Shopping in Sussex covers a broad range of venues and activities. Probably most people's initial thoughts when thinking of shopping are the large, busy shopping centres which can usually be found in major towns. Sussex is no different, with perhaps the best known being Churchill Square in Brighton. With over 90 shops, two large car parks and a dedicated crÃ¨che, it can cater for most of a family's shopping requirements without needing to leave the centre.
However, venturing out and discovering the rest of the town can be very beneficial. Most of the shopping area is centred around North Street, Western Road and Queens Road and just about any 'Big Name' in high street shopping can be found here. Until quite recently, Brighton used to have two unique department stores, Hanningtons and Vokins. For many years, almost 200 in the case of Hanningtons, they provided a focal point for shopping in the town. Unfortunately, both have now closed.
Hidden away behind the main streets is Brighton's most famous shopping venue, The Lanes. This square mile of narrow, winding streets is packed with tiny shops and boutiques. Specialising in jewellery, antiques, designer clothes and gifts, it is possible to spend hours browsing the various wares on offer. There are also a good number of cafes and bars if need to pause for refreshment during your visit. Crossing over North Street, you will find yourself in the North Laine district. This is a very laid-back area with a strong bohemian theme, home to around 300 shops and cafes. Here you will find everything from arts and crafts, unusual fashions, handmade furniture, ethnic shops from around the world to specialist food stores, patisseries and smoothy bars.
Around the County
Of course, shopping in Sussex is not confined to just one city. At the other end of the county, the town of Horsham boasts an award-winning town centre with many Medieval and Tudor buildings providing a superb environment for shopping, strolling, browsing and relaxing. Horsham's main shopping precinct, Swan Walk, is a modern, busy shopping mall with many well-known high street stores. Nearby, Crawley has its own historic High Street, as well as the extensive County Mall Shopping Centre. Back at the coast, Worthing is the largest town in West Sussex, and its shopping area reflects that. Largely pedestrianised, the centre puts everything within easy walking distance, yet the town is still large enough to support many of the larger high-street names.
Shopping in Sussex is not just about large towns. Any of the small or medium-sized towns and villages will have their own speciality shops. And its here that you will likely find the unusual - unique or hard to find foodstuffs perhaps, a locally produced delicacy, or some handcrafted furniture.
Town and village markets are another great way of discovering the unusual. Many towns will host a market monthly, or once or twice a week. Some that are worth seeking out are:
- Eastbourne - Tuesday, Thursday
- Horsham - Saturday
- Lewes - 1st Saturday each month
- Worthing - Wednesday
Larger towns often have a permanent market such as Brighton's Flea Market in Kemp Town or the Greenwich Village Market in North Laine.
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