Southsea is a little gem on the south coast, full of character, history, amazing buildings and famous sons and daughters. For a densely packed peninsula, Southsea has retained a sense of Victorian charm with wide-open spaces. Southsea Common spans some 480 acres next to the shingle beach, and the promenade has a vibrant cafe culture.
Southsea is a desirable place because it has everything you could want from a cosmopolitan city: some of the best restaurants and dining on the south coast, a pier, a funfair, and so much history, it would take more than a couple of paragraphs to list it all.
Southsea has excellent ferry links to Europe and the Isle of Wight, along with a railway station and major roads leading out of the city.
There is a large student population in Southsea, which adds to the vibrancy of the area. There is a mix of houses ranging from modern flats, converted Victorian sea-front villas, Georgian townhouses and large properties with a high-end price tag.
Whether you are a student, a first-time buyer or someone looking for their “forever” home, Southsea has everything you could possibly need.
It might surprise you to learn that Southsea was largely unknown until the mid-16th century when Henry VIII ordered the building of Southsea Castle as part of extensive sea defences. Prior to the development of the fortifications, Southsea was largely farmland and marshland.
The land was originally owned by Thomas Croxton, and so when he started to develop the farmland in the early 19th century, it was originally called Croxton Town.
With the expansion of the dockyard, Southsea grew to accommodate the influx of workers, and the development continued. The town became fashionable during the 19th century, and it became a bathing destination for the middle and upper classes.
Most of the original streets still exist; however, Southsea was heavily bombed during the war, destroying much of the original buildings.
In the 1950s, Southsea underwent redevelopment, and many of the buildings we see today were constructed. While Southsea never quite recovered the visitor numbers it once enjoyed, it still grew through the 20th century and remained a popular seaside destination.
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