East Sussex Naturists was formerly Eastbourne Naturist Swim Club, which was founded some 35 years ago.
In recent years we have arranged all sorts of naturist events so we changed our name in 2021 to reflect this.
In the 20-21 season to date and in spite of Covid we have had a 20% increase in membership..
Please use the Contact page if you are interested to join our group.
Naturists in Eastbourne have been swimming against the tide for more than three decades. But even recently a student studying for a photography degree contacted us and although born and bred in Old Town, Eastbourne she had no idea that there was a 'subculture' in existence there. This was her word not ours. To naturists, being without clothes is normal and the feeling of being naked is something that once tried, never forgotten.
Until this year we swam in a pool built in 1905, small, old-fashioned, but a great home for a small and friendly group. Swimming is the ideal introduction to social naturism as you can safely slip below the water enjoying the interaction of warm water on skin, but able to chat to our members without any embarrassment that might be anticipated or worried about. You will soon find that social interaction is no different from any other, except you will find that the ambience is kind, friendly, respectful and tolerant.
Now at Seaford from October to April we swim once every month.
In 2017 we organised a naturist evening at Charleston farmhouse - the famous home of the Bloomsbury art group. It was a revelation in many ways, not the least that we had grown up believing there was no tolerance for naturists and we should be secretive and out of sight. Since then businesses of all sorts have been happy to let us run naked events and they are often surprised at how human naturists are.
We join naturist walkers every so often and walk quieter public footpaths. The highlight of the year for me is the freedom of the South Downs with green Sussex laid out before us with little human habitation in sight. Of course we do meet other walkers, often looking highly overdressed in summer, but usually we get a response to our cheery hallos and sometimes people stop to chat and find out something about us.
Naturally some may nervous about going naked outside of the protective enclave of a sunclub - but these are few and far between in the South East. This year we pioneered a naked charity walk up in Surrey where the public was excluded and first timers in particular could feel safe to enjoy what many non-naturists take for granted - a gentle ramble in a regenerative green space. And 100 people took part and raised a staggering £25,000 for the British Heart Foundation.
When we get together it seems that there is nothing we cannot achieve and in the achieving lasting friendships can be made.
We believe all our members are unique. We all look mostly the same, have the same feelings and values.
Summing this up here is a little story. I organised a naked visit to the Towner gallery. We ran a weekend of events including a walk, the art gallery visit and a picnic and wild swim. In the Towner I was standing in front of a picture that was trying to evoke the feeling of being in a glider - something I have not done. I was talking to someone I met that evening, both completely naked and discussing opinions about this painting. I thought to myself if I were visiting during the day clothed I doubt I would be talking to anyone except my wife.
So apart from the enjoyment of feeling my surroundings unchafed by cloth, there is a symbolic or mindset change when removing your clothing that leaves you more human, more mindful and more empathetic. Above all you feel safe and stress-free when you know that being naked is fine. It's empowering not defenceless, but above all it's enjoyable.