History Of Brighton And Environs - Online Book

From The Earliest Known Period To The Present Time.

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of Edward I., the town must have been considerable, for in 1298, it sent members to Parliament.
Camden, speaking of this town, says, "Upon the shore is a place, anciently called Score-ham, which, by a little and a little has dwindled into a poor village, now called Old Shoreham, having given rise to another town of the same name, the greater part whereof is ruined and under water, and the commodiousness of its port, by reason of the bank of sand cast up at the mouth of the river, wholly taken away; whereas in former ages, it was wont to carry ships under sail as high as Bramber, a pretty distance from the sea."
A writer of considerable celebrity, in 1762, speaking of Shoreham, says, " It is a town chiefly inhabited by ship chandlers, carpenters, and all the several trades depending upon the building and fitting-up of ships, which is their chief business. Vessels of a large size, some for the use of the navy, but most for the merchant service, are here constructed. The demands of late for these are so great, and the people so industrious, that it is asserted there is sometimes not so much as a single person who receives alms, a circumstance worthy not only of praise, but of imitation. Shoreham is justly noted for seamen, but mostly for neat and stout sea boats. The builders of ships seem to have settled here, chiefly because the quantity and cheapness of timber in the country behind them is favour­able to naval architecture. Vessels of 700 tons burthen have been launched from the ship yard of this town ; and although the trade of ship-building declined for several years, owing to the badness of its harbour, there is every prospect of its obtaining a return of prosperity upon the completion of the present improvements."
Shoreham Harbour, for magnitude and capacity, stood in high estimation in 1316, the year in which Edward defeated the French at the memorable battle of Cressy. In that expedition, Shoreham sent to
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