Viva Lewes April 2015 Issue #103



15TH TO 25TH MAY 2015

w h e r e books, i d e a s and creat i v i t y bloom


Peter Carey

Shami Chakrabarti

Monty Don

Antonia Fraser

Michael Frayn

Maggi Hambling

Helena Kennedy

Neel Mukherjee

David Nicholls

Hans Ulrich Obrist

Amartya Sen

Ali Smith

Tom Stoppard

Colm Tóibín

At Charleston, Firle, Lewes BN8 6LL. Tel. 01323 811626

Tickets from 01273 709709 or





Sundays have changed. When many of us

were growing up, most shops were shut, as

the law required them to be. Substantially

more people attended church, and the

expectation was that it would be a day of

‘rest’, although plenty of activity went on -

car washing, cooking roast dinners, playing

football etc. Pubs were open, but only during

strict licensing hours. Although there’s been

a huge shift since the Sunday Trading Act of

1994, it occurred to us it’s not always clear

what’s open in Lewes and when. We’ve been

doing some investigating to provide a helpful

Sunday opening guide. But we also explore

what else you might get up to on this day.

Since even though it may have lost some of

its status as ‘special’, we still have a soft spot

for the dream of a perfect Sunday.

Ladybird by Design

Visit the beautiful De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill

for this fantastic, free exhibition. p28

Perfect poached eggs

Sunday is a great day to enjoy a hearty

breakfast, and Laporte’s show us how to

cook the perfect poached egg. p58


We plan the contents of each magazine six weeks

ahead of any given month, with a mid-month

advertising/copy deadline. Please send details of

planned events to, and

for any advertising queries, contact advertising@, or call 01273 434567.

reader offer

Two foodie offers for you this month, from

the Griffin at Fletching and the Sussex Ox in

Milton Street. p63

the sunday issue


Bits and bobs

7-21. New feature on

Lewes Town Plaques, My

Lewes, Owen Daughtery,

James McCauley’s Photo

of the Month. Plus, recent

developments on Newhaven


On this month

25. Interview. Chris Chatfield

of the 1595 Club

26. Interview. Iain Sinclair

on walking and writing

28-29. Ladybird by Design

at De La Warr Pavilion

31-34. Art and About, with

the spotlight on Ori Gersht

35. Cinema. Child’s Pose

37. Classical round-up

39-49. Listings. Films, talks,

gigs, and other diary dates

51-55. Free Time, Shoes On

Now, Listings, Young Photo

of the Month, and Western

Road at 100

Food and drink

57-65. We review the Sussex

Ox, cook Holmansbridge

kidneys, cocktails at the

Coffeehouse bar, try juicing.

Plus, Laporte’s perfect

poached eggs


67. My Space. Flint Owl

69. Fin and Farm tell us

about their food box service

71. Spending the night in an

eco-friendly B&B

73. Bricks and mortar. St

John sub Castro

77-81.The Way We Worship.

Cammie Toloui’s


83. We try… self-hypnosis

85. Shopping on a Sunday

87. Talking shop with the

Lewes Outdoor Shop

89-91. Football. Sunday

league and new interim

Lewes FC boss Steve Brown

92-93. Phoenix developments.

First of a series

95. Wildlife. The yew tree


95-103. Ciar Byrne talks to

Philip Pople, David Jarman

on Burra, John Henty plus

Mark Bridge

Business news

105. Trade Secrets. We talk

to Sophie Whelpton at

Mulberry Cottages

107-108. Business news.

Spotlight on Richard Soan

Inside Left

122. Reeves’ Monster Demonstration

in 1913

Photo by Martin Sinnock

this month’s cover art

This is Mark Ellender’s second cover for Viva.

What we enjoy about his work is that it’s complex

- there’s so much to look at and it’s enjoyable trying

to interpret it. Both designs were created using

acrylics on canvas.

Mark talks to us about this one: “I was working

to your brief of ‘Sundays’, but also aware of April

as a month when I’m excited about renewal, when

there’s a sense of expanding possibilities. To paraphrase

Ram Dass, ‘April is just Apriling itself’. You

can get taken away from the drudgery and gloom

of winter just by looking up and noticing all the

flowers blossoming, the birds singing - all the clichés.”

