A new Wealden Vineyard guide for 2022/23 has been produced by Wealden District Council.

The guide production and design was part of a collaboration with Locate East Sussex.

Viticulture – the cultivation of grape vines – in the UK has expanded nearly 400% from 761 to 3800 hectares between 2004 and 2021. And in Sussex alone there is approximately 50 vineyards and 16 of them are in Wealden – all showcased in the guide.

The print run is 30,000 and distribution will be within an hour’s drive of the Wealden area covering Kent, East Sussex, West Sussex and some parts of Surrey and south, south west and south east London suburbs.

Outlets to be targeted will include all types of accommodation, eateries, leisure outlets like gyms, golf clubs and garden centre, plus community centres and community tourist information centres.

Many of the vineyards welcome visitors and offer tours and tastings. Please note some visits are by appointment only, so please contact them before your visit for full details.

Councillor Philip Lunn, Wealden District Council’s portfolio holder for Leisure, said “Viticulture is very important to our area. Back in 2018, our council was the first authority to engage consultants to carry out a feasibility study in respect of wine tourism becoming part of the visitor economy.

“Just a few years later, our area has become one the most significant producers of fine wines. We have an outstanding growing environment and climate, with ideally suited vineyards, producing multiple world class sparkling wines. Our still wines are also gaining wide admiration, and we should really be very proud of the achievements of our producers.

“Whereas we already benefit from many visitors each year, I really do hope people will read and enjoy the guide and make every effort to visit some of the many vineyards within our district, and wider Sussex.”

Copies of the guide are available from economicdevelopment@wealden.gov.uk or you can download it Maps and Attractions Guide – Wealden (explorewealden.co.uk)