Saltdean sits on the boundary of Brighton and Hove and Lewes District and enjoys the best of both worlds. The busy city with its shops, offices and leisure facilities is only 15 minutes away, and the peace and quiet of the Downs is within easy reach of residents of the clifftop community.

As towns go, Saltdean is relatively new. Until 1914, all that stood between Newhaven and Rottingdean was open downland grazed by sheep. Then entrepreneur Charles Neville, who had built his fortune on gold and land in Canada, saw the site for his “garden city by the sea”. He bought a belt of land five miles long and one mile wide. Once Peacehaven (the main development) was complete, he turned to Saltdean, which was developed in the 1930s around a central park. Many of the distinctive Art Deco houses are still there.

Over the years, the community has grown and is now home to a mix of people, from young families to pensioners.

Bungalows dominate the area but there is also a range of detached and semi-detached houses and several modern, purpose-built blocks of flats.

Along with the Lido, the Grand Ocean Hotel is a splendid example of 30s seaside architecture. It was built by the developers responsible for the Lido and much of the village, the Saltdean Estate Company, formed by Mr Neville in 1924. The hotel was bought by Butlins in 1953 and stayed in its ownership until Rank Leisure, the owner of Butlins, put all Butlins hotels up for sale in 1998.

After a period of decline this landmark property was converted into luxury apartments.

The hotel and the Saltdean Lido were designed by the architect Richard Jones and opened in 1938. The building was given listed stated in 1987.

Since its early days, Saltdean has attracted young families and retired people. Most of the homes have garages or off-street parking.

Along the coast Peacehaven stands on the white cliffs at precisely the point where the Greenwich Meridian leaves these shores.

When Charles Neville, a gifted self-publicist, started selling plots of land for homes he ran a competition in the national newspapers to give away a plot worth £100 to the person who came up with the best name for his development.

The winning name was New Anzac-on-Sea in honour of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps which had recently joined battle in the First World War. As the war wore on and the casualties mounted, the name was quietly changed to Peacehaven.

Development did not really start until after the end of the war and Neville’s South Coast and Land Resort Company would tailor its home designs to suit the means of the plotholders.

The one-bedroom Exeter, for example, cost £360 and was built of bricks made from clay found to the west of Roderick Avenue.

A much-loved former resident who left an indelible mark on the town is Gracie Fields.

Britain’s foremost female entertainer of her day, Gracie owned a house in Telscombe Cliffs and bought another for her parents in Dorothy Avenue, Peacehaven. She later gave the property to the Theatrical Ladies Guild as home for the children of down-and-out actors. The house is now a nursing home.

Today, Peacehaven is a thriving community, which would make its founder proud.