Self-sufficiency Introduction

Even those who lived off the sea had quiet months and needed to turn their hand to other work in order to survive. The skills the locals acquired included boat building, thatching, brewing, bee-keeping and, especially vital before the NHS started in 1948, creating herbal remedies.

Vegetable and fruit growing was essential, alongside rabbiting and keeping chickens and a pig. The villagers had the right to cut gorse or furze (‘fuzz’, as it was called) on the Common, a slope of the Down, and this was used as fuel for cooking. Before container ships most cargo was carried in the holds, however  the inshore current meant there was always something useful to be picked up by ‘combing’ along the beach in the early morning.