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A short History of Crowhurst


Crowhurst is a small village equidistant between Battle, Hastings, St Leonards on sea and Bexhill-on-sea in East Sussex . It has 25 listed buildings dating back to the 14 th century. The Powder Mill stream forms the boundary between Crowhurst and Catsfield for a considerable distance and then flows due south to join the Combe Haven river, dividing Crowhurst from Bexhill. It consists of some 2,168 acres, mostly pasture with some 400 acres of woods and plantations. In medieval times the sea came up to the village and the Recreation Ground and some houses nearby are below sea level.

The earliest mention of Crowhurst was in 771 when King Offa gave 8' hides (a term of measurement) to the Bishop of Selsey, who then built the Church. Crowhurst is also mentioned in the Domesday Book (1086). Crowhurst Manor was built by Walter de Scotney in the 12 th Century, the ruins of which can still be seen next to the church. Although known as Crowhurst Castle when it was built it was in fact a fortified manor.

St Georges Church was granted to the Priory of the Holy Trinity in Hastings by Walter de Scotney at the end of the 12 th century. The registers begin in 1558. The Yew Tree in the churchyard is well over 1,000 years old, one of the oldest in England , and it is certain that William the Conqueror would have passed it. In 1907 the railings were put in place to save it from further damage and the in 1938 its girth at the base was 42 feet.

There is evidence in the Forewoods of the Romans in the first century AD mining for iron, and in 1334 of 70 acres of woodland known as the ;Forwode'. In the 17th Century the ironworks of Crowhurst formed an important industry.

More recent history

The railway station was built in 1902 at the junction where the line to Bexhill branched off this was closed by Dr Beeching in 1964.

The Christian Healing Centre at The Old Rectory opened in 1928.

The Inn at Crowhurst, which used to be at the top of Station Road , was demolished in January 2000 and two houses were built on the site.

Crowhurst Parish Council was established by statute in 1894.

The recorded estimate of the population in 2006 shows that about 868 people were living in Crowhurst.

There are seven working farms within the parish boundary consisting of beef, dairy, pigs and arable.

With thanks to the Lottery Awards for All Funds