The biggest surprise on my recent four day perambulation along the final section of the South Downs Way, in Englandās newest National Park, came on the final day of walking.
Although the established local beer for the area is Harveys, famous for its Tom Paine Ale, and still brewed beside the river Ouse in the heart of Lewes, there is now a new rival.
It comes in the form of Beachy Head Ale, produced in a micro-brewery based in the pretty village of East Dene.
We enjoyed a delightful lunch in their brewerytap pub, the Tiger Inn, sitting in the sun on the village green looking across to Sherlock Holmesā retirement home.
The surprise came when reading their promotional brochure and discovering the re-branding of Beachy Head. As a relatively local inhabitant, I am well aware of the stunning beauty of Seven Sisters and Beachy Head, but also cognisant of its more well known feature. For most UK residents Beachy Head it is quite literally a jumping off point for those who want to end it all.
This, less attractive aspect has featured in many films, documentaries and news items. Beachy Head suicide spot.
Now, working as I do on the Euston Road opposite Kings Cross Station, I am all too aware of the stigma that can cling to an area, even if that reputation is no longer deserved.
So I was fascinated to see how the Davies-Gilbert family, who have farmed the Beachy Head area for 200 years are attempting to re-invent and re-brand Beach Head. As you can see at Beachy Head.org.uk, it is a beautiful part of the country, with lots to see and do.
While there, I began to notice the clean and modern Beachy Head logo almost everywhere I looked. And it will be interesting to see if the media starts to pick up on this more positive story about the area. However, given their predilection for the gory and ghastly, I have my doubts.
As a geographer, I was somewhat perplexed by the brochure map of the area. I would expect it to concentrate on visitor highlights, but, the designers have decided to omit the large village of Friston. Perhaps because it is adjacent to, and somewhat overwhelms the village of East Dene which appears to be the heart of Beach Head.
Have a look a the maps of area below and see what you think.