TOP TEN FOR KIDS
The Lewes area is bursting with activities for the kids. Whether they want to run free on the downs , explore the shoreline or discover our local history, the Lewes district is a child friendly place with many visitor attractions sympathetically designed with the whole family in mind.
Cloaked in mystery and protected by its impressive ramparts, Newhaven Fort has been keeping secrets safely hidden for almost 150 years. Venture inside this extraordinary Victorian Structure to discover its fascinating and surprising past and help to celebrate and forge its exciting future.
Journey deep into the vast network of tunnels, venture on to the ramparts and gun emplacements to soak up the stunning views, and unlock the secret stories of the people who lived and worked at Newhaven Fort. Explore hundreds of genuine military artefacts housed in the casemates lining the Parade Ground and reveal their hidden history. Don’t miss the realistic air-raid recreation in the Blitz Bomb Shelter and the fascinating Home Front exhibition.
There’s also an ever-changing programme of living history events and activities for children. Visit the website for all the latest details.
Newhaven Fort, Fort Road, Newhaven, East Sussex, BN9 9DS
Pells Pool is one of Lewes’ best kept secrets and it’s the oldest documented freshwater outdoor public swimming pools in the country. The Pells Pool is a spring-fed pool – 46 metres long by 23 metres wide. This is a fantastic spot to spend the whole day as there are facilities here for the whole family to enjoy.
From 30 May onwards: 10am-7pm opening times will now be every weekday (except Tuesday due to Pells Paddlers), not just on Saturdays and Sundays as previously.
Early morning swims for over-16s every weekday, 7am-9am, from 30 May onwards until end August.
Early season opening times: 14 May-29 May: every day noon-7pm
This park is a great place for kids of all ages. It boasts a large play facility for toddlers and an adventure playground for the older kids complete with a carved dragon, giant acorn tower and flying foxes. All of the play equipment is made with natural materials and blends in beautifully with the South Downs National Park that surround it. You will also find an ecologically sound cafe serving fresh coffee, lunch and snacks.
Raystede is free to visit almost every day of the year. With its sizeable lakes and 43 acre site Raystede, offers a safe haven for visiting waterfowl as well as for chickens, turkeys, ducks and geese. They also offer a lifelong home for goats, horses, ponies and donkeys which are no longer wanted.
Spring Barn Farm is a working sheep farm situated on the outskirts of Lewes town, but there’s much more to it than that. It is also a visitor attraction with a farm shop, restaurant and campsite. Not only do the children get an opportunity to feed the pigs, pet small animals, and ride in a tractor trailer, they also have giant jumping pillow trampolines and an indoor play area for the colder months.
A nod to more innocent times, this attraction has bags of charm and is a great hit with the younger kids.This is the extraordinary life story of our planet from its earliest beginnings, following the progress of life from the big bang to the present day. There’s a Miniature railway to ride, a Triassic Treetops Adventure Playground and an indoor play area including soft play for the under fives.
Lewes Priory and Castle are great spots for the whole family, rich in history and opportunities to picnic and play. The evocative remains of St Pancras Priory are the perfect backdrop for imaginary play and a more recent addition, the children’s playground with a castle theme, is also popular with locals and visitors alike. Look out for special activities at the castle on our Events Calendar.
THE BLUEBELL RAILWAY
The Bluebell railway runs through the heart of the Sussex weald, between Sheffield Park Station and the ancient market town of East Grinstead. Trains run every weekend and daily from Easter to October.Climb aboard, sit back and relax while you enjoy a journey behind one of the railway’s historic locomotives.
The Bluebell Railway, Sheffield Park Station,
East Sussex TN22 3QL
Go carts, swing boats, zip slides and tractor rides, Blackberry Farm is a fun filled day out for the kids, especially if they need to let off a little steam. As well as a variety of farm animals they have an indoor play area that includes an area for babies, the“sensory stars” area for visual stimulation and a flat zone for the less able bodied.