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Life on Watership Down

Original oil paintings chosen by Watership Down author Richard Adams for the 40th anniversary edition of his novel are on display at the National Trust’s Sandham Memorial Chapel in Burghclere.

  • Booking not needed
  • Free event (admission applies)

Life on Watership Down, which runs from 21 March to 23 June features artworks by Hampshire-based artist Aldo Galli.

The author Richard Adams commissioned Galli to illustrate the 40th anniversary edition of Watership Down, which came out in 2012. It was first published in the United States, then in Britain and all over the world.

Sandham Memorial Chapel sits on the edge of Watership Down in the village of Burghclere - the Down can be seen from the Chapel’s orchard and Adams grew up just a few miles away. Artist Stanley Spencer whose First World War murals decorate the interior of Sandham Memorial Chapel incorporated the same much-loved landscape into his piece, Resurrection of Soldiers.

Visitors to Sandham can follow the story through the paintings and literary quotations from the book, while an audio recording plays interviews with Richard Adams from a documentary filmed by enthusiast Stuart Robinson. Inspired by the paintings, a free family spotter trail runs in the garden outside the chapel.

Life on Watership Down is open 11am-3pm, Thursdays to Sundays between 21 March and 23 June, also Bank Holiday Mondays on 1 April, 6 May and 27 May 2024.



Event ticket prices

This event is free, but normal admission charges apply for the venue.

Check admission prices

The basics


Inspired by the paintings, a free family spotter trail runs in the garden.


Accessible parking available on site and entrance to exhibition is on the ground floor with wheelchair accessible access.

Contact info

Sandham Memorial Chapel

Upcoming events


Service at Sandham 

A religious service led by Rev Mark Christian including references to the paintings of Stanley Spencer in Sandham Memorial Chapel.

Event summary

4 Jul to 3 Oct 2024
10:00 to 10:45
+ 3 other dates or times

Highlights Tours 

Get beneath the surface of Sir Stanley Spencer’s paintings on a 45-minute bespoke tour of the chapel.

Event summary

6 Jul to 28 Sep 2024
10:00 to 10:45
+ 1 other date or time