Balcombe, The story of a Sussex village, by Leslie Fairweather

The book "Balcombe: The story of a Sussex Village", published by Balcombe Parish Council, was written by Leslie Fairweather in 1981. Copies are available from the Balcombe Stores and Threads.

I have included the Table of Contents below. The book has 112 pages.

The Footpaths Map and the Millennium map can also both be bought at the Balcombe Stores and Threads.

Balcombe Footpaths Maps are also available.

Introduction 7
One - A clearing in the forest 9
Two - Rough roads and rambling river 22
Three - Balcombe turns the century 26
Four - Soil and toil, birch and perch 32
Five - Burnt wood and balls of fire 40
Six - To the manor born 44
Seven - A necklace of three waters 50
Eight - To church on Sunday 54
Nine - The heart of the village 62
Ten - Buried pots and hazel twigs 69
Eleven - More pubs than parsnips 72
Twelve - A community of farms 83
Thirteen - The vanishing village 92
Fourteen - Stepping stone to London 95
Fifteen - The day the gas man came 107
Sixteen - A stable future? 110


# Stuart Balcomb 2015-05-26 17:45
I corresponded with Leslie Fairweather in 2000 when I was researching my genealogy, and I sent him a copy of the study when I finished. I have his wonderful book, but at the moment I cannot find it. Would you please tell me when the town of Balcombe was founded, or when was it recognized as a settlement of some kind.

I'm 10th generation from blacksmith Henry Balcombe, who in 1660 sailed from England to Boston.
# Neil Balcom 2016-05-06 00:56
Have not chatted with Stuart for several years. Curious about the source of the statement that Henry Balcombe sailed from England to Boston. Henry Balcom of Charlestown Mass. was there in 1640 so we can't be talking about the same person.

No one in over 115 years has been able to document where the North American Balcoms came from.
# Lawrence 2015-07-13 07:55
From Lawrence whose grandmother was Katheryn Balcomb and according to Andrew (LNU) the Webmaster of the Village of Balcombe in Sussex: (
“Balcombe estate is one of the last feudal estates in England, and is currently owned by the [usurping Simon] Greenwood family, who live in Balcombe Place.” The village of Balcombe’s local history book (P. 12) indicates that: “It was probably the Saxons who gave Balcombe its name, although opinions differ. It seems likely that the name is derived from Bealda’s cumb, meaning Bealda’s valley. Bealda would have been the chief Saxon of the area; a cumb or coombe is a valley on the flank of a hill. The awkward sound of Bealderscumb would, over the years, have been contracted to Balcombe or, as in America where the Balcombe family immigrated, to Balcomb”.
# Jane hopkins 2017-08-30 14:43
Hi. I have been tracing my family history and have ended up in Balcombe in the 1500's. The family name is Comber and the furthest back is De Combe. I wondered if anyone had any information they could give me on my ancestors?
Many thanks in advance.
# antony perkins 2017-09-11 08:26
E-mail me and I will send you the list of Balcombe Combers from 1539.
# antony perkins 2017-09-11 08:34
Sorry Jane, my E-mail is

Add comment

Security code

Anti-spam: complete the taskJoomla CAPTCHA