Wealden

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For the stone, see Wealden Group.

Coordinates: 50°59′56″N 0°12′43″E / 50.999°N 0.212°E / 50.999; 0.212

Wealden District
Non-metropolitan district
Library and Council headquarters, Crowborough
Library and Council headquarters, Crowborough
Wealden shown within East Sussex
Wealden shown within East Sussex
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Constituent country England
Region South East England
Non-metropolitan county East Sussex
Status Non-metropolitan district
Admin HQ Crowborough, Hailsham
Incorporated 1 April 1974
Government
 • Type Non-metropolitan district council
 • Body Wealden District Council
 • Leadership Leader & Cabinet (Conservative)
 • MPs Caroline Ansell
Maria Caulfield
Nusrat Ghani
Amber Rudd
Area
 • Total 322.4 sq mi (835.0 km2)
Area rank 42nd (of 326)
Population (Mid-2014 est.)
 • Total 154,767
 • Rank 123rd (of 326)
 • Density 480/sq mi (190/km2)
 • Ethnicity 98.3% White
Time zone GMT (UTC0)
 • Summer (DST) BST (UTC+1)
ONS code 21UH (ONS)
E07000065 (GSS)
OS grid reference TQ5519524567
Website www.wealden.gov.uk

Wealden is a local government district in East Sussex, England: its name comes from the Weald, the remnant Sussex and Surrey forest which was once unbroken and occupies much of the centre and north of this area. The term is cognate with Wald, forest or wood in German.

History[edit]

Wealden District was formed on 1 April 1974, under the Local Government Act 1972, by the merger of the Hailsham and Uckfield Rural District Councils (RDCs), both set up under the Local Government Act 1894, which also revived the parish councils.

Governance[edit]

Wealden District Council is elected every 4 years, with the Conservative party having had a majority on the council since the first election in 1973, apart from a couple of years after 1995 when no party had a majority. As of the last election in 2011 the council is composed of the following councillors:-[1]

Party Councillors
  Conservative Party 50
  Independent 5

The district is second-level in local government, responsible for town and country planning and domestic rubbish and recycling collections, for example. There are 55 members of the Council, representing 35 wards.[2][3] The towns have more than one ward: Crowborough has five; Hailsham, three; Heathfield, two; Polegate, two; and Uckfield, four. The ward boundaries are regularly redrawn in an attempt to maintain a standard number of electors per councillor. They are at 2007:

Ward Population (2007) Councillors Electors per councillor
Alfriston 2481 1 2481
Buxted and Maresfield 5052 2 2526
Chiddingly and East Hoathly 2934 1 2934
Cross in Hand/Five Ashes 2291 1 2291
Crowborough East 5202 2 2601
Crowborough Jarvis Brook 2698 1 2698
Crowborough North 5035 2 2517
Crowborough St. Johns 2262 1 2262
Crowborough West 4791 2 2395
Danehill/Fletching/Nutley 5003 2 2501
East Dean 2186 1 2186
Forest Row 5356 2 2678
Framfield 2611 1 2611
Frant/Withyham 4767 2 2383
Hailsham Central and North 5591 2 2795
Hailsham East 2769 1 2769
Hailsham South and West 8401 3 2800
Hartfield 2606 1 2606
Heathfield East 2349 1 2349
Heathfield North and Central 7832 3 2610
Hellingly 5117 2 2558
Herstmonceux 2826 1 2826
Horam 2583 1 2583
Mayfield 2615 1 2615
Ninfield and Hooe with Wartling 2362 1 2362
Pevensey and Westham 8981 3 2993
Polegate North 4811 2 2405
Polegate South 2245 1 2245
Rotherfield 2402 1 2402
Uckfield Central 2984 1 2984
Uckfield New Town 2604 1 2604
Uckfield North 5317 2 2658
Uckfield Ridgewood 2968 1 2968
Wadhurst 5085 2 2542
Willingdon 7121 3 2373
Total Wealden 142238 55 2586



This district is entirely civil parished, enabling all farms and outlying homes to have an established community and influencing civic body, into:[3][4]

