Sussex Societies

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Family history societies often publish helpful journals, transcripts, compiled genealogies and host helpful websites. They may have ongoing projects to transcribe records and create indexes. Most societies publish queries in their journals and maintain lists of members’ research interests that may be helpful to you. You may want to join one of these societies, reap the benefits of their expertise and resources, or support its efforts.

Addresses of the societies are for the most part where their meetings are held as they are by-and-large not brick-and-mortar institutions.

Regional Societies[edit | edit source]

Felbridge and District History Group
Lake View Road
Furnace Wood
Felbridge, Surrey RH19 2QE UK
Telephone: 01342 715830
Website: Felbridge and District History Group

The group was founded in 1998 to exchange history and information, and make a permanent record of Felbridge and the surrounding district. The area has a long history that changed little until the first decades of the 20th century. It is on the border of Surrey and Sussex.

Horsham District Archaeology Group
Telephone: 01903 872309
Website: Horsham District Archaeology Group

The Horsham District Archaeology Group meets regularly to carry out research into the fascinating history and more distant past of Horsham and the surrounding West Sussex/Surrey countryside.

Liss Archaeology
Telephone: 02392 783465
Website: Liss Archaeology

Working on Archaeology projects in East Hampshire and West Sussex

Romney Marsh Research Trust
Website: Romney Marsh Research Trust

The Romney Marsh Research Trust was formed in 1987 to study the history, archaeology and landscape history (or ‘geomorphology’) of Romney Marsh.

Tunbridge Wells Family History Society
Website: Tunbridge Wells Family History Society

We are a small Society with around 250 members who either live in or have family history connections with the Tunbridge Wells area, which straddles the Kent/East Sussex border. The following parishes are of specific interest to our members: Kent (Ashurst, Bidborough, Lamberhurst (part), Pembury, Penshurst, Southborough, and Speldhurst) and East Sussex (Frant, Lamberhurst (part), Rotherfield, Ticehurst, Wadhurst, and Withyham).
We regret that because of a continual decrease in the number of members and a lack of volunteers to run the Society it will close on 31st December 2016. North West Kent FHS ( will take over from 1st January 2017 the area previously covered by TWFHS.

Wesley Historical Society - London And The South East
7 Hornminster Glen
Hornchurch, London RM11 3XL UK
Website: Wesley Historical Society - London And The South East

The aims of the Society laid down in 1893 were to promote the study of the history and literature of early Methodism, research into the Wesley's, and investigation into the beginnings and development of Methodism. Area: London and the South East. South East England consists of Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, East Sussex, Hampshire, the Isle of Wight, Kent, Oxfordshire, Surrey, and West Sussex.

Sussex Societies[edit | edit source]

Ardingly History Society
Hapstead Hall
High St
Haywards Heath, Sussex RH17 6TD UK
Website: Ardingly History Society

The aims of the Society are to stimulate interest in the history of Ardingly: to seek out material of historic interest and to persuade owners of the need to take steps to ensure its presentation: to arrange meetings lectures and other activities to foster interest in the history of the village.

Ashurst Wood Historians
St Dunstan’s Hall
Hammerwood Road
Ashurst Wood, West Sussex RH19 3QU UK
Telephone: 01342 323880
Website: Ashurst Wood Historians

Ashurst Wood Historians was founded in 1979…“to research and record the history of our village, its landscape, dwellings and the lives of its people through the stories of our residents, past and present.”

Battle & District Historical Society
Wynne Room
Memorial Hall
81 High Street
Battle, East Sussex, TN33 0AQ UK
Telephone: 01424 775590
Website: Battle & District Historical Society

The Battle and District Historical Society is actively interested in history: Battle, regional, national and international. B&DHS offers the local community a forum for enjoying all aspects of British history, including the very rich local history of the Battle area.

Beeding and Bramber Local History Society
Beeding and Bramber Village Hall
High St
Upper Beeding
Steyning, Sussex BN44 3WN UK
Website: Beeding and Bramber Local History Society

The Beeding and Bramber Local History Society was formed in 1981 for people who have an interest in the past of the two villages, as well as Botolphs, Small Dole and Edburton.

