The Sussex Coast - online book

A Literary & Historical travel guide to the Sussex Coast

Home | Order | Support | About | Contact | Search

Share page  

Previous Contents Next

STEYNING                             149
Norman materials, and half-obliterated zigzag may be traced on several of the stones. An inserted tablet bears date 1684, but the work to which this refers was probably on a most modest scale. A coffin slab with double cross incised, now in the porch, is possibly of pre-Conquest date.
The vicarage contains some fine Renaissance carved panelling bearing date 1522, and rather resembling some of the work in King's College Chapel at Cambridge, with little Gothic feeling. Very many of the houses in the two old streets, called Church and High, are old, dating from the sixteenth century or later; one or two may be earlier ; some have been ref ronted. All the charm that oak framing, flint and stone, thin brick and Horsham slabs can give is there. The old Brother­hood Hall, with carved barge boards to its gables, was acquired by an alderman of Chichester, one William Holland, who in 1614 founded a grammar school there for the benefit of his native place, and the institution is flourishing still. One little dwelling is inscribed "This is Sr Harry Gough's House, 1771." The Goughs were formerly a family of considerable local influence, and prominent in the petty politics of Bramber. Over the fire-engine station in High Street is a picturesque old turret with a clock.
Steyning was a Domesday burg ; once she was a flourishing port and possessed a mint; now she rests on her past and leads her own life in peace: the hustle of this restless age is not for her. Bad indeed for the world if all places within it sought to follow London and New York!
On a north projecting spur of the Downs, a little west of Steyning, is the chief landmark of Sussex: Chanctonbury Ring, Chenkbury Camden calls it.
Previous Contents Next