Wednesday, February 01, 2006

SOUTH EAST COAST OF THE UK , EASTBOURNE, HASTINGS, RYE, ROTTINGDEAN


It came never in my mind that this place is so wonderfull ! Everybody is going to the southern countries to look after landscape beauties and don't kow that such a paradise is so near..

Everybody asked me, but where is that ? Easbourne ? Never heard. I admit I didn't know either. When my friends invited me to spend a week with them in Langley/Eastbourne, I had to look on the map where it was. That I was in England I stated when the world cup was going on. Suddenly I saw everywhere a flag like this an thought what a lot of people are working or support the red cross !



My friend Doug then explained. I ignored that there are several flags in the UK. Shame. Anyway I was impressed by the huge number of "red cross workers ", but during the evening there were less and less and the next morning almost all gone. No fiesta on the streets. A pitty for me I didn't have any problem with the world cup, being german and italian so my countries won anyway.


My friend Anne of course showed me a lot of beautifull places. First I discovered Eastbourne. It is a beautiful town, with victorian style buildings all along the beach and there are lawns along the seafront promenade, full of beautifull flowers and very well kept.

In my whole life I have never seen a sea of such a blue in a northern country. At the Belgian coast the sea is never really blue it's mostly grey. But this coast seemed to me even more blue than the côte d'Azur" or the sea in Italy. Even on a cloudy day the sea was turquoise.

The town itself had a lot of shops and restaurants of all kind and pedestrian zones. Sitting on the sea promenade, having an icecream while watching the beach and the boats was absolutely marvellous. And the seagulls ! (see below)

My hosts also took me to the "Beachy Head and Seven Sisters cliffs. It's all chalk cliffs which are completely white and the contrast to the blue sea is breathtaking. Beachy Head is the highest chalkd sea cliff in the UK. It's 162 m (530 feet) high and on clear days you can get a magnificent view over Eastbourne and even the channel.




















Eastbourne Promenade




















sight seeing boat,you can do a tour to beachy head


















A lot of seagulls are sitting and flying around. They scream like in a Hitchcok film. They are not afraid of anything and are stealing sandwiches or icecream even from the people's hand. Quite dangerous as they are very big. I even saw one sitting on a café's table and eating half of a sandwich. Sitting in Anne's and Doug's garden, I could see them on the roof of the house. Quite impressing. And they have so evil yellow eyes !

























The famous Lighthouse, built in 1831 is located near the edge of the cliff on the next headland from Beachy Head. It was moved more than 17 m (50 ft) further inland in 1999 due to cliff erosion.

View from "Beachy head"to the "Seven Sisters" Why it's called seven sisters I don't know, probably because of the seven cliffs.
It is quite dangerous up there, you walk quitely on flat green grass and suddenly the world ends and you can fall deep down. I have been told that there are quite some suicides.


















Everywhere there are warning signs for people and dogs have to be kept on leashes. Catching a ball on the grass can end up deep down on the beach !
What I liked at this sign was the suggestion (before jumping) "have you payed and displayed"

We have also been in Rye, a cosy old town, with a lot of tourists and wonderfull old houses. The little town was built on a hill top with the church tower at the highest point, and the buildings clustered all around. It's just a little distance to the sea. Most of the houses were timbered houses, and the doors so small that a normal sized person could hardly go through.





















Hastings




















Hastings is in a sheltered valley between the East Hill and West Hill on which the remains of the Castle stand. We have been sitting on the beach promenade having our icecream. But now I know who fought against whom ! The anglo-saxon against the normans. If you want to know more about Hastings, look in Wikipedia.

Of course a seagull. They all chose one lantern and where sitting on the top, which looked quite funny.























Here we have been in Pevency an old fisher town. Very close to Eastbourne. Many houses were painted with tar, because the fishermen hang up their nets on hooks which are nailed on the walls.

I could still see them. The houses looked very special, because of their colors, very black on the bottom and very white on the top. Unfortunately I couldn't take a picture because there were no place to stop the car. I also heard that Roger Moore has a summerhouse there, that's why I took the picture, but I don't know if it's true.

Looks like Roger Moore's









































Penvency castle, what it used to be. Today you can only see ruins of walls and some towers





















Close to Pevency was a little village called Westham. As there were a flower festival in the St. Mary's church, we went there and it was just beautifull. The whole church was decorated with flower arrangements. The church is almost as old as the battle of Hastings and dates from 1066.






















The entrance through a very old grave yard
























old grave stones





















The ceiling in the church. I have never seen such a wooden construction in a church and that old!

During our daily's search of good icecream and nice places, we ended up in Rottingdean. It's a coastal village nearby with a picture-postcard historic centre. Rudyard Kipling lived there. But I haven't seen his house still standing.























Rottingdean's Bed's and Breakfast The beach





































Flowers decorate the chalk wall, this looks lovely.

And here is finally were I spent my holidays with my dear friends. It is a nice cosy bungalow where they are living in since they moved from London to Langley. Of course I was happy to live also with four cats and felt really home.










































two of the cats taking a sunbath


























This seagull sat on the roof one afternoon and got on our nerves with its screems


























There were fortunately also other visitors in the garden !I left quite sad, one week is gone so quickly.
























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I love painting, writing, travelling and photography. My favorit models are my four cats which I observe with fun and humor. I am German, married to an Italian and we live in Waterloo (15 km from Brussels) / Belgium since many years. Waterloo is a famous place to many tourists, because Napoleon lost his battle here against Wellington and other European countries.

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