RE: Beachy Head: My Dream Drive

RE: Beachy Head: My Dream Drive

Friday 14th November 2014

Beachy Head: My Dream Drive

It really needs an early start but a dawn raid on the south coast will absolutely be worth it



Name: Matt Bird
Where: Beachy Head road, East Dean
Car used:Nissan GT-R

Great roads certainly; this sunrise not guaranteed
Great roads certainly; this sunrise not guaranteed
The route:
"Coming from the A23 heading south to Brighton, the first sign to look for is the A27 towards Lewes. The first right after Falmer station and the AmEx stadium is for the B2123 towards Woodingdean which has some good sections in itself. Past Rottingdean (what a lovely place name!) the B-road joins the A259 along the south coast.

"There is nothing much of note as you trundle through Newhaven and Seaford. Look at the map from Seven Sisters Country Park and you can see the area is much less populated, the road tracking through Friston Forest towards Beachy Head. This is where it's far more interesting.

"The sign on the right to Beachy Head is fairly clear - it's the best part of the route, and although it rejoins the A259 all too soon and carries on to Bexhill, which is worth continuing for. The A259 goes all the way to Folkestone but I stopped at Hastings for some breakfast and then returned home."

Once you're at Birling Gap the fun really starts
Once you're at Birling Gap the fun really starts
Why it's a dream drive:
"Because it's a great coastal route. And despite being an island nation, we don't always get to experience that as much as we would like. To be on a road as the sun rises on over the Channel is a special thing to witness. Don't be distracted for too long though, there are roads to drive!

"This route is far from being the Pacific Coast highway but to run near the sea for so long (admittedly through some dull sections on occasion) is a lot of fun.

"The few miles around Beachy Head are the reason for an early-morning trundle down the A23. The star of many a magazine feature, the Birling Gap/Beachy Head loop is a fantastic section of road. There are tight and twisty sections as the road carves through the landscape, a long straight or two and some gorgeous sea views along the way. The odd bump or two keeps you on your toes. Early in the morning there's nothing to stop you turning round and doing it again either. And again. Then once more...

There's plenty to explore off the main route too. Have a look at all the little B-roads around the area, like tributaries to the main route. The B2096 runs from just past the Battle of Hastings site and there are all manner of other minor roads to keep you entertained."

Enough space (just) for a GT-R
Enough space (just) for a GT-R
Highlights and lowlights:
"Other than the Beachy Head section, it's really worth getting on the B2123 nice and early. It's not especially long but there are couple of excellent fast and flowing corners before you reach any residential areas.

"It will also put you in a good frame of mind for the tedious sections of the A259. At points its nothing more than a main road taking you through towns. It's best to see it as a way to get you the more interesting stuff.

"Make sure you drive the B2103 into Eastbourne as well. I've never before seen hairpins with a 15mph suggested speed limit. They are very tight but are a great test of braking and traction. Just don't forget it becomes a 30mph speed limit after the last one..."

No jokes about arcade games
No jokes about arcade games
Sights, stop-offs and diversions:
"If you make it to Hastings there are plenty of classic car events going on at weekends. The Sunday I was there a stunning Sierra RS Cosworth was driving along the seafront, soon followed by a Fiat 500, Mini Cooper S and Ford Anglia. There is of course one or two interesting distractions there for those into history!

"Bexhill is notable as the home of British motorsport too with a section in its museum dedicated to the early years of racing in Britain. And of course you have the myriad delights of the south coast's coastal resorts. Maybe not at this time of year though..."

Follow the route here.


 





   
Author
Discussion

chrisjpartridge

Original Poster:

23 posts

90 months

Friday 14th November 2014
quotequote all
Used to do this route on a motorcycle years ago. Pretty good on a quiet summer evening.

Beer Man

249 posts

42 months

Friday 14th November 2014
quotequote all
Rather than going up the Woodingdean Road from Falmer, the better road is if you carry on the A27 to just past Lewes and take a right onto the A26. Much more fun and it also brings you out at Newhaven so you miss the 30mph drudgery from Rottingdean to Newhaven.

but yes, that Beachy Head loop is great fun!

