A minor priory of the Augustinians was founded here in 1229. It survived without ever being of any great importance until 1537 when the Dissolution arrived and swept it away. The Church and many of the Priory buildings were demolished before 1599 when the house was sold to the First Earl of Dorset. A Jacobean mansion was then constructed around some of the few remaining structures and this is the manor house that bears the name of Michelham Priory today.
The Priory remained in private hands until the early 20th Century at which time it was in need of restoration, undertaken by Sussex antiquarian Walter Godfrey. During World War II the Priory was used as a base for Canadian troops whilst they prepared for the infamous Dieppe Raid. Today it is owned and opened to the public by the Sussex Archaeological Society.
Photo - Andrew J. Müller
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