A £7.1 million restoration project at Stanmer Park has been completed.
The six year project has restored some of the park’s listed farm buildings and ponds around the estate, including the stables and the walled garden, which is now called One Garden.
The changes include managed car parks to replace ad hoc parking along the entrance road, with revenue partially going back into the maintenance of the park.
Funding came from a £4 million grant from The National Lottery, topped up with investment from Brighton and Hove City Council, Plumpton College and the South Downs National Park Authority.
Councillor Tim Rowkins, chair of the new City Environment, South Downs and The Sea Committee, said: “As the city’s largest park and the gateway to the South Downs National Park, Stanmer is a real treasure and we’re lucky to have such a beautiful and historically significant park within our city.
“Everyone involved came together to invest in Stanmer Park and create a more accessible experience for visitors, whether you’re cycling around the estate, walking through the woodlands or having lunch at the restaurant in One Garden.
“Preserving the estate’s history was a key part of the project and the parks team have delivered fantastic improvements across Stanmer.
“With the six-year project now coming to a close, we’re entering an exciting new era for Stanmer Park. We hope residents and visitors take an opportunity to visit this summer and enjoy all that Stanmer has to offer.”
Listed farm buildings which had fallen into disrepair have been restored, with the farmyard now open to the public for the first time.
Volunteers have helped maintain new areas of coppiced woodland, where trees are cut on a regular cycle to preserve biodiversity.
Amphibian charity, Froglife, helped to restore dew ponds around the estate to encourage and support amphibians and insect life.
Work to the bridleway around the estate is ongoing, with funding from National Highways to create a cycling and walking route.
At One Garden Brighton, the Grade II listed brick and flint heritage walls have been repaired and an all-seasons garden, pollinator garden and medicinal garden have been built.
One Garden is now looking to restore the Palm House, a greenhouse which used to grow and display native and tropical plants, so it can open to visitors in 2024.
Around 500,000 people visit the green-flag award winning Stanmer Park annually.
The park itself is a grade II registered landscape, including the grade I listed Stanmer House and 25 grade II listed buildings and structures.
Stuart McLeod, from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, said: “We are thrilled to celebrate the completion of works at the Stanmer Estate.
“Thanks to money raised by National Lottery players, a £4 million grant helped to restore this historically important 18th Century landscape and buildings.
“With community at the heart of the restoration, this ambitious makeover ensures that Stanmer Park will be enjoyed by visitors and its local community for many years to come.”