Rye Heritage Centre
Rye Heritage Centre
4.5
Visitor CentresSpeciality Museums
Tuesday
10:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Wednesday
10:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Thursday
10:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Friday
10:30 AM - 4:00 PM
Saturday
10:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Sunday
10:30 AM - 4:30 PM
About
The perfect start to your visit to Rye! The Rye Heritage Centre is the home of the 'Story of Rye' Town Model Sound and Light show, a handmade scale model of Victorian Rye that plays a show that takes you through 700 years of Rye's history. The Heritage Centre is also host to a fantastic working collection of Old Pier Penny Arcade amusement machines, a souvenir and gift shop, The Smuggler's Attic experience. Guided Walks are also available.
Duration: < 1 hour
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4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles417 reviews
Excellent
248
Very good
130
Average
26
Poor
6
Terrible
7

Albert D
Sutton, UK1 contribution
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2021
Visited here in July 2021. Although lockdown restrictions had been removed my wife and I were aggressively told by the man behind the counter that we should be wearing masks. We are both exempt for genuine medical reasons and were very offended to be confronted this way. We should not have to explain our medical history's simply to enter this centre, particularly as there was no-one else in there!

Won't be going there again if that's the best Rye Council can provide!
Written July 29, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Hi - thanks for your feedback, we will be sure to use it to help train our volunteers and improve our customer service.
Written September 17, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

laura w
7 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2021 • Couples
Our visit to Rye Heritage Centre was excellent. The town model, show and introductory talk were detailed, informative and really interesting. The gift shop is well stocked with some lovely mementoes, including a little bear that now resides in our car. The volunteers were friendly and approachable. We can't recommend this highly enough - remember to take a few pound coins for the penny arcade too! Well worth a visit, a lovely insight into the history and heritage of Rye.
Written September 5, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you ! We are so glad you enjoyed your visit - good feedback is a real boost to our hardworking volunteer staff. Lovely to hear that one of our bears has a cherished new home :-)
Written September 17, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

amandanack
Rye, UK2 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2021
Upon entering the Rye Heritage Centre, we were greeted by the two lovely, professional, helpful staff members. The town model, made to scale of Victorian Rye was fascinating and incredibly detailed. Whilst looking at the town model we watched the sound and light show which is all about 700 years of Rye's history.

There is also a collection of old pier arcade machines and items on sale in the shop, including books and guides. A great way, whilst looking around Rye, to spend an hour or so. Thoroughly enjoyable both for adults and kids.
Written September 12, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you ! We are so glad you enjoyed your visit - good feedback is a real boost to our hardworking volunteer staff
Written September 17, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Tony M
2 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2022 • Couples
Popped in to see what Rye was all about. Women, I assume we're staff, they were behind the counter,were busy chatting to each other.
My wife and I sat down to see the display on the.monitors and cod see a door to our right. Looked in to see a model of the town and a sign it was some sort of show for £4.50 about the town.
As my wife and I were the only ones in the place, thought the staff might show some interest in us and explain what the show was etc, but they were all still too busy chatting.
We left. If you are going to set up a heritage centre they are least have some staff that are willing to take an interest.in the visitors.
Written October 18, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Hi Tony, thanks for your feedback. I'm sorry you and your wife felt neglected although I am certain that had you made an approach to the volunteers on the desk they would have been very happy to engage with you. I am confident that this is a one off as we are frequently complemented on the friendly and helpful service that visitors receive from our all wonderful volunteer staff Simon, Manager, Rye Heritage Centre
Written October 30, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Manfred B
138 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2022
We stumbled across the Heritage Centre after having left the Car Park. Just as well, as the visit to the Heritage Centre was most informative and the right prelude to walking around the Historic Town Centre.

The educational video only took some 7-10 minutes and was modestly priced. It was very easy to start the walk from the bottom of Mermaid Street.

The staff at the Heritage Centre were very friendly and helpful in providing some tips as to how best to explore Rye. It was very easy to reach the bottom of Mermaid Street from the Heritage Centre and a good place to start the Walk.
Written November 22, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

chucky77
Leeds15 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2024 • Friends
Sometimes when a relatively small space is managed really well, over decades, by people who fully appreciated the opportunity of what they had been loaned, and in doing so were given the enormous privilege of being able to provide such a super rare collection of interactive and entertaining vintage automata and working models that are seldom seen anywhere else in the Country on public display, this little space of marvelous mechanical delights and part of our costal social history was truly something to behold, reminisce over, relive fond childhood memories, show the children and the grandchildren and for a time spend a few pennies of sheer enjoyment down memory lane. One of the best collections of rare penny slot machines, novelties and working models in all of the UK, all upstairs, well set out, perfectly displayed, and earning money for the Heritage Centre. Fantastic.

Now.... imagine some fool decided to change all that, send two thirds of the machines back, and move the few remaining ones downstairs, a shadow of it's former self.
I don't think Rye Heritage Centre is exactly awash with funds. The machines once brought a good income, not any more. Academics are usually not entrepreneurs and this is a typical example of how to trash something.
I do hope whoever is currently in charge moves swiftly on, they probably think they're doing a good job? Unfortunately in most trusts and charities the hopeless get promoted and eventually end up at the top. In this instance they should be downgraded to preside over a very small kiosk to manage.
I'm expecting some patronising response, but at the end of the day Rye Heritage Centre, you didn't appreciate what you had, and you ruined that for everyone.
Shame on you.
Written July 19, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Hab7
Ashford9 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2022 • Family
I definitely recommend starting your trip to rye here. The town model is brilliant and the history of the town is explained and even the ghost stories!

Staff are very helpful and have a great knowledge of the town.

Bring a pound to exchange for old pennies to use on the old slot/games machines, kids loved it!
Written April 18, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

KarenMarshall
Studley, UK120 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Couples
Friendly helpful staff. Very informative and interesting talk on the history of the area cleverly illustrated by means of a superb model of Rye, with lighting and special effects. Good display for D Day 80 and enjoyed visiting the smugglers!
Also good to see and use the old penny machines!
Written June 9, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Claudia P
Berlin, Germany129 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2016 • Solo
Initially, I had planned to take part in the Rye History Walk but I missed it because I was too late. So I went to the Heritage Centre and asked what I could do instead. The lady at the counter was very friendly and helpful and provided me with a map of Rye and an audio guide. It was easy to use and provided me with all the information about the history of Rye I had hoped to get on the tour I had missed - with the advantage of being able to walk as fast or slow as I wanted. The weather was phantastic so I could make a break here and there, sit in the sunshine, enjoy the views and than proceed with my audio guide.

Conclusion: especially recommended for those who like to be independent.
Written October 3, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

elisabeth m
Southampton, UK37 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2017 • Couples
What a great centre.
We visited this after having an initial walk around Rye. It made such a difference to our last day and put everything in its place. The staff were amazingly knowledgeable and happy to answer any questions.
The light and sound show was excellent and would highly recommend this to visitors to Rye.
We did have a few goes on the old amusements upstairs whilst we were waiting. It's fabulous they are restored and in working order but the highlight is definitely the show and the welcome you get from the guides. Brilliant.
Written March 12, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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