Crown Vat

Crown Hotel, 19 High Street, Hailsham.

Blaster Mrs. Message.

Crown Vat 6

Photograph made available by Sussex On Line Parish Clerks.      

The Crown Hotel which dates back to the 17th century occupies a prominent position in Hailsham High Street. It became a grade II listed buikding in 1981 and is reputed to be the oldest and at one time the principal Inn in Hailsham.

The town of Hailsham is situated seven miles north from Eastbourne. In the 19th century Hailsham became a centre for the manufacture of rope and twine. By 1807, Thomas Burfield had established a factory in Hailsham, making rope and twine, tarpaulin, corn and coal sacks and rick cloths. In the 1860s, the Green Family set up another factory manufacturing rope and twine. In 1881, Thomas Burfield junior was employing 110 persons at his rope factory, while the Green Brothers had a workforce of 114 men and 19 boys. In the 1890s, there were at least three factories in Hailsham manufacturing rope and twine. Not surprisingly, Hailsham became  known as “The String Town”.

Hailsham has held a market charter since 1252 and now has the only livestock sales in Sussex. Cattle used to be driven through the High Street past the Crown Hotel to the Cattle Market . Now they are transported in trucks.

The Crown Hotel was renamed The Corn Exchange after the opening of the Hailsham Pavilion in 2000, and now operates as a night club on Friday and Saturday nights. A Corn Exchange was originally sited behind the Crown Hotel.