Wednesday, 13 March 2019

Alfriston

Ye Olde Smugglers Inne, Alfriston

The ancient and charming village of Alfriston in East Sussex lies in the valley of the River Cuckmere and is about 4 miles from the town of Seaford. Neolithic remains on the Downs near to the village suggest ancient occupation and in the Cuckmere Valley the earliest archeological features are Roman roads. 

During Saxon times the village was known as Aelfrictun, meaning the town of Alfric. During the Saxon period, from the 5th century  and into the Middle Ages the village grew into a bustling market town until the population was drastically reduced by "The Black Death". During the late 18th and early 19th century, at the time of the Napoleonic War troops were stationed in the town  which prospered and thrived. However, when the war ended and the troops left the economy collapsed and Alfriston became the quiet village that it is today.

The Starr Inn is thought to have been built by the Abbot of Battle in 1520 as a hostel for mendicant friars. Ye Ole Smugglers Inne belonged to a notorious smuggler and has numerous rooms, doors, staircases, hiding places and tunnels. St Andrew's Church was built during the 14th century, the churchyard being built on an old Saxon mound.

St Andrew's Church
This picturesque flint church, situated close to the pretty Cuckmere River was built in the 1370's on a small flint walled mound, probably the site of an original church. St Andrew's is often referred to as the "Cathedral of the Downs". The church was built in the form of a Greek Cross and because it was built all at one time no later additions were required. 

St Andrew's Church


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