Orchard Hut: A guide to the area

Ben And Amanda
Ben And Amanda
Član od 2018
Ben And Amanda

Orchard Hut: A guide to the area

Local places to visit, see and do!
A very warm welcome to Orchard Hut, and to East Sussex. There is so much to do right on our doorstep - I hope this guide will give you some ideas and inspiration! We've lived here for 10 years and we are still exploring and discovering new places. Whether it’s the arts (Charleston or Glynebourne) the excellent local vineyards, or historic houses, the buzz of Brighton, or walks on The Downs or by the sea - there is something for everyone whatever the weather. The list below consists of some of our favourites. Enjoy!
Firle Beacon is the highest point in East Sussex. Drive through Firle Village and you’ll see the concrete road winding it’s way to the top of Firle Beacon. There is a car park at the top. Park and go for a walk along the top of The Downs , or if it’s sunny, take a picnic and a bottle of wine, and lie on the grass. Its often windy up here so take an extra layer! Watch the paragliders if the wind is right. There are amazing views on one side to the sea towards Newhaven, and on the other side views to the Ashdown Forest. Then have supper or lunch at The Ram, Firle - but you should book by calling them on 01273 858222
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West Firle
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Firle Beacon is the highest point in East Sussex. Drive through Firle Village and you’ll see the concrete road winding it’s way to the top of Firle Beacon. There is a car park at the top. Park and go for a walk along the top of The Downs , or if it’s sunny, take a picnic and a bottle of wine, and lie on the grass. Its often windy up here so take an extra layer! Watch the paragliders if the wind is right. There are amazing views on one side to the sea towards Newhaven, and on the other side views to the Ashdown Forest. Then have supper or lunch at The Ram, Firle - but you should book by calling them on 01273 858222
Lewes is a wonderful market town full of quirky independent shops, antique and book shops. Buy bread at the Flint Owl bakery (half way up the high street) - or mooch around the Riverside Café. Have lunch or brunch at Bills (the original Bills before it became a National chain). History enthusiasts might be interested in Lewes Castle or Anne of Cleves House. Its probably advisable to park in the Tesco car park and walk from there. There are some good pubs in Lewes - try the Pelham Arms which also has a good menu. If you fancy dinner in Lewes, we’d recommend “Fork” - a new restaurant but it continues to get consistently positive reviews.
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Lewes
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Lewes is a wonderful market town full of quirky independent shops, antique and book shops. Buy bread at the Flint Owl bakery (half way up the high street) - or mooch around the Riverside Café. Have lunch or brunch at Bills (the original Bills before it became a National chain). History enthusiasts might be interested in Lewes Castle or Anne of Cleves House. Its probably advisable to park in the Tesco car park and walk from there. There are some good pubs in Lewes - try the Pelham Arms which also has a good menu. If you fancy dinner in Lewes, we’d recommend “Fork” - a new restaurant but it continues to get consistently positive reviews.
Charleston was home to the Bloomsbury Set - an eclectic bunch of creatives who resided there from 1914. Take a tour of Charleston House if you are artistically inclined - its fabulous. They also run interesting courses (check the website). Like everything it’s best to book. 01323 811626 www.Charleston.org.uk
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Charleston Trust
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Charleston was home to the Bloomsbury Set - an eclectic bunch of creatives who resided there from 1914. Take a tour of Charleston House if you are artistically inclined - its fabulous. They also run interesting courses (check the website). Like everything it’s best to book. 01323 811626 www.Charleston.org.uk
This is a special place. Park up and go for a walk. Word of warning - on a hot day it can be busy...so leave early is my advice for a less stressful visit!
Cuckmere Valley
This is a special place. Park up and go for a walk. Word of warning - on a hot day it can be busy...so leave early is my advice for a less stressful visit!
Alfriston is full of charm - books shops...tea shops...old church...and its on the way to Cuckmere / Seven Sisters which might be convenient.
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Alfriston
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Alfriston is full of charm - books shops...tea shops...old church...and its on the way to Cuckmere / Seven Sisters which might be convenient.
Birling Gap - just next to Cuckmere Haven - is probably our nearest beach! Its about a 25 minute drive, through the village of East Dean (The Tiger Inn in East Dean is a great pub for lunch). Access to the beach is down an iron set of steps. It is by far the best to visit at low tide (sand and rock pools) so check tides on Google. At high tide its just a pebbly beach at the foot of the cliffs. There is a good National Trust café here by the car park. Birling Gap was used as a backdrop in the film "Atonement" (James McAvoy and Kiera Knightly).
