Weald & Downland Living Museum has launched a new travel bursary scheme to support schools to provide affordable opportunities to learn outside the classroom for their pupils.

Available from this month, the museum is offering eligible schools up to £400 towards the cost of travelling to the museum, which is located in the stunning South Downs near Singleton, just outside Chichester.

Deborah Hodson, head of learning at the Weald & Downland Museum, said: “As an entirely self-funded educational charity and independent museum, we are proud and delighted to introduce a new travel bursary scheme from the start of this academic year.

“We are acutely aware of the rising cost of school travel and yet we know how invaluable it is to get pupils and students of all ages out of the classroom to enhance their learning.

“We are passionate about bringing learning to life here at the museum and our award-wining schools programme offers an unforgettable experience goes from the Early Years Foundation right through to those students studying in further education and college.”

With a focus on rural heritage and its relevance today, the Weald & Downland Museum creates engaging programmes for nurseries, schools and colleges that bring the past to life through unique stories, immersive, hands-on workshops, outdoor learning, and the chance to explore its vast 40-acre site and array of buildings from the Anglo-Saxon to the Edwardian era.

The museum was one of the first sites in the country to be awarded the Learning Outside the Classroom quality badge and in 2017 also received the Sandford Award for Heritage Learning.

Its schools programme is integrated into a full schedule of events designed to make history accessible and welcome a broad range of visitors to the museum.

To be apply for the new bursary, eligible schools and colleges must be in Hampshire, Kent, Surrey, East Sussex or West Sussex areas and meet one of five other criteria relating to Free School Meal, Pupil Premium ratios and other challenges the school may be facing.

Funding is awarded on a first-come, first-served basis and applications must be received via the Weald & Downland website at least 28 days before a visit.

For further information and costs on teacher-led and museum-led visits and to apply for a travel bursary go to www.wealddown.co.uk/schools/