Billingshurst Local History Society
Billingshurst Village Hall
85-87 High St
Billingshurst, West Sussex RH14 UK
Website: Billingshurst Local History Society

The Billingshurst Local History Society was founded more than 35 years ago. Its purpose is to promote an understanding and interest in the history of Billingshurst and its environs.

Blackboys & District Historical Society
18 Maple Leaf Cottages School Lane
Uckfield, East Sussex TN22 5LJ UK
Telephone: 01825 890359
Website: Blackboys & District Historical Society

Bognor Regis Local History Society
Berkeley Arms
25-27 West St
Bognor Regis, Sussex PO21 1XA UK
Telephone: 01243 865636
Website: Bognor Regis Local History Society

The Society was founded to bring together those interested in the history of Bognor Regis and district and to encourage the research and recording of its past and present. In 1984 the Society established the Bognor Museum in the town, firstly at Park Lodge, Hotham Park, then in 1997 at 69, High Street and now at the former Berkeley Arms in West Street.

Brighton & Hove Archaeological Society
Unitarian Church
New Road
Brighton, Sussex BN1 1UF UK
Telephone: 0844 5888 277
Website: Brighton & Hove Archaeological Society

Our objectives are to promote the study of archaeology and local history and to ensure the proper recording and preservation of local antiquities and relics

Burgess Hill Local History Society
Cyprus Hall
Cyprus Road
Burgess Hill, Sussex RH15 8DX UK
Website: Burgess Hill Local History Society
Second Website: Burgess Hill Local History Society

The Burgess Hill Local History Society was founded by a few residents who felt that with the rapid growth of the town, the disappearance of so many landmarks and the number of changes that had taken place, it was essential to try and capture the remnants of the town's history. At the same time, they also hoped to engage the interest of new residents and foster a sense of pride in the town.

Chichester and District Archaeology Society
New Park Community Centre
New Park Rd
Chichester, Sussex PO19 7XY UK
Website: Chichester and District Archaeology Society

From Prehistoric, Bronze Age, Iron Age, Roman and Mediaeval periods through to the 21st Century, Chichester city and its countryside provide a rich variety of archaeology for the members of the Chichester and District Archaeology Society.

Chichester Local History Society
New Park Community Centre
New Park Rd
Chichester, Sussex PO19 7XY UK
Telephone: 01243 576701
Website: Chichester Local History Society

The Society seeks to promote talks, research, and publications on local historical topics and to arrange visits to places of historical interest in the Chichester area.

Cowfold Village History Society
Cowfold Village Hall
Bolney Road
Horsham, West Sussex RH13 8AA UK
Website: Cowfold Village History Society

The society brings together people who are interested in local history through meetings, exhibitions and publications and projects. We welcome anyone with this interest and who would like to share photos, memories, postcards and memorabilia. We also support individual research and encourage groups of like-minded people to get together and investigate aspects from Cowfold’s past to the present day.

Danehill Parish Historical Society
Danehill Memorial Hall
London Road
Forest Row, East Sussex RH17 7HS UK
Telephone: 01825 790396
Website: Danehill Parish Historical Society

The objects of the society are to promote interest in, and the study of local history in particular, or any other historical matter of interest, bringing together local residents or other people to share and enjoy a range of social and informal activities.

East Grinstead Society
Main Hall
East Court Mansion
College Lane
East Grinstead, Sussex RH19 3LT UK
Telephone: 01342 321755
Website: East Grinstead Society

The East Grinstead Society was founded in 1968 as an independent unit to improve the amenities and protect the buildings of East Grinstead and its environs. The town’s long history and architectural heritage are worthy of care by present and future generations.

East Hoathly and District Preservation Society
East Hoathly Village Hall
Church Marks Ln
East Hoathly
Lewes BN8 6EQ UK
Telephone: 01825 841218
Website: East Hoathly and District Preservation Society

The Society aims to promote the preservation of the amenities of the village and its surrounding area, its heritage, and historic buildings and footpaths.