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Birling Gap
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Birling Gap - just next to Cuckmere Haven - is probably our nearest beach! Its about a 25 minute drive, through the village of East Dean (The Tiger Inn in East Dean is a great pub for lunch). Access to the beach is down an iron set of steps. It is by far the best to visit at low tide (sand and rock pools) so check tides on Google. At high tide its just a pebbly beach at the foot of the cliffs. There is a good National Trust café here by the car park. Birling Gap was used as a backdrop in the film "Atonement" (James McAvoy and Kiera Knightly).
Monks House was bought by Virginia and Leonard Woolf in 1919 - and was their home until Virginia drowned in March 1941. Viginia's sister, Vanessa Bell, lived close by at Charleston in Firle. Famous works such as "To The Lighthouse" were written here. Now run by the National Trust, its well worth a visit.
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Monk's House
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Monks House was bought by Virginia and Leonard Woolf in 1919 - and was their home until Virginia drowned in March 1941. Viginia's sister, Vanessa Bell, lived close by at Charleston in Firle. Famous works such as "To The Lighthouse" were written here. Now run by the National Trust, its well worth a visit.
Brighton is really accessible, and the easiest way is to take a train from Lewes (18 minutes). Brighton train station is right in the centre of Brighton and from here its easy to walk everywhere. Brighton Pavilion has recently undergone a major refurbishment.
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Brighton Pavilion
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Brighton is really accessible, and the easiest way is to take a train from Lewes (18 minutes). Brighton train station is right in the centre of Brighton and from here its easy to walk everywhere. Brighton Pavilion has recently undergone a major refurbishment.
The family seat of Lord Gage, Firle Place is open to the public in the summer. It is in a stunning position on the edge of the Downs, in the village of Firle (which is part of the estate). The Firle Vintage Fair (Aug 9th, 10th, 11th) is fabulous - and well worth going to (early!!). It’s claim to fame was that in 2019 the film “Emma” was filmed here. Check the Firle Place website for opening dates https://firle.com
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Firle Place
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The family seat of Lord Gage, Firle Place is open to the public in the summer. It is in a stunning position on the edge of the Downs, in the village of Firle (which is part of the estate). The Firle Vintage Fair (Aug 9th, 10th, 11th) is fabulous - and well worth going to (early!!). It’s claim to fame was that in 2019 the film “Emma” was filmed here. Check the Firle Place website for opening dates https://firle.com
West Firle, Lewes BN8 6LJ Tel: 01323 478636 If cider is your thing - then you should head over to Middle Farm (you pass it on the way to Eastbourne/Alfriston/Cuckmere/Seven Sisters). It sits on the A27. They have an extraordinary array of different ciders / perries / meads etc. Take your own clean milk carton and they will fill it up!!
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Middle Farm
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West Firle, Lewes BN8 6LJ Tel: 01323 478636 If cider is your thing - then you should head over to Middle Farm (you pass it on the way to Eastbourne/Alfriston/Cuckmere/Seven Sisters). It sits on the A27. They have an extraordinary array of different ciders / perries / meads etc. Take your own clean milk carton and they will fill it up!!
If you’re interested in photography and the arts in general then this - along with Charleston- is a must. The American World War II photographer (and ex Vogue model!) - Lee Miller - settled in this gorgeous farmhouse having married an Englishman. Her career was extraordinary (Google her). Many of her photographs are on display. Fascinating. Only open on Sunday in the Summer months.
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Farleys House & Gallery
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If you’re interested in photography and the arts in general then this - along with Charleston- is a must. The American World War II photographer (and ex Vogue model!) - Lee Miller - settled in this gorgeous farmhouse having married an Englishman. Her career was extraordinary (Google her). Many of her photographs are on display. Fascinating. Only open on Sunday in the Summer months.
Farm Shops
As you're driving down to Orchard Hut, if you need to stock up on some provisions, then these farm shops are all nearby (a short drive or bike ride). Of course there is also the Village Shop in Barcombe which sells a full range of basics.
Another excellent farm shop just off the A275, or a 20 minute bike ride from Orchard Hut. They sell excellent organic meat and vegetables, pies and sausage rolls and there’s a small cafe at the back.
Offham Farm Shop
Another excellent farm shop just off the A275, or a 20 minute bike ride from Orchard Hut. They sell excellent organic meat and vegetables, pies and sausage rolls and there’s a small cafe at the back.
