Place:Shoreham by Sea, Sussex, England

NameShoreham by Sea
Alt namesShoreham-by-Seasource: hyphenated, commonly used
Shorehamsource: common parlance
New Shorehamsource: former name of parish
TypeParish, Urban district
Coordinates50.833°N 0.233°W
Located inSussex, England
Also located inWest Sussex, England     (1865 - )
See alsoBramber Rape, Sussex, Englandrape in which it was located
Fishergate Hundred, Sussex, Englandhundred in which it was located
Adur District, West Sussex, Englanddistrict municipality covering the area since 1974
source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names
source: Family History Library Catalog
the text in this section is based on an article in Wikipedia

Shoreham by Sea (often shortened to Shoreham) is a seaside town and port in West Sussex, England where it is in the Adur District.

The present town is bordered to its north by the South Downs, to its west by the valley of the wikipedia:River Adur and to its south by the River Adur and Shoreham Beach on the English Channel. The town lies in the middle of the ribbon of urban development along the English south coast, approximately equidistant from the City of Brighton and Hove to the east and the town of Worthing to the west. Shoreham covers an area of 980 hectares (2,430 acres or 3.80 sq mi) and had a population of 20,547 in the UK census of 2011.

Shoreham by Sea was known as the parish of New Shoreham until 1910. The parish and port of New Shoreham was established by the Norman conquerors towards the end of the 11th century and consisted of the area immediately to the east of the mouth of the Adur. Old Shoreham was located to the north and was more rural. When New Shoreham became Shoreham by Sea it also became and urban district and, in doing so, absorbed 782 acres of Kingston by Sea to the east, 240 acres of Lancing parish that formed the shingle bank between Shoreham and the sea, and 539 acres from Old Shoreham. (Source: "Shoreham" from British History Online. A History of the County of Sussex: Volume 6, Part 1, Bramber Rape: Southern Part which includes a very useful map of the area circa 1910.

The two large old churches of Shoreham by Sea are St. Nicolas' Church, inland by the River Adur, which is partly Anglo-Saxon, and St. Mary de Haura Church (St Mary of the Haven) which is Norman, built in the decade following 1103.

The rapid growth of the neighbouring towns of Brighton, Hove and Worthing – and in particular the arrival of the railway in 1840 – prepared the way for Shoreham's rise as a Victorian sea port, with several shipyards and an active coasting trade. Shoreham Harbour remains in commercial operation to this day.

Shoreham Beach

Shoreham Beach, to the south of the town, is a shingle spit deposited over millennia by longshore drift, as an extension to Lancing parish in the west. This blocks the southerly flow of the River Adur which turns east at this point to discharge into the English Channel further along the coast at a point that has varied considerably over time. During the 17th and 18th centuries, the mouth of the river shifted eastwards which restricted trade to the port; by 1810 it was almost opposite Aldrington church. In 1816, work had been completed to fix the position of the river in its present position, flowing into the sea between two piers. Once the harbour mouth was stabilised it was defended by Shoreham Fort which was built in 1857. Converted railway carriages became summer homes around the start of the 20th century, and 'Bungalow Town', as it was then known, became home to the early British film industry. The seaside shingle bank of Shoreham beach extends further east past the harbour mouth, forming the southern boundary of the commercial harbour in Southwick, Portslade and Hove.

Research Tips

  • The West Sussex Record Office is located in Chichester. Because it holds the records of the Church of England Diocese of Chichester, which covers the whole of Sussex, it has church records relating to both parts of Sussex.
  • An on-line catalogue for some of the collections held by the West Sussex Record Office is available under the Access to Archives (A2A) project (a nationwide facility housed at The National Archives, Kew).
  • West Sussex Past - database of 2 million records from West Sussex heritage organizations.
  • The Institute of Heraldic and Genealogical Studies' Sussex Collection (PDF). This is a 9-page PDF naming the files relating to Sussex in their collection-a possible first step in a course of research.
  • The National Library of Scotland has a website which provides maps taken from the Ordnance Survey England & Wales One-Inch to the Mile series of 1892-1908 as well as equivalent maps for Scotland itself. The immediate presentation is a "help" screen and a place selection screen prompting the entry of a location down to town, village or parish level. These screens can be removed by a click of the "X". The map is very clear and shows parish and county boundaries and many large buildings and estates that existed at the turn of the 20th century. Magnification can be adjusted and an "overlay feature" allows inspection of the area today along with that of 1900. The specific map from the series can be viewed as a whole ("View this map") and this allows the inspection of the map legend (found in the left hand bottom corner. Becoming familiar with the various facilities of these maps is well worth the trouble.
This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original content was at Shoreham-by-Sea. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with WeRelate, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.