The Littlington White Horse

Hindover Hill
East Sussex
England, United Kingdom.


(OS Ref. TQ510 009)


On Hindover Hill between Alfriston and Seaford, East Sussex, stands the sturdy chalk figure known as the Littlington White Horse. The figure is 93' long and 65' high and is today cared for by the National Trust.

The original figure of a horse was cut by James Pagden of Frog Firle Farm and his two brothers in 1838 to commemorate Queen Victoria's coronation. Or, alternatively in 1860, by a pair of industrious youths who saw a patch of bare chalk in the turf that resembled a horses head and they simply added the body. Whatever the source of this first horse it had all but vanished by the 1920's.


The horse as seen today was cut in 1924 by Mr Bovis, Eric Hobbs and John T Ade, said to be the son of one of the youthful creators, William Ade. The three men cut the horse overnight under the glow of a full moon so as to startle the locals with its sudden appearance the next morning - gaining the men some notoriety in the process. The current chalk horse stands a hundred yards or so from the original.


The Littlinton White Horse was camouflaged during the Second World War to prevent it being used as a navigation aid for Nazi aircraft or as a landmark for invasion forces. Following the end of the war the White Horse was restored but only one of its forelegs was re-cut, this was later restored on the 9th June 1949. In 1983 the foreleg was altered further when it was raised to give the horse greater definition and prevent further slippage of the chalk rubble used to define its form. Additional restoration work by the National Trust took place in 1993 and 1998 when a timber revetment was added to reinforce the firgure and prevent erosion. The White Horse underwent further restoration in 2003.

By Kevin Gordon (
By Kevin Gordon (

There may be a further chalk figure upon Hindover Hill. There is a legend of a companion to The Long Man of Wilmington known as Eve. If the landscape may be viewed as a woman laying upon her back with the White Horse upon her right leg, then Eve, in a similar fashion to The Long Man of Wilmington, would be found cut between the two limbs!