The Beacon May 2012 - Beacon Parish of Ditchling, Streat ...

The Beacon May 2012 - Beacon Parish of Ditchling, Streat ...





The Revd David Wallis

The Vicarage, 2 Charlton Gardens,

Lewes Road, Ditchling, BN6 8WA

Geoffrey Heath

Andrew Martin

St Margaret’s

(01273) 843165

(01273) 845134

(01273) 846123

Mike Sewell Streat Church (01273) 890366

Mark Moody-Stuart

Doreen Kallman

Richard Allen

Colyeen Blanchard

St Martin’s

(01273) 846525

(01273) 844743

(01273) 842919

01444 246186

Hon Treasurer: Mark Moody-Stuart (01273) 846525

Bookkeeper: Sue Sewell (01273) 890366

Hon Secretary: Margaret Bovill (01273) 845319

Stewardship Officer: Rodney Dodds 01444 250753

Organists and


Hon Organists:

Nick Hancock

John Sandford

Lynette Walker

Lynn Bond

St Margaret’s

Streat Church

St Martin’s

(01273) 841815

07855 957644

(01273) 891005

(01273) 842387

Parish office Email: Phone: 01273 843165

The Beacon

Editor: Graham Sharpless (01273) 845368



Sue & George Hancock (01273) 890298



Jenny Bell

Margaret Moore


(01273) 843194

(01273) 843805

Paul Charman Streat & Westmeston (01273) 844743

Full membership of the PCC can be found on the website at:

The Revd David Wallis’s day off is Friday

The Beacon Parish is a registered charity, number 1132488

Front cover:

St Margaret’s Church, Ditchling with the new notice board.

The Beacon May 2012


The Beacon Churches Calendar May 2012 ................................................... 2

Fr David writes about St George and Edward the Confessor ....................... 3

Beacon Parish News ..................................................................................... 6

Beacon Parish Church Duties May 2012 .................................................... 11

The Busy Vicar of Ditchling! with three churches ....................................... 13

Bible Notes ................................................................................................. 14

Prayer Diary – May 2012 ............................................................................ 16

What’s On in May 2012 .............................................................................. 18

What’s On in June 2012 .............................................................................. 19

Ditchling Women’s Groups ......................................................................... 21

Children and Young People ........................................................................ 23

Village News from Ditchling, Streat and Westmeston ............................... 26

Nature Corner ............................................................................................. 33

The Beacon in the Past ............................................................................... 34

To Celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee

Street Party

Saturday 2 nd June, Church Lane, Ditchling



For the most regal or zany crown!

Come and join the fun and delicious food from 12.30pm

Adults £7.50 Children £5.00 (includes first drink)

Tickets from the Post Office or telephone Nicki 842791

If wet the party will be in St Margaret’s Church


The Beacon Churches Calendar May 2012

Morning Prayer at Ditchling: Monday to Friday at 9.00 am

2 Wed Eucharist Ditchling 9.30am


Eucharist (BCP) Ditchling 8.00am

All Age Sung Eucharist Ditchling 9.45am

Morning Prayer Westmeston 9.45am

9 Wed Eucharist Ditchling 9.30am


Sung Eucharist Ditchling 9.45am

Morning Prayer Streat 9.45am

16 Wed Eucharist Ditchling 9.30am


Ascension Day Morning Prayer Ditchling 9.00am


Eucharist (BCP) Ditchling 8.00am

Morning Prayer Ditchling 9.45am

Eucharist Streat 9.45am

Eucharist Westmeston 6.00pm

23 Wed Eucharist Ditchling 9.30am

25 Fri Wedding of Ian and Hannah 2.00pm

26 Sat Wedding of Luke and Naomi 1.00pm



30 Wed Eucharist Ditchling 9.30am

The Beacon Parish Office

Open on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday mornings

9.30 am to 12 noon (the place to direct any enquiries)

01273 843165 email:


Fr David writes

Dear Friends

I write to you on the eve of St George’s Day. Although

George is our patron saint, I can’t help feeling that we

don’t allow ourselves to enjoy celebrating our patron as

much as our brothers and sisters in other parts of the

United Kingdom enjoy celebrating theirs. Why is that?

Perhaps it is because we don’t know a great deal about

George – so let me fill you in. The precise details of

George’s life have been lost in time but we do know some

facts about him and with a touch of imagination and a

little poetic licence we can fill in the blanks.

George was an officer in the Roman army and possibly part of the emperors’

guard. At some point, he became a Christian, and during the Emperor

Diocletian’s persecution of Christians in the year 303, George was put on trial for

his faith. But he would not reject Christ and this cost him his life. Over time the

legend developed that he slew a dragon. This was probably a way of

representing the courage with which he stood up to the evil of persecution. He

became the patron saint of Crusaders when in 1187, Richard I took George’s

symbol of a red cross as his uniform. George became very popular, not only with

Crusaders, but also back in England and eventually he became patron saint of

England in 1347 relegating St Edward the Confessor, who had previously been

England’s patron. His popularity endured for many years which Shakespeare

used to good effect, when in Henry V’s speech before the Battle of Agincourt,

the King proclaimed “Follow your spirit; and upon this charge, cry, ‘God’, for

Harry, England and Saint George”.

“George … was a man who gave us a great

example of courage and faith”

Would we, however, have been better off to keep Edward as our patron saint?

Edward, known as the Confessor, because of his reputation for piety was born

some time between 1002 and 1004. He was the son of King Ethelred II or as I am

sure you referred to him at school ‘Ethelred the Unready’. ‘Unready’ is actually a

mistranslation of the old English word ‘unræd’ which means ‘bad counsel’, this

was a play on Ethelred’s name which means ‘noble counsel’. Ethelred, perhaps

determined that his son would be much more of ‘noble counsel’ sent young

Edward to the court of Normandy to be educated. Edward became king in 1042

but it is in many ways his death that is more interesting than his life. The fact


that he had at different times promised the succession of his throne to two

different people – Harold Godwinson and William of Normandy – set the stage

for an epic confrontation, the most famous battle in English history and the

transformation of England’s future.

Less than a century after Edward’s death, he was canonised by Pope Alexander

III in 1161. What were the grounds for this? Edward had taken a vow to make a

pilgrimage to St Peter’s tomb in Rome but when the journey became too

dangerous, the Pope converted Edward’s promised pilgrimage into the building

of a monastery dedicated to St Peter and so began the construction of

Westminster Abbey.