East Preston & Kingston Preservation History
East Preston and Kingston Village Hall
52 Sea Road
East Preston
Littlehampton, West Sussex BN16 1LP UK
Telephone: 01903 779134
Website: East Preston & Kingston Preservation History

We promote the conservation of notable local buildings and features, while closely monitoring the quality of new development. Our meetings feature talks by guest speakers on wide-ranging topics linked to heritage and conservation.

Eastbourne Local History Society
All Souls Church Hall
Wellesley Road
Eastbourne, East Sussex BN21 3RJ UK
Telephone: 01323 485971
Website: Eastbourne Local History Society

The Eastbourne Local History Society, founded in 1970, has an object that is the pursuit and encouragement of an active interest in the study of the history of Eastbourne and its immediate environs, and the dissemination of research through talks, publications, conducted walks and visits to places of local interest. The Society has a wealth of local historical images in its archives.

Eastbourne Natural History and Archaeology Society
St Saviour’s Church Hall
Spencer Rd
Eastbourne, Sussex BN21 4PA UK
Telephone: 01323 731792
Website: Eastbourne Natural History and Archaeology Society

Since the society was founded in 1867, its aim has been to stimulate and educate the public in the beauty, history and character of the countryside. The Society promotes these values with exhibitions, lectures, publications and resources available for education.

Family Roots Family History Society for Eastbourne & District
Telephone: 01323 502432
Website: Family Roots Family History Society

Genealogy is a fascinating, but sometimes frustrating pastime, but you may just find the name that has eluded you for ages here. Our aim is to promote and encourage the public study of family history and genealogy with particular reference to persons living in or associated with the Eastbourne area and the preservation.

Fernhurst Society
Fernhurst Village Hall
Glebe Rd
Fernhurst, Sussex GU27 3EH UK
Website: Fernhurst Society

The Society's aims are to enrich the enjoyment of Fernhurst village and its surrounding countryside in West Sussex, England; to promote interest in local history, local life, traditions and customs; to advance and disseminate knowledge of the archaeology, geography, natural history, buildings and architecture of the local district; and to seek the protection and improvement of the amenities and appearance of Fernhurst village and its environs.

Hailsham Historical and Natural History Society
Methodist Church Hall
High St
Hailsham, East Sussex BN27 2AE UK
Telephone: 1323 843206
Website: Hailsham Historical and Natural History Society

Hartfield and District History Group
Village Hall
2 High St
Hartfield TN7 4AD UK
Website: Hartfield and District History Group

The Hartfield History Group was formed in 1972 to discover and record the history of the small Parish of Hartfield and the Surrounding District that is part of the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) of East Sussex.

Hastings Area Archaeological Research Group
Hastings History House
21 Court House Street
Hastings Old Town, Sussex TN34 3AU UK
Telephone: 01424 812092
Website: Hastings Area Archaeological Research Group

Hastings Area Archaeological Research Group (HAARG) was founded in 1972 to enable those with an interest in local archaeology and history to take an active part in discovering and recording our district's past. Our interests extend from Pevensey in the west, to Bodiam and the River Rother in the north and the Kent border to the east of Rye. We have been known to cross the border into Kent when our research directs us in that direction.

Hastings Local History Group
Hastings History House
21 Court House Street
Hastings Old Town, Sussex TN34 3AU UK
Telephone: 01424 444277
Website: Hastings Local History Group

Encourages an interest in and research into the history and development of Hastings through the centuries.

Hastings and Rother Family History Society
Ore Community Centre
Old London Road
Ore Village
Hastings, East Sussex TN35 5BH UK
Telephone: 01424 437493
Website: Hastings and Rother Family History Society

We are here to help with family research and we believe that means genealogy in its widest sense. We are not only about births, marriages and deaths but also the lives our ancestors lived, the times they lived in and the places they frequented. To this end, we gather together as many resources as possible to find the people and tell those stories.

Heathfield & District History Society
Ian Price Room
Community Centre
Sheepsetting Lane
Heathfield, East Sussex TN21 0XG UK
Telephone: 01435 873551
Website: Heathfield & District History Society

Henfield History Group
Free Church Hall
155 High St
Henfield, West Sussex BN5 UK
Website: Henfield History Group

The Group was formed in the early summer of 2000 by a small group of like-minded people, with the aim of encouraging and assisting research into all aspects of local history, including family history.

