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Alfriston: Sussex towns and villages

PUBLISHED: 15:34 21 June 2013

Alfriston

Alfriston

Archant

Alfriston lies in the Cuckmere Valley just off the main A27 Eastbourne to Lewes road

A national first

The Alfriston Clergy House, a rare 14th-century Wealden ‘hall house’, was the first building to be acquired by the National Trust for conservation, in 1896.

Join the festivities

The village hosts its own annual festivals – the Summer Music Festival runs 23 – 28 July. In the week of the August bank holiday weekend, exhibitions, displays and concerts are all part of the Alfriston Festival, which culminates in the very popular Grand Fair on bank holiday Monday.

Follow in their footsteps

The Star Inn, built in 1345, was originally a hostel for monks and pilgrims travelling from Battle Abbey to the shrine of St Richard, (patron saint of Sussex), at Chichester Cathedral. The ship’s figurehead of a red lion that sits outside, is there because the Inn was once a base for the Alfriston smuggling gang – their leader was duly transported to Australia in 1830.

A musical inspiration

In 1931 Eleanor Farjeon wrote the popular hymn Morning Has Broken in Alfriston, reportedly about the beauty she saw around her in the village and its surrounding countryside.

***

While you’re there

Go…

Drusillas Park

(01323 874100; www.drusillas.co.uk)

Everything from penguins to pythons awaits you at this family-run zoo. The adventure playground will keep small people quiet for hours

Eat…

Wingrove House

(01323 870276; www.wingrovehousealfriston.com)

Fresh, seasonal produce is supplied by local farmers. One of the chefs was nominated for Sussex Young Chef of the Year 2012/13

Drink…

The George Inn

(01323 870319; www.thegeorge-alfriston.com)

This 14th Century Inn was one of the first to be granted a license. An extensive wine list, real ales and even a cocktail menu mean there’s something for everyone

Sleep…

The Riverdale House Guest House

(01323 871038; www.riverdalehouse.co.uk)

Enjoy breakfast in the conservatory, looking down over the Cuckmere Valley. Less than ten minutes away from the South Downs Way. The rooms are beautifully crisp and clean, with plenty of space

***

Notable neighbours – former Prime Minister, Ted Heath lived here

Getting there – Berwick train station is 2.2 miles away, and the A27 passes not too far away

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