THINGS TO DO: EVENTS AND DESTINATIONS IN MID SUSSEX
If you’re thinking of moving to Haywards Heath, Burgess Hill or the surrounding villages, or you’ve recently relocated here, you may well be wondering what there is to do locally. The good news is that you don’t need to get on a train to Brighton or London for entertainment, culture or relaxation – there’s plenty going on right here in Mid Sussex.
Let’s start with the obvious attraction of living here: we are surrounded by beautiful countryside. From Ardingly Reservoir or the glorious setting of the Ouse Valley Viaduct, just north of Haywards Heath, all the way to Ditchling Beacon and Devil’s Dyke on the South Downs, there’s no denying that we’re spoilt for choice when it comes to the Great Outdoors. All you need to do is put on your walking boots or get the bike out and go exploring.
GREAT SUSSEX GARDENS
If you’re a garden lover, a trip to one of the 5 Great Gardens of Sussex is a must. They were designed and developed during the late 19th century with a blend of naturalistic planting using many rare plants and trees. As luck would have it, all are located in Mid Sussex and are open to the public.
Borde Hill (Haywards Heath), High Beeches (Handcross) and Leonardslee (Lower Beeding) are privately owned and fine examples of heritage gardens and parkland, woodland and water gardens that you can visit. The best way to discover these unique havens of natural beauty of relaxation is at your own pace – so take a picnic and make a day of it.
Wakehurst (Ardingly) is Kew’s wild botanic garden, with 500 acres of diverse landscape and plants from around the world a well as the Millennium Seed Bank. It’s a wonderful place for a day out with kids and grandparents (please note: no dogs other than registered disability assistance dogs). Look out for regular events throughout the year.
Nymans (Handcross) is a Grade II listed National Trust garden set in and around a romantic Gothic style house and ruins. It’s an oasis of calm and tranquillity with structural and informal gardens around the former Messel family home surrounded by lush countryside with woodland, lakes and bird hides. Check for regular outdoor music and theatre, gardening and family events.
Other amazing National Trust properties in the area include Sheffield Park (near Fletching) – don’t forget to check out the Bluebell Railway’s steam trains at Sheffield Park Station nearby – and Standen in East Grinstead, one of the best Arts and Crafts family homes with original William Morris interiors.
DAYS OUT DESTINATIONS
If you are looking for something more than appreciating nature and history in the setting of a beautifully kept garden, no problem at all. Here are some of our best recommendations for more contemporary activities you can enjoy:
- Tulleys Farm (Turners Hill) for Escape Room Games, Pumpkin Nights and Shocktober Fest Experiences
- Q Leisure (Hassocks) for outdoor go-karting, archery, target and clay pigeon shooting for kids and adults
- Washbrooks Family Farm (Hurstpierpoint) for meeting farmyard animals, tractor rides and outdoor adventure playground
- Bolney Wine Estate for vineyard tours, wine tasting, shopping and dining (also check out Albourne Estate, Bluebell Vineyard and Ridgeview Wine Estate)
For rainy days, we highly recommend a visit to the recently refurbished and extended Ditchling Museum of Art + Craft or the fantastic World War II Wings Aviation Museum near Balcombe.
You’ll be pleased to hear that Mid Sussex has a thriving events calendar for all interests. The largest venues include the All England Jumping Course at Hickstead and the South of England Showground at Ardingly. The latter holds seasonal country shows and a host of other events including the popular International Antiques & Collectors Fair, wedding fairs, autojumble sales, dog shows and car boot Sundays.
In addition, there are many smaller community events happening throughout the area, and far too many town and country events to mention. Here are just a few of our favourites:
- Cuckfield’s Cuckoo Fayre (May)
- Ditchling Art Trail (part of Brighton Artists Open Houses during the Brighton Festival, May)
- Lindfield Village Day and Arts Festival (June)
- Haywards Heath Town Day and Music Festival (September)
- Hurst Festival (September)
- Burgess Hill Bonfire (September)
GET IN TOUCH
Hunters Group has over 20 years’ experience in the Mid Sussex property market, and we see ourselves very much as part of the local community. Our team specialises in property sales and lettings in Haywards Heath, Burgess Hill and across Mid Sussex. If you are thinking of moving into the area and are looking for a property to buy or a place to rent, or you are interested in a free market appraisal and valuation for selling your home, please feel free to contact us.