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About Pyecombe

Pyecombe is a small village in West Sussex nestled in the Sussex South Downs countryside.

The village lies within the Sussex Downs AONB and national park boundary and also straddles the South Downs Way as it crosses the A273 and A23.

The word 'Pyecombe' is believed to derive from the Saxon name "peac cumb" meaning 'the peak valley'. Pyecombe is composed of two settlements, one called 'Pyecombe' and the other 'Pyecombe Street', set at a quarter of a mile apart. The reason for the gap between the two parts of the village is thought to be a result of plague in the 17th century. The main part of the village and the church was abandoned until the plague relented.

Pyecombe has a distinctive shepherding history. The shepherd's crook, known as the 'Pyecombe Hook', was crafted in the old Pyecombe Forge. The Pyecombe Hook was very popular amongst the traditional shepherds of Sussex in the latter part of the last 19th century.

A surviving Pyecombe Hook is integrated into the Tapsel gate at the entrance to the Churchyard. A church has existed in Pyecombe since the time of the Domesday Book in 1086. Now known as the Church of the Transfiguration, it was granted Grade I listed status on 28 October 1957 by English Heritage.

The village is a natural destination for walkers, horse riders, and cyclists because of its beautiful setting, easy access to the South Downs Way and many other footpaths and bridlepaths. There are also three riding schools in the village which attract horse riders with all levels of experience.

Outdoor terrace area at the Plough Pyecombe


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