A "statare" was a cotter, i.e. a very poor farm worker who owned nothing himself. He settled at major farms in the agricultural parts of Sweden and received lodging with his family in cold and damp "cotters houses". There is a very good description in English if you use the second link below. The system existed in Sweden roughly from 1750-1950 and the cotters had no real rights at all and belonged to the lowest on the social scale. This museum is built to honour them and tell you things about their life. It is housed in a real cotters house so some things you see are things left here when the system ended or similar things collected according to stories told by the last families who lived here and worked the fields and milked the cows for Torup Castle - just one of all the manor houses using cotters. It is quite a moving museum and it is not hard to imagine the dampness that made the single men in the loft use the walls to get wood for fuel...Winters in flat and windy Scania can be cold even now when you leave your snug apartment. The cotters' story is told by signs in Swedish and sometimes English, so you get to understand why it took a week to get laundry ready and why the washing women during winter sometimes needed to pee on their hands to keep them warm during the process! The milk maidens story is also told and also life for the children and how the cotters finally liberated themselves with the help of some politicians. In the beginning, they were just sacked when they tried to organise themselves to have a strong voice. There is also an exhibition on how former concentration camp victims "rescued" to Sweden had to work in Scanian farms when they thought they'd been freed...yet another embarrassing story from WWII and Sweden...When you've seen all this and the pig and other animals at the back of the barn, it is time for yummy waffles in the lovely garden cafe! Note that it is closed most Saturdays so check the website before you visit. See the travelogue below for many more pictures.
Near Torup castle is a school museum next to the old village school, showing you what a school out here looked like.
Surrounding the castle is quite a chunk of beech forest which is the beloved green escape for many Malmö citizens and schools go here on field days and such. It is at its most gorgeous in late April and May when the beeches have just turned green and there is a carpet of white anemones on the ground below (see the intro picture). The forest has several trails and there is a centre near the castle with changing rooms and shower facilities for those who come here to run. There is also a big adventure playground for children. I am quite happy I finally got here after three years in Malmö - I just thought this place would be like the beech forests outside Brussels and guess I needed some distance once back in Sweden :)
The Statarmuseet/Cotters Museum (see tip) has a cafe full of historical gadgets inside. In summer you can sit in the lovely garden and pig out on Swedish waffles with cream and jam (see secon pic) or lovely sandwiches whilst looking at the flowers and the beech forest. :)
Favorite Dish: Waffles!
To Svedala itself, you can easily get by train from Malmö Central station and from Ystad. To get around the countryside itself is much harder and the area I have written a lot about here (Torup) is best reached with your own car or by bike BUT in May and early June, you can get here by Naturbussen (the Nature Bus) which takes people from Malmö and Lund to inaccessible countryside gems - see second link. Otherwise, get a bus from Malmö to Bara or bus 140 from Oxie to Skabersjö and walk the rest of the way.
Interesting side fact is that Svedala is where Malmö airport Sturup is - personally, I live closer to Copenhagen airport!