So given the choice between Edward and George, who would you choose to

have as the patron saint of England? Edward’s legacy is clear to see. Westminster

Abbey has been the focus for the nation’s devotion ever since the time of its

construction. Rubbing shoulders with the Houses of Parliament, it is the very

heart of our capital city. George, however, was a man who gave us a great

example of courage and faith. He reminds us of the importance of placing our

commitment to Christ above all other things, even if the cost to us is very, very


Whether you would prefer George or Edward, both men serve to remind us of

the central and pivotal role that the Christian faith has played in the life and

history of our nation. Throughout the centuries, the Church, with all its flaws, has

been there at the heart of this land. So perhaps the ideal is that we celebrate

the legacy of both George and Edward by (to misquote Shakespeare) “Following

our spirit and crying ‘O God, bless England that we may live as faithfully as

William and George.’”

God bless

Fr David

Marjorie Lee - an acknowledgement

We would like to thank Fr David and everyone who came to join us in celebrating

Marjorie's life on April 10, many of whom were unknown to us. It was a truly

lovely service that leaves us with happy memories. Our sincere thanks go to the

choir members who led the singing so well and included the Anthem 'Lead me

Lord'. Thank you too for all your donations to St Margaret's Church.

Roger Earl, Susan Alder and Pauline Smith (Marjorie's siblings)


Beacon Parish News

The Beacon Parish Finances

A surplus created by generous bequests

The full Parish Accounts are now on the Beacon Website (at The headline results are a

surplus of income over expenditure of almost £47,000. This surplus was almost

entirely due to the very generous bequest from Audrey Day, who left the Parish

over £43,000 (a preliminary £5,000 of this was included in last year’s accounts).

We also received £6,000 from the family of Valerie Hoare and a legacy of £1,000

from Honor Davies. We are all most grateful for these very generous gifts which

will be put to use in the Parish. They have been set aside until the PCC decides to

what use the funds should be put. Without these very generous donations the

surplus would have been only £1,432. This is more or less in line with the

situation outlined in The Beacon last October.

Increased regular giving, but some exceptional costs

It is very encouraging that the Trio campaign resulted in seven new standing

orders bringing in some £3,400 including Gift Aid tax recovery. In addition 12

people increased their standing orders by £2,565 pa. When some additional

cheques are included the additional income is some £8,000. This more than

offsets the reductions due to deaths or people moving away from the Parish as

well as the continuous rise in costs.

There was major expenditure on St Margaret’s of £35,450 for the re-plastering of

the interior and architect’s fees, only £20,000 of which was covered by grants

from the Friends of St Margaret’s and £3,000 from an earlier grant from Sussex

Historic Churches Trust. There was also exceptional expenditure of £9,500

needed on the flint wall of St Margaret’s churchyard and a further £3,000 on the

flint wall of Streat church. Together this meant that some £24,500 of these

major repairs was covered from Parish funds, not grants from other bodies.

Generous Grants from the Community and Trusts

We are fortunate in receiving grants not only from the Friends of St Margaret’s

and Sussex Historic Churches trust, but £7,000 from the Turner Dumbrell

Foundation for churchyard upkeep, £405 from Ditchling Parish Council for the

upkeep of St Margaret’s clock, and grants from Streat Parish Council (£200) and

Westmeston Parish Council (£350) for the upkeep of churchyards. The Listed

Places of Worship Scheme also enabled the recovery of VAT on building


expenditure and there are also funds such as the Mabel Baines, Swan Perkins, Dr

McConnell and the Chancel Fund which can be drawn upon for the repairs of the

fabric of specified churches. In addition a portion of the St Margaret’s School

house Trust can be draw upon for Parish youth work on application. The PCC and

everyone in the Parish can be grateful for these contributions to maintaining the

three churches as a central part of our community.

Contribution to the Diocese and what we get back

As always the largest expenditure of the Parish is the contribution to the Diocese

of £63,000 which covers the housing, stipend and pension costs of the clergy and

church insurance plus a sum for diocesan central costs, clergy training and a

contribution to national church funds. The Parish fully meets its share of overall

diocesan costs and the increase over last year’s assessment was very small,

which is encouraging. In addition £2,163 was paid to the Diocese as statutory

fees for weddings and funerals. The Parish share of these fees plus generous

collections at weddings and funerals contributed some £10,000 to overall Parish

income. Streat Barn and the Beacon Parish Magazine more than covered their


“We have three beautiful church buildings which

are however each some nine hundred years old and

which inevitably will need major work”

The overall picture

Standing back and looking at the overall state of our Parish Finances, it is

encouraging that planned giving and Gift Aided contributions rose. Had we not

had major expenditures, not covered by grants, on replastering St Margaret’s

and repairing the old flint walls of Streat and St Margaret’s churchyards, we

would have had a surplus of some £24,000 which could be applied, for example,

to work with young people in our community or making the churches more

suitable for wider community use.

But before we get carried away with such ongoing commitments we should

remind ourselves that we have three beautiful church buildings which are

however each some nine hundred years old and which inevitably will need major

work from time to time. So while being pleased that our finances are in balance,

we do not yet have the flexibility to do some of the things which I think everyone

in our community, whether church going or not, would appreciate. Regular

committed giving supplemented by generous legacy provision such as we have

seen during the year will help us to achieve these goals.

Mark Moody-Stuart, Hon Treasurer


PCC Briefings

The PCC met on 22 nd March, 2012, at St Margaret’s Vestry and was the last PCC

Meeting before the APCM on Sunday 29 th April after the 10.45 Service at St

Margaret’s Church when the new PCC will be elected. Items discussed were as


The Annual Report and Financial Statements

The PCC were asked to approve the Report before sending it to the Auditors

then presenting at the ACPM.

Hurst Deanery Synod

The Synod has accepted Chris Burgon as a member of the Steering Group

together with Fr David.

Video camera and monitor

The Fabric Committee are looking at the possibility of installing a video camera

and monitor in the South Aisle of St Margaret’s.

Welcome Packs

Welcome Packs are now available from the Parish Office for any newcomers

moving into the Beacon Parish.

