Sole Street

Raising the Frame: medieval house from Sole Street, Kent

Saturday 18 June to Sunday 19 June 2016

On the weekend of 18-19 June 2016, visitors to the Museum will be able to see the frame of the medieval house from Sole Street, Kent, being reassembled at its new position in the centre of the Museum site. Once complete, it will be opened as an exhibit building for our visitors to enjoy for the first time, and will contain information about the rescued historic houses in our collection.

See what’s on – view the event programme programme here.

Museum Carpenter in Residence, Joe Thompson, assisted by his team of Heritage Lottery Funded trainees, will begin to erect the frame on Saturday using historic techniques. Joe and his team have painstakingly surveyed and repaired every inch of the timbers, prior to its reassembly – a process that has been documented in our blog.

Previously used as our cafe seating facility, this medieval building was carefully dismantled (August – December 2015) as we prepared the site for our exciting new Gateway Project.

What’s on:

  • Peg-making demonstration
  • Wattle and daub
  • Blacksmithing
  • Talk to our frame makers about the raising
  • Visit the information tent to learn about the medieval house from Sole Street, Kent
  • Take a tour of the Gridshell building and Museum artefact store
  • Watch the woodyard in action with seasonal displays

Visitors will also be able to enjoy hard-hat tours of our Gateway Project buildings – a new visitors centre, cafe and shop – to see modern timber framed buildings under construction. Members of Green Oak Carpentry, Liss, who are working on the modern buildings will be available to talk to.


Each day at 12noon, Annabelle Hughes (on Saturday) and Richard Harris (on Sunday) will give a talk about the medieval house from Sole Street, putting it into historic context with other rural dwellings.

Each afternoon at 2.30pm, Danae Tankard, Museum Historian, will give a fascinating talk on the building’s social history.

We hope that you can join us for this fascinating reassembly of a historic timber frame, set in the heart of the Museum’s site. Bring a picnic, or buy hot and cold snacks from our cafe kiosk, and watch the frame taking shape.

Information for visitors:

The Raising the Frame event will take place on Saturday 18 and Sunday 19 June 2016 at the Weald & Downland Open Air Museum at Singleton, near Chichester. Visitors with disabilities are advised to contact the Museum in advance of their visit, to discuss the easiest way to access the site. Dogs on leads are welcome and there is ample free parking. Regular admission charges apply and the Museum will open daily from 10.30am, closing at 6pm.