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Winchelsea

Winchelsea in East Sussex

Winchelsea is a historic ancient town which stands two miles west of the town of Rye. It was founded in 1288 as a port town to replace Old Winchelsea, which was overwhlemed by the sea during the 13th century, and is a splendid example of a medieval planned town, with a grid pattern of streets.

Winchelsea, along with Rye, was one of the 'Ancient Towns' who joined the Cinque Port Confederation in the 12th century. During the Hundred Years War, the town was attacked by the French and Spanish, but its demise came with the gradual silting of its harbour. Winchelsea was still fairly prosperous in 1500 but by 1560, it had dwindled to a "settlement" of 60 households.

One of the founders of the Methodist Church, John Wesley, preached his last outdoor sermon in the town on the 7th October 1790, when he was aged 87.

Today, Winchelsea is an unspoilt small town of much character, well worth exploring, with delightful walks and fine views towards the coast. There is a pub and a motel, both providing accommodation and serving lunchtime and evening meals, and a small coffee shop. Visitors may be interested in the surviving town gates, the medieval Church of St Thomas and a small museum which is open daily during the summer months. In the churchyard is the grave of much-loved comedian Spike Milligan.

Other Towns and Villages Near Winchelsea

Event

What's On in Winchelsea?

  • Wild Woodland Weekend Club

    Saturday 25th February @ 10:00am
    Location: Beckley

    Our monthly outdoor club where children aged 6-11 can explore, play and learn in the woods with campfires, mud, dens ... more

  • Talk at Market Fisheries

    Saturday 25th February @ 10:00am
    Location: Rye

    Come and join Russell Drew from Market Fisheries at Simmons Quay for a talk on Rye Bay Scallops. There will ... more

  • Charity Vintage Fair

    Saturday 25th February for 2 days @ 10:00am
    Location: Rye

    “Charity Vintage Fair” in aid of Rye and District Boys Club and Cultural Centre in Mermaid Street - If you ... more

  • Scallop Demonstation and 5 course Luncheon

    Saturday 25th February
    Location: Rye

    Drink on arrival and 2 glasses of Clos de Val Wine per person during a five course luncheon including coffee. ... more

  • Rye History Walks

    Saturday 25th February
    Location: Rye

    Fully guided Walks of the beautiful historic Citadel led by a knowledgeable local expert. Come and explore Rye’s fabulous streets ... more

  • Tatners at Olde Worlde Wines

    Saturday 25th February
    Location: Rye

    Kyle has gained a variety of cooking styles from his travels around the globe, from French cuisine to Asian street ... more

  • Race Night

    Saturday 25th February
    Location: Beckley

    Race Night at the Rose and Crown - an opportunity to buy, name and race your own horse. Free entry, ... more

  • A Serving of Scallops and Sea Shanties

    Saturday 25th February
    Location: Rye

    Rye Bay Crew present a medley of scallops and music of the sea. Limited tickets available Ticket price TBC for ... more

  • An Evening with Mick Bolton

    Saturday 25th February
    Location: Rye

    An evening with Mick Bolton at the Grapevine. The Grapevine Rye, 1 Conduit Hill Rye, TN31 7LE ... more

  • Rye -Citals Concert

    Sunday 26th February
    Location: Rye

    Alisdair Kitchen, known to Rye audiences for his highly acclaimed operatic productions in the Rye Arts Festival, is instituting a ... more

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