Chiddingly in East Sussex lies in a very quiet part of rural sussex. It is quite hard
to find, as it is made up of four smaller settlements. The area around
the church is felt to be the centre of the village.
The derivation of the name is felt to be from Cetelingei(recorded in the
Domesday book) meaning 'the clearing in the forest of Citta's people'. The
original was probably Cittaingleigh (see our Anglo Saxon history page).
The church was started in the late 1000's after the Norman Conquest and
the building continued into early 1300's when the tower was erected.
The church is one of those in the area to wear the Pelham Buckle insignia.
This it was said is the emblem of the Pelham family, and was a battle
honour granted to Sir John Pelham who was one of the knights who captured
the King of France at the Battle of Poitiers in 1356 .
The French family set up an iron furnace and hammer in the north of the
Parish during the 1540's.
Inside the church is an enormous alabaster memorial to the Jefferay family
from the late 1500's. Sir John Jefferay was the Chief Baron of the Exchequer
in the reign of Queen Elizabeth I , who died May 23rd 1578. An old local
legend is that the family were too proud to touch the ground with their feet,
and walked to church stepping on drum shaped cheeses, which are represented
by the shapes under the feet of the statues.
In the church yard is another example of the fine work of Jonathan Harmer
from nearby Heathfield whose terracotta embossed graves were in great demand
in the early 1800's.
The 1830's brought rural unrest with the 'Captain Swing Riots' breaking out
in Sussex and East Anglia. Machinery was destroyed, and other damage was
done to farms and churches in the area. Hellingly , Ringmer and Horsham also
suffered in damage in these riots. The riots continued for two years, and
resulted in over 400 people being transported, and 19 hanged.
During late 1944 a V1 flying bomb exploded near the church causing minor
|The church is visible from all around, as it lies on a small hill in
the middle of the landscape.|
To the south, the downs at Wilmington and the Long Man are visible most
of the time.
|Chiddingly in East Sussex has very few services, but is a very attractive area.|
The nearest shopping centre is at Hailsham about 5 miles to the South East.
For a very large shopping centre you will need to go to Eastbourne about
10 miles south. The county town of Lewes lies about 8 miles to the west,
and has a wide range of smaller shops.
Train services can be caught at Polegate for the coastal line or Lewes
for main line services to london.
|Chiddingly is shown as the red symbol on the map.|
(click on symbol to see the village page)
||(At the base of Mount Caburn)||7.29 miles|
||(Charcoal and Soot)||4.19 miles|
||(White Horse on the roof)||6.47 miles|
||(The miniature church)||3.31 miles|
||(Another Sussex Cannibal?)||1.84 miles|
||(380 years without a church tower)||4.95 miles|
||(Home of English Opera)||6.36 miles|
||(Ropes and Napoleon)||3.96 miles|
||(Ancient Slaughter)||3.02 miles|
||(Only remaining Ciric in Sussex)||2.61 miles|
||(Castle and Observatory)||5.71 miles|
||(Which Station do we get off at ?)||2.80 miles|
||(Simon de Montfort and the Lavender Line)||6.01 miles|
||(Knight captures King of France)||2.72 miles|
||(The Windmill on the Hill)||6.60 miles|
||(Poor Roads and riots)||6.24 miles|
||(Earl Harolds estate)||3.39 miles|
||(Open Village and Nuclear Bunker)||5.81 miles|
||(Cannons and Doodlebugs)||3.77 miles|
||(Fullers Earth)||3.17 miles|
||(The Iron Man)||4.71 miles|
||(Largest Post Mill in Sussex)||6.59 miles|