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PUBLISHED: 15:39 21 June 2013 | UPDATED: 10:44 27 June 2013




Ditchling is a village located within the boundaries of the South Downs National Park

Did you know?

On the source

Ditchling Common is the source of the eastern River Adur, which meets with the western River Adur near Henfield and flows in to the English Channel at Shoreham-by-Sea.

The grass really is greener

Within the parish of Ditchling there are two Sites of Special Scientific Interest. The first is the Clayton to Offham Escarpment, which is valued for its rare chalk grassland habitat. The second is Ditchling Common, which thanks to its many different draining conditions, plays host to a variety of heath grassland.

Humble beginnings

First recorded in 765 under the name Dicelinga, Ditchling later belonged to King Alfred. After his death in the year 900 it was given to a kinsmen named Osferth, and then reverted to the Crown under Edward the Confessor. The Domesday book mentions a church and a mill, with around 150 households.

Ditchling Beacon

The beacons were once lit along the south coast to warn of invasion – more recently they were used to celebrate the Queen’s Jubilee. The views from here are spectacular, as it’s one of the highest points on the South Downs.


While you’re there


The All England Jumping Course, Hickstead

(01273 834315;

Just down the road is the home of British showjumping. But even if horses hold no interest for you, the shows are well worth a visit for the trade stands alone


The General Restaurant

(01273 846638;

Traditional, rustic dishes from around the world, using seasonal, local produce


The Bull

(01273 843147;

Within the South Downs National Park, low timber beams, open fires and deep leather sofas make this a cosy option, with a great collection of drinks. Don’t forget your dog


Tovey Lodge

(01273 256156;

Look out of your bedroom window at three acres of garden and the South Downs National Park beyond. The indoor swimming pool and jacuzzi are the perfect way to relax after a walk


Notable neighbours – Raymond Briggs, the illustrator behind The Snowman, lived here. Dame Vera Lynn and radio presenter Jamie Theakston live in the area

Getting there – Just off the A23. The nearest train station is 2 miles away in Hassocks


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