Hurstpierpoint Historical Society
Guide Hall
Trinity Road
Hurstpierpoint, West Sussex BN6 9UY UK
Website: Hurstpierpoint Historical Society

Ifold And District Local History Society
The Lane
Billingshurst, West Sussex RH14 0UL UK
Telephone: 01403 752 865
Website: Ifold And District Local History Society

Lancing and Sompting Pastfinders
Harriet Johnson Centre
Old School House
Loose Ln
Lancing, West Sussex BN15 0BG UK
Website: Lancing and Sompting Pastfinders

"Pastfinders” is a group of enthusiasts who meet once a month as a focus and forum for the local history of these two coastal villages.

Lewes Archaeological Group
Lecture Room
Lewes Town Hall
High St
Lewes, East Sussex BN7 2QS UK
Website: Lewes Archaeological Group

Lewes Archaeological Group was founded in 1968 to investigate prehistoric and historic remains in the town of Lewes and the surrounding district. Although the Group does not currently run any excavations, it has each year a full programme of talks. It also has occasional tours and walks.

Lewes History Group
King’s Church
Brooks Road
Lewes, East Sussex BN7 2BY UK
Telephone: 01273 447566
Website: Lewes History Group

The Lewes History Group is a volunteer-led group of enthusiasts who have an active interest in the history of Lewes and its immediate surroundings. We started the group in 2009 to study and record the history of Lewes, and to make the history of the county town accessible to the local community, and to others who share our interest.

Mayfield Local History Society
Scout and Guide Hall
Tunbridge Wells Road
Mayfield, East Sussex TN20 6PA UK
Website: Mayfield Local History Society

The Society's aim is the study of local history in general and of Mayfield and district in particular.

Newhaven Historical Society
Hillcrest Centre
Hillcrest Road
Newhaven, East Sussex BN9 9EA UK
Telephone: 01273 515404
Website: Newhaven Historical Society

Newhaven Historical Society own and manage the Newhaven Museum which is located at Paradise Park in Newhaven, East Sussex – within easy reach of Brighton and Eastbourne. The museum houses a diverse collection of photographs and artifacts relating to local heritage and the maritime history of Newhaven and the surrounding area.

Northiam and District Historical and Literary Society
Northiam Village Hall
Frewen Cl
Rye, East Sussex TN31 6AF UK
Telephone: 01797 253341
Website: Northiam and District Historical and Literary Society

The Society was formed in the 1950's to promote a wider understanding of local and national history and literary subject in an informal and friendly atmosphere through short lectures.

Nutley Local History Society
Village Hall
Nutley, East Sussex UK
Telephone: 01825 713078
Website: Nutley Local History Society

The aim of the Society is to publish and promote various aspects of the history of this ancient settlement.

Old Hastings Preservation Society
21 Courthouse St
Hastings, Sussex TN34 3AU UK
Telephone: 01424 424744
Website: Old Hastings Preservation Society

We have two prime aims which are to promote the permanent preservation of buildings of beauty or historic interest and to foster an appreciation of the history of the town of Hastings and to preserve evidence of that history.

Pagham Local History Group
Website: Pagham Local History Group

The website is to let people know about Pagham Local History Group. It is an informal, non-profit group focused on researching and discussing Pagham history (inc. Nyetimber, Rose Green, Aldwick and Lagness).

Petworth Society
Leconfield Hall
Widden House
1 Market Square
Petworth, West Sussex GU28 0AH UK
Telephone: 01798 344629
Website: Petworth Society

The Petworth Society was founded in 1974 “to preserve the character and amenities of the town and parish of Petworth including Byworth; to encourage interest in the history of the district and to foster a community spirit”.

Pevensey and Westham Historical Society
Westham Village Hall
Peelings Lane
Pevensey, East Sussex BN24 5HE UK
Telephone: 01323 472721
Website: Pevensey and Westham Historical Society

The Society Library has a wealth of material donated over the past 27 years, covering local history, including the villages. Selected items are displayed at each meeting for members to peruse.

