Set on a moated island surrounded by glorious gardens, Michelham Priory is one of the most beautiful historic houses in Sussex. Founded in 1229 for Augustinian canons, the Priory is approached through a 14th-century gatehouse spanning the longest water-filled medieval moat in the country. Most of the original priory was demolished during the Dissolution, but the remains were incorporated into a Tudor farm that became a country house. Outside, the gardens are enhanced by a fully restored medieval watermill, physic garden, smithy, rope museum and the dramatic Elizabethan Great Barn. A variety of special events take place throughout the year.
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Discover East Sussex
East Sussex, along with its western counterpart, is packed with interest. This is a land of stately homes and castles, miles of breezy chalk cliffs overlooking the English Channel, pretty rivers, picturesque villages and links to our glorious past. Mention Sussex to many people and images of the South Downs immediately spring to mind – ‘vast, smooth, shaven, serene,’ as the writer Virginia Woolf described them. She and her husband lived at Monk’s House in the village of Rodmell, near Lewes, and today, her modest home is managed by the National Trust and open to the public.
There are a great many historic landmarks within Sussex, but probably the most famous is the battlefield where William, Duke of Normandy defeated Harold and his Saxon army to become William the Conqueror of England. By visiting Battle, near Hastings, you can, with a little imagination, picture the bloody events that led to his defeat. East Sussex’s pretty towns such as Lewes, Rye and Uckfield have their charms, while the city of Brighton offers museums and fascinating landmarks, the best-known and grandest feature being the Royal Pavilion.
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