Visit to Shoreham-by-Sea

Shoreham in West Sussex is one of those funny places that have two hyphens in their name. To distinguish it from other Shorehams, Shoreham in West Sussex is the one by the sea. There’s a Shoreham in Kent, in the Sevenoaks District (I’ve always loved the name Sevenoaks, I don’t know exactly why).

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So that I don’t go straight into my short piece of travel writing, I’ll give you a squeezed-in life update. I’m often feeling confused and tired, I have trouble sleeping at night, and I sweat a lot at night – the latter being the strangest because that never happened to me. I blamed my polyester duvet from Asda, but yesterday I picked up a new, 4.5 tog, “hydrocool” duvet from Dunelm in Shoreham, and I sweated last night again under this new cover. So I don’t know. Is it my sheets? But I picked the 100% cotton ones exactly to prevent night sweats. Is it my mattress topper? But without it my mattress feels like a slab of wood. I really don’t know. Is this my fault? The heating, after all, is always off, and my window open as wide as possible (which isn’t VERY wide, if that’s what you’re thinking – I think the windows in student dorms are chosen in such way as to prevent drunk students from leaping out of them).

That’s been my biggest issue of late. Now, skipping this to my travel piece. I took the bus nr 2 from Brighton to Steyning and got off at Bramber. Went up the hill to Bramber Castle which is basically just a big lawn on a hill with some castle ruins sticking out. Not much to see. I made my way through Bramber village and past St Mary’s House (a 15th century lived-in house which is closed to visitors past September) and into Upper Beeding. In Upper Beeding I followed a public footpath to the little river flowing through it. The vast stretches of rural land in Sussex are really quite calming. It’s a tiny bit like North Yorkshire, but not really like North Yorkshire because those hills in NY are much bigger and there’s more sheep than cows and the coast is very different and, after all, it’s a different sea where the land ends. I picked a lot of blackberries on my way down the river. Then I went back to Bramber to catch the bus nr 2 into Shoreham.

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Shoreham is nice but the high street didn’t impress me as it did in Seaford. Seaford seemed much friendlier, but maybe I just, I don’t know. My favourite part of Shoreham is the River Ader estuary and the RSPB reserve, and the airport where I saw a small plane and a helicopter land. There were two groups of people watching the helicopter land and taking pictures, one in the airport and one on the path that runs along the estuary. I have no clue why they were photographing that helicopter, I thought maybe a member of the Royal Family was in that helicopter, but this time I didn’t stop to ask. The main reason is I don’t know what the reputation of non-British people is down here in Sussex and I suppose I’m a bit too self-conscious at the moment to risk exposure and stuff.

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That was my trip to Shoreham. But my favourite bits was looking at all the English architecture, from 19th century English townhouses to the picturesque cottages to the postwar modernism in Hove, and the disused industrial building of cement works between Upper Beeding and Shoreham. The bus was too quick for me to take a picture but it’s really an impressive place. Apparently there are talks to use it and turn into some sort of, something, not sure what, but to scrap off all the postindustrial charm that urbex people like so much. I’m not an urbex person but I do like the sight of things like that. They’re interesting to think about.

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More pictures to come later; they’re still in my camera and I’m at the library.

Published by kotersey

Graduated from geography (University of Edinburgh), now student of history of design and material culture at the University of Brighton. Probably drinking iced coffee and thinking about buildings/computer games.

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