Ringmer History Study Group
Website: Ringmer History Study Group

Robertsbridge & District Archaeological Society
Robertsbridge Town Hall
11-23 Station Rd
Robertsbridge, East Sussex TN32 5 UK
Website: Robertsbridge & District Archaeological Society

Rye Museum & Local History Group
Rye Castle Museum
3 East Street
Rye, East Sussex TN31 7JY UK
Telephone: 01797 226728
Website: Rye Museum & Local History Group

Seaford Museum & Heritage Society
Seaford Little Theatre
4 Steyne Rd
Seaford, East Sussex BN25 1HA UK
Telephone: 01323 898222
Website: Seaford Museum & Heritage Society

The objects of the Society shall be to inform and educate the public in the history and heritage of the town of Seaford, (in the county of East Sussex), and its environs and to seek to promote a greater understanding of the social history and background of the town amongst its inhabitants and visitors and to use its best endeavours to establish and maintain a public museum for the exhibition of historical and other exhibits relating to Seaford, its environs, and its inhabitants, past and present, and from time to time to add to this collection items of a similar nature which illustrate and record the history of the town and its people.

Shipley History Society
The Andrew Hall
Red Lane
Shipley, Sussex RH13 8PH UK
Telephone: 01403 741986
Website: Shipley History Society
Website #2: Shipley History Society

Shipley Parish Council is the first tier of local government for the Parish Of Shipley which includes Coolham, Dragons Green, and Brooks Green. The Society is an active group within the Parish which aims to encourage interest in both local and regional history by holding regular lectures and walks, and undertaking local research.

Southwater Local History Group
Beeson House
26 Lintot Square
Fairbank Road
Horsham, West Sussex RH13 9LA UK
Telephone: 01403 730995
Website: Southwater Local History Group

The Southwater Local History Group was formed in September 2003. Its aim is to amass an archive of material relating to the origins and development of the area we now call Southwater, from the earliest times to the present day.

Southwick (Sussex) Society
Southwick Community Centre
24 Southwick St
Southwick, West Sussex BN42 4TE UK
Telephone: 01273 465164
Website: Southwick (Sussex) Society
Secondary website: Southwick (Sussex) Society

The Society is active in several fields, one of which is publishing local history books and "Wickerwork" - a regular newsletter updating members on activities and local matters of interest.

Sussex Archaeological Society
Barbican House Museum
169 High Street
Lewes, East Sussex BN7 1YE UK
Telephone: 01273 486260
Website: Sussex Archaeological Society

The Sussex Archaeological Collections has been produced by the Society since its inception in 1846, and is a major scholarly contribution to the study of local archaeology and history. The Collections are the first port of call for anyone researching the past of Sussex. The Society has over 150 volumes completed to date.

Sussex Family History Group
The Keep
Woollards Way,
Brighton, Sussex BN1 9BP UK
Website: Sussex Family History Group

The Sussex Family History Group was founded in 1972. It has about four thousand members in Sussex, the rest of the UK, and around the world. There are five meeting centres in the County at Brighton & Hove, Chichester, Horsham, Uckfield and Worthing. The SFHG has designed and built databases of Sussex Information, Monumental Inscriptions, Marriage Indexes, Census Returns, Parish Records (baptisms, marriages, and burials), strays, members interests, Wills, members own family research and other genealogical information as it becomes available and effort permits. Much of this data is gradually being placed online in our Data Archive, with free access to members.
It can therefore be said that the aims of the SFHG include promoting the study of genealogy and family history, and encouraging the preservation, transcription and publication of relevant documents and records.

Sussex Industrial Archaeology Society
West Blatchington Windmill
Hove, Sussex BN3 7LF UK
Telephone: 01903 208975
Website: Sussex Industrial Archaeology Society

Industrial Archaeology is the study of the working life of past generations through the physical and documentary evidence that they left. Industrial Archaeology shades into 'mainstream' archaeology as it goes back through the ages. It is also bound up with local history, economic history and the history of technology.

Sussex Mills Group
Bridge Cottage
High St
Uckfield, Sussex TN22 1AZ UK
Website: Sussex Mills Group

Sussex Mills Group promotes the study and the restoration of mills and associated artifacts within the counties of East and West Sussex in the United Kingdom.

