This sandstone outcrop on the side of the East Hill at High Wickham with three openings carved into it is something of a local landmark. Cousins refers to it as possibly being a hermitage, with reference made to a statement made by Moss that during 1783, an elderly couple, having been evicted from the Workhouse for some misbehaviour took up residence within the rock.. The openings have certainly been in place since at least 1663 - a sketch of that date featuring the caves.
An alternative spelling of the name is that of 'Minesse'. The name may also be a corruption of 'Menys', which is Old British for steep ascent
Sussex Archaeological Coll. Vol 14 has the 'Great Meadow' as being situated in the vicinity of the Minnis Rock. Whereas in the Deed of Partition executed upon the death of John Collier between his five daughters, there is mention of 'The Rocky Field' as being one of five parts of 'The Minness' - possibly making the Old British the more likely etymology
References & Notes
- Hastings of Bygone days and the Present (Henry Cousins - 1911) pg.131 ISBN: 9789332862449 ESCC Library Google Books " Amazon
- 771-1699 – The Hastings Chronicle, accessdate: 24 January 2021
- The Antiquities of Hastings and the Battlefield (Thomas Cole 1864) Pg. 20 Google Books - 1864 ESCC Library. A later edition is also available: ESCC Library - 1884
- East Sussex County Council Archive The Keep GB179_SAS-DE_3_90