Golfers found a burnt and mutilated body just outside Brighton and Hove as they neared the end of a round late this morning.
The body was so badly burnt that detectives have not been able to tell whether the victim is a man or a woman or how old he or she was.
The senior investigating officer Chief Inspector Trevor Bowles, said: “At least one foot is missing below the shin.
“We will try to determine at post mortem whether this was before or after death occurred but the body will remain in situ for the immediate future while our investigations at the scene continue.
“We are searching the nearby area for evidence and have spoken to the members of the public who found the body and people working at the course.
“We are at a very early stage of the investigation and I would ask anyone who may be able to help us piece together a picture of what has happened to get in touch.”
Anyone with information is asked to call Sussex Police on 0845 6070999 or the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.