In the spring of 1851, the Lanes and the Pooles moved some forty miles west to another seacoast town, because Lane had lost his faith in the climate of Hastings. Worthing looked more squarely to the south than Hastings, and was protected on the north by the chalk South Downs. The Board of Health reckoned Worthing to be the second healthiest place in England, another testimonial of the unshakable Victorian belief in the salubrity of sea air. The population in 1851 was just 5,370, but Worthing boasted several good hotels and had been connected with London by rail for six years. For their first two years at Worthing, the Lanes and Pooles resided at West Terrace, just across the esplanade from the stony beach in what Sophia described as a “Sea house”.
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