ARUNDEL is a busy old town on the River Arun, dominated by its castle, which is often described as Windsor in miniature. The Arundel Castle cricket ground is one of the most attractive in the country and features high-profile touring games. The High Street, climbing steeply between the river and the castle, has plenty of antiques shops, but none of the standard chain stores. There is a butcher, a fine-wines-cum-deli, and a walking-stick shop in an old printing works in Tarrant Sreet. The outdoor heated lido opens its doors to swimmers in summer. Chichester is only ten miles away, with its attractions for yachtsmen and theatergoers, though Arundel has its own Priory Playhouse for smaller-scale productions. Goodwood racecourse is also ten miles away on the Downs, and there are plenty of golf courses. The sea is four miles away, and there is a good beach at Climping. The River Arun has to be watched; it is tidal, and one of the fastest flowing rivers in the country after the Severn. The Arundel Wetland Centre, founded by Sir Peter Scott, runs special events for children during the school holidays.
You could buy a two-bedroom cottage in the old town for £275,000, but for a building in traditional brick-and-flint, you will have to pay a premium of £300,000 to £325,000. For three-bedroom houses the price jumps to £350,000 to £400,000. People opt either for old Arundel, which climbs up the hill, layer upon layer towards the castle, or they look at the larger Fifties’ houses on the slightly cheaper Chichester side. These have big gardens and garages, are within walking distance of the town and are rather more suburban. A four-bedroom house in this neighbourhood will cost around £450,000.
The villages of Burpham and Wepham lie to the east, on the way up to the top of Harrow Hill where the views are wonderful. Both are popular, and a modern, detached four-bedroom home would start at £500,000, rising to £850,000 for a similar sized period house. Slindon, to the west, is the kind of village people wait years for a chance to move into. Not only because of its beauty, but because the involvement of the National Trust means that very few houses are still freehold. A period house with five bedrooms and a small paddock could cost £750,000.