Margaret Bovill, PCC Secretary

The Beacon Churches “100 Club”

The winners of the March Draw were Pam Burr and Ann Baeltz both receiving a

prize of £20.

Pam Gaskin

In May we remember:

In Memoriam

1 st Diana (Miranda) Prickett 3 rd Thirza Ann Morrow

5 th Robert (Bob) Essex 19 th Margaret Florence Tingley

20 th Hyacinthe Amor 20 th Aileen McHugo

24 th Mick Comber 28 th John Barrow

31 st Claude Pascoe 31 st Michael Greenstreet


Jubilee Choir - 10 th Anniversary

This June the Jubilee Choir will be celebrating its 10 th birthday. In 2002 Canon

John, then Priest in Charge at Streat and Westmeston, set the wheels in motion

to form a small choir to sing at the Queen's Golden Jubilee service in

Westmeston Church on 2 nd June 2002. Ten years on we enjoy singing as much as

ever and have more than doubled in size with members from all the surrounding


To celebrate this occasion we are

organising a small concert and

reception on the evening of Friday,

8 th June at 1930 hours in

Westmeston Parish Hall. There will

be no entry fee but we would be

very grateful if you could give

generously to our chosen charity,

the Martlets Hospice.

The evening will be a mixture of

music and entertainment with

interval drinks and light

refreshments. Some local

parishioners have already kindly

volunteered to 'do a turn'. If

Jubilee Choir in 2002

anyone else feels that they would like to participate (eg with a sketch,

instrumental, reading etc) then please do contact us. We look forward to

hearing from you and seeing you on 8 th June.

Helen Firmin - Tel: 01273-844144

Prayer for the Nation

A night or rather half night of Prayer for the Nation has been arranged by the

three churches in Lindfield, at the URC church in the High Street on Wednesday

May 9 th between 6 and 11pm. It will be possible to come and go.

The three denominations involved are the Anglicans, United Reformed and

Evangelical Free churches. Members from all these churches have prayed

together every Saturday morning for over ten years and have developed a great

fellowship. We all agree the nation is in desperate trouble and needs prayer. All

who will join us are welcome.

Frances Berrill




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Beacon Parish Church Duties May 2012

Time Church Service Lessons Readers Sidesmen

6 Fifth Sunday of Easter



9.45am Ditchling








13 Sixth Sunday of Easter

9.45am Ditchling






20 Sunday after Ascension Day



9.45am Ditchling





9.45am Streat Eucharist





27 Pentecost (Whit Sunday)

9.45am Ditchling



Acts 8: 26 - end

John 15: 1 - 8

Acts 8: 26 - end

John 15: 1 - 8

Acts 8: 26 - end

John 15: 1 - 8

Acts 10: 44 - 48

John 15: 9 - 17

Isaiah 55: 1 - 11

Acts 10: 44 - 48

Flowers: Streat: Gill Mc Pate

Westmeston: Helen Firmin,










Carl Belfield



Brenda Hall

Flowers: Streat: Sallie Heine

Westmeston: Tessa Houghton

Di Martin

Dee Grainger

Judy Essex



Sue Sewell

Sue Sewell

Flowers: Streat: Sallie Heine

Westmeston: Tessa Houghton

Acts 1: 15-17,21 -end

Colin French Colin French

John 17: 6 - 19

Acts 1: 15-17, 21 - end

John 17: 20 - 26

Acts 1: 15-17,21 -end

John 17: 6 - 19

Acts 1: 15-17, 21 - end

John 17: 6 - 19

Ian Berill

Chris Burgon



Lyn Bond

Mark Moody-


Jon Styles

Jane Roberts

Mike Sewell



Flowers: Streat: Holly Maxwell-Gumbleton

Westmeston: Tessa Houghton

Acts 2: 1 -21

John 15: 26-27,16: 4b-






Ian Berrill



It was still light, an early spring evening in England, but very cold.

It was pitch black in Jerusalem, mid-night and bitterly cold.

She was wearing jeans and a light jumper.

He was dressed in a light cotton robe.

“You must be cold?” “Yes”, she replied – “Someone is bringing me a coat”.

No-one cared if he was cold; he had no family or friend to bring him a coat.

She was kindling the fire for the Easter Vigil – soon she’d have warmth.

He had to keep in the shadows away from the fire - no warmth for him.

She was safe, secure in the business ahead.

He was waiting to see what would happen. Scared half witless

She would soon be joined by friends and family.

He was alone, an outcast, hiding in the shadows. His companions had all

run away and his only true friend arrested.

No-one challenged her “Why are you here?”

He was challenged and he denied.

She had no need to explain.

He was challenged and he denied.

She was known and welcomed.

He was challenged and he denied.

She heard the quiet murmurs of the congregation.

He heard the cock crow.

She saw the smiles of friendship.

He saw the look that said “I told you so”.

She entered the warmth of friendship and communion.

He crept away and cried bitterly.

PJB 2012

Moonwalk London 2012

The 1 st Ditchling Cub Leaders Dorothy Porter, Naomi Jerrey and friend Audra are

taking part in the London Moonwalk 2012 as the `Ditchling_Walkie_Talkies`.

On May 12 th starting at Hyde Park the girls will be power walking a marathon of

26.2 miles around London during the night with 17,000 other people, to help

raise money for Breast cancer care. To sponsor online go to


The Busy Vicar of Ditchling!

‘Mr Lamb of Ditcheling went to Stenning to take care of Mr William Martin’s

school till his returne.’

So wrote, on April 1 st 1728, Thomas Marchant, diarist, landowner and

prominent figure from Hurstpierpoint. Mr Lamb was William Lamb, Vicar of

Ditchling from 1721 until 1740. He was to be the locum schoolmaster at the

grammar school in Steyning where he was to stay for as long as he was required.

This diary entry is one piece of evidence of how well known this Vicar of

Ditchling became in this part of Sussex. His problem was that Ditchling was a

poor living compared to almost all other surrounding parishes. He, a Cambridge

graduate, had arrived as a very newly qualified priest in December 1721. He had

a wife, Elizabeth and, by 1728, five little ‘Lambs’ had been baptised at St

Margaret’s! Not surprisingly, therefore we find Mr Lamb looking for other

means of raising his income. It is more than possible that he took in boarders in

the Vicarage to teach them the Classics in preparation for entry to public schools

or, perhaps to prepare them for entry into their father’s businesses. Certainly,

we can deduce that William Lamb was no absentee Vicar.

