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The Good Life

Posted 23 July 2013 by Andrew Gardner google authorship button

Hall House, Clapham, West Sussex

Life in Sussex is getting better - it's official. Well, I didn't need the 2011 census to tell me that, but it's nice to see it in print. I hope that when you stay in one of our gorgeous coastal cottages or cosy country hideaways you'll get to share something of what makes our county so special - and if you haven't already booked yours, do check our late availability and special offers pages. Although like everywhere else the population is growing and changing, Sussex is less crowded than other parts of Southeast England and in any case, a changing population keeps things interesting in so many ways.

One figure from the census that intrigued me was the rising number of homes with central heating in the county. I wondered if this was due to the abundance of beautiful old cottages being modernised - we have some fascinating examples on our books - or just the popularity of installing woodburning stoves to make a cosy cottage extra welcoming.

It's also interesting to see a proposal being mooted for a new town just north of Brighton. Some say it would be an eyesore and unwelcome; to others it's a sensible solution to provide much-needed housing in a structured way, instead of adding piecemeal to existing towns and villages. Whatever they decide, I suspect it's a long way off.

But you can always rely on Sussex to be quirky as well. To wit, the naked bike ride in Brighton a few weeks ago. I think it was a protest about conditions for cyclists but it made me laugh because Brits only seem to be comfortable with nudity when we're protesting about or trying to draw attention to something - like the old craze for streakers at major sporting events!. Brighton of course bucks that trend, not only by having a naturist beach but also because it was the first official one in Britain.  And you just can't ignore the fact that it opened, back in 1980, on April 1st. No fooling!