Walks: Glynde to Seaford, Southease to Seaford, Seaford to EastbourneBerwick to Exceat or SeafordLewes to Seaford via West FirleSeaford Circular via Alfriston and Bishopstone

The big curve of pebbly beach between Newhaven's harbour mouth and the cliffs of Seaford Head is rather bare and unadorned. Unusually for a seaside town, Seaford does not put up much of a show immediately behind it, though its old centre is not without charm. Despite this, it is a reliable swimming beach, with moderately shelving shingle giving good depth at all states of the tide.

  • You never get down to flat sand here, even at low tide. That means the water is always quite deep close to the shore and so is not suitable for weaker swimmers who don't want to go out of their depth. An exception is right at the far western end of the beach near the Newhaven harbour wall (best reached from Newhaven Harbour station), where the sea is shallow for a good distance from the shore at low tide. This is also a very quiet and unfrequented end of the beach if you are looking for solitude.

  • This beach can be dangerous when the sea is choppy, as waves break sharply onto the shore and then drag back fiercely on the shingle. In calmer seas, watch out also for the washes of the distant car ferries plying in and out of Newhaven.

  • The shingle area behind the beach between Seaford and Newhaven, is a fascinating nature area, full of interesting flora, birds and butterflies in spring and summer. In the middle of it is the Tide Mills, the remains of a former tidal mill, and nearby the abandoned platform of the original Bishopstone station.

  • The Martello tower - a round Napoleonic-era fortification towards the east end of the beach - is the most westerly in a chain that was built around the coast to repel possible invasion forces. The other end of the chain is Aldeburgh in Suffolk.

  • The cliffs at the east end of the beach are home to a kittiwake colony from May to July. It is the only nesting site of these seagull-like birds on the south coast: they are otherwise only found on remote Scottish or North Sea locations

  • Food and drink: there is a popular kiosk cafe by the beach huts just beyond the Martello Tower, and plenty of refreshment opportunities in the town itself. The Trawlers fish and chip shop near the station is one of the best in the south east.

No comments:

Post a Comment