Local History

Explore the history of where you live and the changing history, scenery and communities of West Sussex from the earliest period of history to the present day.

We can help you get started with access to local history resources including websites, maps and photographs.

Need more help? Ask a Librarian

Local History Town and Village Guides

Whether you've just moved to West Sussex and would like to know more about the area; or you need help with a local history project, we can help you get started with directories, maps, newspapers, photographs and links to other useful information.
Town and village guides


Explore the history of West Sussex and beyond with free access to local and national current and historic newspapers with your library card. Online resources including British Newspaper Archive, Illustrated London News, London Gazette, Pressreader and Times Digital Archive. Plus how you can access local newspapers in digital, microfilm and paper form in our libraries.
More about Newspapers

Maps of West Sussex

Find maps of West Sussex and beyond with free online resources including National Library of Scotland, Ordnance Survey and West Sussex County Council.
More about Maps of West Sussex

West Sussex Past Pictures

If you're looking for historic photographs and pictures of your local area, our West Sussex Past Pictures database has over 13,000 images provided by local museums and West Sussex Library Service.
West Sussex Past Pictures

West Sussex Past Portal

Visit our West Sussex Past Portal to explore West Sussex topics including: The Great War 1914-1918, Wartime West Sussex 1939-1945, Victorian West Sussex, Military Voices and West Sussex Seaside Holidays in the Past.
West Sussex Past Portal

West Sussex Record Office

You can also explore a range of resources about West Sussex history, available through our colleagues at West Sussex Record Office.
West Sussex Record Office

Local History Publications for Sale

Have a look at our catalogue of local history publications for sale, available via your local library.
Local history publications for sale

Search the catalogue