From Historical Hastings


R. G. Roberts suggests that the Ton (Tūn in Old English) portion of the name implies an enclosed piece of land, manor or hamlet[1]. There is reference to Holyngton as being a fore-runner to the current naming[2]. An alternative meaning is proposed by 1066 Online that it translates to 'Dwelling in a Hollow'[3]. The area became known as Holyngton in the 14th and 15th centuries and finally Hollington in the 16th century[4]. In his 1920 work, 'Hastings of Bygone days and the Present', Cousins also gives the following alternate spellings: Holinton, Holington and Honinton.

Early History

The area is known to have had settlements dating back to Roman times, who in the 2nd century excavated the clay from the ground to produce tiles and bricks, together with possibly an earlier settlement of which no traces remain.[3] There is mention of a Manor, Holintun, together with a Horintone in the Domesday valuations[5]. Prior to the modern day, the area was mainly fields, farms and woodland.

Following 1066, the Manor of Hollington was granted to the Count of Eu[5]. A charter of Count Henry of Eu (died 1139) states that his grandfather, Count Robert of Eu (died 1090) had granted the chapel of Hollington and tithe to the prebend of Ralph Tayard between 1068 and 1090. By 1271 the Manor of Hollington was known to have been held by Matthew de Hastings, who was granted free warren in Hollington that year. In the late 14th century the manor passed to Sir Edward Dalyngridge, and then in 1470 it passed to Thomas Pounde[4].

D. Padgham in an unpublished work for Hastings Area Archaeological Research Group hypothesised that the site of the manor house may have been located somewhere between the current Rectory and the church (Church in the Wood)[6].


The large spaces in the area were ideal for conversion into large factories on the outskirts of town and as a result, several farms and large estates were cleared to make way for Ponswood Industrial Estate, Castleham Industrial Estate and slightly later Churchfields Industrial Estate. Much of the housing dates to the 1930s when a large scale program of constructing affordable housing commenced; Castleham House, Mayfield Farm and Tile Kiln Farm were cleared and developed into the Tilekiln and Robsack Housing Estates.'[3]


The first purpose built school in Hollington was the church run National School that was located in Old Church Road, adjacent to what is now Swynford Drive. The school opened on January the 18th 1857. Prior to this, a school was started by the Rev. H. J. Rush circa 1821 above what was a cow shed off Hollington Old Lane in the vicinity of the Arthur Blackman Clinic. St Johns School was in Battle Road just below Old Church Road opened circa 1872 and a boys school followed in 1880 on the junction of Wishing Tree Road and Old Church Road. The Grove (School) opened in 1950 on the site of a house bearing the same name.[7]

Current Day

Today's Greater Hollington area consists of both the Hollington and Wishing Tree electoral wards. The area is made up from five distinct neighbourhoods which are Hollington, Tilekiln, Robsack, Four Courts and Wishing Tree'[3].


References & Notes

'Tales from Around the Wishing Tree' edited by Eileen Parish 1995 ESCC Library

  1. Place Names of Sussex (R. G. Roberts M.A.) 1914 ISBN: 9781107607743
  2. Swan Hotel#Early Days
  3. a b c d History of Hollington in Hastings, East Sussex, UK: History of Hollington in Hastings, East Sussex, UK, accessdate: 9 January 2020
  4. a b Bullock, F.W.R. 1949 A History of the ‘Church in the Wood’, Hollington, Sussex, St. Leonards on Sea, Budd & Gillatt.
  5. a b Morris, J. (Ed) 1976 Domesday Book, Chichester, Phillimore
  6. Padgham, D. 2006 Church Wood, Hollington: An Archaeological Desk-Top Study
  7. The Hastings Chronicle: 1850-1899 – The Hastings Chronicle, accessdate: 9 January 2020