Next Parish Council Meetings


Recreation Ground

Due to the Coronavirus outbreak, the Pavilion remains closed at the moment. The open area of the Rec. is accessible for exercise and the tennis court and play area are now open, but you are urged to comply with Government restrictions regarding keeping a safe distance from others.

Coronavirus: UK Government Information


Community Services within the Village

Charity of the year 2020/21

Cuckmere Community Bus route 41
Community Watch / Neighbourhood Watch
Emergency Plan 
Residents' Association
Tree Warden
Village Directory (at Feb 2020)
Village Hall

Village website

Who Looks after What?

Quick Links 

Your Councillors

Finance Meetings

Full Council
Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group 

Contact Us



Welcome to the East Dean and Friston Parish Council website. We hope that you enjoy browsing it and finding out more about our village and its council. We always welcome feedback from our site visitors, so if you have any comments or suggestions for improvements then please let us know via the "Contact Us" link.

What's new?

Latest Update - 4th May 2021

Urgent! Birling Gap Road Closed: Contractors working for South East Water have closed the Birling Gap Road approximately 100 metres before the National Trust car park so there is currently no access to Birling Gap from East Dean. Misleadingly, there is a sign at the junction of the A259 and Gilberts Drive which implies that there is no access to the village centre. This is definitely NOT the case and the village remains open for business. Regretably, the Parish Council was given no advanced warning of this closure.

The next Parish Council meeting will take place remotely on Thursday 6th May beginning at 6:30 pm. The agenda has now been published and can be found on our "Council Meetings" page or by clicking here. The agenda contains details of how members of the public may observe the meeting and also how to submit items for the public session held at the start.

Parish Council By-election: Nominations for the three vacant positions on the Parish Council have now closed and the returning officer has notified that five candidates have made valid applications. This means that a ballot will be held on 6th May, at the same time as the County Councillor and Police and Crime Commissioner elections. The official notice and list of candidates can be viewed on the Parish Council notice board or by clicking here. The Parish Council are unable to publicise statements from individual candidates but they can be viewed on the independent village website

The most recent meeting of the Planning Committee took place remotely on Tuesday 20th March, The minutes have now been published can be found on our "council meetings" page or by clicking here.

Cuckmere Buses Return: Cuckmere Buses plan to resume all services to their pre-COVID timetables from 12 April. Therefore, East Dean Service 41 will be back to running on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 13 April. Social distancing will need to continue so buses will only be able to accommodate up to 10 passengers. For timetable details click on the "Community Services"link or here.

Youth Cricket: The Cricket Club are very happy to inform you that All Stars cricket will be returning to East Dean and Friston this summer. The programme will be structured in the same way as 2019 – an hour session each Sunday for eight weeks, from 23rd May until 11th July. Click the following links for more details and to register your child! All Stars (5-8) - ClubSpark / All Stars / Course ; Dynamos (8-11) - ClubSpark / Dynamos / Course

Annual Village Meeting: The Parish Council have reluctantly accepted that, for the second year running, it will not be possible to hold an Annual Village Meeting. The rules for such meetings require that they be held between 1st March and 1st June but, under the current restrictions, indoor meetings of more than 30 people will not be possible before 21st June. An annual village report will still be produced and published in due course.

Dog walkers please take care! Terry and Pam Wigmore (formerly of the sheep centre) are currently grazing their flock of rare-breed sheep on Hobbs Eares, by arrangement with the National Trust. They urge all dog walkers using this open space to please keep their dogs on a lead to protect the sheep.

Community Speedwatch: The East Dean and Friston Community Speedwatch group has now been registered and volunteers will be receiving training in the use of equipment once the current lockdown restrictions are over. Community Speedwatch is a national initiative where, in partnership with the police, members of communities use detection devices to monitor local vehicle speeds. If the data proves a driver is ignoring repeated warnings police can prosecute them. If you would consider volunteering to join our local Speedwatch team, please contact the Parish Council at

The Parish and its Council


The Parish of East Dean and Friston is located between the south coast towns of Seaford and Eastbourne, situated on the southern edge of Wealden District in the County of East Sussex and within the South Downs National Park. It is a relatively large rural area, comprising the village of East Dean and Friston, together with the smaller hamlets of Birling Gap and Crowlink. The A259 main coast road passes through the Parish with the old village to the south and the newer parts of the village (known as the "Downlands Estate") to the north. The Parish is primarily residential, covers an area of 3.3sq miles and consists of some 760 households with a population of around 2,200. 

East Dean Village is centred around the Village Green with its war memorial, medieval church and long-established inn, “The Tiger”. To the North-West of the village, as the A259 ascends Friston Hill, is the area known as Friston, which was originally a separate village with its own church at the top of the hill.

Birling Gap is a coastal hamlet with a long shingle beach, backed by the famous Seven Sisters cliffs and not far from Beachy Head. The Birling Gap visitor centre and cafe, and some of the surrounding land is owned by the National Trust.

Crowlink is a small hamlet grouped around a manor house; in the 18th century it was a haven for smugglers of Gin that became known as "Genuine Crowlink". It was also once the home of the Edwardian author, Edith Nesbit, whose best-known work is “The Railway Children”.

Parish Councils were formed in England under the Local Government Act 1894 to take over local oversight of civic duties in rural towns and villages. Before this date a variety of groups based around ecclesiastical (church) parishes had responsibility for these matters, in a system of local government that originated in the feudal system of the 8th century. The establishment of Parish Councils effectively separated church from state and today's councils are totally secular in nature and independent from the Parochial Church Councils that deal with the administration of the local Church of England places of worship.

Following the 1894 Act, both East Dean and Friston began Parish Meetings (not council meetings) and East Dean then formed a Parish Council in 1924. The Friston Parish Meeting merged with East Dean to form the East Dean and Friston Parish Council in 1948.

Parish Councils are the first tier of local government and have limited variable tax raising powers. The component part of the Council Tax, which comes to the Parish Council, is known as the Precept.
Parish Councils are responsible for areas known as civil parishes, and there are approximately 9,000 Parish Councils in England. East Dean and Friston is one of those civil Parishes. Although there is nothing to prevent Parish Councils being political in nature, the current East Dean and Friston PC members are all independent of any party political sponsorship. The current Parish Council was elected in 2019 and is due for re-election in May 2023.