Events and things to do in Sussex - October 2014

Autumn Game Fair

Autumn Game Fair - Credit: Copyright Steve Robards

Edited by Erica Gilbert

12 October - John Lydon

7.30pm. John Lydon in conversation with Alexis Petridis, chief rock critic of The Guardian. John Lydon has secured prime position as one of the most recognisable icons in the annals of music history. As Johnny Rotten, he was the lead singer of the Sex Pistols – the world’s most notorious band, who shot to fame in the mid-1970s. Lydon has remained a compelling and dynamic figure – both as a musician and as an outspoken, controversial cultural commentator. Age 16 plus. Tickets £24.

De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill on Sea: 01424 229111


29 September-4 October - The Importance of Being Earnest

7.45pm. Oscar Wilde’s much loved and brilliantly witty masterpiece The Importance of Being Earnest starring Nigel Havers and Siân Phillips. Thursday and Saturday Matinees 2.30pm. Tickets: £11.90-£42.40.

Most Read

Theatre Royal, Brighton: 0844 871 7677


4-5 October - Autumn Show and Game Fair

South of England Showground, Ardingly

9am-5pm. Traditional country sports have enjoyed an upsurge in interest over the last few years and visitors to the 2014 Autumn Show and Game Fair are encouraged to come and have a go at the many activities and enjoy the best of country life at autumn harvest time. Highlights include fly casting demonstrations, Huxley’s Birds of Prey, packs of local hounds, gundog scurry, clay pigeon shooting, terrier racing and much more.

A variety of rabbits, poultry and farm animals will be on display, together with a collection of vintage agricultural vehicles from a bygone era of farming. Visitors can also enjoy a great range of shopping, including countryside fashion and equipment, regional foods and crafts and much more.

For more information visit


4-5 October - Grow! Cook! Eat!

West Dean Gardens, near Chichester

Grow! Cook! Eat! is a celebration of the best of the British harvest, with the focus on seasonal and locally produced food, including the impressive harvest from West Dean’s own orchards, walled kitchen gardens and restored Victorian glasshouses.

A top line-up of guests, including TV celebrity chefs, will be giving demonstrations in the Cookery Theatre and Sarah Wain, West Dean Gardens’ Supervisor will be joined in the Gardening Theatre by well-known gardening names. Head Gardeners Jim Buckland and Sarah Wain will be giving walks and talks around the walled kitchen gardens.

For more information visit


6 October - Gypsy

Based on the memoirs of Gypsy Rose Lee, with lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, Gypsy is considered by many to be the greatest of the Broadway musicals. Starring Imelda Staunton, Lara Pulver and Kevin Whately. Tickets: £15-£46.

Chichester Festival Theatre, Chichester: 01243 7812312


8 October - NSPCC ChildLine Autumn Fair

Barnsgate Manor Vineyard, Herons Ghyll, near Uckfield

10.30am-3.30pm An inspiring selection of original and stylish stalls which will be in the Ashdown Suite and Museum Barn, including the very popular ‘Gently Used’ handbags, scarves and jewellery stall, (all donations welcome), silk, cashmere, sheepskin and fur clothing, silk flowers, sporting and travelling gifts, toys and gadgets etc. Ample parking and refreshments available. Entrance £2.


10-25 October - Brighton Comedy Festival

The festival sets out to present the best live comedy of the year with the likes of Jason Manford, Milton Jones, Sean Lock, Nina Conti, Andy Parsons, Paul Merton, Russell Kane, Lucy Porter and so many more.

The festival will once again be back at the Brighton Dome, Komedia and The Old Market, providing a programme that should tickle everyone’s funny bone.

For more information visit


11-12 October - Autumn Countryside Show

Weald and Downland Open Air Museum, Chichester

10.30am-5pm. Experience the sights, sounds and smells of the countryside at harvest time. At this beautiful time of year, experience teams of heavy horses ploughing the fields and vintage tractors at work. Enjoy steam-powered threshing demonstrations alongside falconry and dog displays together with a fun dog show in the main arena. See woodland and rural craft demonstrations, thatching and traditional competitions throughout the weekend. Also there is a chance to browse and buy gifts with a countryside theme at the many craft and trade stands.

Museum open until 6pm.


13 October - Autumn foraging

Parham House and Gardens, Storrington

11am-5pm. The event will include attendance by food and drink exhibitors, traditional woodland crafts. There will be guided deer spotting walks into Parham Park as well as fungi walks.

For more information visit:


15-18 October - Far From the Madding Crowd

The Southwick Players

7.30pm. Far From The Madding Crowd is Southwick Players’ entry in the 2014 Brighton & Hove Arts Council’s (BHAC) Drama Awards.

A cast of 15 will bring Thomas Hardy’s much-loved classic dramatically to life in this recent adaptation by Mark Healy, which fuses vivid storytelling, live folk songs and humour into a dynamic staging.

Tickets: £11 (no booking fee); Box Office: 01273 597094 or book online visit

The Barn Theatre, Southwick Street, Southwick.


