*** Covid 19 update ***

May 2021

Our Cafe is open and we are offering outside seating and limited inside seating. Please see Facebook for the latest updates. Inside reservations are essential.

Opening times

Shop 9am – 5pm
Cafe kitchen for food 9am – 3pm
Drinks and cake 9am – 4pm.

Times listed above may change at short notice depending upon weather/staffing and quiet days and Bank Holidays.

Inside seating is limited and following the latest Government guidelines.  Reservations for inside are essential – even for a cup of tea!

Outside seating is also available and no reservations are taken for this space.  If its busy when you arrive, give it a few minutes and space usually appears.

Our priority is to operate in a safe way for both our customers and our staff. Face coverings are required (unless exempt) to move around inside and should only be taken off once seated.  If you are ordering for takeaway or for the outside seating, you will need a face coving to order at our inside counter.  At this time we are still operating the same menu as you can find on this website, but some items that day may not be available depending upon our supply chain.  We are limiting customers into the shop at any one time, which means you may have to queue in the rain.  Please pay by contactless payment where possible.  Thank you for keeping to these polices and keep well.

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We are a Village Shop and Cafe in the Southdowns national park in the heart of West Sussex.

The Forge consists of three complementary elements:

A village Shop offering a useful and desirable range of food and grocery products – everyday essentials for top-up/convenience shopping

We also have a range of fresh produce and deli-type products, specialising in local produce where possible.
As you would expect we also have some newspapers, magazines and stamps plus some related services such as dry cleaning and bill payment services.

If there are things you’d like us to stock by all means come and chat to us – we value ideas and suggestions.

Our Country Café for both villagers and visitors alike, serves great coffee, cake, sandwiches and rolls etc,  plus light lunches, snacks & take-away – again using locally sourced produce as far as possible. complementary WIFI is also available!

Finally we also have and Information Centre with interpretation materials, leaflets, etc about the Slindon estate and the wider South Downs National Park.
For local walks and downloadable maps see the history page or by clicking here.

The project was originally run as a not-for-profit community initiative, organised as a Co-operative and Community Benefit Society, who hold the lease with the freeholder, The National Trust. Community co-operation in running the project (via membership, volunteering and a community share scheme) was a key element of the project in the early days.

After five years of trading, in April 2017 the Forge adopted a slightly different take on the community shop model as the community became landlords to Craig Ramus as the new tennant.

Craig shares the same vision and ambition as the community and hopes to make the Forge even more successful over the next five years and beyond!

Opening Hours & How to Find Us

Opening Hours

Open 7 days a week

Shop: 9am – 5pm
Cafe kitchen for food: 9am – 3pm
Drinks and cake: 9am – 4pm


Tel: 01243 814324


The Forge
Reynolds Lane
BN18 0QT