It is called Horsham’s secret paradise: a place where you can see natural wildflower meadows; where you can walk the dog, ride a horse, jog for miles or have a family cycle ride, well away from any roads; where rare skylarks nest and hover and sometimes barn owls float past at dusk.
Where you can walk through clouds of butterflies, encounter cows and sometimes see rare sheep and their llama companions in a countryside setting which has been farmed since before 1086. It even has royal connections as one of Henry VIII’s wives –Katherine Howard – lived at neighbouring Chesworth House.
This 90-acre (36-hectare) site is managed as farmland bordering the River Arun. It features numerous public footpaths and bridleways, incorporating grassland, wet meadow, ancient hedgerows and access to the greater countryside. There are also a few unofficial, well-trodden paths which are further encouragement to make your own circular route.
It can also be explored via the Horsham to Southwater cycle route, (Pedlars Way) or as part of Horsham’s Riverside Walk, following the River Arun.
It is free and open to the public all year round. Public access is only by foot, cycle or horseback. There is limited car parking outside the Queensway/Chesworth Lane entrance and some off-street parking on some of the roads which feature footpath or bridleway access, subject to local parking restrictions. The nearest town car parks are Denne Road, Piries Place and New Street.
About Friends of Chesworth Farm
Friends of Chesworth Farm (FCF) is a group of local people who have joined together to support the farm as a unique site for informal recreation and appreciation of farmland wildlife.
The group was formed in August 2011,’To foster and promote the preservation, enhancement, improvement and appreciation of Chesworth Farm, for the benefit and protection of wildlife, environment and history of the site for the enjoyment of all.’
FCF seeks to represent the views of its many and varied members: hikers, dog walkers, horse riders, naturalists, cyclists and households bordering the site. It works in partnership with the site-owner, Horsham District Council.
Volunteering on the farm
If you are interested in carrying out practical conservation tasks on the farm, there are sometimes events (eg tree or flower planting or litter-picking) where Friends are invited to help. However you can take part in other, sometimes larger, projects at Chesworth by joining Horsham Green Gym, an independent volunteer nature conservation group. See its website for details Horsham Green Gym.
For a map showing location of Chesworth Farm in relation to other HDC countryside sites HDC Countryside sites map
Map of Chesworth Farm ChesworthFarm-FieldNames