Weald & Downland Blog

Five-year old Megan takes top prize Museum’s 50th anniversary badge design competition

As part of our 50th anniversary celebrations, we launched a competition earlier in the year asking local young supporters to design a badge to mark our milestone occasion. Museum Director Simon Wardell headed up the judging panel, which also included museum ambassador and actor Hugh Bonneville, artist Annie Timothy and Editor of the Observer Series,... (read more)


Our lightly managed woodland, fields and historic gardens at the Museum provide an ideal and varied habitat for over 50 species of birds. The coppiced woods are cared for traditionally, our fields and meadows abound with wild plants, and our gardens full of herbs, vegetables and flowers from 1,000 years of husbandry are a great attraction... (read more)

VE Day 75th Anniversary and the Land Settlement Association

The LSA (Land Settlement Association) which started in 1936 played a major part during World War Two. The tenants were exempt from conscription because they were supplying the nation with food. The Sidlesham Heritage Trail website has several references to local events that occurred during the war. Sidlesham School Attendance Register records the names of... (read more)


Today marks 75 years since the sound of bombing and gun fire across Europe feel silent, and six years of heartache, pain and death would finally come to a halt, as World War II in Europe had come to an end. On this day, as years of agony were officially over the light shone brightly... (read more)

Keep Calm and Carry on Gardening!

Gardening is well known for being beneficial to our physical and mental well-being. So that seems even more relevant and important than ever during these unprecedented and challenging times. Spring is a very busy time for gardeners, but also an exciting one… full of promise and optimism, so whether you have a small or large... (read more)

Flowers that herald the arrival of spring

Primrose (Primula vulgaris) pictured above Being one of the first blooms in March, they herald the arrival of spring and warmer days to come. Primula is derived from two Latin words meaning ‘first rose’ and refers to its early flowering. As they bloom when there are very few insects about, the flowers are often not... (read more)


The Bakers in the Newdigate Bakehouse are preparing for the upcoming Historic Life Weekend – Brewing through the Ages by baking some beverage related recipes. These have been test baked to ensure they are up to the high standard required at the Bakehouse. First off was a Beer Bread that proved to be a very... (read more)

Welcoming InterActiv work experience

Welcoming and supporting InterActiv work experience volunteers from Portsmouth in a new social enterprise project here at Weald & Downland Living Museum  The InterActiv social enterprise project is part of the Portsmouth Charity, Enable Ability. This new project aims to help participants (of whom are registered with a disability or who have additional needs) gain... (read more)

Go wild at the Museum!

Not just a home for fantastic historic buildings, the Weald & Downland Living Museum is a great place for spotting the huge range of wildlife that makes its home in this beautiful West Sussex downland. We have recorded over 53 bird species living here or visiting us during the year – some, like the mallards... (read more)

Ever tried a Sussex Wassailing Cake? Be sure to visit our Bakehouse this Saturday (18/01/20)!

In preparation for the Wassailing that is taking place in the Museum this Saturday (18/1), the Bakehouse has been looking for local recipes using apples and cider in a cake, and trail baked a Sussex Wassailing Cake recipe. The feedback from staff and volunteers has been very positive. So we will be adding it to... (read more)