“He had a wife, Elizabeth and, by 1728, five little

‘Lambs’ had been baptised at St Margaret’s!”

In 1724, the Bishop of Chichester had sent out commissioners to check on the

state of the parishes in his Diocese. The commissioners found that all was well in

Ditchling – the church and vicarage were in good repair, there was a ‘Divine

Service and sermon once every Lord’s Day’ and that ‘the cure is supplied by the

Vicar’. When the commissioners arrived in the village of Patcham, they found

that, as in Ditchling, there was a service each Sunday, but that it was conducted

by none other than ‘William Lamb, Vicar of Ditchling who is the curate.’!

The connection between Ditchling and Patcham had been enhanced in 1719

when Patcham Place was bought by George, Lord Abergavenny who was also the

leading landowner here in Ditchling. So, on Sundays, was there a horse saddled

and bridled in the churchyard at St Margaret’s ready to convey our young Vicar

over the Downs to Patcham? And our interest in him deepens when we discover

that, between 1731 and 1739, William Lamb was also Vicar of Wivelsfield, at

which church there was, of course, a Sunday service!

There are all sorts of possible explanations of how one priest could apparently

be in three places at once on a Sunday – perhaps he had ceased to be curate at

Patcham before becoming Vicar of Wivelsfield or perhaps he employed another

priest to cover some of his Sunday duties or perhaps the times of the services


were varied to allow him to travel between all three churches. And then there

were his schoolmasterly duties! Whatever the explanation, the fact remains that

William Lamb was indeed a busy Vicar of Ditchling!

Richard Allen

Bible Notes

It is interesting that two of the missions of our church formerly supported have

combined their work for evangelism. The Bible Society has produced magazinestyle

Bibles for Mission Aviation Fellowship to place in the seat pockets of their

planes, as they do flights in Arnhem Land in Northern Australia.

They are pleased for the copies to go, or some passengers even ask to keep

them. They thank God for this novel approach to evangelism. Indeed, the Bible

alone is a tool for evangelism; as St Paul says in 2 Timothy 3:15-16 “the holy

Scriptures are able to make you wise for salvation through Jesus Christ. All

Scripture is God-breathed.” 2 Peter 1:20-21: “Scripture … men spoke from God as

they were carried along by the Holy Spirit”.

“I love to find a verse or two from each book of the

Bible which shows God’s love for man.”

I once read that a Bible was shared between prisoners, page by page. One

prisoner was converted to Jesus by some verses from Jeremiah! Amazing!

But I love to find a verse or two from each book of the Bible which shows God’s

love for man. Starting at the beginning with Genesis, one of the saddest verses

in the Bible is Genesis ch 6:5-6. Because the Lord saw how evil man was … “The

Lord was grieved that he had made man on the earth, and his heart was filled

with pain”. But two chapters later, because God was pleased with Noah’s

obedience and sacrifice, (Genesis 8:21-23) “God said in his heart, never again will

I destroy all living creatures as I have done. As long as the earth endures,

seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will

never cease”. What a promise. With God there is always grace before


Bible Society Quiz

There will be a Bible Quiz at Hassocks United Reformed Church on Wednesday

May 30 th at 7.30 pm. Do come and join in. We will divide into teams of four and

there will be refreshments.

Jill Veness


Prayer Diary – May 2012

Feast Days

Prayer for the world church

& Prayer for this diocese

1 Philip & James, Apostles Florida

Heyshott, St James

2 Canterbury


3 Athanasius, Bp of Alexandria,

Teacher of the Faith, 373

Gulf Coast

Linch with Iping Marsh & Milland

4 English Saints & Martyrs of the

Reformation Era


Lynchmere & Camelsdale

5 New York

Rogate with Terwick & Trotton with


6 Easter 5 Korea

Family Support Work

7 Pennsylvania

Stedham with Iping

8 Julian of Norwich, Spiritual

Writer, 1417


Rural Deanery of Petworth

9 Solomons

Barlavington, Burton with Coates & Sutton

with Bignor

10 Tanganyika

Bury with Houghton & Coldwaltham &


11 Zambia

Duncton; Tillington; Up Waltham

12 Pancras, Martyr, 304 Zimbabwe


13 Easter 6 Melanesia

For the retired clergy

14 Matthias, Apostle Chandigarh (India)


15 Chelmsford

North Chapel with Ebernoe; Lurgashall

16 Caroline Chisholm, 1877 Coimbatore (India)


Feast Days

Prayer for the world church

& Prayer for this diocese

Petworth, St Mary; Egdean, St


17 Ascension Day Sheffield

Stopham & Fittleworth

18 Chester

Wisborough Green, St Peter ad Vincula

19 Dunstan, ABp of Canterbury, 988

Chhattisgarh (India)

Rural Deanery of Storrington

20 Ascension Sunday

The Diocesan Board of Finance

Anglican Communion Sunday

21 Helena, 330 Chicago

Amberley with North Stoke & Parham,

Wiggonholt & Greatham

22 Chichester

Ashurst, St James; Steyning, St Andrew

23 Chile

Beeding & Bramber with Botolphs

24 John & Charles Wesley, 1791 &


Chotanagpur (India)

Pulborough, St Mary

25 The Ven Bede, 735 Christ the King (Southern Africa)

West Chiltington, St Mary

26 Augustine, 1 st ABp of

Canterbury, 605


Ashington, Washington & Wiston with


27 Pentecost Mexico

The Diocesan Board of Education

28 Lanfranc, monk, abp, scholar,


Chubu (Japan)

Storrington, St Mary

29 Clogher (Ireland)

Sullington & Thakeham with Warminghurst

30 Josephine Butler, 1906 Colombia

Rural Deanery of Westbourne

31 The Visit of the Blessed Virgin

Mary to Elizabeth

Colombo (Ceylon)

