Tide Mills, East Sussex
The derelict mill race sluice, from the seaward side
Tide Mills shown within East Sussex
|OS grid reference|
|- London||50 miles (80 km) N|
|Shire county||East Sussex|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Ambulance||South East Coast|
|EU Parliament||South East England|
Tide Mills is a derelict village in East Sussex, England. It lies about two kilometres (1.2 miles) south east of Newhaven and four kilometres (2.5 miles) north west of Seaford and is near both Bishopstone and East Blatchington. The village was abandoned in 1939.
The village consisted of a large tide mill and numerous workers' cottages, housing about 100 workers. The tide mill at Bishopstone was erected in 1761 by the Duke of Newcastle, and was later owned and operated by William Catt (1770–1853) and his family.
The Sussex Archaeological Society started a long-term project in April 2006 to record the entire East Beach site: Mills, Railway Station, Nurses Home, Hospital, RNAS Station and the later holiday homes and the Marconi Radio station (1904). Apart from the dig, it will evolve into a huge collection of film, video, recollections and photographs logging the decline of the area.
The mill stopped in around 1900, the village was condemned as unfit for habitation in 1936 with the last residents forcibly removed in 1939. The area was in part cleared to give fields of fire and also used for street fighting training. The site was not used for target practice by Newhaven Fort Artillery, though this story is common locally.
The area accommodated vast numbers of Canadian troops during the Second World War.
There are the remains of a station on the Newhaven to Seaford line at grid reference TQ460003. It started life as either Bishopstone Station (the Victorian OS map of 1879 shows it as this together with a short branch line to the mills) or Tide Mills Halt, but became Bishopstone Beach Halt in 1939 before its closure in 1942. This is different from today's Bishopstone railway station at grid reference TV469998.
Old photographs and paintings, together with a poem show that the tide mill complex included a windmill.
Access is either via Mill Drove, an insignificant single track road which runs south west from the Newhaven and Seaford roads at approximately the point where one changes into the other grid reference TQ463005 (very limited parking, and access is via a pedestrian railway crossing at Bishopstone Beach Halt); or along the beach to the east of Newhaven Harbour.
In popular culture
The Tide Mills features in the 2007 novel A Kind of Vanishing by crime-writer Lesley Thomson. Two girls are playing hide and seek in the summer of 1968. Eleanor is hiding from Alice who never comes looking for her. Alice disappears and over thirty years later she is still missing. Much of the 'action' takes place around the Tide Mills. The cover photograph for the UK edition published by Myriad Editions shows a shot of the Tide Mills.
- Bishopstone, the Largest Tide Mill in Sussex
- Newhaven Local & Maritime Museum - A Selection of Local Subjects
- The Sussex Archaeological Society Tide Mills archeology project
- Hamlyn; Octopus Publishing Group (5 May 2009). Top 10 of Britain. Octopus. p. 29. ISBN 978-0-600-62251-2. Retrieved 16 February 2012.
- Newhaven Local & Maritime Museum
- The train now standing at Bishopstone Beach
- Bishopstone Beach Halt station
- The Victorian OS map of 1879
- Source- plaques on the site for visitors
- Thomson, Lesley. A Kind of Vanishing. Myriad Editions. ISBN 978-0-9549309-4-3.
Media related to Tide Mills, East Sussex at Wikimedia Commons
- Friends of The Tidemills and Newhaven Eastside Conservation Group
- Corn. Bishopsten (sic), Sussex. Tide mills. Petition of merchants for sanction to build tide mills for grinding corn
- Outreach Helps to Turn the Tide
- Saline Lagoons The pound for the tide mill as a wildlife habitat
- Tidemills - a sustainable energy story
- Abandoned Communities ..... Tide Mills