With nearly 1900 hours of sunshine a year, Eastbourne has a strong claim as the UK’s sunniest town but there are plenty of other hot spots to this pretty coastal town.

Great British Life: The Towner Gallery , Eastbourne (c) Andrew HassonThe Towner Gallery , Eastbourne (c) Andrew Hasson


For nearly 100 years, the Towner Gallery has been showcasing contemporary art for the people of Eastbourne, Sussex and the world. Even the building itself is part of an exhibit, with this colourful work painted onto the exterior walls – Lothar Götz’s Dance Diagonal, from 2019. The 2023 Turner Prize is being hosted here as the centrepiece of the gallery’s centenary programme.

Great British Life: The Eastbourne Eye, a giant ferris wheel (c) Andrew HassonThe Eastbourne Eye, a giant ferris wheel (c) Andrew Hasson


The UK’s largest transportable Ferris wheel, the Eastbourne Eye, is 160ft high. On a clear day which, as we’ve already established, is more likely than not, the views are incredible. Next to the Eye you can find a statue of the 8th Duke of Devonshire, Spencer Compton, who was Mayor of Eastbourne at the end of the 19th century.

Great British Life: The 'I Love Eastbourne' sign on the beach (c) Andrew HassonThe 'I Love Eastbourne' sign on the beach (c) Andrew Hasson


The Eastbourne Hospitality Association, Visit Eastbourne and Age Concern sponsored this grand expression of town pride called Eastbourne’s Love Letters. The social media-friendly letters are made from recycled wood by a group of individuals aged 50 plus from the Eastbourne Shed, who come together to tackle loneliness and dementia in the elderly.

Great British Life: The Grand Hotel, Eastbourne (c) Andrew HassonThe Grand Hotel, Eastbourne (c) Andrew Hasson


Opened in 1875, the five-star Grand Hotel has a long-standing association with music. Claude Debussy completed La Mer when he stayed here, while English composer Edward Elgar visited in 1926. From 1929 until 1934, the BBC broadcast a weekly live music radio show called Grand Hotel. It was here at the White Palace also that Henry Allingham, the last surviving World War One veteran, was presented with a letter of congratulations from the Queen, honouring his 110th birthday in 2006.

Great British Life: Motcombe Gardens pond (c) Andrew HassonMotcombe Gardens pond (c) Andrew Hasson


In the heart of Old Town sits Motcombe Park, and in the middle of the park is this pond. This is the source of the Bourne Stream, the waterway from which Eastbourne took its name.

Great British Life: Eastbourne Pier (c) Andrew HassonEastbourne Pier (c) Andrew Hasson


Unlike a lot of piers around the country, Eastbourne Pier is constructed slightly differently. The structure does not sit on piles drilled into the sea floor. It sits on stilts resting in cups on the seabed. This allows the entire structure to move during stormy weather. There is also a ‘camera obscura’ at the sea end of the pier which has, sadly, been closed to the public for quite some time.

Great British Life: Eastbourne bandstand (c) Andrew HassonEastbourne bandstand (c) Andrew Hasson


heir website declares this to be the busiest bandstand on planet Earth, so who am I to question this claim? It’s certainly one of the most stylish architecturally and a beautiful thing to have on the seafront. One of the mainstays is the traditional Sunday afternoon concerts at 3pm.

Great British Life: Eastbourne Town Hall (c) Andrew HassonEastbourne Town Hall (c) Andrew Hasson


From anywhere on the seafront, head west towards the suburb of Meads and keep going. Eventually, you’ll come across signs for the start of the South Downs Way, stretching from Eastbourne all the way to Winchester. It’s quite a steep walk towards Beachy Head to the top of the hill but doesn’t take too long and, when you get to the top, this view back across Eastbourne is spectacular.

Great British Life: Eastbourne Town Hall (c) Andrew HassonEastbourne Town Hall (c) Andrew Hasson


It’s hard to think of a more spectacular municipal building in our county than the incredible Renaissance-style, Grade II Listed Town Hall, opened in 1886. It stands at the end of Grove Road and looks down South Street, so is right at the junction of Little Chelsea.

Great British Life: Charlotte Thornton (c) Andrew HassonCharlotte Thornton (c) Andrew Hasson


‘What’s great about Eastbourne is the sea and the Downs, which are all easily accessible. Allthose beauty spots! I’ve lived here for 12 years, and, on a sunny day, I love to come down to the beach. There’s nothing quite like it. It’s great that we have a train service to London, but it could definitely be better.’