A-Z of Bexhill-on-Sea
- Andy Bull
15th August 2022
Bexhill may have one of the highest percentages of retired people in the country, but this fascinating town does not deserve its reputation as God’s waiting room. The town was developed by the 7th Earl of Sackville as a seaside resort in the late nineteenth century and gained a reputation for health and longevity, as well as becoming home to around 300 independent schools before the outbreak of the Second World War. It has always been a pioneering place: the birthplace of British motor racing, the first resort to allow mixed bathing, the town where colour television was invented, and the venue for Bob Marley’s first gig in the UK. A wonderful array of fascinating characters, and a fair few true eccentrics, have called Bexhill home, including pioneering motorcycling rector Canon Basil Davies, and a hoax inventor of a death ray. The town has been immortalised in a Goon Show sketch by Spike Milligan, who trained with the army there in the Second World War, and celebrated by native Eddie Izzard, who put a replica of the coach from The Italian Job on the roof of the town’s art gallery.
A–Z of Bexhill-on-Sea reveals the history behind Bexhill, its streets and buildings and the people connected with the town. Alongside the famous historical connections are unusual characters, tucked-away places and unique events that are less well-known. Readers will discover tales of smuggling, the town’s link to Agatha Christie and its connection with the US state of Delaware among many other fascinating facts in this A–Z tour of Bexhill’s history. Fully illustrated, this book will appeal to all those with an interest in this historic East Sussex seaside town.