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Hastings Country Park with bluebells

Hastings Country Park - Points of Interest

The marked paths of this extraordinary part of the park pass through thickly wooded hillsides until they emerge into a bracken and gorse-covered stretch that leads to what was once called 'Lovers' Seat'.

This romantic spot draws its name from a true 18th century love story. There was once a seat which was used as the trysting place for the two lovers Elizabeth Boys of Hawkhurst and Charles Lamb, a naval captain of Rye. The couple's parents disapproved of the liaison and eventually it ended in a runaway marriage at St Clement's Danes Church in the Strand, London.

Legend says that a couple engaged at Lovers' Seat would have a happily married life. Unfortunately the seat is no longer there as it fell victim to the ravages of the elements when a great slice of the cliff fell away during the 1970s!


Even so the views from the remaining cliffs are still amongst the most breathtaking in the world. The artist William Holman Hunt captured the scene on canvas in 1852 in his famous work Our English Coasts (Strayed Sheep).

Warren Glen

Historically important site, farmed by Stone Age man and used as a free rabbit warren in 1254 and 1317 (hence the name!).

North's Seat

Approached by footpath from the picnic area on the Fairlight Road, North's Seat is two miles from the sea and is the highest point in the town, standing 575 feet above sea level. There was once a windmill on this spot which was destroyed by fire in 1872 and later a look-out platform erected by Frederick North, former Mayor of Hastings and local MP, which brought the height up to 600 feet.

Although the platform no longer exists, the views from this spot are extensive and you can see for more than 60 miles across the Downs and Weald in the westerly direction. On a clear day, you can even see the coast of France with the naked eye!

The Firehills

This remarkable area of Heathland is close to the Coastguard station. There are two theories about the origin of its name. One says the hills were named by seafarers who could see their blaze of colour as their ships passed by in the Channel. The other that it derives from the time when the hills were burnt for local warning signals.

Geology

The magnificent cliff sections in the park reveal some of the oldest rocks in South East England which are rich in fossilised plants and animals. The sands and clays of the cliffs are prone to rapid erosion from landsliding and inundation by the sea so please take care if you venture down to the beach.

Ecclesbourne Glen

This heavily wooded valley has many rare ferns and mosses and was the landing place and entrance to the Iron Age Hill Fort. A Coastguard Watchtower was built here in 1819 but its modern equivalent is now located on the Firehills.
 

 

Places to See

Clambers

Clambers Play Centre

One of the best and largest Children’s Play Centres in the UK with extensive indoor and outdoor areas. For children up to 12 years and a separate...

White Rock Theatre

White Rock Theatre

The White Rock Theatre offers the very best in entertainment, from headlining comedians to live music, international dance acts to shows for all the...

Perfect Pinot,Carr Taylor Vineyard

Carr Taylor Vineyard

David & Linda Carr Taylor established the vineyard, in the beautiful 1066 countryside just north of Hastings, more than 30 years ago and quickly...

Large coastal nature reserve with a vast array of wildlife

Rye Harbour Nature Reserve

A large coastal nature reserve with shingle beaches, sandy shores at low tide, grassland, saltmarsh and reedbeds bordering lakes and pools hosting a...

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Things To Do

Type
Area
Name
Itinerary

Historic Itinerary

Historic Itinerary

Divide your day between the two major sites bound up with the history of the Norman Invasion - Battle and Hastings.  William marched first...