Visitor centre encourages people to start their South Downs journey

The South Downs Centre is launching Saturday and Bank Holiday opening and is encouraging visitors to make the most of the array of activities and information on offer.

The interpretation area, located in the beautiful former Grammar School of Midhurst, is the ideal way for families, walkers and community groups to start their journey in the South Downs.

The centre features colourful educational displays, packed with information on the history, geology and produce of the South Downs. For the children, there is a fun activities room, with brass rubbing and fascinating visual displays on the flora and fauna of the National Park.

Visitors can also make the most of the local information room, packed with leaflets on days-out and walks in the National Park, and buy books, maps and souvenirs from the shop.

The new opening hours begin over Easter, with the centre in North Street open 9am to 1pm on Good Friday, Easter Saturday and Easter Monday. The centre will then be open on Saturdays and Bank Holidays from 9am to 1pm until October 26. Normal weekday opening hours from 9am to 5pm Monday to Thursday and 9am to 4.30pm on Fridays will continue.

Lottie Warren, one of the team at the South Downs Centre, said: “We’re really excited to be launching our Saturday and Bank Holiday opening because it gives a lot of people who work during the week the chance to make the most of our facilities.

“Our friendly centre is the perfect way for people to start their journey into the South Downs and there’s something for all ages. Whether you’re a seasoned walker or someone visiting the National Park for the first time, you will be guaranteed a warm welcome!”

“We’re also in the heart of historic Midhurst with an array of shops and cafes on our doorstep, as well as the Tudor ruins of Cowdray House, so it’s an ideal spot for walkers and families.”

The centre also offers a number of other facilities:

  • A Cyclist and Walkers Welcome Scheme where you can park your bike safely, pump and repair and tyres and also clean muddy boots and bikes. There are also spare inner tubes and access to basic first aid.
  • Fresh water point – fill up on water for your journey!
  • Start your geocaching adventure in the National Park – pick up a passport and your geocoins at the centre.
  •  If staying after dark it is worth visiting nearby Iping Common, with its fabulous dark skies to see how many stars you can spot. The South Downs National Park is a renowned International Dark Skies Reserve and is one of the best places in the world to see the cosmos.


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