West Dean College and Gardens is a special place with so much to discover.
Every penny raised thanks to your Friend membership supports the upkeep and development of West Dean College and Gardens for present and future students and visitors.
If you share our love for the arts and conservation or have a passion for the gardens then become a Friend of West Dean and be part of our story.
Complete your application form and become a Friend.
Friends go behind-the-scenes at West Dean and discover more.
The two levels of membership (College and Garden) enable you to enjoy the parts of West Dean that interest you most.
The following benefits are included in your Friend membership:
Complimentary entry - all Friends enjoy the changing face of West Dean Gardens throughout the year during normal opening hours. (Please note the gardens close from 23 December 2018 to 1 February 2019.)
Events - your chance to get behind-the-scenes. Discover more about the College and meet the people who look after West Dean house and the glorious gardens that you enjoy year round. An additional charge may apply and certain events are restricted to College Friends only.
Regular Newsletters - packed full of information to help you make the most of your membership, keep informed and right up to date with all the latest news and events.
Entry to West Dean events - Garden Friends get complimentary entry to one day of the West Dean Arts and Craft Festival. Entry fees will apply on all other event days.
Relax and have a brew! - After a long walk around the gardens, perhaps it's time for a cream tea? You can enjoy a 10% discount in the Gardens Restaurant (excluding alcohol and special menus/events) - just show your Friend membership card at the till.
College Friends receive the following additional benefits:
Entry to West Dean events - College Friends are provided with complimentary entry to the Arts and Craft Festival (all 3 days).
Make use of the College craft shop, Dining Room and Steward's bar - Connect with like-minded Friends and become part of our artistic community. Stock-up with supplies from the craft shop, have a drink in the bar or dine with us in the College dining room. Advance booking is essential.
Monthly coffee morning - Join us on the second Friday of each month from 10am for a cup of coffee and to meet other College Friends. We will also be joined by a guest speaker every other month - a great opportunity for you to hear from the people who work hard to protect the historic house, its collection and grounds. There's no need to book, just show your College Friend membership card and sign-in at the College reception. We look forward to seeing you.
It has felt like a privilege to have joined the Friends scheme. The monthly coffee mornings have been a wonderful opening to the living history of the Edward James Foundation. The warm encouragement to participate with ideas of our own gives a sense that this is not simply coffee & chat! I look forward to attending more of the special evenings arranged at the College.VIVIENNE GIACOBINO-SIMON, College Friend
Give a Gift of Friend Membership
West Dean College or Garden Friend membership for an individual or a couple, is the perfect gift for a friend or loved one to enjoy all year round. We can send the membership pack directly to the person of your choice or return it to you to give them directly.
Download your application form and return the completed form with your preferred options.
'West Dean College makes a significant contribution to the education of the artists, writers and conservators of the future and to ensuring that their important work is valued and understood.'Francine Norris, Director of Education, West Dean College
Every year we organise a number of events that are your chance to get behind-the-scenes and enjoy West Dean all year round. Come along and discover more about the College and meet the people who look after West Dean house and the glorious gardens. We look forward to welcoming you.
Renee So exhibition at the De La Warr Pavilion
Friday 1 November 2019, 11am - 2pm, De La Warr
Artist-in-residence, Renee So, is currently exhibiting a new body of work at the De La Warr Pavilion and we are inviting you to join West Dean's Degree and Diploma students for a guided visit of the exhibition and tour of the Pavilion.
Tickets are £15 per person and include:
Renee So exhibition guided viewing
Two course hot lunch
Guided tour of the De La Warr Pavilion
Click here to book
The Pavilion is only a few minutes walk from Bexhill station, and they have ample parking (paid car park on site or free on-street). Event location: De La Warr Pavilion, Marina, Bexhill On Sea, East Sussex, TN40 1DP
Please click here to visit the De La Warr Pavilion website for directions.
Carols by the Christmas Tree
'While Shepherds watched their flocks by night' Carols by the Christmas Tree with a Shepherds and Sheep theme
Thursday 12 December 2019, 2.30pm and 7.00pm in the Oak Hall, West Dean College
A programme of well-known carols for everyone to sing, carols
sung by the Winterbourne Singers
and played by the West Dean Viol Consort, including a new carol specially written for the occasion by Mary Hampton, West Dean Composer-in-Residence.
Tickets £12.50, including mulled wine and mince pies served in the Old Library during the interval.
The Christmas Gift Fair with work by West Dean Staff will be held in the Old Dining Room and Music Room, 2.00 to 8.30pm.
Click here to book the 2.30pm performance
Click here to book the 7.00pm performance
Find out about events at West Dean College.
Join us on the second Friday of each month from 10am for a cup of coffee and to meet other College Friends. We will also be joined by a guest speaker every other month - a great opportunity for you to hear from the people who work hard to protect the historic house, its collection and grounds. There's no need to book, just show your College Friend membership card and sign-in at the College reception. We look forward to seeing you.
Are you a writer? Would you like to share ideas with others who have work in progress? Then why not join this informal group of College Friends? They meet once a month to discuss ideas, critique writing and share tips and inspiration.
If you're a College Friend and would like more information on the Writers Circle contact David Warwick or call 01243 778026.
The Friends office is open Monday to Friday 9.00am - 5.00pm.
You can contact us via email or telephone us on 01243 818256 and we shall be happy to help.