Nearest History & Heritage West Sussex
Our History and Heritage category brings all Coast Radar’s West Sussex listings related to looking for something to do or a place to visit together where they offer some form of historic or heritage based activity.
Finding the best things to see and do on a West Sussex day out with your family or friends is easy – simply explore the historic and heritage links below, hit the jump to my location button or use the search bar to plan your next West Sussex activity.
- Goodwood House is the seat of the Dukes of Richmond. Over the years many architects have contributed to the design of the house, including James Wyatt. It was the intention to build the house to a unique octagonal layout, but only three of the eight sides were built. Some of the older parts of the house also survive, although some sections were demolished in the mid 20th century. The house has neo-classical interiors and is open to the public on a limited number of days per year. It is also available to hire for weddings and corporate events. The surrounding Goodwood Estate is a major sport and leisure venue featuring Goodwood Racecourse, home of the Glorious Goodwood flatracing festival, which is one of the highlights of the English social season; Chichester/Goodwood Airport and Goodwood Circuit; and the Goodwood Park Hotel, Golf and Country Club. The immediate grounds of the house also play host to the annual Goodwood Festival of Speed, which has rapidly become a major event in the diary of all fans, participants and companies associated with motor racing. The Rolls-Royce Motor Cars manufacturing plant and global headquarters is located on the south end of Goodwood Estate.
- Chichester Guildhall was built in 1269 as the church for the Greyfriars. After the Dissolution of the monasteries the church became the Town Hall. It is a Grade 1 listed building and an Ancient Scheduled Monument. It was also used as a court room. Now part of the Chichester District Museum service and sits within Priory park.
- Fishbourne Roman Palace was originally a military base but changed to a Palace by the end of the first century. You can see a selection of mosaics within the palace and outside, the northern half of the formal garden has been replanted to its original plan as recovered by excavation. Audio-visual programme available and site museum.
- Weald and Downland Open Air Museum has six (13th – 19th) centuries of rural hertitage set in roling countryside. Explore the museums village, working watermill and collection of rescued buildings then have a break in the cafe or a lakeside picnic.
- The Cathedral of our Lady and St. Philip Howard in Arundel is a Roman Catholic Cathedral build between 1869 and 1873 by the 15th Duke of Norfolk. Plans designed by JA Hansom, the designer of the Hansom cab. Originally the Parish Church of St. Philip Neri, it became the Cathedral of the diocese of Arundel and Brighton in 1970. The Cathedral is faced with Bath stone and is in the French Gothic style. The west façade has striking figures of Christ and his apostles and a statue of Mary with her divine child, together with a large rose window adorned with stained glass.
- Parham has only been owned by three families since the building was started in 1577 and extended over the years. Built from local stone and slates. Parham’s Gardens consist of seven acres of Pleasure Grounds and a four acre Walled Garden. Lunches and teas are served within the 16th century kitchen. Wheelchair access to the gardens.
- Bosham church of The Holy Trinity, is one of the earliest churches in Sussex and there is documented evidence to show that there was a small Christian community in Bosham in the 7th century, making it the oldest site of Christianity in Sussex. One of its most famous features is the 11th century chancel arch generally believed to have been built shortly after the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Saxon tower is the oldest part of the church and stands out as a landmark for sailors as it has done for many centuries.
- Tangmere Military Aviation Museum was established on the old RAF Tangmere airfield. From its beginnings in 1916, through its illustrious service as one of Britain’s front line fighter bases during WW2 and on to its key role as home to the world speed record breaking aircraft of the High Speed Flight in the post war years it has occupied a unique place in aviation history. The museum contains priceless historic aircraft such as Neville Duke’s world record breaking Hawker Hunter, actual equipment used by the brave SOE agents who were carried into occupied France on ‘black Lysander’ flights from Tangmere, flight simulators where you can try your hand at flying, a full sized replica of the very first Spitfire prototype and more.
- Shoreham Fort was built in 1857 and is located on the Eastern end of Shoreham Beach at the entrance to Shoreham harbour. The England south coast had a number of similar forts acting as small defencive positions. Shoreham, also know as Kingston or Shreham Redoubt, is one of the few remaining today where you can still see and have access to the whole structure. Pay and display car park alongside the fort and it is free to look around.
- According to the inscription upon the Chichester Market Cross, it was built by Edward Story, the bishop of Chichester from 1477 to 1503. Built so that the poor people should have somewhere to sell their goods. An earlier wooden cross had been erected on the same site by Bishop Rede (1369-1385). The Market Cross is constructed of Caen stone, is octangular, having a strong butment at each angle, surmounted with pinnacles. On each of its faces is an entrance through a pointed arch, ornamented with crockets and a finial. Above this, on four of its sides, is a tablet, to commemorate its reparation in the reign of Charles II. Above each tablet is a dial, exhibiting the hour to each of the three principal streets; the fourth being excluded from this advantage by standing at an angle. In the centre is a large circular column, the basement of which forms a seat: into this column is inserted a number of groinings, which, spreading from the centre, form the roof beautifully moulded. The central column appears to continue through the roof, and is supported without by eight flying buttresses, which rest on the several corners of the building.
- West Dean House, a large mansion built of flint which houses West Dean College, an arts and crafts school. The house, built by the Peachey family in 1804, was later bought by the James family and was the home of Edward James, who donated it to a charitable trust in 1964. The gardens around the house are open to the public and have well preserved Victorian walled gardens and glasshouses.