Once you've done the loop......probably several times......instead of heading to Bexhill there's a VERY tight and twisty road that leads straight down into Eastbourne at the far western part of the front. EPIC.

pisdonthread

47 posts

91 months

Friday 14th November 2014
quotequote all
This is my stomping ground and you will often find my up doing the beachy head loop. Although the road surface is awful from Birling gap to Beachy Head.

Personally I prefer to head through Pevensey and Boreham Street toward Battle rather than Bexhill, there are some well sighted roads there to get past any traffic

homologeo

374 posts

94 months

Friday 14th November 2014
quotequote all
Yep, a nice bit of road.

It's great to let the mighty Polo 1.2 12V Twist stretch it's legs...

BrightonEd

64 posts

89 months

Friday 14th November 2014
quotequote all
A good drive indeed, there's lots of good roads around here. If you fancy an alternate route, head into Ditching off the A23, then take the B2116 over to Lewes where you can continue back onto the A27, or continue across country.

And of course, the Devil's Dyke road over the Downs is a good 'un, as is the A272 - as long as you're up early enough.
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xRIEx

8,180 posts

76 months

Friday 14th November 2014
quotequote all
I thought this was going to involve a tasteless joke about driving off a cliff.

paulrussell

1,478 posts

89 months

Friday 14th November 2014
quotequote all
You should of continued to Rye, as there's an even tighter hairpin just past Winchelsea. Also the area around Ditchling is a very good place to drive especially Ditchling Beacon.

Beer Man

249 posts

42 months

Friday 14th November 2014
quotequote all
Actually, don't listen to a word about the roads in Sussex, they're all DREADFUL so go and find somewhere else to play!!!!

DavidLScott

1,048 posts

152 months

Friday 14th November 2014
quotequote all
Beer Man is right........leave our roads alone smile

The Bandit

741 posts

123 months

Friday 14th November 2014
quotequote all
Just watch out for the street luge skateboarders on the hairpin section after Birling Gap heading towards Beachy Head.
Oh and don't miss the Ditchling Beacon road between Brighton and Lewes(and Cuilfail Tunnel at Lewes)
smile

Matt Bird

956 posts

133 months

PH Reportery Lad

Friday 14th November 2014
quotequote all
Beer Man said:
Actually, don't listen to a word about the roads in Sussex, they're all DREADFUL so go and find somewhere else to play!!!!
You lot say that every time we do a Dream Drive! But I'll happily venture off somewhere and uncover another unknown superb road or two. Then court abuse from locals there...


Matt

e21Mark

10,376 posts

101 months

Friday 14th November 2014
quotequote all
If ever you venture down here, head from Hayle, via Lelant, towards St Just.


HertsBiker

6,251 posts

199 months

Friday 14th November 2014
quotequote all
Some hideous head shaking roads near BH. Maybe at less than 1.0 they are ok........

hammo19

1,762 posts

124 months

Sunday 16th November 2014
quotequote all
Cars should stay off these roads and leave them to the bikes....leather clad not those Lycra clad idiots!

gregf40

1,114 posts

44 months

Sunday 16th November 2014
quotequote all
You could have stayed asleep and let the GTR drive the route for you...it does drive itself right? hehe

iva cosworth

33,187 posts

91 months

Sunday 16th November 2014
quotequote all
Might give this a try out at Christmas.........

paolow

3,019 posts

186 months

Wednesday 19th November 2014
quotequote all
Well, didn't do the whole thing - or even close - but certainly enjoyed the section from Seaford via the Head 'loop' and down onto Eastbournes seafront via Upper Dukes Drive.
Just this second finished (and yes I did drive it at 3:30 AM!
The Seafront was odd being so utterly deserted - and there was a film crew at Birling gap though it wasn't as good as doing it at 07:00 to blow out cobwebs. That said - still a very good bit of road....

RoverP6B

3,614 posts

56 months

Friday 5th June 2015
quotequote all
Had a bit of fun here over the years, especially powering up the hill out of Eastbourne up to Birling Gap. Rottingdean is rather pleasant, but very quiet - it really is Walmington-on-Sea incarnate! I was expecting to bump into George Mainwaring, Arthur Wilson, Jack Jones et al at any moment...