South Downs Discovery Tour

Abingworth Hall

Code: AWHCR

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Activity types:

  • Coastal
  • History
  • Meadows & hills
From £365.00 - 3 to 7 nights

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Prices are per person

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Holiday overview

Our Discovery Tours really get into the heart of the  countryside. These are sightseeing tours by minibus, visiting places not normally reached by a full-sized coach. Small groups and friendly leaders make this a great way to enjoy Britain at its best. Peaceful countryside, lovely landscapes of rolling downland of white chalk, pretty villages – all this and more will be captured during this holiday in Sussex and the South Downs.

Holiday Highlights:

  • The historic village of Steyning with its different types of architecture
  • The fascinating garden at Highdown
  • The Weald and Downland Museum
  • The Elizabethan manor house at Parham
  • Petworth where Capability Brown designed the rolling parkland landscape 
  • The interesting old Norman port of Bosham

Great reasons to join us

  • Great value: all prices include Full Board en-suite accommodation, plus five full-day mini-coach tours, with plenty of stops at places of interest and short walks of up to 1½ miles
  • Knowledgeable leader: learn more about the history and landscapes of the South Downs from your knowlegeable leader
  • Accommodation: relax on the terrace by the lake at our 4-star Country House in the Sussex countryside
  • Sociability: we pride ourselves on the social atmosphere of our holidays - explore together, eat together and relax together

In pictures...

Accommodation

HF Holidays' Abingworth Hall in the South Downs

Nestled at the foot of the South Downs, Abingworth Hall is ideally located for a short break or a longer holiday. A peaceful ambiance and excellent facilities make it a relaxing place to stay. It offers great viewing for short or long strolls in the beautiful surrounding meadows.

 

 

Choose your room

Classic Rooms
• Comfortable accommodation
• En-suite bathroom with bath or shower
• TV
• Hairdryer
• Tea and coffee making facilities
• Single rooms available at no extra charge
Premium Rooms
• Enjoy extra space or exceptional views
• Toweling robe, complimentary slippers
• Same facilities as our classic rooms
• Available from an extra £10 per person per night
Family Rooms
• 3 or 4 beds
• Same facilities as our classic rooms 
• Full sized twin or double beds for adults and bunk or occasional beds for children

Facilities

• Excellent boot and drying rooms 
• Three comfortable lounges, the largest of which opens onto the attractive conservatory and bar 
• Large ballroom
• Dining room
• Free WiFi avaliable in some public rooms
• Range of board games and books 
• Surrounded by eight acres of gardens
• Putting green and croquet lawn
• Heated outdoor swimming pool (open May to September) 

Dining

All holidays at our Country Houses are full board with breakfast, picnic lunch and evening meal. All of our Country Houses have a well-stocked bar serving local beers, wine and spirits.

Start your day with our extensive breakfast.
 Take your fill from our famous self service picnic lunches
A relaxed social dinner is a highlight of any stay at our Country Houses

An example of Abingworth evening meal

Your evenings

Make the most of your evening or join us at the bar


Just relax and take it easy, or if you'd like to continue to chat with our guides and fellow guests then why not grab a drink or take part in one of our optional evening activities.

All of our bars are stocked with locally sourced drinks so you can really soak up your surroundings.

 

Itinerary

During your Discovery Tour you will have the opportunity to visit many fascinating places of interest. The following is a suggested programme, but your HF Holidays' leader may adjust it at their discretion, taking into account factors such as weather, local opening times or the wishes of the group.

Friday: Arrival day

You can check in to your room from 2.30pm onwards. Please join us for afternoon tea at 4pm. All guests are invited – we’ll introduce your leader and welcome you to your holiday.

Exterior of Petworth HouseSaturday: Petworth and Midhurst

Start with a walk through Petworth Park, hopefully among the deer, with a chance to visit Petworth House (National Trust). After lunch we drive through pretty villages to Midhurst, forever associated with H G Wells. Walk through the historic centre and view the fascinating and atmospheric ruins of Tudor Cowdray House.

 

 

Exterior of Elizabethan Parham HouseSunday: Sussex Villages

This morning we stroll around one of the most beautiful villages in Sussex - Amberley. Time for coffee at the village café before the short journey to Bignor Roman Villa, which has some of the finest mosaics in Britain. We spend the afternoon at the fascinating Elizabethan Parham House, exploring the house and extensive gardens.

 

 

Monday: Free day

A free day for you to explore the local area or to relax in the Country House. If you’re interested in more Roman history, visit Fishbourne Palace. If you’d like to see some rare and unusual plants, Nyman’s Gardens (National Trust) is the place for you. Or Amberley Museum & Heritage Centre can show you more about the south-east.

View from Devil's DykeTuesday: Over the Downs

Enjoy a morning spent exploring the small town of Steyning. Nestling under the South Downs, it’s a historical treasury of buildings built over the past four centuries. Then it’s on to Devil’s Dyke, for lunch and a leisurely amble on the top of the dyke to enjoy the views as far as the Isle of Wight. Lancing College contains a magnificent chapel, leaving time to stroll around the small town of Henfield.

 

 

Exterior of Arundel CastleWednesday: Arun Valley

First stop, Littlehampton, where you can chose to take a walk alongside the River Arun on a smart new promenade to the sea. We then visit the delightful Highdown Gardens, built into a chalk quarry, followed by a visit to an unusual chapel, with a painted reproduction of the Sistine Chapel. The afternoon will be spent in Arundel, with time to visit spectacular Arundel Castle and The Collector Earl’s garden.

 

View from the top of the TrundleThursday: Around Chichester

We visit the delightful village of Bosham on Chichester Harbour, which appears on the Bayeux Tapestry and is also associated with King Cnut. We then spend some time in Chichester where you can visit the cathedral, explore the town, walk on the town wall or even indulge in a little ‘retail therapy’. The day finishes at West Dean with the opportunity to enjoy the walled garden or take a walk on the Monarch’s Way.

 

Friday: Depart after a leisurely breakfast

For maximum flexibility, admissions are not included; please remember to bring your National Trust or English Heritage cards if you have them. Otherwise please allow up to £80 for entrances (there may be concessionary and group discounts which may reduce this price).

Sometimes things happen beyond our control – the weather, traffic jams or changes at the places we visit. If we need to adjust your holiday programme, for whatever reason, your leader will help smooth the way.

 

 

 

Local area

Discover Sussex and the South Downs

Abingworth Hall is situated amidst gentle rolling farmland at the foot of the South Downs.

The nearest facilities are in the village of Storrington, about two miles away. Here you’ll find a small supermarket, post office, newsagent, pubs and a bank.

During your stay at Abingworth Hall you may enjoy visiting the following places of interest:

Arundel Castle from the airArundel
The quaint town of Arundel, about 30 minutes' drive away, is dominated by its castle, the home of the Duke and Duchess of Norfolk. During your visit you may enjoy a walk in the Castle's extensive grounds, or beside the river Arun. www.arundelcastle.org

 

 

Frontage to Uppark HouseUppark House
Completely restored after an extensive fire, this stately National Trust property has ornate rooms and gardens. Uppark is around 50 minutes' drive from Abingworth. www.nationaltrust.org.uk/uppark

 

 

Brighton
The cosmopolitan seaside city of Brighton is about 40 minutes' drive from Abingworth Hall and has an excellent range of specialist shops, entertainment, and its famous beach. You may also enjoy a visit to the Royal Pavilion, built in the early 19th century by George IV. www.brighton-hove-rpml.org.uk

Amberley Working Museum
Just 15 minutes' drive from Abingworth Hall, this large open-air museum tells the industrial story of the downs, complete with a steam railway, vintage buses and restored quarry machinery. www.amberleymuseum.co.uk

Parham House
Just 10 to 15 minutes' drive away, Elizabethan Parham House  is surrounded by an extensive deer park. www.parhaminsussex.co.uk

Chichester
The historic cathedral city of Chichester, about 45 minutes' drive away, has plenty of interest. Just a couple of miles away is the fascinating Fishbourne Roman Palace, uncovered in 1960, which has many superb mosaics. www.chichestercathedral.org.uk or www.sussexpast.co.uk/fishbourne

Imposing stone fascade of Petworth HousePetworth House
A large late 17th century mansion, now run by the National Trust with extensive grounds that were landscaped by ‘Capability’ Brown. Around 30 minutes' drive from Abingworth. www.nationaltrust.org.uk/petworth-house

 

 