Bosham, Holy Trinity


What’s On in May 2012

1 Tue

Ditchling Downs WI meeting and talk on Ditchling p 21 8 pm

Memories, Friends Meeting House, East Gardens,


3 Thu Ditchling WI meeting, Ditchling Village Hall p 21 2.30 pm

5 Sat

8 Tue

9 Wed

10 Thu

12 Sat

An Evening with the Twagger Band, The Old

Meeting House

Newick Decorative and Fine Art Society lecture

Painting with Light, Plumpton Village Hall


p 30

p 31

8 pm

2.15 pm

Westmeston Annual Parish Meeting p 30 6.30 pm

Prayer for the Nation, URC church, High Street,


Choir Practice, St Margaret’s Church, Ditchling

Ditchling Film Society film Conversations with my

Gardener, Ditchling Village Hall

Streat Barn Garden working party

Ditchling_Walkie_Talkies on Moonwalk London

2012, Hyde Park

13 - 19 Christian Aid Week 2012

15 Tue

Ditchling Village Association Coffee Morning,

Ditchling Village Hall

Women’s Fellowship meeting, 46a Lewes Road,


p 9

p 27

p 12

p 28

p 23

6 pm

6.15 pm

8 pm


10 am

7.30 pm

Ditchling Players When we are Married, Ditchling

16 - 19

Village Hall

p 28 8 pm

24 Thu Choir Practice, St Margaret’s Church, Ditchling 6.15 pm

25 Fri

26 Sat

Ditchling History Project evening stroll around

the village, Ditchling Village Hall

Ruth Fund Celebratory Concert, St Margaret’s

Church, Ditchling

p 26

p 24

7 pm

7 pm

29 Tue Whist Drive, Westmeston Parish Hall p 31 7.15 pm

30 Wed Bible Quiz, Hassocks United Reformed Church p 14 7.30 pm

What’s On in June 2012

2 Sat Beacon Parish Street Party, Church Lane, Ditchling p 1 12.30 pm

7 Thu

8 Fri

14 Thu

15 Fri

Ditchling Film Society film Budrus, Ditchling

Village Hall

Jubilee Choir 10 th Anniversary Concert and

Reception, Westmeston Parish Hall

Ditchling History Project talk on Harris’s Fair, the

Old Meeting House

Ditchling History Project Ditchling Fair Show and

Tell history morning, Stoneywish

Ditchling Film Society mini Glyndebourne

evening, Ditchling Village Hall

p 27

p 9

p 26

p 26

p 28


8 pm

7.30 pm

7.30 pm

10 am

8 pm

Ditchling Village Association Coffee Morning,

19 Tue

Ditchling Village Hall

p 28 10 am

26 Tue Whist Drive, Westmeston Parish Hall p 31 7.15 pm

The Music Express

Summer Music and Drama Workshops

The Music Express runs music and drama workshops for children aged 7 to 12.

The venue is Great Walstead School, Lindfield. Reasons to choose Music


• no auditions – all children are welcome

• every child gets a major role, regardless of age

• we offer the full range of performing arts activities, including dance,

drama, singing, mask work, drumming

• small classes in which individual talent can flourish

• a relaxed and supportive environment

There is only one course this summer which runs from 23 rd to 27 th July.

The cost for the week is £140.

For further information and to obtain an application form, contact John

Sandford on 07855 957644 or email


Ditchling Women’s Groups

Ditchling Downs WI

For our April meeting we welcomed Ian Everest as our guest speaker. Ian gave a

most interesting talk together with a cine film of what farming was like in the

1950’s. The film was made by John Willets and covered a year in the life of the

Willets’ farm from 1955 - 56. The farm was situated in Bishopstone, on the South

Downs between Newhaven and Seaford and on the face of it the film looked

idyllic, sunshine every day but Ian went on to explain the 20 farm workers

worked a 50 hour week and lived in very basic cottages with no indoor plumbing

and no tenure to their homes. One worker had an accident with a piece of farm

machinery and was given one minute’s notice to leave his employment and

immediate eviction from his cottage. These were harsh times. The film also

showed workers washing cattle with an organophosphate to prevent warble fly,

now banned, with no protection from gloves or special clothing. Perhaps things

were not all good in the old days. One beautiful scene was a field full of stacks of

corn covered with thatch. They looked like rows of pretty thatched cottages .

Congratulations were given to W.I member Janet Walford who was given a

highly commended award for her pennant design for the county competition

and shown at the Region’s AGM.

For our May meeting, on Tuesday 1 st May in the Friends Meeting House, East

Gardens, Ditchling, 7.30pm for 8pm, our guest speaker will be Dick Morley who

will give a talk on Ditchling Memories. There will also be our annual bring & buy

plant sale. Visitors will be welcome – contact Barbara Dollings 01273 843892

Barbara Dollings 01273 843892

Ditchling WI

On Thursday April 5 th we had a very fun talk with slides on “The British seaside

Holiday” by Jackie Marsh Hobbs. We were told how doctors used to recommend

dipping in the sea for your health. We were also shown slides of various piers;

the very first pier was built in Ryde in 1814. Deck chairs made an appearance in

1898. Punch and Judy came over from France in 1662. We saw how swimming

costumes have altered over the years. We then had a Photo competition called

‘British holiday’ which was won by Joan Sayer. There was a nice Easter tea and

Flower of the Month plus a Grand Raffle.

Our next meeting will be the WI resolutions and will be held on Thursday May

3 rd at 2.30 pm in the Village Hall. Visitors will be very welcome.

Joan Sayer, Tel 01273845255


Women’s Fellowship

Our April Meeting was held at the home of Jenny and Jasper Bell where they had

invited Richard and Tim from the Camelia Botnar Foundation. They gave us an

excellent presentation on the Foundation which provides residential training for

young people between the ages of 16 and 21 years who have been in

disadvantaged or problematic situations in their lives. There are eight

departments from which they can choose from: Metalwork, Carpentry and

Joinery, Catering, Estate and Grounds Maintenance, Horticulture, Pottery, Light

Building Work and Painting & Decorating. Many of these young people gain

much expertise in their chosen work winning awards and diplomas at the end of

their two and a half years. We were all very inspired by what the Foundation has

achieved. All the Camelia Botnar products are finished to a high standard and

can be seen and purchased at the Camelia Botnar Homes and Gardens in

Littleworth Lane, Cowfold. There is a Nursery, Gift Shop and a Bistro. We were

all very keen to make a visit and also enjoy a meal at the Bistro.

Our meeting on the 15 th May will be held at the home of Margaret Moore, 46a

Lewes Road (843805) at 7.30 pm. Members are asked to bring along a special

memento and give a short talk on its significance to you. Please let Margaret

know if you will be attending.

