Nicholas Pearson Associates

Projects /
West Dean Park

Clients:  Edward James Foundation and Weald and Downland Open Air Museum

Location: West Dean, Chichester, West Sussex

West Dean Park, the home of the poet and patron of surrealism, Edward James (1907-1984) is now the setting for two internationally renowned West Dean College and the Weald and Downland Open Air Museum.

Both are highly successful centres for heritage training and education, using the historic landscape and a remarkable collection of historic buildings. The continuing development of these two great institutions within the South Downs National Park and registered park required a shareholder consultation process to establish a consensual approach.

Initially, we prepared a landscape conservation management plan for the Edward James Foundation and the Open Air Museum, to guide the management of the extensive registered parkland, arboretum, woodland and pleasure grounds. The plan, grant-aided by English Heritage, also addressed options and the capacity of the landscape to accommodate visitor facilities and car parking. We have since helped the Museum develop scheme designs for new interpretation and other facilities in conjunction with Edward Cullinan Architects.