Ditchling Beacon

  • Location: South Downs, north east of Brighton
  • Distance: 0.9 miles / 1.45 km
  • Height gain: 143m
  • Average gradient: 9%
  • Max gradient: 16%
  • KOM – Michael Kwiatowski 4.05 – 13.8mph (2014 Tour of Britain)
  • Course record in hill climb – S.Dangerfield, 3.45 (1995) (not sure which version of course)
  • 100 climbs – #22
  • Everesting attempt? – 62 times (1 lap = 2.9 km) Approx total = 180 km

Ditchling Beacon by Martin Thomas

Ditchling Beacon is a popular road hill climb. It is tackled by many amateurs on the annual London to Brighton bike ride. It averages 9%, but gets up to a maximum of 16%, with quite a few false flats.


ditchling-beacon by Martin Thomas

National Hill climb Championship 1995

In 1995, the National Hill Climb Championships were  held on Ditchling Beacon. It was won by Stuart Dangerfield in a time of 3.45.

1994 Tour de France

In 1994, the Tour de France went up Ditchling Beacon on its way to Brighton


Sean Yates and Lance Armstrong at the top of Ditchling Beacon – Tour de France, 1994. Photo Credit

Ditchling Beacon has also featured in races such as the 2014 Tour of Britain. It proved a decisive moment in splitting the field before the finish in Brighton.