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feet more, and the whole area enclosed occupies rather more than an acre and a quarter, Near the northern angle was the entrance gateway, long since demolished, and adjoining it may be seen the ruins of a small tower and sallyport; still further westward are the remains of another. The walls, about eight feet in thickness, were composed of stone, flint, and rubble, and were Aanked by a broad and deep ditch, contracting gradually towards the entrance. It is scarcely possible for a tourist, at all imaginatively constituted, to wander by moonlight in the charmed circle of this relic of antiquity without expecting some mailed knight or doughty warrior to start upon his path. For some time past the interior has been laid out as a flower-garden and shrubbery, and the person who has charge of the lodge accommodates, for a small fee, visitors with seats and refreshments. The view, though not equal to that from Fairlight Downs, is varied and extensive, and commands towards the south an ample marine expanse, whilst Beachy Head, Eastbourne, and Bexhill may be seen towards the west,
The recognised salubrity and mildness of the air, together with the openness of the coast and smoothness of the beach, have long made Hastings a favourite and a recommended resort. The shore is not abrupt and the water almost always limpid, and of that beautiful sea-green hue so inviting to bathers. The constant surging of the waves, first breaking against the reefs and next dashing over the sloping shingle, is not unwelcome music at midnight to the ears of all who sleep in the vicinity of the shore. Dr. James Clark states that in winter Hastings is most desirable as a place of residence during January and February. “During the spring also it has the advantage of being more effectually sheltered from
north and north-east winds than any other place frequented by invalids on the coast of Sussex. It is also comparatively little subject to fogs in the spring, and the fall of rain may be said at that time to be less than on other portions of the coast. As might be expected from the low and sheltered situation of Hastings, it will be found a favourable residence generally to invalids suffering under diseases of the chest. Delicate persons, who desire to avoid exposure to the north-east winds, may pass the cold season here with advantage. Owing to the close manner in which this place is hemmed in on the sea by steep and high cliffs, it has an atmosphere more completely marine than almost any other part of this coast, with the exception, of course, of St. Leonard's, which possesses the same dry and absorbent soil.” The breadth and extent of its esplanade also, and the protection afforded by the colonnades for walking exercise, are circumstances of considerable importance to the invalid, and render a conjoined residence at Hastings and St. Leonard's a very efficient substitute for a trip to Madeira.
Whilst in the neighbourhood it should not be forgotten that a delightful excursion may be made to Battle Abbey, not more than six miles distant. The grounds are now in the possession of the Webster family, who have liberally thrown them open to public inspection every Monday. It is here that the “Battel Roll,” a sort of primitive “Court Guide," is carefully preserved, and furnishes a list valuable to the antiquary and historian of those families who came over with William the Conqueror. · A glance into the booksellers' windows, where engraved vignettes of some neigbouring attraction allure the eye in every direction, will at once reveal to the visitor the tempting beauty of the environs. A week may be delightfully spent in exploring the fairy-like nooks about Fairlight alone. Situated in a sweet umbrageous spot, down which, by narrow winding steps, hewn out of the solid rock, one only can descend at a time, is the weeping rock. The view of this constantlydripping well, as the spectator looks up to the jutting rock from the beautiful cottage of Covehurst below, is well calculated to inspire the mind with that feeling under which credence would be given to any legend that accounted for this freak of nature, by ascribing it to the influence of supernatural agency. The stone weeps, as it were, from myriads of pores, and, although the water falls in continuous drops, no trace of it is left in the reservoir; passing through the rock, its appearance is as mysterious as its disappearance is magical. It is explained by the soil beneath being loose and sandy, over a heavy beach stone foundation, and, acting as a subterraneous drain, the water is conducted beneath the surface, appearing as a translucent stream about a hundred yards from the rock, and then again disappearing down a declivity. The beautiful appearance the rock presents in winter, when the drip is frozen and the icicles hang from the sloping crags in clusters of crystals, will not be easily forgotten by those who have had the good fortune to witness, at this period, such a mimic stalactite cavern.
Then, in the vicinity of the well are the fish-ponds, with romantic walks around it, and a comfortable farm-house adjacent, where refreshments can be had at a small cost, and where the ale is—but we forbear our eloquence. The picturesque waterfall of Old Roar should not be overlooked, nor the Lover's Seat, so charmingly enthroned amid shrubs and evergreens, nor the other favoured localities, which are enough to make a Pennsylvanian lawyer turn poetical. Let the pedestrian, however, make his way to the signal house belonging to the coast-guard station at that point, and he will have a panoramic view around him which it would be worth while walking from Cornhill to Grand Cairo only to behold and then walk back again.
The whole forms a complete circle; the sweep of inland scenery extending to the hills in the neighbourhood of London, and the sea view reaching from Beachy Head to Dover cliffs, between seventy and eighty miles apart, and stretching out to the heights of Boulogne. The entire area of the prospect, both by land and water, cannot be less than three hundred miles. Amongst many minor objects visible may be enumerated ten towns, sixty-six churches, seventy martello towers, five ancient castles, three bays, and forty windmills. The best time for seeing it is in the afternoon, when the setting sun lights up the old town of Hastings in the foreground, and brings into strong shadow the opposite coast of France. Under favourable atmospheric influences it is, indeed, a view never to be forgotten.
St. Leonard's, the recognised “west-end” of Hastings, from which it is only one mile distant, and with which the extended line of buildings must speedily form a junction, was planned and executed by the well-known architect, Mr. Decimus Burton, who only commenced his bold project in 1828. Hotels of eastern magnificence, public gardens, looking like realisations of the Arabian Nights' descriptions, libraries where the most fascinating novel gains an additional charm from the luxurious sea-fronting ottomans, on which their perusal may be indulged, together with an esplanade, peerless in its promenading conveniences--these are but a few of the manifold attractions which St. Leonard's holds forth to tempt the errant visitor into becoming a stationary resident.
On the hill, by the railway station, as you approach Bulverhithe, may be seen the ruins of the Conqueror's Chapel, supposed to mark the spot where he landed. Recent antiquaries have laboured to prove that it must have been nearer Pevensey.
For the epistolary convenience of the traveller, we may state that Hastings has now two dispatches and arrivals of letters daily. Letters are delivered at 7 a.m. and 6 30 p.m.; the box for London closes at 6 35 a.m. and 9 45 p.m. There is a penny post, besides, to St. Leonard's twice a-day.
And now, having glanced at the attractions of Hastings, and of which the visitor has a reasonable right to expect the enjoyment, be it our final office to tell the uninitiated how to get there. The pleasantest route is certainly by road, the quickest is most assuredly by rail. Taking the South Coast line, via Brighton, from which Hastings is distant thirty-three miles, the traveller may get thither from London-bridge comfortably in three hours and a half. Should he have time to spare we earnestly recommend him to have a peep at old Pevensey Castle on his way. There is a branch in progress from the Headcorn station, on the South Eastern line, which will render the time of journeying somewhat shorter, but with less attractive stations to stop at than the rival railway just mentioned affords. By the old coach road the traveller passes through the most lovely portions of Kent and Sussex, successively showing the scenery round Sevenoaks, Tunbridge, Tunbridge Wells, Lamberhurst, Robertsbridge, &c. Let him choose, however, which route he will, there is enough, and more than enough, to repay him, at his journey's end, for all the expenditure of time and money involved in its attainment.