castle itself is closed to the public except
for occasional tours by Historical
Societies, as it is a private family home,
but the estate is crisscrossed with about
26km of public rights of way, plus
additional permissive routes together with
groups visits, and an open access area.
who live on the estate believe that the use
of these routes has become a whole lot
better since we reverted from conventional
agriculture to the parkland and wildland
projects and certainly the number of people
that use the footpaths in the park has
escalated enormously with the main
attraction being the potential to see our
& Footpaths The
estate and West Sussex County Council
maintain the public network jointly, and we
work closely with the local ranger service
to ensure that our rights of way network is
in good condition.
2010 listening to some locals, we have
invested considerably in the main bridleway
at Penbridge by resurfacing the worst areas
around the bridge itself.
We were assisted with the valiant
efforts of volunteer helpers on our big
volunteer day in September, the object being
to cut back any scrub growth on the inside
of the ditches.
We will then go on to reduce the
height of the main hedges that flank the
bridleway and hope that light will help to
keep the surface dry.
will over the next few years be continuing
to clear the ditches on this bridleway and
hope to maintain this in the long term as a
lovely country walk or ride, through the
heart of the estate.
do rely heavily on people’s comments on
the footpath network and if anyone
identifies any hazards or obstacles please
do bring them to our attention so that we
can deal with them.
animals may be encountered on any of these
footpaths or bridleways but hopefully they
will get out of the way and if they seem
stubborn and won’t budge then do feel free
to move around and leave the definitive line
of the route.
To try and make more sense of some of the
footpaths we have created some links and
additions around Shipley, Dial Post and
These new routes can be seen on the
plans on the left of this page. Click on the
map you would like to look at.
area around the old Knepp Castle ruin is
also an open access area and has been now
since 2002, so please do feel free to park
at Floodgates entrance and visit the old
Our area is very popular with horse riders
and again in order to make some sense of the
local riding routes and try and encourage
people to avoid the roads, we have created a
Toll Ride network TROT).
The idea is that you subscribe to
ride on these.
They are not open for anyone to ride
on as there is considerable additional costs
each year in maintaining them and we
therefore insist on a membership system and
we do police this!
Once a rider becomes a member of TROT they
can use ALL other farm or forestry routes
nationwide for no extra fee (see
the TROT web site).
you would like to join the Trot Ride Scheme
to use these do please contact Jo Francis
There have always been the odd visit from
interest groups and schools to the estate,
but this was formalised in 2002 when we went
into Countryside Stewardship when it became
an obligation on us to have at least 5 of
these visits a year, particularly aimed at
few years ago we became so inundated with
requests that we had our own bespoke trailer
built to ferry people around and in the last
3 years numbers of visitors has doubled year
on year, with about 650 visiting in 33
groups in 2010.
tours are limited to the period when ground
conditions are suitable, but in the winter
walks can be arranged to show some of the
hidden secrets in the park.
Generally 25 is the maximum number
that we like to accommodate on a visit and
if you have a group that would like to
attend please do e-mail Jason@knepp.co.uk.
members of the public who are not associated
with any group, we do have two visits a year
– Open Farm Sunday in June and the Horsham
Food Festival in September.
If you would like to sign up for
either of these to visit then please contact
Sandra at the estate office.
is a very long list of groups that have
visited now since 2002 and some incredible
feedback from people who have visited which
does make what we do all the more
when visiting Knepp we obviously hope that
you have a wonderful visit but we do ask
that certain rules are adhered to:
On no account should any of the
animals be fed or petted.
The reason for this is that they will
then trouble the next person walking through
the estate for attention and this may not be
welcome and can lead to danger.
We insist that walkers follow the
Countryside Code, particularly in relation
to dog walking during the bird nesting
Our gamekeepers will become quite
excitable if they come across dogs roaming
away from footpaths as once a bird is put
off its nest it will not return.
New mothers will always protect their
young and this is important in the animal
Whilst new piglets, calves, foals are
all lovely to see, on no account should they
be approached or should you find yourself in
between them and their mother.
Anyone who watches Springwatch will
know that on no account should you ever ever
think that a fawn found on its own tucked up
in the long grass is abandoned. This natures way of drawing predators away from newborn
animals and the only time the fawn will be
in danger is if it is touched by human hands
as it will then invariably be abandoned and
will die. Our other animals also behave in this way to a certain extent
and so please do not touch fawns, calves,
piglets or foals that may be found on their
all means if you are concerned telephone the
estate office to make us aware if you think
there is a problem.
There are many other ways that people can
become involved with the estate or visit on
is an annual coarse fishing event on
Springwood Pond to raise money for
have small wild game shoot but do
occasionally need helpers (beaters) and
anyone interested should phone the
office (01403 741 235).
host two of St Catherine’s Hospice
main events on the estate to enable them
to raise money for our local hospice.
We do not charge for these events
and hope very much that they will be
well attended so that the maximum
revenue can be raised by the charity.
from the Trot route and the bridleways,
the local hunt still trail hunt through
the estate and always welcome new
local Ranger Service (01403 864001 or firstname.lastname@example.org)
organise many group visits to the estate
to carry out restoration projects to
ponds, hedges etc and always welcome new
visitors. The estate also organizes one or two big volunteer days a
year where we try and encourage as many
people as possible to come along and
help slash and burn or do other projects
in return for a delicious lunch.
We did this in 2009 and 2010 and
both years had fantastic turnouts albeit
surprisingly fewer locals than people
We are concentrating the efforts
of these volunteer days on the public
Rights of Way network so that people who
use these paths can enjoy the
maintenance of them and see the fruits
of their labour.
information, please contact the estate
is a link to the HSE’s guidance note http://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/ais17ew.pdf
further information please contact the