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“Peaceful Oasis”
Review of Michelham Priory

Michelham Priory
Ranked #1 of 3 things to do in Arlington
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Michelham Priory is an historic house and gardens dating back to the 13th Century. Inside the house you can discover the history of the site from Medieval times right up to its use during WW2. Hands on activities, trails and dressing up keep the children amused!Outside we have extensive gardens, moat, working watermill, forge, Elizabethan barn, playground, and replica Bronze age roundhouse.At the weekends you can have a go at archery with the Bowmen, and recently opened in 2013 is the interactive Medieval gallery in the gatehouse.Many special events run throughout the season, please check the website for details.Michelham Priory has ample parking, shop, cafe and picnic area.
Westcliff-on-Sea, United Kingdom
1 review
“Peaceful Oasis”
Reviewed 7 August 2014

This is a lovely place to visit. The Gardens are so tranquil and the Priory is very interesting. The grounds are surrounded by a moat with willows and water lillies, which you can walk around. There is also an old mill you can visit. It would make a wonderful wedding venue.

Visited May 2014
Helpful?
Thank LBA K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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213 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Lewes, East Sussex UK
Level Contributor
48 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
“Much more for kids to do than I thought! (And WW2 interest)”
Reviewed 6 August 2014

Visited in August for a special "archaeology day" where there were additional activities for children to do (which was great). Had not previously visited as it always appeared as mostly grounds with a house so not really suitable for keeping a young child entertained.
How wrong I was!
Firstly the grounds are extensive and beautiful - plenty of room to run, roam and explore (beware the unfenced moat if you have little ones), including sculptures dotted around. There is a fairly new playground, across the moat best suited for under 8's, consisting of wooden climbing frame with slide, bridge etc, seesaw, basket swing, sit on animals. There are loads of benches and picnic tables dotted about throughout the grounds so plenty of places to picnic. One of the best places I think is actually a little further along the "moat walk" from the playground area, where there are two roundhouses as these are set in their own fairly enclosed area, away from everything else.
Inside the house there are some great exhibits, such as fully equipped period kitchen with lots of stuff you can touch and hold, and upstairs a great selection of dressing up clothes for the whole family.
There were also some fantastic exhibits from WW2 as the Priory housed evacuees and one of their bedrooms is recreated, together with toys (some recreated and can be played with), clothes and some of their letters and diaries. There is also lots of information on wartime rationing etc which was very interesting.
The gatehouse has the ticket office on one side and some very steep spiral stone steps opposite. Don't be put off by these - go to the next doorway along and use the wooden staircase and you will find yourself in a lovely room full of children's activities which seemed to be completely un-signposted or advertised. There were colouring sheets, tile rubbing, tile jigsaws, models of the Priory and grounds to match up, examples of different woodworking joints to be constructed and archways to be built. We spent ages in there and had the place to ourselves.
You can also go up another floor where there are great views out over the moat.
Other interesting bits in the grounds are the working forge, small rope museum, and the watermill.
Practical stuff - the grounds are all flat, and there are ramps for the occasional steps around the house. (Don't remember seeing a lift to get to the first floor but could have missed it). Loos were good. Café did the usual stuff but we only purchased a cup of tea and cold drinks as we took a picnic.
All in all we had a great day out (and we did spend literally all day there), and would happily go back again tomorrow, even without the archaeology activities.

Visited August 2014
Helpful?
3 Thank Ali_and_Andy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Royal Tunbridge Wells, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
82 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
“Peaceful Place”
Reviewed 28 June 2014

This is a moderately interesting building inside a beautiful garden surrounded by a very large moat. Everywhere you go there are quiet areas, and you feel like you have stopped the world spinning for just a little while. The House is actually quite interesting, and what is important is the record of how the place was saved from ruin over the last 100 plus years.The Café is marvellous and a good choice of foods and teas and cakes. The membership option gives you access to other sites in Sussex, and is well worth it.

Visited June 2014
Helpful?
Thank justmarriedCowes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bexhill on Sea
Level Contributor
39 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Beautiful and very peaceful”
Reviewed 22 June 2014

We enjoyed a lovely day out at Michelham Priory. The grounds are very beautiful and the flowers are planted in a natural and informal way. The buildings are also very interesting with some excellent displays relating to the history of the Priory. There is a pleasant restaurant where we enjoyed a light meal. Overall we were impressed with the peace which pervaded the whole atmosphere and which contributed to a most enjoyable day out. Incidentally an electric buggy which is available to guests enabled us to see far more of the property than we had originally expected

Visited June 2014
Helpful?
Thank evergreengrass
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Portsmouth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
88 reviews
33 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
“Wonderful place”
Reviewed 18 June 2014

Went here today and spent four hours in the priory,the grounds and tea room
It was a fairly quiet Wednesday morning during school time so few children around
I think this is a lovely spot for adults to have a peaceful time
Not so sure it would appeal to children,except the history buffs amongst them
There are clothes for children to try on and colouring to be done in the cafe
though and a play area
Had a lovely panini pot of tea and very good cake,sat by ponds surrounded by wildfowl
Only gripe no dogs allowed,but with the geese and ducks wandering the grounds perhaps
That is for the best
The priory itself we left till last and I was amazed how much there was to see inside
Lots of ancient furniture beautifully arranged to create a dream of a place
Everyone who works there is very helpful and friendly One lady going out of her way to show us the intricate lock mechanism on a Tudor chest which we would have not seen otherwise
English heritage members are half price
Will definitely return very soon

Visited June 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank oldspot123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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