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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?

  • Hastings Tapestry

    Saturday 24th August for 3 days @ 11:00am
    Location: Rye

    Hastings Tapestry 27 panels made in 1966 by Royal Society Embroiderers to commemorate the 900th anniversary battle of Hastings. This ... more

  • Beverley Knight - Rye Jazz & Blues Festival

    Saturday 24th August
    Location: Rye

    The Rye international jazz and blues festival proudly present a special headline concert with the Queen of British Soul Beverley ... more

  • Free Rein Horse Rescue Open Day

    Sunday 25th August @ 10:00am
    Location: Beckley

    Our popular Annual Open Day is on Sunday 25th August. There will be pony rides, a fun dog show open ... more

  • Craft Fayre

    Sunday 25th August @ 11:00am
    Location: Rye

    Craft Fayre at Tilling Green Community Centre, Mason Road, Rye, East Sussex TN31 7BE on Sunday 28 July 2019 from ... more

  • Charity Boot Fair

    Monday 26th August @ 7:00am
    Location: Peasmarsh

    Bank Holiday Charity Boot Fair - Jempson’s Superstore, Peasmarsh. Hard-standing pitch from £5 (donated to Rye Day Centre) gates open ... more

  • Richard Thompson - Rye Jazz & Blues Festival

    Monday 26th August
    Location: Rye

    We are delighted to announce a special headline solo concert with the legendary Folk and Rock guitarist, singer and songwriter ... more

  • Sisters of Swing at The Mermaid

    Thursday 29th August
    Location: Rye

    An evening of outstanding live music and improvisation with the Jazznights Ensemble featuring Annie Dehaney Steven - a versatile vocalist ... more

  • Rye Country Market

    Friday 30th August @ 10:00am
    Location: Rye

    Local Produce, Cakes, Jams, Crafts and more. ... more

  • Rye Harvest Music Feastival

    Saturday 31st August @ 11:30am
    Location: Rye

    The Sussex Cancer Fund is delighted to be the beneficiaries of this exciting new music event. Local musicians are coming ... more

  • Rye Flower and Veg Show

    Saturday 31st August
    Location: Rye

    A fun Flower and Veg Show open to all to enter and open to the public from 2pm. Featuring veg, ... more

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