England Coast Path: Shoreham-by-Sea to Eastbourne

Find out about the progress of improving coastal access – including maps, process and timing – in West Sussex and East Sussex.

The 53 km (33 miles) stretch of the England Coast Path (ECP) from Shoreham-by-Sea to Eastbourne is now open to the public. Coastal access rights came into force along this stretch of coast on 19 May 2022 by order of the Secretary of State.

Map of the stretch

The route is available to view on the National Trails website.

The maps in Natural England’s original report to the Secretary of State also show the route of the ECP along this stretch of coast and the adjoining land that is coastal margin, as approved by the Secretary of State on 19 December 2019.

Stage of progress

Stage 5: Open

If you are planning a walk on the ECP, check our interactive access maps for details of local access restrictions and coast path diversions which may apply at certain times.

Coastal access rights normally apply to all land that is coastal margin - including any land seaward of the route - unless it falls into a category of excepted land.

Use the links below to see details of the Secretary of State’s decision to approve Natural England’s proposals and for guidance on your rights and responsibilities if the ECP passes through your land.

Variation reports on approved sections

Sometimes it’s necessary to change sections of an approved route. The proposed changes are published as variation reports. Anyone can comment (make a representation) on these proposals. Affected landowners and occupiers can make an objection.

Proposals to change the approved route at Mill Creek, Newhaven (VR16)

On Thursday 26 May 2022, Natural England submitted a variation report (VR16) to the Secretary of State setting out proposals to change the approved route of the England Coast Path in East Sussex at Mill Creek, Newhaven.

This change affects part of the approved route from Chapter 3 of the original report. A new relief road for Newhaven Port has been constructed over the approved route of the ECP. As part of the road scheme, the public footpath used by the trail has been realigned eastwards, passing under a new road bridge over Mill Creek. This new public footpath turns seawards on the east side of the new road to join the approved route by the coast.

This variation is proposed due to the road development and the loss of the approved route.

The period for making representations and objections about the report closed at midnight on Thursday 21 July 2022.

The report is still available to view.

Objections are forwarded for consideration by an independent planning inspector appointed by the Secretary of State. The inspector will make recommendations to the Secretary of State in respect of each one.

Natural England may not make any further changes to reports as a result of representations and objections, but will make comments about them for consideration by the Secretary of State and, in the case of objections, the appointed person (an inspector from the Planning Inspectorate).

The Secretary of State will consider all the representations and objections before making a decision about Natural England’s report.

Find out more about the England Coast Path

See information about all stretches in preparation around England’s coast.

The coastal access scheme gives details of the process being followed to improve access to the coast.

Contact the coastal access team

Contact Natural England with any comments, suggestions or queries you have about improving coastal access.

Coastal Access Delivery Team - South East
Natural England
Guildbourne House
Chatsworth Road
West Sussex
BN11 1LD


Telephone: 0208 026 8045

See the map below for information about progress on improving coastal access in other parts of the south east region.

Published 30 August 2016
Last updated 26 May 2022 + show all updates
  1. Information about variation report VR16 added.

  2. Page updated to show this stretch is now open to the public.

  3. Stretch approved by the Secretary of State.

  4. Removed the sentence giving a date for when access is expected to be ready.

  5. Opportunity to comment on the report has ended.

  6. Page updated to show this stretch is now at stage 4.

  7. Page updated as stretch is now at stage 2 and 3.

  8. First published.