16 October - Royal Opera House: Manon

Live from the Royal Opera House

7.15pm. Manon Lescaut is a beautiful young woman who falls prey to the moral corruption of 18th century Paris. Kenneth MacMillan brings Manon’s story vividly to life, with his ballet, which evokes the brutality and decadence described in Abbé Prévost’s infamous novel, as well as the feckless character of Manon herself – torn between love for the poet Des Grieux and her desire for money and attention. Tickets: £16.50.

Connaught Cinema, Worthing: 01903 206206


16 October - Mnozil Brass

7.30pm. This septet is from Vienna and is probably the strangest brass ensemble ever.

With musical virtuosity mixed with their unique kind of comedy, the only way to describe Mnozil Brass is possibly to label them as the Monty Python of the music world. Tickets £28.90.

Theatre Royal, Brighton: 0844 871 7677


19 October - Vivace!

St Nicolas Church, Pevensey

2.30pm. Vivace! is a choir of mixed voices whose concert programmes feature a wide range of music, from Baroque to rock. The choir is based in Ditchling and specialises in singing for good causes. Tickets £10.

Advance bookings can be made by telephone to 01424 216651, or 01323764449.


24-25 October - Coppélia | English Youth Ballet

7.30pm. Stage Award-winning English Youth Ballet brings a sensational production of the family favourite to The Hawth for the first time.

A witty, sparkling classical ballet with internationally known principal dancers Amy Drew and Brenden Bratulic, backed up by 100 young local dancers with attractive choreography by artists Janet Lewis and Dominic Marshall. Sat Matinee 2.30pm. Tickets: £22.50.

The Hawth, Crawley: 01293 553636


24-26 October - Battle Arts and Music Festival

The inaugural Battle Arts and Music Festival promises to be a vibrant and exciting addition to Battle’s calendar of events. The festival includes performances by internationally renowned classical musicians, drawn from premier UK and London-based orchestras and ensembles, which will feature in ticketed events at several festival venues throughout the town.

Visual Arts exhibitions will include work by renowned international and regional artists and will be held at participating galleries and exhibition spaces. Additionally, intimate Battle Fringe events will take place in many of the town’s bars and restaurants and will complement the classical performances with jazz, folk and rock. Box office: 01797 229049.

For more information visit


25 October-2 November - Wild Boar Festival

Wild Boar Week in Rye offers the perfect opportunity to indulge in culinary delights from the dark ages. Restaurants around Rye will be showcasing an array of treats from pheasant to pigeon, ale and cider to mead.

For more information visit


31 October - Halloween Horrors!

Sussex Wildlife Trust - 5.30pm-7.30pm

Come along to Woods Mill nature reserve near Henfield for spooktacular fun and games. You can whittle your own toasting stick to crisp marshmallows over a campfire, and enjoying a warming hot chocolate. Suitable for children aged 5-11 years; all children must be accompanied by an adult. Fancy dress costumes welcome. Cost for SWT members: £5.00 per child/£2.50 per adult, non-members: £7.00 per child/£3.50 per adult. Booking essential. For further information and online booking tel: 01273 497561 or visit:


24 October - 9 November - Brighton Early Music Festival

This year’s festival takes the theme of cities, musical centres and the journeys between them. Events are at various venues across Brighton and will include a Polish programme from The Sixteen (31 October); Venetian festivities with La Serenissima (24 October); and Nine Daies Wonder from The Society of Strange and Ancient Instruments (7 November).

For tickets tel: 01273 709709 or visit


Halloween and half-term fun with the National Trust

The atmospheric houses and large gardens of the National Trust are perfect locations for little horrors (as well as adults) over autumn half-term, with a variety of seasonal activities and Halloween trails full of secrets and surprises:

25 Oct-2 Nov: Spooky Nymans

25 Oct-2 Nov: Alfriston Clergy Pumpkin Prowl

25 Oct-2 Nov: Bodiam Castle Halloween half term

25 Oct-2 Nov: Standen Halloween Fun

26 Oct-2 Nov: Halloween at Uppark

27 Oct-2 Nov: Petworth Wild Ghost Chase Family Trail

29-31 Oct: Petworth Sorcerer Academy

30 Oct: Woolbeding Countryside Hallowe’en of Terror

30 Oct: Bateman’s Halloween Spooky supper

1 Nov: Three Witches Charity Ball at Petworth

For more information visit:


Wild Woodies Holiday Clubs

Sussex Wildlife Trust

27 October 10am-3pm: Swallowtail Hill Farm, Beckley

28 October 10.30am-3pm: Seven Sisters Country Park, Eastbourne

A whole day of outdoor holiday fun including a campfire, shelter building, games and woodland crafts.

Please bring a packed lunch and drink and wear suitable outdoor clothing/footwear. Parents do not accompany children. Booking is essential.

For further details on locations, suitable ages, activities, prices and online booking tel: 01273 497561 or visit: