Fun historical outings in an around Chichester and Bognor Regis

Take a trip into the past, there are plenty of historic sites to experience in around Chichester and Bognor Regis that are great for all ages.

Arundel Castle

Dominating Arundel in more ways than one, Arundel Castle fits many peoples’ idea of a picture book fantasy castle, and it’s right on our doorstep! A castle was originally designed by William the Conqueror’s sidekick Roger de Montgomery in the 11th century in order to secure the inland river port on the River Arun. Most of what you see today was rebuilt in the 18th and 19th centuries, and it is spectacular.

Arundel Castle has plenty of history and does a good job of presenting it to visitors of all ages. Visitor accessibility is very good and there are wheelchair-friendly slopes and lifts at various points around the grounds and gardens. Wheelchairs and Motability scooters are allowed in the castle and there are wheelchairs available for loan on a first-come, first-served basis. They also have a motorised buggy that can be used to get from the ticket box to the main entrance.

You can’t miss the castle, postcode for Sat Nav is BN19 9PA and there is a pay and display car and coach park directly opposite the castle entrance, Mill Road Car Park.

Fishbourne Roman Palace

Fishbourne owes its fame to the expansive Roman Palace which was first excavated in the 1960’s. It is thought that much of the site of the Palace’s buildings lie beneath the A27 and the housing of Fishbourne. Welcome to the largest Roman home in Britain. Stroll around the recreated Roman gardens, the earliest gardens found anywhere in the country and enjoy the largest collection of mosaics in situ in the UK.

The site is wheelchair friendly and generally level with easy access to the museum, North Wing mosaic area, café and film theatre. There are wide doors and ramped walkways. The gardens have gravel pathways but the formal garden can be viewed from the colonnade. There are four dedicated parking spaces for visitors displaying a Blue Badge. There are three wheelchair-accessible toilets and two loan wheelchairs are available which can be reserved the day before a visit.

Weald & Downland Living Museum

The museum is located in Singleton, just over the hill from Goodwood, so only a short drive out of Chichester. The museum is ideal for those wanting to see, touch and even smell what life was like for people living in years gone by. Visitors can explore more than 50 historic buildings across a 40 acre site, from a replica Anglo-Saxon hall house to an Edwardian tin church.

For senior visitors the centre of the museum is flat with parts set on sloping ground, which is steep in places. Access around the site is on rural surfaces; mainly rolled or loose chippings , some paths are cobbled and their surfaces may cause difficulty for visitors who use a wheelchair or have impaired mobility. The museum does not offer a wheelchair hire service. It is suggested that visitors use wheelchairs with wide tyres as this makes access around the museum easier and smoother.

Amberley Museum

Located in the heart of the South Downs National Park, Amberley Museum is dedicated to preserving the industrial heritage of the South East.  With 36 acres to explore and over 40 exhibits, visitors can discover the South’s working past. The Museum is also home to traditional crafts people such as the blacksmith and wood turner.

A carer can attend with a senior visitor for free – just select ‘Complimentary Pass’ when booking online. Visitors should check the Museum’s accessibility page to check if the site is suitable for their senior.

The museum has lots of events throughout the year, so it worth checking their what’s on page to see if there’s an event that meets your area of interest.

Petworth House & Park

Inspired by the Baroque palaces of Europe and nestled in the South Downs, Petworth House displays one of the finest art collections in the care of the National Trust.

Petworth House is an extraordinary and surprising place created by one family over 900 years. The 17th century  building comprises grand state rooms which form the centrepiece of your visit. State rooms offer an expanse of paintings  and sculptures, including major works  by artists such as Van Dyck, Turner, Reynolds and Gainsborough.

The gardens surrounding Petworth give every impression of being totally natural; in reality, nothing is further from the truth. The park and gardens were transformed in the 1750s and early 1760s by the landscape architect Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown.

Senior visitors should be aware that the grounds and gardens are partly accessible with some slopes and undulating terrain. There are benches in the garden but be aware these are spread across 50 acres. There is an access toilet available in the car park and at the Servants Quarters. The majority of rooms open to visitors at Petworth House are on the ground floor.