Holmansbridge Farmshop (Town Littleworth Road, Lewes BN8 4TD) is a renowned family run local farm shop that sells a broad range of high quality meat and other provisions. The shop is a nice 25 minute bike ride through Barcombe along the lanes - or a short drive if its raining! Call ahead of your stay and they will marinade meat for you in advance of your stay! Tel: 01273 401964
Holmans Bridge Farm
Holmansbridge Farmshop (Town Littleworth Road, Lewes BN8 4TD) is a renowned family run local farm shop that sells a broad range of high quality meat and other provisions. The shop is a nice 25 minute bike ride through Barcombe along the lanes - or a short drive if its raining! Call ahead of your stay and they will marinade meat for you in advance of your stay! Tel: 01273 401964
This is the place for fresh eggs - they supply Fortnum and Masons no less! If you are heading to Holmansbridge you go right past Springles Farm. There is a little wooden kiosk and an honesty box system. They sell top quality eggs and eggs with dodgy shells which they can't sell in Fortnums! (we tend to buy these!!!)
Springles Farm Organic Eggs
This is the place for fresh eggs - they supply Fortnum and Masons no less! If you are heading to Holmansbridge you go right past Springles Farm. There is a little wooden kiosk and an honesty box system. They sell top quality eggs and eggs with dodgy shells which they can't sell in Fortnums! (we tend to buy these!!!)
Local pubs (within walking distance)
It's sometimes nice to ditch the car and walk! These pubs are all within walking distance of Orchard Hut and are roughly a 25-30 minute walk. Use the OS map provided (but please bring it back!).
High St, Barcombe, Lewes BN8 5BA Tel: 01273 400418 This is our local! But most importantly its within walking distance of Orchard Hut. Its quite busy at the weekends and the food is good honest pub grub and good prices. Sit outside at the front (if its sunny) and watch the world go by.
Royal Oak
High St, Barcombe, Lewes BN8 5BA Tel: 01273 400418 This is our local! But most importantly its within walking distance of Orchard Hut. Its quite busy at the weekends and the food is good honest pub grub and good prices. Sit outside at the front (if its sunny) and watch the world go by.
Anchor Ln, Lewes BN8 5EA Tel: 01273 400414 This is another local favourite that's within a 25 minute walk of Orchard Hut along the old Lewes to Uckfield railway line (which closed in the 60's). Its right on the River Ouse, and you can hire boats (£6 per person) and paddle up the river - dreamy! The food, once again, is good honest pub grub (not gastro). It is often extremely busy on a hot day with Brighton day trippers.
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Anchor Inn
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Anchor Ln, Lewes BN8 5EA Tel: 01273 400414 This is another local favourite that's within a 25 minute walk of Orchard Hut along the old Lewes to Uckfield railway line (which closed in the 60's). Its right on the River Ouse, and you can hire boats (£6 per person) and paddle up the river - dreamy! The food, once again, is good honest pub grub (not gastro). It is often extremely busy on a hot day with Brighton day trippers.
Old Uckfield Rd, Ringmer, Lewes BN8 5RX Tel: 01273 890253 A lovely pub (set well back from the A26) and well priced pub food - good quality and huge portions! Although its possible to walk to this pub, in truth, its not such a nice walk as the walk to The Anchor, so you may choose to drive.
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The Cock Inn
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Old Uckfield Rd, Ringmer, Lewes BN8 5RX Tel: 01273 890253 A lovely pub (set well back from the A26) and well priced pub food - good quality and huge portions! Although its possible to walk to this pub, in truth, its not such a nice walk as the walk to The Anchor, so you may choose to drive.
Good pubs (within a 15 min drive)
If you don't want to walk (or if its raining!) we're lucky to have a number of really good pubs within striking distance, to suit a range of tastes and budgets. The pubs listed here are all good in their own way and are within a 15 minute drive.
Ditchling Rd, Plumpton, Lewes BN7 3AF Tel: 01273 890253 A lovely pub at the foot of the South Downs. A good menu - we eat here quite a lot. There is a foot path directly opposite that takes you up onto The Downs.
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The Half Moon Inn
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Ditchling Rd, Plumpton, Lewes BN7 3AF Tel: 01273 890253 A lovely pub at the foot of the South Downs. A good menu - we eat here quite a lot. There is a foot path directly opposite that takes you up onto The Downs.
The Griffin, Fletching, Uckfield, East Sussex TN22 3SS Tel: 01825 722 890 The Griffin Inn (Fletching) is an excellent and very well known pub. Indeed it is probably one of the best in East Sussex and - on a sunny day - has to have the most spectacular beer garden in the UK(judge for yourself!). There are two restaurants - a smart one and more of a relaxed one. It is on the expensive side - but great quality. Definitely book!
