Traditional Homes of the South Downs National Park, by Annabelle Hughes


Traditional Homes of the South Downs National Park

An amazing collection of traditionally-built homes, ranging in age from 250 to over 700 years old, can be found within the bounds of the South Downs National Park. This guide aims to provide the tools for any visitor to become their own ‘House Detective’, through understanding how these buildings were constructed, how they have altered over the centuries, how earlier owners might have used them, and by looking at the differences between town and countryside. By appreciating the stories of such buildings you can help make sure they will still be there for future generations to wonder at.

Annabelle Hughes has lived in Horsham since 1970, and has nearly thirty years’ experience of investigating, analysing and making written records of buildings, mostly in West Sussex. In 1980 she joined the Wealden Buildings Study Group, and then embarked on the long road that led to her doctorate (1989) on timber-framed buildings in their historical setting.

As a professional historian with a particular interest in traditional buildings, she believes that through examining and recording the buildings of a parish, hamlet or town, a better understanding can be gained of the way a locality has developed over the centuries, and helps towards shaping and protecting its future.

In 1986 she wrote Horsham Houses, was a contributor to the Sussex Historical Atlas (2000), provided text for West Sussex Barns & Farm Buildings (2002) and edited a volume on clergy probate inventories for the Record Society (2009).

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