Pam Gaskin

Children and Young People

1 st Ditchling Scout Group

Beavers - For Mothers’ Day the Beavers made cards which incorporated origami

flowers. The Brighton and Hove Reform Synagogue was visited towards the end

of term and everyone learned about the Jewish Faith as part of their Faith

Challenge Badge. The term ended with an Easter Egg Hunt on an absolutely

perfect evening. There were no meetings during Easter but the Beavers are

now busy preparing material for their float for the Ditchling Village Fair.

Cubs - Jacqui Page and Mike Cohen came from the Guide Dogs for the Blind to

tell everyone about the work of this fabulous organisation. The Cubs all enjoyed

stroking Jacqui’s gorgeous dog. The Cubs will be doing a sponsored walk in May

with Jacqui and her dog going with them. A visit to Blacklands Farm saw the

Cubs enjoying abseiling and an activity called “The Perch”. We congratulate


Joseph Jerrey, Hugh Porter and Dylan Williams all of whom have been awarded

their Chief Scout Silver Badges – the highest award a Cub Scout can achieve.

The Cubs have now started working on the float for the Fair.

Scouts – The Scouts had a busy month before Easter. One of the events held

was a visit to Crowborough Pool for a Scuba Diving Taster Session which was

fantastic fun. Everyone thoroughly enjoyed the experience and there are hopes

that this interest can be taken further.

Alec Gaskin, Group Chairman


A programme of Choral and Instrumental music & song

Saturday 26 th May at 7 pm

St Margaret’s Church, Ditchling

In aid of The Ruth Fund

The programme will include

The award winning Coastline Harmony Chorus,

Precious Metalz, Hannah Labus Euphonium Trio

and The Bothy Singers

After 11 years of support for the Rwandan family group whose lives were

brutally affected by the Genocide we are raising funds for Luke to complete

his A level studies at school in Kampala. Our success includes Ruth who

completed her education at Kingston University and works for Radisson

Group, brother Bernard who gained a first class degree at Makerere

University and is now making great progress in Nairobi, Barnabas who is

working freelance and Simon who is studying at Kingston College.

Tickets £10 to include a glass of wine and canapés in the interval available

from Sue Hancock 01273 890298

Please support us once again and be entertained by these talented musicians.


Specialists in Landscape Planning

Garden Construction Waterscape Landscape

& Waterscape Maintenance Service




TEL: (01273) 843283, FAX: 842335

Directors: A L Standen & S M May

Company Reg. No. 814630 Registered at

Ashdown Cottage, Underhill Lane,

Ditchling, Sussex, BN6 8XE


Village News

Ditchling Fair Saturday 16 th June 2012

For the refreshments in the barn

we would like help with the


1. Delivering 'Volunteers and

cake makers needed' letters

to houses in your street in


2. Making sandwiches in the

barn on the morning of the

fair from about 9-11am.

3. Getting the urns ready for the

'opening' at 12.

4. Cutting cake and/or serving

the teas and coffees for an

hour on the day.

5. Washing up the cups, saucers

and plates for an hour on the Ditchling Fair Procession 1948


6. Collecting used cups, saucers and plates for an hour on the day.

7. Cashiers for an hour on the day.

8. Bringing roses to the barn on Friday 15 th to put in jam jars to decorate the


9. Cooking about 50 eggs on Friday to make egg and cress sandwiches on


10. Tidying up the barn at about 4.30 on Saturday.

11. Carrying tables from various places to bring down to the barn on Friday.

12. Returning tables to their rightful places on Saturday evening or Sunday.

13. Providing garden tables and chairs for using outside for people to eat and


14. Making cakes that we can cut up and sell on the day.

15. People to sell cold drinks for an hour on the day.

If you can help with any of these jobs, please contact Fiona Hughes on 845636.

Ditchling History Project

Enjoy an evening stroll around the village and find out more about its history

with members of the Ditchling History Project on Friday May 25 th meeting at the

village hall at 7.00 pm. Tickets are available from the Post Office and Parkers.


As part of the 700 th anniversary celebration, members of the History Project

have been tracing the history of Ditchling Fair and find a first mention of Harris’s

funfair in 1910. We are therefore delighted to announce that Robert Harris will

give a talk on Harris’s Fair in Ditchling on Thursday June 14 th at 7.30pm in the

Old Meeting House. Tickets are £6, including wine, from Ditchling Post Office,

Parkers and the Village Hair Studio.

We will also be hosting a ‘Ditchling Fair Show and Tell’ history morning at

Stoneywish on Friday 15 th June so please bring along your photos and share your

memories any time between 10am and 1pm. Entry is free with refreshments for


Next month look out for our Village History trail which will go up to coincide

with the famous Ditchling Fair Scarecrow trail.

If you would like to know more about these events or about Ditchling History

Project have a look at our website or you can

phone me on 01273 845383.

Janet Cragg

Ditchling Film Society

On Thursday, 10 May 2012 we will be showing a film called Conversations with

my Gardener which is an affectionate French film about a flashy artist whose

wife is leaving him and whose mistress is having an affair. The artist, beautifully

played by Daniel Auteuil, leaves Paris for inspiration and returns to the village of

his childhood where he hires an old friend, a retired railroad worker, as his

gardener. Reunited through a series of naturalistic and yet increasingly intimate

conversations, the two men inform and reform each other’s lives just in time for

a startling denouement. With its beautiful settings, the film is a wonderful

appreciation of close friendship and simple rustic pleasures.

Director: Jean Becker. France 2007. 109 mins.

On Thursday, 7 June 2012 our film will be Budrus - a powerful documentary

account of the non-violent struggle by residents of a small town in the West

Bank’s Occupied Territories against Israel’s plans to re-route its “separation

barrier” which would deprive the community of 3,000 olive trees on which its

economy depends. Refusing to move, the townsfolk plant themselves in the

path of the bulldozers despite increasingly heated provocation. This involving

film is an eye-opener.

Directors: Julia Bacher. Israel/Palestine 2009. 70 mins.



On FRIDAY, 15 JUNE 2012 the Ditchling Film Society will be hosting a “mini

Glyndebourne evening” in the Village Hall with a special screening of a surprise

opera to be accompanied by champagne. Please look out for posters and ticket

prices for this special event. Formal dress is positively encouraged.