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The Griffin Inn
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The Griffin, Fletching, Uckfield, East Sussex TN22 3SS Tel: 01825 722 890 The Griffin Inn (Fletching) is an excellent and very well known pub. Indeed it is probably one of the best in East Sussex and - on a sunny day - has to have the most spectacular beer garden in the UK(judge for yourself!). There are two restaurants - a smart one and more of a relaxed one. It is on the expensive side - but great quality. Definitely book!
29 The St, West Firle, Lewes BN8 6NS Tel: 01273 858222 If you are planning a trip to Birling Gap, Seven Sisters, Cuckmere, Charleston, Glyndebourne, Alfriston...then you pretty much go past this great pub. Very popular with locals it is definitely verging on the gastro pub (however you define that!). The Ram is in a lovely setting in the very pretty village of Firle.
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The Ram Inn
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29 The St, West Firle, Lewes BN8 6NS Tel: 01273 858222 If you are planning a trip to Birling Gap, Seven Sisters, Cuckmere, Charleston, Glyndebourne, Alfriston...then you pretty much go past this great pub. Very popular with locals it is definitely verging on the gastro pub (however you define that!). The Ram is in a lovely setting in the very pretty village of Firle.
Chapel Ln, East Chiltington, Lewes BN7 3BA Tel: 01273 890400 A well known and popular pub in the hamlet of East Chiltington, at the foot of the South Downs. Quite expensive - but generally good quality.
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The Jolly Sportsman
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Chapel Ln, East Chiltington, Lewes BN7 3BA Tel: 01273 890400 A well known and popular pub in the hamlet of East Chiltington, at the foot of the South Downs. Quite expensive - but generally good quality.
Best places to eat in Lewes
Lewes is full of the usual Pizza chains, but these are the nicest independent places to eat in town. Let us know what you think though!
34 Lansdown Pl, Lewes BN7 2JU Tel: 01273 471999 Erawan is a wonderful (and very busy) little Thai restaurant in the centre of Lewes. Its unlicensed (so take your own booze). It's a family favourite of ours. They do take away of course - just phone ahead. If you want to eat there its essential to book ahead.
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Erawan
34 Lansdown Pl
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34 Lansdown Pl, Lewes BN7 2JU Tel: 01273 471999 Erawan is a wonderful (and very busy) little Thai restaurant in the centre of Lewes. Its unlicensed (so take your own booze). It's a family favourite of ours. They do take away of course - just phone ahead. If you want to eat there its essential to book ahead.
56 Cliffe High St, Lewes BN7 2AN Tel: 01273 476918 Bills is still a favourite - and is open for a cracking cooked breakfast from 8am. They also close late. The menu is varied and seasonal - and appealing to vegitarians, vegans and carnivores alike! You rarely need to book (but you may want to for peace of mind). This is the original Bills - before it became a national chain.
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Bill's Lewes Restaurant
56 Cliffe High St
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56 Cliffe High St, Lewes BN7 2AN Tel: 01273 476918 Bills is still a favourite - and is open for a cracking cooked breakfast from 8am. They also close late. The menu is varied and seasonal - and appealing to vegitarians, vegans and carnivores alike! You rarely need to book (but you may want to for peace of mind). This is the original Bills - before it became a national chain.
Pinwell Rd, Lewes BN7 2JS Tel: 01273 525354 The Depot was launched in 2018 - and was refurbished from an old Harveys brewery depot. It is now a superb and well designed independent cinema, restaurant, café and bar. Check their website for films and live opera screenings - and have supper before or after. They have outdoor seating. We love it here. Sometimes we just go here for dinner (good quality) and don't even see a film. Perfect for a wet weather plan! Book tickets online. https://lewesdepot.org/
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Depot
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Pinwell Rd, Lewes BN7 2JS Tel: 01273 525354 The Depot was launched in 2018 - and was refurbished from an old Harveys brewery depot. It is now a superb and well designed independent cinema, restaurant, café and bar. Check their website for films and live opera screenings - and have supper before or after. They have outdoor seating. We love it here. Sometimes we just go here for dinner (good quality) and don't even see a film. Perfect for a wet weather plan! Book tickets online. https://lewesdepot.org/
Fork
14 Station Street
East Sussex Vineyards
East Sussex has for many centuries produce excellent wines and sparkling wines. In fact, in view of climate change, French Champagne houses are starting to buy tracts of land in East and West Sussex. Our advice is to call ahead and book a tour and a tasting.
A well known and excellent producer of English wine
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Bolney Wine Estate
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A well known and excellent producer of English wine
Bluebell Vineyard Estates Ltd
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Rathfinny Wine Estate - Tasting Room & Cellar Door
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Ridgeview Wine Estate
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