Beacon Down vineyard occupies 18 acres of the beautiful High Weald near Heathfield in East Sussex in England. A designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the vineyard is set on gentle South East facing slopes with stunning views over to Eastbourne and the South Downs. Two fields on the site were planted with nearly 10,000 vines in May 2015 by Paul and Al Pippard, which have thrived on the sandstone slopes and Sussex sunshine.
Back in 2012 the owners, started having one of those ‘what if’ conversations and we decided that it was now or never to realise a dream.
While still living and working in Camberwell, South London, Paul took the first steps and gained his Diploma in Wine Production from Plumpton College, an agricultural college based in Sussex.
After finishing their studies and gaining valuable experience on a number of vineyards as well as within the industry, in 2014 they started searching and spent some long days driving around the countryside, small baby in tow. After a few months of looking they found an ideal site just outside a little village called Cross-in-Hand.
They were 'immediately struck with the potential' and fell in love with how beautiful it is. They sold their flat in London and made the move to Sussex to start a new life.
They manage and run all aspects of the vineyard - growing and tending to the vines, selling and packing up wine for delivery, leading the tours and providing delicious picnics.