TQ3821 : St George's

taken 8 years ago, near to North Chailey, East Sussex, Great Britain

St George's
St George's
Built in 1932 as a residential block for Chailey Heritage School. The school had originally used the site on Red House Common next to the windmill during the First World War when the pupils had constructed a series of what became known as Kitchener Huts to provide a residential area to replace those vacated in the main school which had been given over to the army for the duration. When these became dilapidated the current area in view was enclosed and the building constructed. It remained in use until the 1990s when the site was sold off and converted into residences. Also in view is North Common Windmill (Often known as Chailey Windmill) which is believed to be the seventh windmill on this site since the 1590s. This one was built in West Hoathly in 1830 then moved to Newhaven before arriving here in 1864 and continued working until 1911. Until the 1890s the windmill and its ancillary buildings were the only ones on this part of the common and it can certainly be seen from Devils Dyke to the south. The windmill and neighbouring yew tree are believed to mark the exact centre point of the county of Sussex.
The parish is situated in a part of Sussex where the Low Weald becomes the High Weald with the northern part significantly higher than the southern. Historically it is one of the largest parishes in the county and reputed to be in the exact centre of Sussex. It was also for many centuries one of the poorest and unsurprisingly was the site for the district workhouse during the 19th century. This poverty also ensured that a large number of the commons within the parish survived periods of enclosure particularly the 17th century when virtually all of the commons of the neighbouring parishes to the west disappeared. More information can be found on the Chailey Common description.

The original settlement of Chailey lies in the centre of the parish but the bulk of the population lives in either South Chailey or North Chailey both those communities having grown up from the 19th centuries around the South and North Common respectively. There are two major roads through the parish, the A275 runs north-south and is the Lewes to East Grinstead road which follows the line of the old medieval Lewes to London route. The A272 runs east-west and is a newer turnpike constructed in the late 18th century. Both cross each other at North Chailey. A station existed which was shared with Newick as it lay midway between the two from 1882 to 1958 when the line was shut. Newick & Chailey station was the next station south of Sheffield Park the current terminus of the Bluebell Railway.
Chailey Common :: TQ3820
Currently consisting of 450 acres of Lowland Heath that is a local nature reserve. The current common is split into five sections; Memorial Common bounded by the A272, 275 and B 2183; Pound Common lying south of the B2183 and the minor road to Wivelsfield; Romany Ridge Common to the south of the A272 and west of the minor road to Wivelsfield; Red House Common to the north of the A272, west of A275 and minor road to Horsted Keynes; and Lane End Common to the north which is detached from the rest lying east of the A275 and north of the minor road to Fletching. Another strip, Godleys Green, running between the minor roads to Wivelsfield and Plumpton Crossways respectively is also included in the reserve. Access is not open though the public can use the existing tracks and footpaths through each of the commons.

Being a poor parish Chailey has historically relied on its commons to help sustain its population and during the medieval period the extent of the common ran from the north of the parish in an arc to the east of the main village to the south. Parts of this were lost to inclosure during the early 17th century which left two large tracts known as North and South Common which survived for another 200 years when the latter was enclosed in the mid 19th century. The former remained and was used for military training during World War Two becoming an SSSI in 1955 and a local nature reserve ten years later. Consequently the North Common's landscape has retained its open lowland heath unbroken throughout the centuries.

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Grid Square
TQ3821, 74 images   (more nearby )
  (find more nearby)
Date Taken
Thursday, 23 December, 2010   (more nearby)
Friday, 24 December, 2010
School (converted)   (more nearby)
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! TQ 386 213 [100m precision]
WGS84: 50:58.5090N 0:1.5887W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! TQ 385 213
View Direction
East-northeast (about 67 degrees)
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Image classification(about): Geograph
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