Tide Mills Abandoned Village • Seaford

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Tide Mills is an abandoned village and mill situated between Seaford and Newhaven in East Sussex. It’s a fascinating place for photographers and history buffs alike.

Plus, it’s a great place for a bracing walk on one of the largest undeveloped areas of beach in Sussex. I think it’s a hidden gem!

Tide Mills - Sluices
Tide Mills – Sluices

Brief History

I read up about the history of Tide Mills on Wikipedia. There’s some more useful information here. In brief:

  • The mill was powered by the tide and accessible by ship. It was operational from 1788 until 1883.
  • A village sprang up around the mill but it was condemned as unfit for habitation in 1936 and abandoned in 1939.
  • The Chailey Heritage Hospital was operational here in the 1920’s.
Chailey Heritage Hospital
Chailey Heritage Hospital
Decaying Building - Tide Mills
Decaying Building
Crumbling Away - Tide Mills
Crumbling Away
Remaining Foundations - Tide Mills
Remaining Foundations

Tide Mills for Photographers

If you’ve been following my Brighton and Sussex professional photography you’ll have gathered that landscapes and seascapes are not my usual genre. You’re more likely to find me in Brighton doing some street photography! But there’s a story to tell here, which appeals to me as documentary photographer.

That said, I think there’s something of interest at Tide Mills for most photographers. Regardless of your favoured genre. I’ll certainly be visiting more often. Personally I’m thinking more in terms of abstract photography opportunities for future visits.

Abstract - Into the Sun
Abstract – Into the Sun
Last Wall Standing
Last Wall Standing

The Tide Mills Railway Crossing

After parking your car you’ll have to cross a railway track to get to the Tide Mills abandoned village and beach. It’s a scary crossing! Apparently there are plans to replace this crossing with a bridge due to numerous incidents and near misses recently. That’ll be safer but I’m not so sure about the effect it’ll have on the natural beauty of the place. My advice? Look both ways and be sensible!

Railway Crossing - Tide Mills
Railway Crossing

Tide Mills Beach

Tide Mills is totally undeveloped and you can walk along the beach from Newhaven to Seaford without an ice cream parlour or “Kiss me Quick” hat in sight. I think it’s gorgeous. It’s a brutal yet peaceful landscape. Just as Mother Nature intended.

Looking west towards Newhaven Harbour
Looking west towards Newhaven Harbour
Abandoned Hat - Tide Mills Beach
Abandoned Hat
Kite Surfers - Tide Mills Beach
Kite Surfers

How to Get to Tide Mills

Address: Mill Drove, Seaford, East Sussex, BN25 2TW

Tide Mills is located just off the A259 coast road between Seaford and Newhaven. There’s a free car park at the top of Mill Drove. Here’s a Google map to show the location:

Related Topics

You can learn more about my work as a professional photographer in Brighton and Sussex here. Alternatively, you might be interested in my Brighton street photography here.

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