Christmas Fair

Christmas Fair

Although not every Christmas Fair will be held this year, the Winter Fair at Ardingly is due to go ahead. 

Ardingly winter fair Sussex

  • Saturday 21st and Sunday 22nd November 2020 at The South England Show-ground, Selsfield Road, Ardingly RH17 6TL.
  • 9am – 5pm Saturday
  • 9am – 4pm Sunday
  • Tickets: Adults £6.75, Seniors & Students £5.85 inclusive of 10% online discount ends midnight 20.11.20.
  • Under 16s go free, when accompanied by a paying adult.

The Society and its Show ground have been seen as ‘Good to Go’ by Visit England and so the Winter Fair will run from 9am – 5pm on 21st and 9am – 4pm on 22nd November all within government guidelines to ensure the safety of all visitors.

You will find plenty of items to buy from local, independent traders. For food and drink lovers there will be gin liqueurs, homemade jams and chutneys, pies, cheeses, wines and handmade Christmas puddings and chocolates.

This is also a great opportunity to find unusual presents and also Christmas decorations.

There will be live music and a traditional fun fair too!

This is a popular event and well worth a visit. You will need to book.

Details at

Find out about some of my favourite places to see and other things to do in my Sussex Guide

Stargazing South Downs

Stargazing South Downs

Take advantage of this free Stargazing South Downs event, within walking distance of Rosebud Holiday Cottage

South Downs Night Sky Events: Friday 9 February – Sunday 25 February Two weeks of fun with parties, talks and family activities taking place across the South Downs National Park to celebrating the wonderful dark night skies.


15 February 2020 from 4.00 pm to 8.00 pm


No booking required

Event Cost

Free event

Stargazing South Downs Details

Help celebrate 10 years of the South Downs National Park at this free family event. Activities include:

  • Indoor planetarium shows
  • Virtual Reality Experience of our dark night skies
  • Giant ‘sky at night’ colouring wall
  • Nocturnal wildlife
  • Outdoor stargazing (if the conditions are right)

Designated an International Dark Sky Reserve in 2016, the South Downs National Park is one of the best places in the UK to enjoy the sight of constellations, planets and distant galaxies.

The South Downs National Park Authority organise events throughout the year. Check what’s on when you plan to visit

Chichester Planetarium

To learn more about the night sky you can also visit the Planetarium in Chichester.

South Downs Planetarium 100 seater auditorium provides an opportunity to view 4,500 stars, planets, Sun and Moon. These are projected onto 10.8 metre dome. An astronomer will be there providing an expert commentary.

Relax and explore the past, present and future of the universe and the magic of the night sky in warmth & comfort!

  • Admission: Adults £7:00. Children 6 to 16 years £5:00.
  • Not Suitable for children under 6 years of age.
  • Duration About 70 minutes

Find out more on the Planetarium web site

Read about other places to visit and things to do in our  Sussex Blog

West Sussex Canal Cruises

West Sussex Canal Cruises run along the Wey and Arun canal starting from rural Loxwood .. a half an hour drive from Steyning. These usually take between 35 mins and an hour and a half.

wey and arun canal sussex

These leisurely trips usually start in early April and run every Saturday, Sunday and Bank Holiday Monday until the end of October, apart from Easter Sunday & Monday.
There can also be special Santa cruises each December .. including an evening cruise for adults (expect mulled wine and mince pies) Easter Bunny specials run each year too.
The cost is normally between £6 and £10 for adults and from £3 for children.

Canal History

map: canal route london to the coast

In the 19th century it was possible to travel by boat from London to Littlehampton on the south coast  passing through Weybridge, Guildford, Pulborough and Arundel.
The route was via the rivers Wey and Arun, linked between by the 23-mile Wey and Arun Canal. This formed a vital link, the only one between the south coast and the river Thames, linking London and the English Channel.
Sadly the route fell into disuse when railways became established. Fortunately volunteers are now restoring the waterway…

West Sussex Canal Cruises from Chichester

Trips also run from time to time on the Chichester Ship Canal. They offer special Fish and Chip, Afternoon Tea and Pie and Mash cruises.

Read more about the Chichester Ship Canal

Read some reviews about Rosebud Cottage in Styening.

Sheep Fair at Findon!

Findon Sheep Fair takes place every year in Findon Village on the second Saturday of the month in September.

Festivities start on Friday evening with a funfair on the green and a Barn Dance in the marquee

Saturday is the fair itself, with…

(car parking £4)

There are craft stalls, sheep displays, sheep judging, a funfair, food stalls, and many other displays on the green.

In the evening, you can dance to live music from the popular local band Murdoch’s Crazy Eyes in the marquee (admission by pre-paid ticket)

findon sheep fair


An annual three day fair began  in Findon, back in 1261, with a government charter . The Sheep Fair proper was started by George Holford on Nepcote Green sometime before 1785. A lamb sale was held on 12th July followed by The Great Fair, always held on 14th September. Before that the sheep had been sold by private deals and the first auction sales started in 1896.

From 1925 sheep were driven in large flocks over the downs to Steyning train station for delivery but this stopped when the Steyning line was sadly closed in the 1960’s. Gradually lorries took over and sheep are no longer delivered on foot in the traditional way.

In the 1950’s the date changed to the second Saturday in September and in 1971 the July lamb sale stopped.

Most dramatically the breed of sheep, which used to be almost all Southdown’s, have tended to be replaced with other breeds so that in recent years very few Southdown sheep have been sold and the most popular rams are Suffolk’s.

How to get to Findon

Travel by car via A283 and A24. It should take about 15 min (7.6 miles)

Steyning Steam Rally

steyning steam rally sussex

Steam engines, traction engines, vintage buses and the funfair can all be found at Wiston – a stone’s throw from Steyning.

steyning steam rally sussex

This annual event takes place just a mile from Rosebud Cottage. It is usually held in early July.

Steam Rally Location

Off the Steyning Road – the A283 which runs from Shoreham to Storrington just north of Steyning. There is no access from Mouse Lane.


Buy your tickets at the gate on the day

£8 Adult

£6 OAP

£5 Children (5 -15 yrs)

Children under 5 yrs go free

More details here

Gliding in West Sussex

Gliding in West Sussex

Gliding in West Sussex can be enjoyed at the South Downs Gliding Club in Cootham.

gliding cootham sussex

Gliding on the Downs dates back to June 1909, when 16 year old Gordon England flew from Amberley Mount, a few miles away from the current site.

Southdown Gliding Club started in 1930, so is one of the oldest in the UK. It is also one of the largest and best equipped voluntary clubs.

The club is closely affiliated to the British Gliding Association, which controls all aspects of the sport. Their location close to the South Downs allows them to soar on the up-draughts or lee waves from the Downs, ride the sea-breeze fronts, or soar in thermals.

Their fleet consists of 3 modern two seat training gliders, 3 single seat gliders, and one motor glider, along with tug aircraft for aero tows.

Members keep over forty privately owned gliders at the airfield. While many members enjoy local flying, some regularly make cross-country flights of 300km or more. Others participate in competitions.

Gliding in West Sussex: Courses

Courses on all aspects of gliding take place throughout the year. Lessons are usually available all year round on a Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday.

First Lesson

After a ground briefing you are first aero-towed to 2,500 feet. Next the instructor explains the action of the controls and guides you through some simple manoeuvres for a flight lasting approximately 20 – 30 minutes. You will receive a signed certificate to commemorate your flight!

Visits to other gliding clubs both in Britain and overseas are another popular activity.

More details about the Southdown Gliding Club

If you would like to stay locally why not spend a few days at Rosebud Cottage in Steyning … a 20 minute drive from Cootham.


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