lewes castle near Brighton sussex
Brighton and Sussex

Lewes – the county town of East Sussex

Lewes is a most attractive market town. It’s a half an hour drive from Steyning.

Go there and you’ll see medieval streets, old English churches and tiny twittens (a Sussex word for alleyway).

Although surrounded by chalk cliffs, the town is dominated by the remains of a 1000 year Norman castle. Panoramic views are guaranteed if you climb to the top!

lewes castle near Brighton sussex

The adjoining Barbican House is home to the Museum of Sussex Archaeology with local collections from the Stone Age to medieval times. A mini-cinema tells the story of Lewes from prehistoric to Victorian times.

Lewes is also home to the town house of Anne of Cleves (fourth wife of King Henry Vlll) which I really love. Both the castle and Anne of Cleves house are usually open throughout the year. 

The town also has many contemporary art galleries and historic & special interest sites including the Priory of St. Pancreas – a former monastery.

snowdrop inn lewes sussex
The Traditional Snowdrop Inn

Shops Cafes and Pubs

You’ll come across numerous small, specialist, independent retailers and a local brewery.

I recommend visiting Cliffe High Street. Bookshops, boutiques and antique shops are there as well as individual craft workshops. You’ll also find restaurants, cafes, and pubs offering tasty choices all year round with an emphasis on local produce.

Lewes is one of my favourite towns. I recommend a visit! It is 7 miles from Brighton. You can also reach Lewes by train from Shoreham by Sea.

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