Next Wednesday is Sussex Day (16 June) and West Sussex Record Office and Screen Archive South East will be hosting an exciting free online event at 7pm called West Sussex Unwrapped Live: South Downs National Park.

This virtual event is a special opportunity to get up close and personal with unique documents and film footage telling the story of the magnificent South Downs National Park and to hear from the archivists and curators who care for these collections.

Viewers will be able to experience:

  • detailed drawings by famous landscape designer Humphrey Repton,
  • find out how the Downs has been used for hiking, camping and more,
  • follow actress and author Nancy Price’s campaign to protect this unique landscape,
  • see Land Girls bringing in the wheat harvest,
  • view what is probably the oldest surviving film of West Sussex,
  • and go on a journey to see how the South Downs has developed and changed over the centuries.

West Sussex Unwrapped Live starts at 7pm on Wednesday 16 June 2021 and will last for around one hour. It will be held via Zoom and bookings can be made through Eventbrite by searching for ‘West Sussex Unwrapped’.

Duncan Crow, West Sussex County Council Cabinet Member for Community Support, Fire and Rescue, said: “The onset of the pandemic may have stopped people attending the Record Office, but the team didn’t let that stop them from bringing the Record Office to the public with West Sussex Unwrapped.

“Now in its second series, West Sussex Unwrapped has allowed people across West Sussex and beyond to explore the historical, celebratory, nostalgic and quirky sides of our fantastic county. I’m really excited for the live event on Sussex Day as it will allow both the Record Office and Screen Archive South East to bring the history of West Sussex to life. It will also showcase what they do best - share their love of history and the archives with others.”

Speaking on the night will be Frank Gray, Director of Screen Archive South East at the University of Brighton, and Jennifer Mason, Assistant County Archivist (Collections Management) at West Sussex Record Office.

The event will be introduced by Wendy Walker, West Sussex County Archivist and there will be an opportunity to ask questions via the chat box after the event.

Dr Frank Gray said: “It is a pleasure to be collaborating with West Sussex Record Office on a live version of West Sussex Unwrapped for Sussex Day. Series one and two have been packed with a variety of interesting films, pictures and blog posts that cover everything from railways to rural traditions.

“To celebrate Sussex Day, we have specially prepared a compilation that provides a grand tour of the National Park. It features panoramic views of the Downs, Land Girls bringing in the wheat harvest and concludes with probably the oldest surviving film of West Sussex. We can’t wait for people to see it and to interact with viewers on the day through the live Q&A session at the end.”

The event will be recorded and will be shared on West Sussex Record Office’s brand-new YouTube channel which will be launched in the days following the talk.

To catch up on series one and two, visit

Notice Date: 08/06/2021