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Ditchling Beacon

During prehistoric Sussex around the time of the Iron Age 500 BC, farming became the primary occupation.  Iron which was used to build farm equipment such as ploughs and sickles and other farm implements became the most popular material to use.  The iron was distributed from administrative supply centers and was kept at the hill forts built into the countryside.  These hill forts were a series of burrows and ditches where a chain of fires would warn of a pending invasion and could serve as a natural defense.  Sadly nothing remains of the original structures which were once healthy chalk grassland, rich in wildlife.  Currently there is a conservationist effort to restore areas of Ditchling Beacon.

Why Ditchling Beacon

Climbing Ditchling Beacon has been described as a classic climb, whether walking, cycling or horseback riding the climb as been described as “climbing into open sky”.  All of Sussex can be seen from atop the Beacon.  Ditchling Beacon is the third highest point on the South Downs, the utmost point with views that stretch over 50 miles.  The only access to the summit is along the steep and narrow Beacon Road.  This steep road has been referred to as the challenging part of many charity and sporting events.  Cyclist and others climbing to the crest have stated both their leg strength and will were fading by the time they reached the top.  There are a number of places to stay in East Sussex such as hotels and Country Hotels.  The amenities available will appeal to a wide range of visitors, from those seeking basic accommodation to those desiring luxurious and opulent trappings.  East Sussex Hotel and the Country House Hotels of this area offer a wide range of choices for the quiet vacation or weekend getaway.

Events to Ditchling Beacon

About 27,000 cyclists gather yearly for the London to Brighton ride via Ditchling Beacon.  Often referred to as the green monster of southern England, the ride is very popular and although not the longest route it is considered difficult to complete because of the steep and narrow pathways.  Many people make a holiday out of the event by staying in a Rye Hotel or finding some other sort of Rye accommodation.  On Sundays, there is a bus ride to Ditchling Beacon that is minimal in cost and very popular, so much so that the rides have been extended to winter rides. There are car parks at the summit of Ditching Beacon for those wishing to walk the pathways and enjoy all of the wide variety of plants that are able to grow in chalk grasslands.  There are a number of herb that also grow well and the spotted orchid can also be found.  Butterflies abound and grazing sheep can be seen near the base of the northern face.

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