Our Favourite Villages: Firle, East Sussex
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Firle, East Sussex
Located at the foot of the South Downs, Firle is a picturesque village in the Lewes District of East Sussex. Firle derives from the Anglo-Saxon word ‘fierol’ meaning overgrown with oak.
The beauty of the village and surrounding countryside has attracted artists and writers for decades. Writer Virginia Woolf visited nearby Lewes in December 1910 and decided to relocate to Firle, where she rented a house and renamed it Little Talland House. Woolf's sister – painter and interior designer Vanessa Bell – moved to Firle in 1916 taking residence with her live-in lover Duncan Grant in Charleston Farmhouse, which subsequently became a regular haunt of the Bloomsbury Group. Writer Katherine Mansfield also lived in Firle for a brief time. Her landlord was economist John Maynard Keynes, who moved to Firle in 1925 and died there in 1946.
Firle is also home to a sprawling country estate, the seat of the Gage family, which includes a stunning stately home and several villages and farms set across the rolling hills. Home to many artists, craftsmen and local businesses, the estate offers magnificent walks, bike rides and country pursuits, with many places to stay, eat and drink. You can find out more HERE.