Historic Houses at museumWeald & Downland Museum
Located on the Downs, near the village of Singleton, this excellent open-air museum contains many restored buildings that bring the history of Sussex to life. These include a working watermill and a re-creation of a typical downland village. The museum is around 45 minutes' drive from Abingworth. www.wealddown.co.uk

 

Bluebell Railway
One of Britain’s premier steam railways with an impressive collection of 50 locomotives, representing the Southern Railway and its predecessors. The line runs through rolling countryside from Sheffield Park to East Grinstead, about 40 minutes' drive from Abingworth. www.bluebell-railway.co.uk

 

Uppark House and Petworth House image ©National Trust Images/John Miller

Travel

Travel to Abingworth

Our address is: Abingworth Hall, Storrington Road, Thakeham, West Sussex, RH20 3EF

How to get to us by train

By train:

The nearest railway station is at Pulborough. For train times and general rail enquiries visit www.nationalrail.co.uk or call 03457 484950 (from outside the UK call +44 20 7278 5240).

Train at Pulborough station 

Get to us by Taxi

By taxi:

The 6 mile journey from Pulborough railway station takes approximately 15 minutes. Pre-booked taxis cost approx £14. Details of our current recommended taxi company and rates will be sent to you with your booking. The return taxi journey can be arranged on your behalf by the Abingworth Hall Manager.

 

Driving to us

By car:

From the north leave the M25 on either the A24 or the M23 and A264 to Horsham. Continue south on the A24 towards Worthing. About 5 miles south of Horsham turn right onto the A272 signposted to Billingshurst and Petersfield. After 3 miles turn onto the B2139 in the village of Coolham. After 3½ miles pass the turning for Thakeham on your left. Abingworth Hall is on the left after the Thakeham turn.

From the south take the M27 and continue on to the A27 and around Chichester. 4 miles before Arundel at Fontwell Park turn left on to the A29. After approx 4 miles at a roundabout, turn onto the A283 to Storrington. Turn right onto the A283 in Storrington. Continue through Storrington and left at the mini-roundabout at the Anchor Inn onto the B2139 towards Thakeham and Coolham. Go straight across at the next roundabout and then take a left at the Rydon Community College roundabout. Abingworth Hall is on the right, 2 miles north of Storrington.

 

Travel by plane

Travelling from overseas

Abingworth is particularly convenient from London Gatwick Airport, which is served by a large range of long-haul and European flights.

From Gatwick Airport station there are trains every 30 minutes to Pulborough - journey time 40 minutes. See www.nationalrail.co.uk for train times. From Pulborough station complete your journey to Abingworth by taxi (see above)

London Heathrow airport is a little further away, so you'll need to travel via the centre of London. Allow 2½ hours to get to Pulborough.

 Quantas Boeing 747

Leaders

Mike Craze

Mike is a professional Blue Badge Guide based at Winchester in Hampshire and enjoys combining the facts and stats with a bit of fun and trivia. A keen historian and member of an archaeology group in Hampshire, he likes nothing better than researching new places and learning about their ‘hidden secrets’ and telling their story. ‘History fascinates me. It’s like pulling at a thread that never stops unravelling.’ He’s also quick to acknowledge though that when people are on holidays, sometimes it’s just about relaxing - sharing a breathtaking piece of landscape or soaking up the atmosphere of a beautiful garden.

 

Graham Horn

After 30 years as a Transport Planner, Graham successfully retrained as a Blue Badge Tourist Guide.  He is a geographer by qualification and an explorer by instinct, and frequently has a map in his hand.  Graham's travels have taken him to many parts of the country, where he enjoys discovering out-of-the-way places as well as an area's better known towns and buildings. He has a particular interest in the countryside, waterways, industrial heritage and places where history happened. Graham is also an HF Holidays' walking leader and has led at more than half of the UK's Country Houses.

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Dates & Prices

Date Description Nights Brochure price Buy today for Book
28 Jul 2017 AWHCR - Discovery Tour - Abingworth 7 £855.00 £805.00 Special Early Booking offer - £50.00 off pp Book Now
28 Jul 2017 AWHCR - Discovery Tour - Abingworth 3 £365.00 £365.00 Book Now
31 Jul 2017 AWHCR - Discovery Tour - Abingworth 4 £505.00 £505.00 Book Now

Prices are per person

Information

  • Premium single room: £15 per night
  • Premium twin/double room: £10 per person per night
  • Non-member associate fee: £10 per person

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