Sussex Record Society
Barbican House
169 High Street
Lewes, East Sussex BN7 1YE UK
Website: Sussex Record Society

The Society commissions research by individuals who are experts in their field to produce historical records in the selected area of research of the County of Sussex in the United Kingdom. The research is published in book form with the help of the Society’s historical, literature, technical, publishing and financial help provided by the members of the Society. Over the last 100 years the Society has published over 90 volumes of detailed historical research into the County of Sussex from 1066 to World War I. This research has also led to the creation of databases, records, images and texts covering many aspects of historical Sussex which are presented as Online Records.

Sussex University Archaeology Society
Telephone: 01903 879696
Website: Sussex University Archaeology Society

We hope to promote a higher profile of archaeology at the University and try to encourage students, past and present, to keep in touch. We will also be available to help students wishing advice on existing assignments on the University’s Archaeology courses. At present, most of our members are either past or current students at the CCE but we are open to anyone interested in archaeology.

Tools and Trades History Society
Website: Tools and Trades History Society

The Society's aim is to further the knowledge and understanding of hand tools and the trades in which they were used.

Uckfield & District Preservation Society Local History Group
47 Roman Way
Uckfield, East Sussex TN22 1UY UK
Telephone: 01825 763754
Website: Uckfield & District Preservation Society Local History Group

The Uckfield and District Preservation Society (UDPS) was founded in 1968, initially to protect and preserve Nutley Windmill and to encourage interest in the local history and environment of the parishes around Uckfield in East Sussex.

The Wadhurst History Society
Commemoration Hall
High Street
Wadhurst, East Sussex TN5 6AP UK
Telephone: 01892 784280
Website: The Wadhurst History Society

The Society runs a series of monthly talks which are generally, but not exclusively, focused on local history. It has a number of Task Groups which research specific areas of our history and the results of the research are brought together and published from time to time in book form.

Warbleton and District History Group
Dunn Village Hall
Rushlake Green
Heathfield, East Sussex TN21 9QD UK
Telephone: 01435 830280
Website: Warbleton and District History Group

West Hoathly Local History Group
Sharpthorne Church Hall
Station Road
Burgess Hill, West Sussex RH15 9EN UK
Telephone: 01342 810534
Website: West Hoathly Local History Group

The Group was formed in 1983 by Sheila Allen and Kay Coutin and has continued to attract new members. They are a mixture of experts and those who enjoy things historical.

West Sussex Archives Society
Pagham Village Hall
Pagham Road
Pagham, Sussex PO21 4NJ UK
Website: West Sussex Archives Society

The Society comprises the Friends of the West Sussex Record Office. The Friends are people who use the Record Office or who wish to help and support in its work of preserving the wonderful archival heritage of West Sussex.

Westbourne Local History Group
Telephone: 01243 575414
Website: Westbourne Local History Group

The Westbourne Local History Group was formed in 1978 by a few like-minded individuals with an interest in the lives and times of the village of Westbourne, particularly the previous 150 years. Now the period in question is around 200 years.

Winchelsea Archaeological Society (WAS)
Telephone: 01797 224446
Website: Winchelsea Archaeological Society (WAS)

The Winchelsea Archaeological Society (WAS) was founded to help rectify the lack of physical archaeological evidence about the layout and character of the medieval town and port of Winchelsea (a planned town of Edward I that uniquely retains its original grid layout).

Wivelsfield History Society
Wivelsfield Village Hall
Eastern Rd
Wivelsfield Green
Haywards Heath, West Sussex RH17 7QH UK
Telephone: 01444 471242
Website: Wivelsfield History Society

Wivelsfield Historical Society was formed in 1993 with the aim of fostering interest in local history by talks, visits, walks and research.

Worthing Archaeological Society
Worthing Library
Richmond Rd
Worthing, West Sussex BN11 1HD UK
Website: Worthing Archaeological Society

Worthing Archaeological Society is dedicated to the history of West Sussex. We organise excavations, talks, and other events, and welcome beginners and experts alike.