Uckfield was flooded on three occasions in 2000.

In the most severe event on October 12, a small intense rainstorm in the catchment area caused serious flooding up to 2m deep in the town centre.

Richard Woolard used stilts to keep his head – and the rest of his body – above water. But some vehicles were caught deep in water at the railway station.

There are records of flooding around the River Uck as far back as 1852.

The first mention in historical documents of Uckfield is in the late 13th century.

The town developed as a stopping-off point on the pilgrimage route between Canterbury, Chichester and Lewes.

The settlement began to develop around the bridging point of the river, including Pudding Cake Lane, where travellers visited a pub for slices of pudding cake.

The town developed in the High Street and the New Town areas, the latter to the south of the original town centre.

The Eversfield family, who later became prominent in Sussex history, giving their name to the prime waterfront street of St Leonards, first settled in Uckfield after moving from Surrey.

The family, who later owned the mansion Denne Park in Horsham, which they represented in Parliament, acquired a large fortune through marriage, real estate acquisition and iron foundering.

Their climb to wealth and prominence was a heady one – in 15th century Sussex they were described as yeomen, but within a generation they were already among the first rank of Sussex gentry.

The oldest building in the town is Bridge Cottage, thought to have been built in the 15th century.

Historical studies have shown the cottage to date to about 1436.

Between 1500 and 1900, the cottage was inhabited by a number of local families, including local merchants.

And in October 2014, the Heritage Lottery Fund granted £1 million to enable the restoration of the cottage.

Work started that month, with an estimated completion date set for later this year.