There are two things that are synonymous with the Sussex countryside and give it the character we have all come to know and love. A small hidden village full of history, country walks and postcard views is undoubtedly one of them.
The other is a traditional pub with views over the countryside. Of course, any village that has something to offer has a pub at its heart, and that’s usually not far from its church or cricket ground either.
Chiddingly in East Sussex is one such village that ticks all of those basic boxes, plus a few more. Nestled along a series of narrow winding lanes off the A22 between Uckfield and Eastbourne, Chiddingly is easy to miss but has everything to boast of.
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As you would expect, the village mentioned in the Domesday Book has a Grade I listed church from the 11th or 12th century. It also has a cricket ground which can be reached via the churchyard, a school and pub in the centre.
Within the community there is another country pub not far from the village itself that has recently gained national attention – The Gun. The pub on Gun Hill was included in a list of Britain’s best beer gardens this month.
Design My Night scoured the country collecting the best “treasures” to celebrate “what it means to have a drink outside”. Introducing the pub, it said: “The Gun may be tucked away in Chiddingly, but its premium beer garden is worth the drive.
“Bringing you crisp pints along with a variety of sheep, this upscale favorite combines British food and beautiful countryside to give you the ultimate summertime experience.” And yes, while the review is correct, the drive to the pub is on the long site is going to be difficult to get loose once you are there.
Nestled between the South Downs and the High Weald AONB, The Gun – and all Chiddingly – offers an escape from the hustle and bustle of modern life. The trip is part of the charm of the place and without it the draw wouldn’t be quite the same.
Guests can take a seat in the pub’s extensive gardens or on the terrace and watch the world go by on the adjacent farm fields and distant clumps of trees. You can also choose to be seated in the iconic 15th-century building.
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