Parish Type Area (sq mi) Population (2007) Pop Density /sq mi
Alciston Parish Meeting 2.7 146 53.7
Alfriston Parish Council 3.6 774 214.2
Arlington Parish Council 7.1 490 69.2
Berwick Parish Council 1.9 289 149.4
Buxted Parish Council 8.4 3145 376.4
Chalvington with Ripe Parish Council 4.3 1082 252.0
Chiddingly Parish Council 6.8 1006 147.9
Crowborough Town Council 5.2 19988 3812.1
Cuckmere Valley Parish Council 6.8 197 28.9
Danehill Parish Council 8.7 1927 220.3
East Dean and Friston Parish Council 3.3 1577 474.9
East Hoathly with Halland Parish Council 5.8 1343 229.9
Fletching Parish Council 9.9 1041 104.7
Forest Row Parish Council 12.6 5054 402.4
Framfield Parish Council 7.6 1855 243.3
Frant Parish Council 12.3 1367 110.9
Hadlow Down Parish Council 6.6 715 109.1
Hailsham Town Council 7.5 19836 2652.3
Hartfield Parish Council 16.2 2157 132.9
Heathfield and Waldron Parish Council 20.4 11514 564.5
Hellingly Parish Council 7.6 1552 205.1
Herstmonceux Parish Council 9.5 2598 272.8
Hooe Parish Council 3.9 446 115.4
Horam Parish Council 4.0 2583 643.3
Isfield Parish Council 3.0 564 190.7
Laughton Parish Council 7.3 585 79.7
Little Horsted Parish Meeting 4.1 168 40.8
Long Man Parish Council 6.2 412 66.2
Maresfield Parish Council 10.1 3246 319.9
Mayfield and Five Ashes Parish Council 16.4 3562 217.6
Ninfield Parish Council 4.1 1520 371.7
Pevensey Parish Council 6.8 3152 463.8
Polegate Town Council 2.8 8021 2853.6
Rotherfield Parish Council 17.8 3151 177.0
Selmeston Parish Meeting 2.6 190 73.1
Uckfield Town Council 2.9 13873 4810.0
Wadhurst Parish Council 15.5 4818 311.0
Warbleton Parish Council 11.2 1262 112.3
Wartling Parish Council 4.3 396 92.7
Westham Parish Council 5.5 5829 1066.9
Willingdon and Jevington Parish Council 4.1 6156 1511.3
Withyham Parish Council 14.2 2651 186.7
Total Wealden 321.7 142238 442.2

Geography[edit]

Wealden District covers two main upland areas: the section of the High Weald within East Sussex; and the eastern end of the South Downs, between which lies the Vale of Sussex, its lowlands of which are named the Pevensey Levels. The River Ouse, some of the tributaries of which originate in the district, is the border with the Lewes District; and the River Cuckmere is wholly in Wealden. The English Channel to the south is interrupted by Eastbourne. The River Rother rises on the Weald and flows easterly to the east of Rye Bay.

It is the central of the three East Sussex non-borough (low density) districts: the others being Lewes to the west, and Rother to the east.

Home ownership[edit]

The district has the highest proportion of home ownership of the 37 local authorities in Surrey, Sussex and Kent: combining the social (housing association and local authority provided) and private rented sectors, Brighton and Hove's returns recorded in 2011 that its rented sector comprised 44.4% of its housing, whereas 18.8% of Wealden's residents rented their homes. Neighbouring Rother has a marginally higher proportion of homes owned outright, 3.1% greater and a greater rented sector.

