How to spend 48 hours in West Sussex
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Throughout West Sussex there are fantastic shopping opportunities and here some of the best stores and independent retailers for some retail therapy. Chichester is the administrative capital of West Sussex and its only city. It also serves as the main shopping centre for the surrounding rural areas to the west and north of the county. Here, independent bookshops and antiques stores can be found alongside household names such as Marks and Spencer and John Lewis.
It might not be able to compete with Brighton but the seaside town of Worthing boasts nearly 400 retail stores, as well as a weekly market on Wednesdays in Montague Street. The Royal Arcade, a restored Edwardian shopping arcade, offers a charming shortcut from Montague Street to the seafront. For independent shops, visit Warwick Street, Rowlands Road and Portland Road.
In the north of the county, Horsham town centre’s wide, flat streets welcome in the serious shopper – The Carfax is home to specialist and independent shops and restaurants while Swan Walk shopping centre has the biggest concentration of high street names.
Petworth is the place to go for antiques, which is fitting given its centuries-old history. Did you know it is the only town outside London to boast over 30 arts and antiques dealers within a one-mile radius (according to the Petworth Antique & Decorative Arts Association)? East Street is one of the main thoroughfares, home to Petworth Antiques Market offering more than 40 antiques dealers under one roof. Among Petworth’s cobbled streets, however, you’ll also find art galleries, fashion boutiques and home interior specialists such as Augustus Brandt, Oakapple Trading Company and Twenty.
2-3 East St, Chichester PO19 1HE
Situated in the heart of historic Chichester, R.L. Austen is an independent family-run jewellers dating back to 1794 originally under the name E.H. Lewis. R.L. Austen stocks a range of high-quality jewellery, specialising in coloured gemstones and diamonds, pearls, top name branded watches and clocks, and quality name giftware. There’s also have a large selection of pre-owned jewellery, Rolex watches, and silverware. The shop also has a full range of customer services, including jewellery repairs, jewellery and watch valuations, silverware repairs, clock repairs, watch repairs, and pearl re-stringing. A level of service, a cut above the rest. Visit website
Loriner House, Broad St, Cuckfield RH17 5LJ
Sacred Cellar is an independent wine merchant and boutique off-licence in the heart of Sussex with one simple aim: to offer the very best products at every price point. Whether it’s the fine wine, artisan spirits, craft beer or unique cider, a dedication to quality ensures that more than 90 our cent of the Sacred Cellar range has won an award or major commendation around the world.
16 The Hornet, Chichester PO19 7JG
For a truly unique shopping experience, visit Draper’s Yard. Located in The Hornet in a former pub garden, this ‘village’ of sheds houses independent businesses selling everything from hand-made jewellery to alpaca wool spun on the premises. There’s even a Test Shed, which offers start-ups the opportunity to rent retail space one day at a time. Visit website
22 High St, East Grinstead RH19 3AW
It’s worth popping into East Grinstead Bookshop for the interesting features alone: Tudor House boasts black and white beams, cork oak cladding and carved faces. It is also full to the rafters with new and second-hand books. Browse the shelves and enjoy a hot drink in its cafe. Visit website
Market Square, Petworth GU28 0AG
Located in a Grade 2-listed Georgian townhouse and adjoining coach house in Pound Street, Augustus Brandt is a destination in its own right, selling antiques and bespoke furniture from more than 17 rooms. The 7,500sq ft retail space also includes a shop stocking homeware, giftware, toys and even pet accessories. Visit website
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Image credits: ©Daria Shevtsova/Jessica Ruscello/Scott Warman/Unsplash; David Prado/stock.adobe.com; ING Image; R.L. Austen