Naturist / Nudist Beaches in England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland
Browndown Point (Stokes Bay) - near Southsea Hampshire
MOD land overlooking the Solent. The MOD are actively asking naturists to leave. Nearby Meon recommended.
Browndown is adjacent to an MOD range, lying on the North shore of the Solent between Lee-on-the-Solent, to the West and Stokes Bay (Gosport) to the East.
[Aug 2013] The MOD Defense Training Group says naturists may not use their land, and that they will be asked to leave. Reports are that people are are indeed being asked to leave.
"Warning Order. The land in question is owned by the MOD and is used for military training. There is no permission for anyone to use the beach as a nudist area and any of your [readers] who use the beach in this way will (and are) being sent off the beach. Could you ensure that Browndown is removed from your website as a matter of urgency or we will have no option but to escalate this through our departments as a matter of urgency".
"Browndown is used for military training and as part of that, cadets use this area and it would be unacceptable to have naturists on this area. ... the Browndown Byelaws control the access to this area - and anyone found on the area without clothing would in contravention of the Prohibited Activities 4(d) and therefore sent off the area. ... We do not have any naturist areas on our military lands."
The boundary of the army range is the high water mark, so if you are below it, you should in theory be fine. However, using nearby Meon instead might make for a less stressfull day
- "Military Byelaws" for Browndown (PDF) An army representative may "warn off" people from the range (i.e. order people to leave), and 2) the range ends at the High Water Mark
- Hampshire Council Countryside Services - Bowndown Point
- Meon - a nearby alternate beach
The "Solent Way" designated footpath runs along the beach between Lee on solent and Gosport, affording access on foot. By car - the B3385 leads straight from Fareham Station to the middle of Lee on Solent (Newgate Lane/Broom Way)
"By car, leave the M27 at Junction 11 and follow the signs for Gosport and the A32. After a couple of miles you will approach a double roundabout. At the first roundabout be in the left hand lane to go straight over (1st exit) and then move over the right hand lane to turn right (3rd exit) following the signs for HMS SULTAN. Stay on this road, Military Road (you will pass HMS SULTAN on this road), until the next roundabout. Here go straight over (2nd exit) and again follow the road until another roundabout. Again go straight over (1st exit this time) and you will see the sea .The road sweeps round to the left and on the crown of the bend there is a turn off into a car park; park here."
"You will notice a wire fence that leads down to the sea. Follow this and at the end, or through one of the many holes, turn right (if facing the sea) and start to walk away from the car park. The beach is made up of pebbles so walking can be difficult and there is definitely no access for wheelchairs. On your left you will walk past the rear of Browndown TA Camp. Keep walking until you can see a large concrete mushroom affair which marks the eastern limit of the nudist section. The western limit is marked by l high (50 feet or so) embankment."
"The beach is long and flat and looks out across the Solent towards the Isle of Wight. Yachts sometimes come close to the beach to escape the strong tides that are common around the headland.. Don't be worried about the golfers, they know about the place and don't bother about it. Both these sites have been considered by the council for official recognition in the past (last time was about three years ago). Their policy is [to turn] a blind eye to the beaches. Both beaches are quite well used, Browndown being the better of the two."
None on the beach - the nearest facilities are in the car park where there is a snack wagon and public toilets.
No specific information, but must be similar to other beaches along the Solent.
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My wife and I experienced naturism for the first time at this beach in August 2004, after reading the positive trip report in the NUFF beaches list. It was perfect for a first time.
After walking from the main car park for approx. 15 mins we reached the naturist section. The beach was rather empty with only one or two couples and a few older males. We felt quite at ease as the naturist section was a good distance from the main 'textile' beach and as a result there were very few passers by. We were able to find a remote spot with ease, and before we knew it we felt comfortable enough to strip off and become naturists for the first time. Although we were considerably younger than the other couples at no time did we feel uncomfortable by the other naturists. We even plucked up the courage to go for a swim in the sea. We weren't bothered by the small fishing and sailing boats as they kept a good enough distance from the shoreline. The only 'textile' passers-by (which were very few) were walking their dogs, or genuinely walking along the shoreline, and did not appear to be 'gawking' and generally seemed to respect the naturist section.
We agreed that we would definitely return to this beach and would recommend it to anyone considering to experience naturism for the first time, who don't want to be surronded by a large crowd.
Thanks for the info on UK naturist beaches. I had a few hours to kill in Lee-on-Solent today so I visited this beach.
From Lee-on-Solent centre it was about 30 mins brisk walk. After about 10 mins I passed the Elsmore car park. This is the last car park at the end of the Lee-on-Solent seafront before the road bends away from the beach. Just beyond that is the start of Browndown range, with the largest collection of warning signs I can remember seeing (about suspicious objects, fire risk, firing when red flags show, and vipers in hot weather). 20 mins from there I passed the second of two large shingle embankments and a little further along I saw the concrete mushroom.
I stopped for about 2 hours, during which time only one other person passed (he didn't seem embarrased by my nudity). I went for a swim and the water seemed OK although there was a slight current along the beach (presumably the Solent tide). Viewed from the air, the two embankments are midway between the Elsmore car park and the one to which your previous report gives directions, so the naturist section would be closer to that car park than Elsmore.
For my first nudist experience I found the beach perfect. The view is fantastic and the beach was quiet. My wife and I stayed for around an hour and we just had one yacht come close by but not too close to bother me. We swam in the sea and whilst wary of the currents we were not bothered by them. I am sure more visits will ensue.
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Photos should be of the beach, or show the way to it. They should NOT have people in them.
These photos, which have been tagged as 'safe', were all taken nearby.
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The beach descriptions originally came from the closed NUFF website.
Thanks to its authors.