The Tidemills at Bishopstone

Between Newhaven And Seaford on the south coast of England, Tidemills and its History.

Help conserve this special open space.

This precious and somewhat mysterious place, situated between Newhaven and Seaford on the East Sussex Coast, needs ongoing care and attention - why not join the Friends and give a couple of hours a month by helping us keep the place cared for - you will be made very welcome!

Who are the friends of tidemills?

The Friends of Tide Mills is a small, informal group of mainly local people interested in maintaining and preserving the unique atmosphere of this area for the benefit of all. The group was started April 2005 and has now become the focus for anybody who feels the area is threatened in any way - we have an excellent working partnership with Newhaven Port Properties, the land owners, and, latterly, the South Downs National Park Authority, as much of the area is now within the boundary of this latest UK National Park.

 Our prime objective is the collection of (mainly) seaborne rubbish (nearly 2000 bags to date) but we have also taken an active role in clearing vegetation such as Japanese Knotweed  and assisting other groups with the recording and conservation of the plants and animals inhabiting this special habitat known as “Vegetated Shingle”.

 Our other main objective, now achieved we feel, is to put Tide Mills firmly “on the map” so that as many people as possible know about it and appreciate it as we obviously do.

We meet once a month, on a Sunday morning (always the 3rd Sunday of the month) between 10am and noon. We have litter grabbers and bags generously provided by Newhaven Port Properties. We just need you to work them! When we started in 2005 and in the early years of our activities around 6-10 of us would collect up to  25-30 bags of plastic and other rubbish. In recent years between 15-20 of us collect 10-20 bags, so we do feel we are now making Tide Mills much cleaner than ever before, but obviously the more of us there are the more of a difference we can truly make. That this litter peaks in or after stormy weather is sadly indicative that most of it is generated by those who rely on the sea for a living and the contempt they treat it with - fish net cuttings, discarded marine grease, oil containers etc.

 In September each year we participate in the Marine Conservation Society’s National Beach Watch initiative. However it isn’t all about rubbish collection as we are regularly consulted over other matters that crop up from time to time - for instance; Newhaven Port expansion plans, incidents of pollution, nesting bird sightings etc. We also enjoy two picnics a year - after our August and December meetings.

 No physical exertion just gentle, worthwhile exercise, in the, still free, sea air, you can work alone or with others. We generally work for 2 hours but any time that can be spared is equally appreciated - come for as long as you want, when you want, you will be made most welcome.

latest report(as reported to the press)

Dear Sirs, the Friends of Tide Mills have just completed their May meeting, in very pleasant weather, hopefully now the unsettled weather of late is now behind us.

20 members collected 5 (yes, just five!) sacks of assorted litter, the whole area is now looking near its best with the emergent vegetated shingle plants now close to full bloom- the birds are singing and nesting, this really is a great time to visit. We know there are several unsung heroes out there who also collect litter in their own time and pace- we are very grateful to you and all who ensure they leave the area as they would wish to find it, fantastic

Our nesting Ringed Plover signs are still in place, please do reduced disturbance of the signed area as much as possible- these little birds are active, so hopefully we will witness another successful breeding year, obviously the less the disturbance the more chance they will succeed.

At a recent meeting we voiced our objections and concerns about the ESCC proposal to press ahead with the Port Access road which will see an erosion of open space, disturbance etc. towards the Newhaven Port end of the site. Although possibly this objection will fail hopefully it will be the case that some mitigation will be offered- our views were noted and some sympathy shown. At least we were able to explain the situation on the ground and how important an area Tide Mills is to many people these days, which perhaps was not the case when this road was first muted, many years ago. 

Our next meeting is scheduled for Sunday 18th of June, 10-12- the more we are the stronger we are in protecting this beautiful and precious open space and keeping it the peaceful haven it undoubtedly is. For more information please contact myself at or

How do i join IN ?

There are no membership fees, forms etc.  Just email Jim Skinner (01273 517291)  or better still  just turn up, we meet at the junction of the coast path and Mill Drove at 10am. It can be windy so wear something warm. Kids, dogs even  mother in laws welcome as long as they are well behaved