Small Churches in Sussex

The Small Churches in Sussex is my photographic project to capture some of the architectural and social history of the area. The churches I have chosen are all Grade I or Grade II* listed and are in the Wealden and Lewes districts. Because they are in small villages or towns, over the ages, there have not been the resources to change them greatly. They capture the nature of the buildings from Saxon and Norman times. Sussex was one of the last regions to convert to Christianity and some of the churches were probably established on pagan sites (e.g. Selmeston Church). Others bear witness to previous pandemics. The black plague of the 1350s probably hit Sussex first. Hamsey occupied an island in the Ouse valley and was a substantial Saxon settlement with access to the sea via the river. King Ethelstan (925 – 940) once held his court there in preference to Lewes. But after the devastating Black Death, those left alive moved to Offham at the foot of the Downs. Hamsey Church now is isolated in a field. Similarly other villages along the Ouse suffered and the churches at Beddingham and Tarring Neville are no longer in the centre of busy villages. All photos were taken with a converted IR camera and converted to B&W using Silver Efex Pro