Things to do at Chiddinglye
If you would like to book a foraging or ranger walk with Ross or an arrival hamper full of local goodies, please contact Becky in the Contact section of this website.
Pod visitors will have freedom to access all 320 acres of Chiddinglye except for private gardens (available by arrangement). There are many things to do without ever leaving the estate.
Visit the Missing Link Brewery, which produces award winning craft beers and cider and apple juice from our own orchard. The Tap Room (open Thurs-Sun) and Beer Garden are located just five minutes walk from the pods. Missinglinkbrewing.com
Visit the Kitchen Garden. The old Victorian kitchen garden is now managed by Tom Morphew of the Garden Army, a Community Investment Club. Pod visitors can visit the gardens and buy fresh organic produce direct from the soil. Garden-army.com
Hike around Chiddinglye Estate. Chiddinglye has been in higher level stewardship for many years and is rich in local wildlife including the Sussex big five (deer (fallow, roe and muntjac) fox, badger, squirrel and rabbit). There are many songbirds, pheasants and birds of prey including kites, buzzards, kestrels and sparrow hawks. There is ancient woodland and pasture, three stands of Californian redwoods, and spectacular bluebells in the spring.
Happy Valley is an ancient glade with sandstone outcrops just ten minutes walk from the pods, and Philpots Valley (AKA the Land that Time Forgot) with its spectacular SSSI designated sandstone rocks and briophytes is just a few minutes further.
Chiddinglye is also home to an Iron Age Fort near which Simon Summers, a heritage blacksmith, is offering courses on ancient iron making.
There are yellow, red and blue marked trails showing suggested walking routes.
Chiddinglye is a renewable energy centre featuring two 200mW biomass boilers, a 5mW Solar Farm (where sheep can still graze under the panels), and an additional 30kW of solar panels powering the Brewery.
Chiddinglye Garden can be visited on request. The swimming pool (May to Sept inclusive) and tennis court can also be booked on request.
Guided estate walks, evening nature walks (featuring owls and bats) and foraging walks are arranged on a timely basis with our Ranger Ross Symonds. There are a number of additional wilding projects in plan including restoring a wild swimming area in a stream, creating a new wildflower meadow and possibly the reintroduction of beavers.
The more active may like to book a onsite paintball session with Jamie Beadle at thepaintballpark.com
Things to do around Chiddinglye
Gardens, gardens, gardens.
Chiddinglye is just a few miles from some of the South of England’s most famous gardens. The high elevation and acid soil of the High Weald is perfect for Himalayan plants and other exotic species from around the world.
Wakehurst Place. Kew.org
Borde Hill bordehill.co.uk
High Beeches high beeches.com
Sheffield Park nationaltrust.org.uk/sheffield-park-and-garden
Ashdown Forest is just three miles away and comprises 6500 acres of heathland in the heart of the High Weald AONB. There are numerous walks and numerous cosy country pubs. Ashdownforest.org
The Bluebell Railway runs from East Grinstead to Sheffield Park and trains can be boarded at stations en route. If there is an easterly wind you can hear the whistle of the locomotive as it enters the Sharpthorne Tunnel a mile to the east.
There are numerous excellent local golf courses including Royal Ashdown, Piltdown, Chartwell Park and Lindfield.
Other local attractions include Hever Castle, Herstmonceux Castle, Arundel Castle, Battle Abbey, Chartwell, the pretty village of Lindfield, Lewes, Brighton (just 35 mins away) and the whole of the South Downs. For opera lovers we are only 30 minutes from Glyndebourne!
There are a number of excellent restaurants nearby including:
Gravetye Manor, just five minutes drive away
Ockenden Manor, Cuckfield
Jeremys at Borde Hill
Alexander House, Turners Hill
Booking in advance is recommended