Burwash, the home of Rudyard Kipling. This idyllic village in the richly wooded landscape of the Sussex Weald has so much to offer
There are many interesting buildings in the beautiful tree-lined high street of Burwash , some date from before the 16th century. The Manor House of Burghurst stands opposite the church.
Burwash dates back to Norman times. The Church of St. Bartholomew was built in 1090 although the tower is all that remains of the original Norman structure. The church houses the rare 16th century Geneva Bible discovered in 1954 among a collection of old books in the church vestry. During the late 17th and 18th centuries Burwash along with many other villages in the area was a haven for smuggling, a capital crime for which several villagers were executed. Originally the Revenue had been insistent that the smugglers may not be buried in consecrated ground; although a compromise was reached whereby their headstones were carved with the skull and cross bones. Several such headstones are to be found in the churchyard; although some are fairly weathered the marking is still quite distinguishable.
There is also a memorial plaque in the church to John Kipling (Rudyard’s son) who was reported missing, believed killed at the age of 18, in his first battle, the Battle of Loos on the Western Front in 1915.
Bateman’s House, owned and loved by Rudyard Kipling, it was his idea of a home, a sanctuary, private and protective. A member of his family once said, “the house stands like a beautiful cup on a saucer to match.”
Built in 1634, the kiplings felt that the house would not let them use modern furniture. Every effort was made to find furniture in keeping with the period of the house. There are many oriental rugs and artefacts, reflecting the author’s strong associations with the East. Most of the rooms are much as Kipling left them, including his book-lined study.
Nearby is the market town of Heathfield , which along with the surrounding villages of Waldron and Mayfield was the centre of the Sussex iron industry in the 18th century.
Burwash marks the northern boundary of ” 1066 Country ” being eight miles from Senlac field.