Firle Camp

UK England South East England East Sussex Lewes

  • Dogs welcome
  • Campfires allowed
  • Groups welcome
  • Short walk to pub
  • Beaches nearby
  • Good walks nearby
Beautiful green countryside, all around
The South Downs National Park is the UK’s newest National Park, so it seems entirely fitting that a brand new campsite with a fresh approach has opened in one of its most beautiful areas. The owner, however is far from new to this game – it’s James from much-loved Sussex site Kitts Cottage Campsite. Firle is his latest venture, blazing a trial with a pop-up campsite concept in 2012, open just for popular summer weekends. Proper service commenced here in 2013 with a modest shower block replacing the portable loos, but don’t expect huge changes as the beauty of this site is in its back-to-basics simplicity. Two flat hedge-edged fields are hidden behind an 18th Century stone barn; other than the pillar box shower huts, that’s it, there’s not much else to say. Except, look around – immediately beyond the hedges are the rolling South Downs, tempting you to leave your tent and walk straight off into this Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (and there’s a cracking country pub nearby to reward those that do). There are no marked pitches, but expect James to cluster families and non-families in separate groupings, each around the essential firepit, of course.

Details

Facilities

Campfires allowed. Around 40 tents max. A couple of pillar box shower huts both produce a surpirsing amount of hot water. Pressure can be a little iffy though, so anyone expecting a power shower will be disappointed. A washing up area has covered sinks and ample room for drying and stacking. There is no hot water on tap. More encouragingly, the water that comes to the campsite is from Firle's own Downland Spring. It filters through the South Downs chalk making it cleaner, purer and softer than nearly anywhere else. There’s a small shop in Firle village and a top-notch farm shop at nearby Middle Farm (01323 811411).

Suitable For

Tents, campervans, groups, dogs on leads – yes. Caravans, noisy groups – no.

Nearby

It’s all about the walking here: you can acces paths directly from the site and walk to Firle Beacon (1 mile), from where you can pick up the South Downs Way. Nearby, Firle Place estate (01273 858307) offers history and some of the best views in the area. The lovely county town of Lewes (4 miles) is also an easy trip.

Food & Drink

There’s a great pub 15 minutes’ walk from the site: the Ram (01273 858222), with a high quality menu and a lovely garden. Families should try the Barley Mow  (01323 811322) at Selmeston, which has a kids play area.

Opening Times

April – Oct.

Accommodation

No availability showing at Firle Camp.

Location

Contact Firle Camp, Firle Estate, Heighton St, East Sussex BN8 6NZ

Getting There

From the A27, 4 miles east of Lewes turn on to Heighton Street marked by a sign saying ‘Ripe 3, Laughton 5’. Firle Camp is 300 yards on the left.

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