Form of home ownership in Surrey, Sussex and Kent compared[5]
Local Authority Owned Owned with a loan Socially rented Privately rented Other Shared ownership
Wealden 42.3 36.5 7.7 11.1 0.8 1.7
Epsom and Ewell 36.8 40.2 8.1 13.3 0.9 0.8
Surrey Heath 34.8 42 9.2 12.1 0.8 1
Tandridge 36.2 39.7 10.8 11 0.9 1.4
Horsham 37.3 37.2 11.5 11.8 0.7 1.5
Mid Sussex 35.5 38.8 10.6 12.8 1 1.4
Arun 42.8 31 8.8 15.3 0.8 1.2
Adur 37.8 36 13 11.4 0.6 1.2
Waverley 37.7 36 12.4 11.3 1 1.7
Mole Valley 39.1 34.5 12.2 11.9 0.9 1.4
Rother 45.4 28.1 10.3 14.1 0.5 1.5
Reigate and Banstead 33.2 39.9 11.9 12.9 1.2 0.9
Elmbridge 34.2 38.8 9.8 15.1 0.7 1.2
Sevenoaks 37.5 35.2 13.2 10.8 1.7 1.6
Lewes 39.8 32.8 10.9 14.5 0.7 1.3
Spelthorne 33.9 38.6 12.4 12.6 1.4 1
Tonbridge and Malling 32.6 38.6 16.1 10.1 1.5 1.1
Woking 31.6 38.9 11.9 15.7 0.9 1
Maidstone 32.9 37.5 12.8 14.6 1.1 1.2
Runnymede 33.1 36.4 12.9 15.2 1 1.4
Worthing 34.8 34.5 10 19.3 0.5 0.9
Guildford 33.7 35.1 12.8 15.8 1.3 1.3
Ashford 31.8 36.6 14.4 14.3 1.3 1.5
Swale 31.4 36.9 14.3 15.2 1 1.2
Medway 28.9 38.8 13.2 17.1 1 1
Chichester 40.5 26.6 14.9 14.9 0.9 2.2
Dartford 27.5 39.4 14.8 16 1.3 1
Dover 35.3 31.3 14.3 17.1 0.5 1.7
Canterbury 35.5 30.5 12.2 19.5 0.8 1.4
Tunbridge Wells 32 33.7 15.2 16.9 0.8 1.4
Shepway 35.3 29.5 11.2 22.2 0.5 1.3
Gravesham 30.7 33.9 17.3 16.1 0.8 1.2
Thanet 33.4 28.6 12.7 23.8 0.3 1.2
Eastbourne 33.5 28.3 13.2 23.4 0.7 1.1
Crawley 22.2 36.9 23.8 14.5 1.4 1.2
Hastings 26.9 28.3 14.6 28.8 0.5 1
Brighton and Hove 23.4 29.9 14.9 29.5 0.9 1.3

Transport[edit]

The major trunk road is the A22, London to Eastbourne; it is crossed by the A26 MaidstoneLewes road at Uckfield; and the A267 Tunbridge Wells to Eastbourne road. There are also three west-east roads: the A259 coastal route; next inland is the A27 Pevensey–Brighton trunk road; and further to the north the A272 cross-country route to Winchester.

The East Coastway Line, serving Eastbourne and Hastings, uses the Vale of Sussex and has two station serving different sides of Pevensey in the district, which forms a generally suburban conurbation with Westham and a largely rural holiday and visitor coastline, Pevensey Bay. The other railway line is the Uckfield Branch Line from London Victoria.

Long-distance footpaths include the:

Landmarks[edit]

Major landmarks include the Seven Sisters and Cuckmere Haven along the coast; and the Long Man of Wilmington together with all of the paths over the South Downs National Park. Roman fortified hills can be found in the north of the area and Uckfield has a large architectural conservation area.

Sheffield Park Garden is an informal landscape garden now owned by the National Trust but laid out by Capability Brown. Near to this is its terminus, of the Bluebell Railway a heritage, steam railway line.

For late medieval castle construction moated Herstmonceux Castle was begun in 1440 and is study centre of Queen's University open to visitors and organising tours on a few summer days.[6]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "England council elections". BBC News Online. 10 May 2011. Retrieved 4 January 2012. 
  2. ^ Wards and councillors
  3. ^ a b "East Sussex in Figures". East Sussex County Council. Retrieved 2008-04-26. 
  4. ^ Interactive map showing locations of parishes
  5. ^ Office for National Statistics 2011 Census Key Statistics: Tenure. Shared ownership forms the small remainder of each proportion.
  6. ^ Scheduled ancient monument: Herstmonceux Castle. Historic England. "Details from listed building database (1002298)". National Heritage List for England.