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Things To Do In Henfield, West Sussex

The Cat House Henfield West Sussex

Henfield is a large village in the Horsham District of West Sussex, about 19 km northwest of Brighton and about 66 km south of London. It’s not far from the River Adur and the South Downs and it dates back to at least as far as the Domesday Book of 1086.

Henfield West Sussex

With its long history, it’s no surprise that Henfield has some interesting architecture which includes the well-known Cat House. Built in 1550, the Cat House is a Grade II Listed timber-framed building named after the cats on the outside of the building. When the eccentric owner’s pet bird was killed by a local cat (owned by none other than Nathaniel Woodard founder of the famous Woodard schools – Ardingly, Lancing, Hurst) the owner of the house decorated the building with pictures of cats with a canary as a gruesome reminder.

The Cat House Henfield West Sussex

Henfield had an active suffragette movement and in Coopers Way, you’ll find two mosaics in honour of the work they did in the Votes for Women movement. The village church dates back in origin to 770AD and Henfield is also known for its great walking and cycling. The Downs Link (a disused railway that runs from the North Downs to Shoreham) passes through the edge of the village and is now a public bridleway. The South Downs are also within sight offering lots more trails to explore.

Henfield West Sussex

Things to do in Henfield

Give yourself a little “me-time” and explore Henfield’s past and present.

Henfield West Sussex

A visit to the museum

Henfield has a fantastic museum with a number of different collections including prehistoric flint artefacts, a costume collection, photographic and documentary archives, an art collection and regular temporary exhibitions.

Henfield Museum West Sussex

Sussex Prairie Garden

Sussex Prairie Garden is just outside Henfield and it is stunning. It was designed and created by Paul and Pauline McBride who have designed gardens as far afield as Scotland, Luxembourg and India. Described as a “naturalistic” garden, it covers eight acres and is home to some 35,000 plants. The gardens include sculpture, a resident artist and an Indian Bazaar in the summer.  

Sussex Prairie Garden

Wood Mills Nature Reserve

Home to Sussex Wildlife Trust HQ, Woods Mill is 47 acres of wetland and woodland just outside the village. You can walk here around old ponds and through the ancient woodland. However, dogs are not allowed (except assistance dogs).

Henfield West Sussex

The Hidden Henfield trails

Hidden Henfield is a local website with lots of information about the village. They also have four trails around the area that you can follow. There are maps on their website and all the details of the various points of interest along the way.

Henfield West Sussex

Henfield walks

Head west of Henfield for the Downs Link. Off the Downs Link there are you’ll find lots more footpaths so that you can walk along the banks of the River Arun in a loop or head further afield, and down to Bramber and Bramber Castle.

Bramber Castle

A rural exhibition 

Tucked away at a local farm is a private “Life in the Countryside” exhibition. It includes an array of items from 1900 to 1960 including vintage tractors, machinery, tools, and lots more. It’s open to the public on the 5th and 6th August but it is also open for private viewings and you can find out more at: Sussex Rural Events. 

Things to do in Henfield

A rum idea

Henfield happens to have its own rum distillery at Goldstone Rum. You can opt for a distillery tour and tasting or sign up for Rum School and learn how to distill rum.

Henfield West Sussex

Henfield market

Henfield market is held every Monday 9.00 am – 1.00 pm in the village hall. The village also now has an Artisan Market held in Coopers Way car park on the second Sunday of each month from 10 am to 2 pm. And the village is also home to Jeremy’s – an excellent farm shop.

Jeremy's Henfield West Sussex

Henfield Garden & Arts Festival

In June every year, the Garden and Arts Festival involves open gardens with artists’ work and live music in the village.

Henfield West Sussex

For places to stay near Henfield and other things to do in the area, you may be interested in:

A Sussex Rural Retreat 

Things To Do In Storrington

Things To Do In Horsham, Sussex

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