Now a peaceful and picturesque community of 600 people, Winchelsea was once a major hub for the medieval wine trade and a sea port of national importance. Use this website to find out more about our history.


A rare example in England of a settlement laid out on a grid pattern , offering vistas along wide, straight streets. Dating from the town’s creation in the 1280s, Winchelsea’s medieval stone-vaulted cellars are famous, and there are regular guided tours during the summer months.


Explore a townscape rich in characterful houses, with three medieval gates, one of the best medieval church buildings in Sussex, a museum, primary school, pub, shop and beautiful views of the sea and open country on all sides.

smallest town

As a community with our own mayor, we count ourselves the smallest town in England.  Find more about our role in the life of the Cinque Ports and look up contacts for all the organisations and activities that flourish in this far from sleepy place.