Wealden District Council

Tourism

Welcome to Wealden, situated in the county of East Sussex. With over 800 square kilometres of countryside, including coast and market towns waiting to be discovered, Wealden offers a unique holiday and short break destination.  If you are looking for ideas for a day out, there are lots of attractions to visit and many different events throughout the year to keep you and your family entertained. For further information visit our website Wealden Do Sussex (external link) or view the latest Attractions in Wealden Guide 2017 (pdf)

Ashdown Forest (external link)

Ashdown Forest is an ancient area of tranquil open heathland occupying the highest sandy ridge-top of the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). It is situated some 30 miles (48 km) south of London and lies between Crowborough, Forest Row and Maresfield on the more northerly of the two major sandstone ridges in the High Weald AONB.  Rising to an altitude of 732 feet (223 metres) above sea level, its heights provide expansive vistas across the heavily wooded hills of the Weald to the chalk escarpments of the North Downs and South Downs on the horizon.

Forest Explorer (external link)

Why not leave your car at home and visit Ashdown Forest on the Forest Explorer Service?  The Forest Explorer is a co-ordinated bus network set up by the Wealden Bus Alliance which connects visitors from local mainline railway stations to the heart of the Ashdown Forest. An Explorer bus ticket is flexible and allows you to take the bus from the mainline station to the Ashdown Forest or you can change buses if you want to go walking.  There are various stops en route at cafes, pubs and attractions, some with special offers available, all making for an enjoyable day out.  Also visit the Ashdown Forest Tourism Association (external link) for more information.

Business Support

Wealden District Council offers a range of services for locally-based tourism businesses, including advice & help to businesses who are starting up, employment issues and finance & grants.

Sussex Heritage Coast Strategy and Action Plan 2016-2020 (external link)

The Sussex Heritage Coast stretches from Eastbourne along the iconic cliffs of Beachy Head and the Seven Sisters, past Cuckmere Haven and on to Splash Point at Seaford.

This was the first Heritage Coast established as part of a plan to protect and conserve the best stretches of undeveloped coast in England.  More than one million people visit the Sussex Heritage Coast every year.

For more information on how the area will be managed for wildlife, landscape, tourism, recreation, heritage and the local community, please visit the Sussex Heritage website as above.

Wealden Tourism Economic Impact Study 2015 (pdf)

The Economic Impact of Tourism in Wealden report is a snapshot of the value and volume of tourism activity in our region.  It identifies total jobs supported in tourism, the spend, staying nights and day visits. The 2015 figures were prepared in 2016.

Wealden Tourism Destination Management Plan

Wealden District Council has started work on a destination management plan for the District.  The tourism industry is a key contributor to Wealden's economy with the largest business sectors (by number) being retail and visitor/tourism related.  In 2014/15 the total tourism spend in Wealden was £258 million and 11.4% of the total Wealden workforce are within the industry.

Over the next few months there will be various pieces of research being undertaken including visitor, resident and business surveys and interviews.  The evidence collated will help to inform Wealden's corporate objectives and a future tourism model for Wealden.  Such work will also contribute to wider strategic work such as the Wealden Local Plan and county wide growth strategy interventions such as the East Sussex Cultural Strategy and East Sussex Growth Strategy and prospectuses.

For further information please contact the Community and Regeneration Team.