Combine top-class art and beautiful scenery

Bluebell walk at Bates Green Farm, Arlington SUS-140325-141500001
Bluebell walk at Bates Green Farm, Arlington SUS-140325-141500001

Three prestigious local galleries have joined forces to create the Coastal Culture Trail to combine top-tier art with the best that East Sussex’s seaside towns and countryside have to offer.

The De La Warr Pavilion, Jerwood Gallery and Towner are forming the basis of the weekend, which can be tailored as either a luxury break, a leisurely cycle ride by the seaside or a family-friendly mini holiday.

London may enjoy a global reputation for its arts and culture but less than 90 minutes away on the East Sussex coast is a cultural hotbed regarded by those in the know as second only to the capital city.

Tracing a route along a stunning 20-mile stretch of coastline between Hastings, Bexhill and Eastbourne, the Coastal Culture Trail has been designed as a framework into which visitors can add local area highlights like trendy St Leonards, with its eclectic mix of arts and crafts, and areas of outstanding natural beauty in the South Downs National Park.

But this is not just a trail for committed culture vultures. It has been designed to appeal to families as well. All three galleries are family-friendly, with regular workshops and creative drop-ins tailored to captivate kids. Nearby are attractions like Seven Sisters Sheep Centre in the South Downs, the Fisherman’s and Shipwreck Museums and long stretches of sandy beach to add to the experience.

Towner is the third of the trail’s visual arts galleries, which houses a mix of traditional and contemporary art. Towner’s renowned collection features artists such as Christopher Wood, Edward Bawden and David Bomberg.

The gallery sits at the foot of the South Downs National Park and, after taking in striking views of the Downs from its café bar, the Coastal Culture Trail can be extended with a walk, cycle or drive in some of the South’s most beautiful countryside around Beachy Head, the Long Man of Wilmington and the Cuckmere Valley. Visit