North Lancing and South Lancing
Before the build environment started to dominate Lancing the shallow south facing slopes of the Downs just above the coastal plain were well known for horticulture. Lancing also enjoyed a period in the nineteenth century as a secluded coastal resort, popular with rich folk who wanted to get away from it all. It's fairly hard to imagine that nowadays.
Lancing has maintained a separate identity to its beefed-up neighbours, Worthing and Shoreham-by Sea, but only just.
The village has effectively become combined with Sompting to form a continuous block of suburbanisation. Slightly ironically, Shoreham Airport has done the most to prevent old-fashioned Lancing being swallowed up by the megalopolis of the Sussex coast, providing a large area of grassland near the Adur's west bank.
Lancing is technically a village, but a huge one with nearly 20,000 inhabitants. The northernmost parts of Lancing contain a small, but treasured, part of the South Downs, where some of the most interesting features of the the parish lie.
In the middle ages the parish of Lancing contained three settlements - North Lancing, South Lancing and Pende. The last of these was a small port alongside the Shoreham River (Adur), but changes in the course of the river and the Teville Stream meant that most traces of Pende were lost by the seventeenth century.
Lancing RingLancing Ring is the name given to a small hill which rises to 109 metres above sea level immediately to the north of modern day Lancing.
Lancing Ring is now protected by its designation as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and its status as a local nature reserve. The area is looked after by the Friends of Lancing Ring.
Lancing Roman TempleThere are traces of a Roman Temple on the Downs above Lancing which were rediscovered in the 1828.
Rather unfortunately the man who discovered them removed much of what he found before proper investigation could be carried out.
But two archaeological investigations of the area in the twentieth century concluded that the 12 acre site included a shrine and that Lancing Roman Temple has been built on what was possibly a traditional Celtic holy place.
The Romans excelled at adapted British customs for their own religious and political purposes - partly as a way of keeping the local population sweet without having to crush them.
Artifacts such as a beautiful copper bracelet and a brooch were dug up.
You can imagine the attractions of the site as a spiritually special place very easily - overlooking the Channel and the Adur Valley - even today it's a very uplifting place to be.
Lancing CollegeOne of the most noticeable features of Lancing is the extraordinary sight of Lancing College Chapel looming above the village and commanding the western side of the Adur valley. You can read read more about the history of Lancing College Chapel here.
Map of the Lancing area
- Upper Beeding
- Cissbury Ring
- The South Downs Way
- Bognor Regis
- Burgess Hill
- East Grinstead
- Haywards Heath