The area's museums are a fantastic way to explore the area's heritage whatever the weather, and many are running talks and activities or have new exhibitions. View our events calendar to find out more or contact the museums directly using the details below.
Egerton Road, Bexhill-on-Sea, East Sussex TN39 3HL T: 01424 787950
Admission Fees: Adults £3, children £1.50, Under 5’s Free, Concessions £2.50, Group rates available.
Opening Hours: Open daily February to mid-December
Bexhill Museum offers something for everyone, from local history and archaeology to fashion and Bexhill's motor heritage. The unique collections are housed in a distinctive building which combines a traditional Edwardian museum with a modern extension. Highlights include the original architect's model of the De La Warr Pavilion, the 'Old Windmill' painting by L.S. Lowry and a beautifully restored prototype of the 1950s Elva sports car.
Carriers Road, Cranbrook, Kent, TN17 3JX
Opening times: April until the end of October (Tuesday-Saturday). Summer Bank Holidays (2-4.30pm)
The Museum covers all aspects of social and family history including the works of the 'Cranbrook Colony of Artists' and the 19th century explorer Boyd Alexander's collection of British birds.
Opening times: currently closed and will be moving to new premises in the centre of Crawley - autumn 2017.
The Museum has a range of permanent displays. These include a 1903 Rex Forecar, an area dedicated to the work of local artists, a shoemaker's workshop and local archaeological discoveries. Other exhibitions feature a Victorian kitchen and the remains of Vine Cottage once home to Mark Lemon.
Queen's Hall, High Street, Cuckfield, West Sussex, RH17 5EL
Opening times: Wednesday, Thursday and Friday mornings from 10-12.30 and from 10-3 on Saturdays.
Cuckfield Museum opened in 1981 and traces the history of the town from its earliest days to more recent times. It illustrates important aspects of life in and around Cuckfield, in particular local trades such as brewing and clock-making.
Eden Valley Museum
Church House, 72 High Street, Edenbridge, Kent, TN8 5AR T: 01732 868102
Opening times: Wednesday - 2pm -4.30pm; Thursday -10am - 4.30pm; Friday -2pm - 4.30pm, Saturday - 10am - 4.30pm; Sunday (June, July & August) - 2pm - 4.30pm; Closed in January
Located in a medieval farmhouse in the centre of historic Edenbridge, an innovative and exciting museum that brings the history of the Eden Valley to life through the stories of its people, buildings and natural environment.
East Grinstead Museum
Old Market Yard, Cantelupe Road, East Grinstead RH19 3BJ
T: 01342 302233
Opening times: Wednesday to Saturday 10-4. Sunday & Public Holidays 2-5. Closed over Christmas & New Year.
Interesting and varied displays trace the history of the town and surrounding area. Artefacts and memorabilia are interspersed with interactive touch screens and film. East Grinstead's association with the WW2 Guinea Pig club and Sir Archibald McIndoe's pioneering work in plastic surgery is commemorated. The Museum's photographic collection, one of the largest in Sussex, is available to view on computer. There are temporary exhibitions and regular children's activities.
Hastings Museum & Art Gallery
Johns Place, Bohemia Road, Hastings TN34 1ET
T: 01424 451052
Opening times: April to September Tues – Sat 10-5 Sunday 12-5. October to March Tues – Sat 10-4 Sunday 12-4
Hastings Museum & Art Gallery has extremely rich and varied collections, with artefacts from prehistory to the present day and from every continent. Its collections include fine and decorative arts, local and natural history, and world art, including significant Native American collections. The most spectacular part of the Museum is the magnificent Durbar Hall, constructed for the 1886 Indian & Colonial Exhibition, which now also offers a unique venue for weddings and civil partnerships. There are plenty of special features for children, from fossils that transform into dinosaurs and free activity books to a play corner and dressing up.
Horsham Museum & Art Gallery
9 The Causeway, Horsham, West Sussex, RH12 1HE
T: 01403 254959
Opening times: Daily Monday to Saturday 10-5
Local history, culture, decorative arts, crafts, photography, reconstructed blacksmith and wheelwright's shops, Percy Bysshe Shelley, costumes, toys.
Sussex Farm Museum
Horam Manor Farm, Horam, near Heathfield TN21 0JB T: 01435 813352 or 01435 813716
Admission Fees: Adults £1, children 50p
Opening times: Closed for winter. Reopens Easter weekend, then daily 11-5.
The museum is is not just a collection of agricultural items but is representative of all aspects of farming life over the last 100 years. Around the farmyard are carts, ploughs, and other machinery; the large drying barn (an interesting building in itself) houses iron and brick items and a stagecoach. The main barn is divided into farmhouse room settings plus cabinets showing hobbies, toys, medicines, wartime relics and much more.
Tunbridge Wells Museum & Art Gallery
Civic Centre, Mount Pleasant, Tunbridge Wells, Kent, TN1 1JN T: 01892 554171
Opening times: Tuesday to Saturday 9.30-5.
Tunbridge Wells Museum & Art Gallery shares the special story of the Borough of Tunbridge Wells through fantastic collections of art, natural history, archaeology, craft, toys and so much more. It is a fascinating tale beginning with the discovery of the spa waters in 1606 - eventually giving birth to the Georgian ‘den of iniquity’ which would later become the byword for Victorian respectability.
Rye Castle Museum, 3 East Street, Rye, East Sussex TN31 7JY
T: 01797 226728
Opening times: Open from Easter unless there is a special event
The history of Rye through the ages with many strange artifacts to inspire your imagination.
Rye Castle Museum, 3 East Street, Rye, East Sussex TN31 7JY T: 01797 226728
Opening times: 7 days a week (weather permitting ) throughout the year except on 24 & 25 December. March 30 – October 31 10:30 – 5 Last admission 4:30. November 1 – March 29 10:30 - 3:30 Last admission 3:00.
Rye Castle Museum’s medieval Ypres Tower site – formerly defence, private house, prison and mortuary -- now boasts new attractions including a gibbet with a famous murderer’s skeleton, a newly opened Women’s Tower with cell and AV display revealing how women prisoners lived here in the 1840s, a model of the changing coastline, splendid uniforms, smuggling artefacts and more to help visitors understand the unique character and long history of Rye and its surrounding landscape.