 400 BC and was used for defence for about 300 years.

From the top on a clear day you can see forever:  Enjoy views across to the chalk cliffs beyond Brighton and as far as the Isle of Wight.

Flint Mines

Long before the hill fort was constructed, Cissbury had extensive Neolithic flint mines. Miners used antler picks to dig shafts up to fifty feet deep, with several galleries opening out at the bottom. Flint was the common material for making stone axes to fell timber and work with wood during the Neolithic period.

Steyning museum has an interesting explanation about these mines


New Forest Ponies at Cissbury Ring


Centuries of continuous grazing have produced a marvellous habitat for butterflies and flowers. Rare plants such as the round headed rampion, known as the ‘Pride of Sussex’, thrive here. 

During spring and autumn you can see a wide variety of migratory birds as Cissbury is one of the first coastal landing points after their long flight across the channel.

Getting There

You can walk to Cissbury from Rosebud Cottage, but friends and I recently drove to Findon then followed a 7 mile circular route. You can find details in the Cicerone walks books at the cottage.

Alternatively drive to Findon then leave your car in the small car park at the top of Nepcote Lane and near the base of the Ring.

For more ideas of places to visit, take a look at our Sussex Guide






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