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New Book Reveals History of Town Council Office Building

Mayor's Press Releases

Cllrs Gavin Blake-Coggins and Paul Holbrook with local history author David Dyer 

A new book revealing the history of the ‘Fleur de Lys’ building, which is currently occupied by the Hailsham Town Council in Market Street, Hailsham, was officially launched at a special event held at the Town Council Offices today [4 September].

The Mayor of Hailsham, Cllr Paul Holbrook, joined fellow councillors and author David Dyer, who’s latest book entitled The Inglenook, Hailsham: From Country Inn to Town Council Hall, was launched and copies signed at the event.

Local historian David Dyer has researched the history of the Fleur de Lys building, sometimes referred to as ‘Inglenook’, a Tudor building which started life in 1540 and is reputably the second oldest house in the town, making it nearly 500 years old.

The Fleur de Lys was originally a country inn in an agricultural community of around 220 people. Increased trade led to an enlargement of the building to accommodate the coaching business. Around 1760, the inn ceased trading and was bought up for the town’s poorhouse.

Later, it was transformed into a workhouse and remained as such until the union workhouse was opened in Hawks Road in 1836.

The Fleur de Lys was then used as an infirmary for the elderly poor but was closed 18 years later and split into leased business units. A devastating fire in 1889 destroyed one third of the building and this section was rebuilt as the town’s fire station, now trading as ‘Kemer Kebab’.

The Inglenook, Hailsham details the history of this important Tudor building including innkeepers, workhouse masters and stories involved with it. It also includes details of the union workhouse plus the story behind the cobbled walls in Stoney Lane.

The book is priced at £10 and available either direct from the author (01323 381228), the Hailsham Town Council offices (Market Street), The Link Coffee Shop (Market Square), Hailsham Camera Centre (53 High Street), or Hailsham Heritage Centre (Blackman’s Yard).

Town Mayor Cllr Paul Holbrook states that the book achieves its aim of raising the profile of the Fleur de Lys and Inglenook dwelling as the second oldest in the town of Hailsham: “In this new publication, which outlines the varied and eventful history of this magnificent Tudor building, David has studied every inch of the building and the fully illustrated publication covers almost 500 years of its use.”

“Thank you for enlightening us David – and for producing yet another brilliant book covering the history of our wonderful market town.”

“I’m delighted to have been invited to attend the launch. I hope David’s book is a bestseller and local people buy it and find out more about the history of this interesting building.”

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Enquiries relating to this media release

Terry Hall, Communications Officer
Hailsham Town Council, Market Street, Hailsham, East Sussex, BN27 2AE
Telephone: 01323 841702 | Email: