As part of a celebration of my Mum’s 80th birthday, we visited Arundel in West Sussex and spent a very happy few hours there.
Arundel In West Sussex
Arundel is a market town that boasts a fully restored medieval castle and glorious cathedral. The old part of the town is dominated by the castle and the castle walls. But it contains a large number of listed buildings that make walking around the streets a joy.
The River Arun runs through the edge of the town. One interesting fact is that people born in Arundel are known as ‘Mulletts’ owing to mullet, a type of fish, in the river. There is a pretty riverside walk with benches to sit and watch the world go by. Unfortunately on the day we visited it was grey and cloudy with drizzly rain so we did not venture down by the river.
We parked in a car park just before the bridge over the River Arun into the old town. A short walk and we were at the bridge and were greeted with this fabulous view of the castle towering over us. Doesn’t this look like a scene from a fairy tale to you? It certainly took our breath away.
The original castle was founded by Roger Montgomery in 1067. Roger was a cousin of William The Conqueror. The castle was damaged during the English Civil War (an 18 day siege) and then restored in the 18th and 19th centuries. A Grade I listed building, the castle has been in the possession of the Duke of Norfolk for over 400 years and is the main seat of the Howard Family.
The castle has featured as the backdrop for several feature films and television series including Doctor Who. Regular readers of my blog will remember my article about the Shad Thames area of London which was also used in Doctor Who. I see a theme developing!
Plenty of Eateries
As we walked over the bridge we could see large queues of tourists waiting to go into the castle for a tour. So we opted to look around the town itself, starting with breakfast in one of the many tea rooms.
There are lots of places to eat in Arundel. Tea rooms serve English breakfasts and traditional afternoon teas. For an explanation of ‘afternoon tea’ read my earlier blog on the subject. There are also many other restaurants to choose from for main meals.
Fabulous Old Buildings
The old town of Arundel really is an architectural gem, with picturesque, historical buildings everywhere you look. As you can see from the image above, timber framed buildings mix with Georgian structures and more. Alleyways and bends in the road are inviting as you never know what you will find next.
Some old buildings have been converted to take small shopping malls or act as office buildings. For example, the Old Printing Works, an Edwardian themed shopping mall, has been beautifully converted.
Arundel is famous for its antique shops and we spent quite a bit of time looking around at all the treasures available. On a rainy day this was an ideal activity for us and we saw everything from medieval armour to gnomes available for sale!
We had a lovely time looking around Arundel and plan to go again off season to look around the castle. I will say we spent quite a bit of money in the antique shops. Well it was Mum’s birthday!
Before you go
My name is Dorothy Berry-Lound, an artist and writer. You can find out more about my art and writing at https://dorothyberryloundart.com.
Thank you for reading!