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(Smugglers and Churchill Tanks)
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Jevington is an old village nestling in a quiet valley in the South Downs not far from Eastbourne .

There was a neolithic settlement near the village, and many barrows can be found on the nearby hills.

The church in the village dates from about 900AD and had a defensive tower similar to the one at East Dean . The tower was the refuge from the Vikings when they came raiding the area, probably trying to kill the population that supplied King Alfred the Great's port at nearby Exceat .

Jevington Place the local manor house is mentioned in the Domesday book.

A monastry was founded in the village in 1344 and dedicated to St Lewinna ( see Alfriston ) but was closed by Henry VIII when he dissolved the monastries in 1538 .

The area was well known for its smuggling connections with a smuggler James Pettit known as 'Jevington Jigg' organising the smuggling in the local area. The gang offloaded at nearby Birling Gap and Crowlink , and brought the contraband up the valleys to Jevington where they were stored in the cellar of the Rectory and in the inn. Pettit was the local innkeeper and leader of the local gang in the 1780's . As a criminal he seemed to be interested in both smuggling and horse thieving as he was imprisoned at Battle , Horsham and East Grinstead . In 1799 he was convicted of horse thieving and was deported to Botany Bay.

During the Second World War Winston Churchill visited the village to see the final prooving of the Churchill tank on the hills above the village in 1940 .


Jevington has a few local services, mostly dealing with the tourists who flock into the area in the summer.

The nearest trains are from Polegate about 3 miles north which is on the coastal line.

The nearest major shopping area is at Eastbourne about 5 miles to the east.


The village is very pretty, and a walk up Church Lane to the church which lies on the higher ground and overlooks the village is very pleasant.

The South Downs Way runs through the village for those more daring visitors.

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