The films will be shown in Ditchling Village Hall. Films start at 8.00pm. Doors

open at 7.30 pm. Free coffee and biscuits beforehand and ample free parking

behind the hall. Guests and temporary members are welcome for a small charge

payable at the door.

Rowena Cager and Melanie Samuel

Ditchling Village Association Coffee Mornings

The Coffee Morning on Tuesday May 15 th in Ditchling Village Hall will be run by

the Horticultural Society, from 10am to 11.30am as we have to ensure that we

vacate the village hall by 12 noon. Dates for subsequent coffee mornings during

2012 are shown below:


June 19 th

July 17 th

August 21 st

September 18 th

October 16 th

November 20 th

December 18 th


Ditchling Morris Dancers


Ditchling WI

Friends of Village Green

Ditchling Film Society

Friends of St Margaret’s


‘When we are Married’ – 16 th to 19 th May 2012

As you read this it’s only a matter of weeks away from curtain up on the

Ditchling Players spring production.

It seems only a short time ago that we were holding auditions & casting the play

but now the pace is really stepping up. Lines are being gone over again and

again (will we ever remember them all?) Parts of the set are being built ready to

bring together on the day of the set build and costumes, props etc are being

sourced from all manner of places. All of this hard work by the members of the

Players is being done to bring yet another successful production to you the


Performances are at Ditchling Village Hall with curtain up at 8.00pm (Doors

open at 7.15pm). Tickets are £7.00 (Wednesday) and £8.00 (Thursday to

Saturday) and are on sale now from Clifford Dann, High Street, Ditchling. Tel

No: 01273 843344. We look forward to seeing you there.

David Tettersell


For practical services

from friendly people

Wills & Estates

Property Sales & Purchases

Personal injury

Inheritance tax planning

Family matters

Services for businesses

32-34 Keymer Road, Hassocks

01273 843405

Authorised and Regulated by the

Solicitors Regulation Authority


The Old Meeting House

On Saturday May 5 th , there will be An Evening with the Twagger Band at 8pm.

The Twaggers play mainly traditional music on a wide variety of instruments.

Tickets are £10 including a glass of wine whilst the cost for children and students

will be £7, with all proceeds for the benefit of the Old Meeting House. They will

be available from Ditchling Post Office, Ian Chisholm (01273 843699) or Brian

Clutterbuck (01273 844746). For further information about the band their web

site is or e-mail

Brian Clutterbuck (Trustee of the Old Meeting House)

Westmeston Parish News

The following is taken from the April issue of Westmeston Parish News.

Parish Council Meetings

The Annual Parish Meeting … will be held on Tuesday 8 th May at 6.30pm, when a

report to parishioners will be given by the Parish Council chairman – Philip

Tucker. There will be words from District Councillor Thomas Jones.

Parking Ban at Westmeston Church Corner

It is proposed that as a result of an EU Eco directive, three of the parking spaces

at Westmeston Church Corner will no longer be available on an unrestricted

basis. These will be exclusively for the recharging of electric vehicles, with a

small wind turbine as the power source. Apparently this decision followed a

review of charging points when it was found that a disproportionate number of

grant-aided charge points have been provided in urban areas.

Has Ditchling Beacon been moved?

The Ditchling church magazine THE BEACON gives a full coverage of Ditchling but

mainly of the village and not the whole parish as its geography is a little suspect.

The March edition has a very attractive cover which is a view of Westmeston

“village” i.e. the church and surrounding houses. The foreground features a

hybrid squeeze stile designed and installed by the Monday Group which serves

to double the compliment to Westmeston and its residents. However the cover

picture is incorrectly captioned as the “View from Ditchling Beacon” whereas

every Westmestonian will tell you, it is in fact the view from Home Brow,

Westmeston – almost half a mile away from Ditchling Beacon.

[My thanks go to the Westmeston Parish News for providing this information.

The Beacon, as the front cover states, is the magazine for the parish of Ditchling,


Streat and Westmeston and I am always delighted to include news and

information from Westmeston and Streat as well as Ditchling. Ed]

You lucky walkers

With the reopening of the footpath through Middleton Common Farm … only

one Westmeston footpath remains blocked and unusable. It has taken many

years to get our wonderful local footpath network to this satisfactory condition

and the Footpaths Conservation Society (covering Ditchling, Westmeston and

Streat) is working on the one remaining blocked path. The Society, now just over

50 years old owes its origin to an even older society The Commons, Open Spaces

and Footpaths Preservation Society and to Octavia Hill who also helped to found

the National Trust.

Newick Decorative and Fine Art Society

‘Painting with Light’, Plumpton Village Hall, 2.15 pm, May 8 th

The lecture this month will cover the works of Pierre Bonnard, the French

Impressionist painter and printmaker. His pictures are a delight to the eye with

their intense use of colour, and their subject matter of sunlit rooms or gardens

full of flowers, friends and family. Unlike many artists he had an extremely

happy personal life and friendships with such other painters as Manet, Matisse

and Toulouse-Lautrec all contributed to his style. He started his life training to

be a lawyer, his father thought it a much more worthy profession than that of an

artist, but fortunately he failed the exams and the rest, as they say, is history! So

do come and enjoy a really lovely lecture by Julian Halsby, RBA . Julian is also a

painter and has written seven books on Art History.

Entry £5 on the door for non-members with tea and biscuits afterwards and a

chance to talk to the speaker. If you require any further information please ring

Carole Burgon on 01273 890301 or Marjorie Blunden on 01825 723250

Annette Shelford


Tuesday 29 th May, Westmeston Parish H all

starting at 7.15pm

Everyone is welcome to join the friendly team of players. The next

whist drive will be on Tuesday 26 th June 2012 at 7.15pm

For more details contact Doreen Kallman (01273 844743)


Nature Corner

Bird Watch

As so often happens in Nature, things are evened out over a period of time. The

extraordinary warmth of March, during which time flowers bloomed before the

normal date, birds began building their nests, some having well grown young

before the end of the month and large numbers of migrant birds arriving from

the south was followed by much lower temperatures.

At Portland in Dorset, migrants arrived in huge numbers on the last day of

March. It is normal for the West Country to get the first influx of these Summer

Visitors at least a week before we do farther east but this land-fall was of record

proportions when over six hundred were ringed. This was estimated at being

only a fifth of the total birds arriving. The weather conditions were ideal for such

a phenomenon, the sky being clear over night as they left the Continent but the

northerly wind brought cloud cover at dawn and unable to navigate, they were

grounded. The following day with clear blue skies, hardly any were seen as they

carried on flying inland.

This year there is to be a count of the Nightingales breeding in Britain. This is a

species that is found to the south of the country and we are in one of the best

locations for them. The census will be done by counting the number of males

singing as each one sings to defend its own patch and it is likely that each will be

matched by a female. This species has only one breeding attempt each year so

the song occurs from mid April until the first week of June at the latest and

during this time the nest will be built on the woodland floor, the four or five eggs

laid and the young reared to be self reliant. Having but one brood annually, the

life expectancy of Nightingales is longer than most small birds as the turnover is

smaller. Many live for more than five years, the record being about twelve.

Another summer migrant you may care to look for is the abundant Whitethroat.

Along many of the hedgerows and field margins these lively warblers breed in

low Brambles or Nettle beds. Their territorial song is a spluttering effort

delivered either from a tall piece of vegetation or as a flight dance about ten feet

in the air. These birds nest throughout the summer with their later nestlings still

being fed well into July. They are easy to recognise as though they are “Little

Brown Jobs”, the white throat and white outer tail stripes are very visible.

I have just had a report of a Blue tit getting tangled in the green netting of a fat

ball at a feeder. It had to be cut free and was successfully released. I had not

heard of any such problem before but please be aware.

Reg Lanaway


Ripe for Change

In an ideal world, there would be no weeds or backache, endless time to

complete all those seasonal garden jobs and unlimited funds to spend on plants.

But the reality is that many find the burden of caring for their garden a little

overwhelming. I remember how depressed I was when the garden went from

diva to down-and-out after my child was born.

If things are going from bad to worse in

your garden, take action now to save on

heartache and work later. The single most

important thing is weed control – if you

can keep on top of these monsters, then

your garden remains manageable. Weed

seeds settle on exposed soil, so ensure full

coverage. This can be achieved using geotextile

membranes, mulch, weed mats or

by dense planting. Mulches of chipped

bark should be applied in very thick layers

as it breaks down over time. An added

advantage of mulch is that it reduces

water evaporation and increases soil

insulation. Pretty it is not, but ANYTHING is better than a border seething with


My preferred weed suppression technique takes the form of blanket planting -

this doesn’t have to be hugely expensive or time consuming. Buy annuals and

biennial seeds that form soil-covering mounds or carpets and invest in perennials

that spread quickly and will out-compete the weeds. Within a few years, forgetme-nots

can form dense forests, foxgloves, love-in-the-mist, lady’s mantle and

calendula self-seed madly, so a single purchase provides years of coverage. Just

fling the seeds in various spots around the garden and enjoy the haphazard

result. Fast-spreading perennials with basal leaves are perfect for weed

suppression: Phlomis russelliana, verbascums, geraniums and polemoniums.

Don’t forget ornamental grasses, which are superb for the war on weeds. And if

all this seems just like too much work, buy some grass seed and just have fence

to fence lawn!

Haut Talk by Karoline Baird

07742 731967

The Beacon in the Past

On the opposite page are excerpts from previous issues of the Ditchling Beacon.


40 years ago

In the May 1972 issue, after reporting on the events of Holy Week and Easter,

the Vicar was able to announce that “apart from £800 of our £1,000 loan from

the Diocese we are now completely out of debt having paid for both the new

vestry and the repairs to the churchyard wall. This is mainly due to a very

generous gift of £460 from an anonymous donor, who I have … thanked very

sincerely for closing the final gap. I write ‘mainly due’ as we were also greatly

helped by the simply wonderful result of the coffee morning and bring and buy

organised by Mrs. Faure-Walker at her house. This raised £113.53.”

A visit to Taizé was being organised by the Diocese and “The P.C.C. agreed

recently to raise the money to help four young people to go (two boys and two

girls)”. Two boys had been found to go but at the time of writing no girl.

The St Margaret’s Flower Guild reported that “Ditchling has adopted a London

church, St. Mary’s Battersea, where the only member of the congregation with a

garden is a local doctor whose family devote it to growing flowers for use in their

church. Ditchling is so rich in gardens with lovely flowers that it seemed a good

idea to decorate their church on June 23rd as this weekend is in the midst of a

special effort organised by the London Diocese”.

20 years ago

In his letter for May 1992 the Vicar said “I am sure you are as delighted as I am

with the appearance of the new frontal and hangings which were dedicated on

Palm Sunday in memory of the late Joanna Bourne and provided for the church

by her family. The transformation of the Abergavenny chapel has been the most

impressive. The material was woven from wool spun locally by Mrs Greenstreet

and embroidered by a team of helpers under the direction of Mrs Annett and

made up into hangings by Mrs Berry.”

In the Churchwardens’ report for 1991, it was mentioned that “with the help of

the Ecclesiastical Insurance Group we have replaced the chairs stolen a few years

ago, and the windows in the Choir Vestry have been renewed. The flagpole has

been replaced and we were especially grateful to the children of the Sunday

School who paid for the magnificent Diocesan flag.” On the subject of finance

the Church faced problems “due to the declining central support from the Church

Commissioners’ as a result of the reduction in investment income. This means

that the Diocese must seek a greater contribution from the parishes by raising

the Quota. This is at present 40% of our income, and is likely to rise substantially

in the next year or so. Therefore we must seek to raise our income as a matter

of urgency.”

Graham Sharpless




Newsagents & Stationers

1 Lewes Road, Ditchling

Tel: 01273 842736


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Ice cream Postcards

Greetings cards Stationery

Maps Parking vouchers



If you would like to contribute to our magazine on church and village

community matters, or receive further copies, please get in touch with:

Graham Sharpless, 23 North Court, Hassocks, BN6 8JS

Tel: 01273 845368 E-mail:

Copy deadline for the June 2012 edition is

Friday 18 th May

Contributions should, where possible, be sent by email to the email

address above either in the body of the email or as a Microsoft Word file.

For events please ensure that all necessary details are included, such as

title, venue, date, time, ticket prices and availability.

Printed by DPS Ltd, Burgess Hill

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