The beautiful church at Firle dates back to the 13th Century and occupies a stunning location beneath the South Downs Way that marches in spectacular fashion across the top of the hills high above. A notable interior attraction is an imposing stained glass window created by John Piper (1903 – 1992) that depicts Blake’s “Tree of Life”.
The church houses an albaster effigy of Tudor courtier Sir John Gage wearing the Order of the Garter. The Gage family have been lords of the manor of Firle since the 15th Century. Bloomsbury set writer Virginia Woolf lived in Firle for a while. Her sister, painter and interior designer Vanessa Bell, her son Quentin Bell and live-in lover Duncan Grant are all buried in the churchyard.
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