Countryside town where Julie Walter's organic farm provides businesses with seasonal produce

Julie walters and west sussex

Julie Walters leads a 'green' lifestyle in one of the country's most idyllic counties

Solen Le Net

By Solen Le Net

Published: 17/03/2024

- 15:27

Julie Walters is a committed community member of a small village in West Sussex

British actress Dame Julie Walters is a prominent figure in the British film industry thanks to her earthy portrayals of working-class Britain.

The role that propelled the Walters to stardom, however, was the title character in Willy Russell’s Play Educating Rita.

Born in Birmingham, the actress traded the hustle and bustle of the city for a rural life in a West Sussex village that sits on the edge of the South Down National Park.

Her home is in Plaistow, considered one of Sussex’s most idyllic locales due to its picturesque setting and charming period homes.

Dame Julie Walters

Dame Julie enjoys a slower pace of life in the countryside


Walters reportedly lives on a small organic farm there with her husband Grant Roffey, whom she met in a Fulham pub in 1985.

She told Great British Life in 2018: “We live down in West Sussex on a farm which a little over 200 acres, and it’s very much a working operation.

“It’s livestock rather than arable. We have our own vegetable part, so we’re quite green, which I thoroughly approve of. It’s an organic farm: cattle, sheep and chickens - 40 cattle, 700 chickens and about 100 sheep.”

As dedicated members of the local community, Walters and Roffey, take great pride in providing their produce to local businesses.

“We have a couple of stalls in the local town and sell to some of the local hotels,” explained Walters. “We have a lot of loyal customers we can’t make it much bigger because it would become a factory.”

West Sussex has become a popular hub among celebrities, partly due to its fantastic weather. In fact, it holds a 29-year record with the Met Office for being the sunniest county in England.

Additional perks include sweeping fields and a protected coastline that boasts outstanding natural beauty.

Plaistow is located 12 miles south of the town of Guilford and is ideally situated for motorsports events like the Festival of Speed.

The Travel Site Inspired Villages: “Not only does West Sussex have the South Downs National Park to explore, but there are also many lovely beaches and charming seaside towns only a short drive away.

“Littered around West Sussex, you’ll find charming market towns waiting to be explored,” the experts add, citing East Grinstead and Easebourne and some of the best.


\u200bWest Sussex

West Sussex has a track record of being the sunniest county in England


Those hoping to explore more of Sow Down National Park will find many attractions scattered across the 600-mile reserve.

Top on the list of attractions are the historic buildings including Arundel Castle, Petworth House, and the ruins of Cowdray House.

Many of the towns and villages nearby are brimming with traditional public and farm shops selling organic produce.

Visitors happy to venture further afield can visit major coastal towns lining the south coast, namely Brighton, Newhaven, Seaford and Worthing.

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