Top End

Lovely image of the top end of the High Street, circa 1951.  To the left of the photo is the cinema (what a shame its no longer there) advertising the classic film 'Brighton Rock'.  The Bridge Hotel can be seen at the lower end of the High Street with the tops of the large cranes in the background.

The second photo was taken from similar position in 1984, whilst some of the buildings on the right hand side remain, with pedestrianisation, demolition and creation of the ring road, the character of the town centre has changed dramatically. Despite this, the wooden panel fronted Bridge Hotel remains as a constant landmark.

Photo:High Street, 1951

High Street, 1951

Photo:High Street, 1984

High Street, 1984

Mrs Mary Morgan Private Collection

Photo:Town Centre 2007

Town Centre 2007

Sylvia Woolford

This page was added by Jackie Blackwell on 03/09/2007.
Comments about this page

I remember the High Street being pedestrianised and the new bridge being built. I was born and brought up in Newhaven Leaving in 1986

By Jan Chapman
On 19/11/2007

How many remember Mrs Ware's shop at the bottom of town? Gibbs the chemist, Hall's the tackle shop and Feltnesess' sweet shop? Ha ha ha! memories coming back now.
Anyone recall hearing about the small boy of 7 falling out of a tree at Christ Church and getting impaled on the railings there?... Well, that was me.

By William Still
On 23/11/2007

I left Newhaven in 1986, returning about once a year. I can remember the town centre being used by cars and then the ring road being built. This has totally killed off the town centre and it gets worse everytime I return.

By Craig McIntyre
On 03/02/2008

I have lived in Newhaven since I was 6 years old (I am now 61!) Such happy memories of pushing my children Paula and James down the High Street, one in the pram and one sitting in a pram seat on the end with a tray underneath for the shopping. I must have been so fit then!! I remember the International Stores on the right hand side and Goldsmiths the Butchers opposite where my mum always went for her meat, the butcher was Mr Webster and there was a lady in a cubicle who took the money. A bit further up was Mrs Green's the Wool Shop, by the bus stop. My friend's mother worked in there, she has recently passed away aged over 100!
Oh, and Bill Still, didn't you used to work in the tackle shop? I am sure my husband used to dig bait for you!

Marilyn Nolan

By Marilyn Nolan
On 23/04/2008

I remember Mrs Green's wool shop and started buying wool there when I was a teenager.

By Jan Chapman
On 24/04/2008

Hello Marilyn.  It's likely I knew your friend's mother. I can remember the Wool shop moving next door to the Elim church in South Way.

By Jan Chapman
On 24/04/2008

Hi Jan

My friend's mum was Mrs Nock, her son John and daughter in law Joy are our friends.

By Marilyn Nolan
On 28/04/2008

What a shame it looks like a ghost town. Not the way I choose to remember it. Is the big tree still off-set to the left in front of what was 'Fine Fare' supermarket? Not a patch on Parsons with its wooden floors, bins and barrels full of produce and those amazing curved glass windows.

Having moved out of the country I have only been back briefly once in the last 17 years and then I didn't have the time to wander up the High Street. Maybe next time.

By Rob Patten
On 03/05/2008

My father George, owned Goldsmiths the butchers and the lady working in the cubicle taking the money was his sister Maud.

By sally
On 27/06/2008

Does anyone remember an old dance hall at 28 High Street
Newhaven? (now Home Start South Downs)

By Jacky Robinson
On 27/03/2009

Does anyone remember a shoe-repairers called Hannigan's (I think the spelling's correct) in the 1950s, at the very top of the High Street. I think it must have been where the parcel office is now.

It seemed to my young eyes to be a couple of wooden sheds. You had to step down from the pavement to enter.

Inside there was a large counter behind which was a collection of machines that were driven by a series of pulleys and leather belts. It smelt wonderful!

On the counter was a dog, about 18" tall, made from folded Woodbine cigarette packets.

By Doug Hall
On 16/10/2014

Hi Douglas,  Sorry 5 years on now! My grandparents had the shoe repairers, 3 sheds in the back all different machinery and as you say the leather smell was memorable. The brown paper packages with the repaired shoes in on the shelves. I don't remember the dog but the large ticking clock my uncle has now. They retired to 1 Bay Vue before the dreadful bypass. I remember so much during the 50's an 60's the best times. I went to the secondary school in 1964 and left Tideway in 1969, can't say l enjoyed it though and remember so many teachers l read looking at others recollections. 

Finally, in 1967 there was a ski trip to Gaschurn in Austria and a Geography trip to Derbyshire in 1968 does anyone remember or go on these trips?

By Teresa Mackintosh
On 03/12/2019

I remember the shoe shop, like you say it was the smell of the place that brings back the memory, I can smell it now. I think it was where I got the Dubbin for rubbing into my football boots.

By Terry Howard
On 04/12/2019

I wonder if the town planners from the sixties regret their mania for bypasses? I was born and raised in Denton before the county vandals wrecked Newhaven (and many other English towns). I left the UK in 1982 and went back recently to find a sadly diminished high street. God knows what will become of it. It cannot get any worse.

By Stuart Winton
On 25/04/2023

I can't help but think that the decision to isolate the town centre by building North and South Ways in the town has to have had something to do with landowners and the golf course. Looking again at Google Map it is blatantly obvious that the route of a bypass should have branched off the A259 by Links Avenue, skirted around the valley housing and crossed Lewes Road between Robinson Road and the Cemetery. It would then be a relatively easy route across a fixed bridge north of the North Quay to link up with the A26 north of where Paradise Park is now located. Sealed envelopes and secret handshakes I'm sure. 

By Rob Patten
On 03/05/2023

Rob, I think you may be right! The proposed bypass and high level northern bridge was a less expensive option than the ring road and swing bridge that we ended up with. 


By Andy Gilbert
On 04/05/2023

If you're already a registered user of this site, please login using the form on the left-hand side of this page.