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Weald and Downland is best paired with what?

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Feb 27th, 2014, 03:54 PM
  #1
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Weald and Downland is best paired with what?

Hi again,

When we visit the UK this summer we would like to see the Weald and Downland museum in West Sussex. We will be coming from Tonbridge or Tunbridge Wells. We also would like to see the Seven Sisters enroute either to or from. How much driving time would that be for one day? The map programs say about 4 hours for a round trip but I know we have to add to that figure.

Obviously we will not have time for both Petworth House and Arundel Castle combined with the above so what would make the better pairing? Petworth--grand stately home with lots of Turner paintings and Gainsborough paintings plus the wood carvings by Gibbons is one option or Arundel Castle which also has a fair share of paintings. What would you recommend?
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Feb 27th, 2014, 04:31 PM
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I loved Petworth House, in part because of the treasures, of course, but also because it's right in the very nice small town. So you get both, house & a very pretty town to visit with one stop. I haven't been to Arundel Castle so I can't compare them but I can wholeheartedly recommend Petworth.
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Feb 27th, 2014, 04:39 PM
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Each is about the same distance from the Weald & Downland -- so basically flip a coin

I know that doesn't help much.

Petworth House is more "Stately Home-ish" ala Chatsworth

Arundel is a lovely castle

You really can't go wrong w/ either, but my choice would lean ever so slightly to Petworth
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Feb 27th, 2014, 04:40 PM
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You'll love the Weald and Downland BTW . . . if it is a nice-ish day . . .
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Feb 28th, 2014, 04:44 AM
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For driving time alone, allow at least 2 hours each way.

It's not that far as the crow flies but the cross-country roads round here (e.g. A272) are notoriously slow, as car drivers will find when they get stuck behind a lorry, caravan or tractor and it's simply too twisty to overtake. The villages you pass through can also be surprisingly congested with traffic. The South Downs National Park you'll be travelling through is by far the most heavily populated of all the NPs in the UK (over 108,000 inhabitants).

The other, slightly further way (A26 then A27 coast road) is mainly dual carriageway (2-lane road), but is plagued by endless roundabouts and heavy traffic so no quicker.
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Feb 28th, 2014, 05:12 AM
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I too would tend towards Petworth, but as others have said, there's not much in it.

And do allow yourselves plenty of time, especially if you are travelling in school holidays [last week of July & all through August]
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Feb 28th, 2014, 10:05 AM
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TBH you could spend the whole day at the W&D - there's a lot there. You may end up feeling you've short changed both places you visit.

For a shorter visit, you could look at Fishbourne Roman Palace.
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Mar 1st, 2014, 10:56 AM
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Thanks everyone.

I didn't realize there is enough to do at Weald and Downland for most of the day. I thought you only needed a couple of hours but it seems like you really need about 3-4 hours to cover it without rushing through?

I also read about the Eastbourne miniature railroad museum and the Museum of Shops. Has anyone been to either one of those?
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Mar 1st, 2014, 11:16 AM
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if the buildings were all crammed in next to each other - maybe a couple of hours would be fine for the W&D. But the site is about fifty acres and w/ all the buildings, demonstrations, animals and such I wouldn't necessarily plan on an entire day -- but if the weather is decent at least 3 hours and 4 is more like it.

Re the museum of Shops - be sure it is open. The owners are retiring and it is up for sale.

There are so many other great sites in the area I probably wouldn't bother w/ the mini railway.
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Mar 1st, 2014, 01:52 PM
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Oh--good to know about the museum of shops. Sounds cute but they may not be open when we go. Thanks for that info.

I have a couple more questions. How much time to allow for the ride from Weald and Downland to the Seven Sisters Country Park? Is that the best place to view the Seven Sisters?
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