South Heighton

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South Heighton
Heighton Road, entrance to South Heighton from Denton - - 724888.jpg
South Heighton is located in East Sussex
South Heighton
South Heighton
South Heighton shown within East Sussex
Area8.5 km2 (3.3 sq mi) [1]
Population990 (Parish-2011)[2]
• Density338/sq mi (131/km2)
OS grid referenceTQ448027
• London49 miles (79 km) N
Shire county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Postcode districtBN9
Dialling code01273
FireEast Sussex
AmbulanceSouth East Coast
EU ParliamentSouth East England
UK Parliament
List of places
East Sussex
50°49′N 0°03′E / 50.81°N 0.05°E / 50.81; 0.05Coordinates: 50°49′N 0°03′E / 50.81°N 0.05°E / 50.81; 0.05

South Heighton is a village and civil parish in the Lewes District of East Sussex, England. The village is seven miles (12 km) south of Lewes. In the 1890s the village's population grew from less than 100 to over 500 after a cement manufacturing plant opened nearby. The village is now associated with the urbanised area of Newhaven.

There is no place called North Heighton although part of the South Downs above the village is called Heighton Hill, from which one can get to Norton, which lies north-east of South Heighton, and north of Bishopstone.

It is a regular thoroughfare and point of rest for ramblers, and features a series of ponds, known locally as 'The Three Lakes', which were until the early 1990s open to the public. It remains a popular destination for local visitors, with its public house, The Hampden Arms, and until recently, its corner-shop and post office, which has now closed and been converted into a residential dwelling. South Heighton is one of many villages in the area which maintains a bonfire society, celebration and parade.

South Heighton is famous for its secret tunnels, built and used for defence during the Second World War, which lie underneath most of the village,[3][4] with the main entrance at Denton House. In 1998, when work finished on the conversion of Denton House into flats and of the surrounding area into houses, the road was called Forward Close, after the ship associated with Newhaven and the secret tunnels, HMS Forward.

Notable residents, past and present, include Ralph Reader, originator of the Scouting Gang Show and Ursula Mommens,[5] the great-granddaughter of Charles Darwin and the great-great-granddaughter of the potter Josiah Wedgwood.


On a local level, South Heighton is governed by the South Heighton Parish Council. Council meetings are held every six weeks in the South Heighton village hall. Their responsibilities include footpaths, street lighting, playgrounds and minor planning applications. The parish council has seven seats available[6] although only four were filled in the uncontested May 2007 election.[7]

The next level of government is the district council. The parish of South Heighton lies within the Ouse Valley and Ringmer ward of Lewes District Council which returns three seats to the council. The election on 4 May 2007 elected two Liberal Democrats and one local Conservative.[8]

East Sussex County Council is the next tier of government, for which South Heighton is within the Ouse Valley East division, with responsibility for Education, Libraries, Social Services, Civil Registration, Trading Standards and Transport. Elections for the County Council are held every four years. The Liberal Democrat Pat Ost was elected in the 2005 election.[9]

The UK Parliament constituency for South Heighton is Lewes. The Liberal Democrat Norman Baker was the Member of Parliament (MP) for Lewes in East Sussex from his election in 1997 to his defeat in 2015. He was replaced with Maria Caulfield, a Conservative Party politician

At European level, South Heighton is represented by the South-East region, which holds ten seats in the European Parliament. The June 2004 election returned 4 Conservatives, 2 Liberal Democrats, 2 UK Independence, 1 Labour and 1 Green, none of whom live in East Sussex.[10]


  1. ^ "East Sussex in Figures". East Sussex County Council. Retrieved 26 April 2008.
  2. ^ "Civil Parish population 2011". Retrieved 12 October 2015.
  3. ^ "HMS Forward (1939 - 1945) The Secret Tunnels of South Heighton". Retrieved 2012-09-17.
  4. ^ Geoffrey Ellis. "Site Name: HMS Forward". Subterranea Britannica. Retrieved 2012-09-17.
  5. ^ "Ursula Mommens". Pottery Studio. Retrieved 24 September 2008.
  6. ^ Crawford, John (19 March 2007). "Notice of Election" (PDF). Lewes District Council. Retrieved 24 September 2008.[dead link]
  7. ^ "Results – Town and Parish Council Elections" (PDF). Lewes District Council. 3 May 2007. Archived from the original (PDF) on 25 February 2009. Retrieved 24 September 2008.
  8. ^ "Election Results". Lewes District Council. 4 May 2007. Archived from the original on 24 July 2008. Retrieved 9 August 2008.
  9. ^ "Councillor Pat (Thomas) Ost". Find your Councillor. East Sussex County Council. Retrieved 19 September 2008.
  10. ^ "UK MEP's". UK Office of the European Parliament. Archived from the original on 17 September 2007. Retrieved 19 September 2007.

External links[edit]

Media related to South Heighton at Wikimedia Commons