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Local history and heritage

Heritage is an integral part of the historic environment but it can be hard to define as it is never one element, but a meshing together of several. Character, identity and cultural variety are built up in layers of detail over time and it is the mixture of these layers that helps to make up the heritage of an area. As a guide we have classified heritage into four types and given examples of assets in each category.

Records and archives

West Sussex Record Office collects and preserves the documentary and recorded heritage of the county of West Sussex. The collections include records of local government from the sixteenth century, the Diocese of Chichester and its parishes and those of businesses, families, estates, societies and schools. It also holds records of West Sussex hospitals, the West Sussex Constabulary and The Royal Sussex Regiment.

Please see the West Sussex County Council - Record Office web page for more information.

Archaeological heritage

Locally important visible features, such as hill forts, burial mounds, moats, field systems, ridge and furrow, and ancient village sites.

Built heritage

Locally distinctive built heritage elements and small features, such as field barns, pumps, wells, gates and walls, bridges, railings, milestones, architectural details, cobbles, memorials, village greens or traditional signs.

Customs and traditions

Historic and cultural associations with the land and activities of local people.  Heritage features relating to how people lived, worked and played, such as place names, field names, parish boundaries, open spaces, viewpoints, rights of way of significant heritage value, including country lanes and drove roads.

Industrial heritage

Physical features related to locally important industries, such as chimneys, lime kilns, packhorse trails, wagonways, canals, quarries, mineral pits, spoil heaps, mills, mines, smithies and coopers.