A fascinating collection of rescued historic buildings set in the heart of the South Downs National Park.
Life through the ages
The Weald & Downland Open Air Museum has over forty-fi ve historic buildings that have been rescued and re-erected to create one of the most important Open Air Museums in Europe.
Located in the South Downs the Museum’s collection includes homes displayed as they were lived in centuries ago, historical gardens planted with heritage herbs and fl owers, farm buildings with animals living in them, a working forge, a 17th century watermill that still grinds wheat and a church made of tin. Together these buildings tell the story of ordinary people’s lives from the 13th through to the 19th century.
The Museum’s collection also includes over 15,000 rural artefacts housed in the basement of the award-winning Downland Gridshell, a 21st century building constructed by traditional craftsmen and made from oak and cedar. There are tours of the Downland Gridshell at 1.30pm every day, giving visitors the chance to hear the story of this iconic building and
to visit the artefact collection.
Introducing Tindalls Cottage
Visitors to the Museum in 2013 will be able to join in the excitement created by the Museum’s fi rst re-erection of a
domestic dwelling in a decade. Tindalls Cottage was built in the 18th century and rescued from the site of Bewl Water Reservoir in 1974. The timber frame of this husbandman’s cottage was erected at the Museum in September 2012
and building and interpretation work will continue throughout 2013. The cottage will eventually be dressed to refl ect the family and working life of John Tindall, who moved into the cottage in 1748 and gave it his name.
From field to feast
Historic cereal crops and vegetables are grown seasonally in the Museum’s fi elds and gardens. The authentic Tudor
kitchen is the place to discover tasty Tudor fare; fl our is ground in the working 17th century watermill. You can visit
the lakeside café or simply bring your own picnic and enjoy the company of the hungry ducks
Traditional crafts and skills
Ask about how people lived and worked, and watch demonstrators working at rural trades and crafts. At half-term and every Wednesday during the Easter and summer holidays, families can try all kinds of unusual crafts and activities.
Please download our leaflet for more information including events
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