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One of England's most popular coastal resorts with more hours of sunshine than anywhere else in the entire United Kingdom

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Eastbourne, in East Sussex, is one of England's most popular coastal resorts. Its main attraction is its undeveloped seafront, which is a very unusual feature for a British seaside town. More often than not, places like this would be full to bursting with the bright lights and loud sounds of countless fairground rides and videogame arcades. By contrast, Eastbourne's main promenade is lined with old Victorian hotels, giving the beach a calm, traditional feel. Most of the buildings are owned by the Duke of Devonshire, who refuses to let them be converted into shops.
Of course, the town doesn't exist in complete silence. One of the best places to hear some sound is at the Eastbourne Bandstand, a 75-year-old semi-circular structure, with a blue domed roof, and elegant supporting columns. It's situated directly on the beach, so the seawater forms a beautiful background to the performing band. There are around 150 concerts a year, which vary from rock n roll, to military bands, to classical concerts that feature fireworks!

Eastbourne Bandstand
Photo in the public domain
More noise is made every August, at a free air display called Airbourne. It's the biggest display on the south coast, with highlights that include World War II memorial flights, and displays from the RAF's aerobatic team, the Red Arrows.
During the rest of the year, the main highlight is undoubtedly the beach, which is around 6km long. Jutting out from its centre is the Eastbourne Pier, with its distinctive circular tower. This building houses a camera obscura, which projects views of the surrounding scenery onto a screen via clever use of mirrors. In the summer, the pier also hosts several extremely odd competitions, including a homemade raft race, and the infamous Birdman contest, in which participants attempt to achieve the miracle of flight using methods such as fancy dress, and pure optimism!

Eastbourne Pier
Photo usm_photos
Another of Eastbourne's well-known buildings is the Redoubt Fortress, which dates from the early 19th century. It was originally built to help defend against an attack by Napoleon, the French military leader. In subsequent years, it has been used as a jail, a World War II storage location, and an aquarium. More recently, it has spent the last few decades as a military museum. The Eastbourne promenade is also known for the Carpet Gardens, which feature plants and flowers in a range of carefully sculpted patterns. In fact, the town as a whole is renowned for its floral displays, resulting in frequent success in the Britain in Bloom competition.
The biggest landmarks in Eastbourne are Beachy Head, the highest sea chalk cliff in Britain, and the Seven Sisters, a series of smaller cliffs. Their white rocks resemble the White Cliffs of Dover so much, that they are often used as a stand-in for TV and film productions! On top of Beachy Head there is a lighthouse called Belle Tout, which is currently used as a private residence. A few years ago it was in danger of falling off the cliff entirely, due to coastal erosion. In 1999, via an amazing piece of engineering, the entire building was moved, in one piece, 17 metres away from the edge.

Beachy Head, near Eastbourne
Photo Elsie_esq

The Seven Sisters
Photo jonnyr1
Beachy Head is also unfortunately notorious as a suicide spot. Thankfully though, numbers have been dropping in recent years, thanks to regular patrols by the Beachy Head chaplaincy team. If you are finding life tough though, Eastbourne is good place to recover in - the town reportedly receives more hours of sunshine than anywhere else in the entire United Kingdom.

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