Steam-powered threshing at the Weald & Downland Living Museum Autumn Countryside Show

Autumn Countryside Show, 7-8 October

Come and experience the immersive autumnal sights and sounds of the countryside at the end of the harvest. Our popular show features traditional working demonstrations, including heavy horses and vintage tractors ploughing, steam-powered threshing, plus a horticultural show, rural craft demonstrations, displays, competitions and stands with a countryside theme.

The weekend’s celebrations include falconry displays plus the Dog and Duck Show, which offers spectators a fascinating insight into canine behaviour and training using dogs’ natural instincts. Watch as the expert sheep dogs herd ducks over and around an obstacle course. On the Sunday, there is also a fun dog show to enjoy.

The threshing of the Museum’s wheat crop – separating the grain from the straw – is one of the event’s main attractions. In the days before combine harvesters, the ‘threshing train’ was a common sight and usually comprised a steam traction engine, threshing drum, elevator, and living van used by the engine driver and his mate.

The annual horticultural show is included as part of the show, with classes to suit all ages, ranging from vegetables to woodwork, marmalade to mini scarecrows.

Look out for colourful displays of flowers created by the National Association of Flower Arrangement Societies (NAFAS) whose stand can be found in the horticultural marquee – the talented team will be laying a flower trail, beginning at the event entrance and throughout the Museum. There will also be displays from local clubs, societies and the Museum’s gardening team, plus traditional craft demonstrations.

Visitors can enjoy a wide range of food and drinks from stalls in the Food Village, the Museum’s new waterside café Wattle & Daub will be open, plus there are outdoor picnic areas. Dogs on short leads are welcome and there is free parking. The Museum is open for the Autumn Countryside Show on Saturday 7 and Sunday 8 October, from 10.30am-5pm. Regular Museum entry charges apply (free for Annual Members), which include admission to the show.