Welcome to Hangleton!
Your editor for Hangleton is Ian Farrell. If you’ve got any queries about this area, or can add any information, photos or memories, please send My Brighton and Hove a message via the Comments form at the bottom of this page.
I’ve lived here for over 20 years, and my interest in the history of the area has only increased the more I have learnt about its rich past. Courtesy of Geoff Mead, here’s a brief overview of Hangleton, present and past.
The Hangleton stretch
Hangleton is a downland parish lying north of Hove. It stretches from the edge of the coastal plain near the present Old Shoreham Road, up onto the high downland south of the Devil’s Dyke.
The area today
The housing area is the usual suburban mix. There are an historic set of buildings – St Helen’s Church and Hangleton Manor – as the core, with distinct groups of classic interwar semis spreading out from the Thirties roadhouse pub, The Grenadier.
In the Sunninghill area on the eastern side of Hangleton, there is an extensive estate built from 1946 onwards, partly constructed by German ex-POW’s stranded in the UK after World War II. Much of the western area around Hangleton valley is in the form of 1950’s and 1960’s bungalow developments.
There was a big surge of building in the late 1960’s, taking the housing spread high onto the Downs, particularly along the line of the old Dyke railway line, where Hangleton ends abruptly in the gaunt flats of Buckley Close.
Encircled by the Brighton by-pass, there is little scope for an extension of the built area other than in the Toads Hall valley. Currently the land is derelict and is used unofficially as a dirt-bike track.
The area yesterday
Hangleton Manor is the oldest secular building in the city. However, along with the church, the Manor was all there was to see in the parish until development started in the inter-war period. Hangleton was a classic ‘deserted medieval village’, abandoned sometime in the 14th century. For much of the past 500 years, it consisted of little more than downland sheep walks, with extensive arable land in the valleys.