The setting is lovely: You look up to the slope of the South Downs on the east side. The River Arun and the wild brooks are on the on the south and west sides.
The village has its own castle – in use as a hotel and wedding venue. Even if you are not staying at the hotel you can walk around the back of the building on your way into the wild brooks.
The Wild Brooks
Whilst you are in the area do visit the Pulborough Brooks. This is an Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) site – open throughout the year and a haven for birds. This area often floods in the winter.
Amberley Working Museum
Another place to see is the Working Museum. This is an interesting use of an old chalk pit above the railway station which is now home to old agricultural and industrial machinery, nearly all of it still functioning.
Many of the houses round here are truly beautiful, with thatched roofs and plenty of lovely old brick and tile work. You can see a couple in my photo below.
This picture shows the beautiful church of St Leonard in South Stoke village, near Arundel, West Sussex.. It was recorded in the Domesday Book – a great land survey from 1086, commissioned by William the Conqueror – when the village was named as “Stoches”.
To find the church head for Arundel then travel down Mill Road until the road ends in a t-junction. Turn left, following the signpost to South Stoke. Go beyond the entrance to the farm and turn left with the road – the gate to the church is down a (signposted) short pathway to the right, about one hundred yards further on. Well worth finding!
South Stoke is about a half hour drive from Steyning and close to the South Downs.
This enterprising company offer half day trips round their estate near Dial Post. Your safari will take you to the current ‘hot spots’ of natural interest.
You’re likely to see at least some large herbivores – longhorn cattle, Exmoor ponies, Tamworth pigs, red and fallow deer – as they roam freely in large herds through the Wildland. Birds are also present in huge numbers all year round.
You will check trail cameras for our more secretive residents like foxes, badgers, hedgehogs, weasels and stoats; and stop for a species count at some of their wildlife ‘refugia’ for slow-worms, grass-snakes, toads, field-mice and voles. Spectacular tree-platforms offer panoramic views and a close-up of life in the canopy.
You can travel in an open-sided 14 seater Pinzgauers for larger groups or an open air all-terrain 5-seater Kawasaki,. Mule. Halfway through your safari they stop for coffee, tea and their popular organic homemade cake!
Steyning is just a 16 minute drive from Knepp Safaris (& within easy reach of Brighton)