But, according a new report from the Royal College of Physicians, the Sussex town is now one of the most dangerously polluted areas in Britain.
Despite sitting on the doorstep of the South Downs, Eastbourne is effectively trapped between pollution from London and the continent and now contains levels of lethal particulates far higher than recommended by the World Health Organisation (WHO).
The new research shows that 44 major UK towns and cities now breach WHO guidelines on air quality with particulate levels so high they are causing 40,000 premature deaths each year, and six million sick days.
According to WHO, tiny particles - known as PM2.5s - should not exceed 10 micrograms per cubic metre of air.
But in most major urban areas, pollution is above healthy levels. In Glasgow it is 60 per cent higher than acceptable levels, while people in Southampton and London and Eastbourne regularly breathe in air that has 50 per cent more particulates than is healthy.
Dr Toby Hillman, one of the report's authors from the RCP, said: “We know the effects of poor air quality run from cradle to grave. It's a lifetime threat to human health.”
Dr Hillman said diesel-powered vehicles, which generate huge numbers of particles, were one of the ‘key drivers’ of poor air quality in Britain’s cities.
"Unfortunately previous policies about encouraging diesel adoption have led to an increase in the amount of diesel related pollution," he said.
“Within urban centres after the Clean Air Act of 1956 the major shift has been from coal fired power stations to diesel engines producing the nitrous oxides and PM2.5 particulates and diesel is particularly bad for this. It’s probably one of the key drivers of the reduction in air quality, particularly in Metropolitan areas.”
Other majorly polluted urban areas include Stoke on Trent, Oxford, Cardiff and Birmingham with 40 per cent higher than recommended levels of particulates, Manchester and Bristol with 30 per cent more pollution than is healthy.
In a "briefing for UK policymakers" the report called for the expansion of Clean Air Zones nationwide and wider introduction of measures similar to London's new T-charge, which imposes a levy on drivers of the most polluting vehicles.
From last week, drivers of the most polluting vehicles must now pay a daily charge of up to £21.50 to drive in the capital. The government has also committed to phasing out the sale of non-electrical vehicles by 2040.
Many British cities and towns also broke the WHO limits for PM10s, slightly larger sooty specks considered less of a hazard than ultra-fine particles but still harmful to health.
The report added that 802 London schools and a high proportion of the capital's hospitals and clinics were located in highly polluted areas "potentially putting some of society's most vulnerable at risk".
The impact of air pollution in UK cities forms part of a major study into the health impact of Climate Change which has brought together 24 institutions and governmental organisations from across the world.
The Lancet Countdown on Health and Climate Change warned that global warming was the ‘major health threat’ of the 21st Century and the impact was likely to be worse than feared.
The report pointed out that between 2000 and 2016 there had been a 46 per cent increase in the number of weather-related disasters around the world. Within 50 years the numbers of people dying in Britain from extreme weather events was likely to increase 50 fold.
Climate change has also increased the threat from mosquito-borne infectious diseases, the authors warn.
Transmission of dengue fever by the Aedes agypti mosquito had increased by 9.4 per cent since 1950.
Professor Hugh Montgomery, co-chair of The Lancet Countdown and director of the Institute for Human Health and Performance at University College London, said: "We are only just beginning to feel the impacts of climate change.
“This is the major health threat of the 21st Century. Things are worse than we thought. There is an urgent need to address it.”