I ask him about the large grey figure with

the rainbow record on top. “I’m obsessed with

Easter Island iconography and its totemic quality. I

use it in a lot of my art. What the figure represents

is winter being transformed into colourful spring

by new growth.” He also says: “I did try to put a

Sunday roast on a cloud, but it didn’t look right!”

The sun and the word day are a little nod to the

Sunday theme, as are the Sunday walkers. We love

the vibrant butterflies, flower emblems, colourful

Easter eggs and bunnies. Wonderful stuff. For

more of Mark’s fantastic work, see markellender.

the team

EDITOR: Emma Chaplin

STAFF WRITERS: Mark Bridge, Moya Crockett,,

Steve Ramsey

SUB-EDITOR: David Jarman

ART DIRECTOR: Katie Moorman

ADVERTISING: Sarah Hunnisett, Amanda Meynell

EDITORIAL/ADMIN ASSISTANT: Isabella McCarthy Sommerville

PUBLISHERS: Lizzie Lower,, Nick Williams

directors: Alex Leith, Nick Williams, Lizzie Lower, Becky Ramsden

Viva Lewes is based at Pipe Passage, 151b High Street, Lewes, BN7 1XU, 01273 488882

Every care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of our content. Viva Lewes magazine cannot be held responsible for any

omissions, errors or alterations. The views expressed by columnists do not necessarily represent the view of Viva Lewes.

its and bobs

ian seccombe’s point of view

Sunday morning: St Michael’s in Lewes. The oldest parts of the church date from around 1200.

ghost pub #7 - The Windmill Inn, Spital Road

I’m sure many readers will remember the Windmill Inn,

which closed in the 1990s, and is now a residential property.

Established in the first half of the 19th century, it was

situated a hundred metres or so from both Town Mill and

Spittle Mill. Incredibly, the pub was run by Albert Edward

Dowlen, and then his son, for over 70 years. Albert had taken

over the pub around 1880, and ran it until his death in

1920. His son (also Albert Edward) then took over and was

licensee until his retirement in June 1951. In 1907, Albert

was fined 16 shillings for serving stout to a ten-year-old boy,

who had been sent to the pub for the drink by his mother!

This hand-coloured photograph, kindly supplied by Peter

Luckin, shows tenants Joe and Queenie Salter in the early

1950s. Mat Homewood




Thursday 23 April

10am to 4pm

Bonhams specialists will be in

the Hove office to offer free and

confidential advice on items you may

be considering selling at auction.



01273 220 000


19 Palmeira Square

Hove BN3 2JN

Photo by Emma Chaplin

my lewes

Owen Daughtery

Are you local? Yes. I was born in Guildford, but

my parents, four older sisters and I moved to Lewes

when I was five, and I’ve been living in Southover

Rectory ever since.

Tells us about your role in this year’s Passion

Play. I was approached by the director Serena

Smith a few months ago to audition to play Judas.

I’ve never played a ‘baddie’ before, but we’re trying

to show Judas’ more human side. The Passion

Play takes place over four days, all outside, around

Lewes, including in Harveys Yard. There are some

70 cast members, including children, and the performances

will include songs.

How did you get into acting? I was homeschooled,

so I joined lots of clubs to meet other

people my own age, and one was Lewes Little

Theatre Youth Group. It was a really good springboard.

One I really enjoyed was playing Jack in

My Boy Jack.

How have you found studying at Sussex

Downs? It’s been great meeting new friends, and

I loved seeing the chemistry lab, using Bunsen

burners, and clotting pots of blood. Mum had

done the theory with us, but not so much practical.

I’m studying what I want to learn; computing,

maths, software development. I’m hoping to go to

Sussex University to study computer science.

Are there many young people with faith in

Lewes? Southover has the biggest community,

youthwise. It’s exciting to be part of it. We go on

trips, do lots of workshops.

What do you like about Lewes? It’s interesting,

quirky. I feel safe. I couldn’t imagine growing

up anywhere else. I like the fact there is no Mc-

Donalds and few chain shops. It’s a short trip to

Brighton if you want that.

Are you active on social media? Yes, I live on the

internet. I’m on Facebook, Twitter, Vine etc and

I’ve got my own YouTube channel where I post

short films, NewGreenShoe.

What did you have for breakfast? Nothing! I

trade breakfast for sleep, even though I know I


What’s your favourite place? The Grange. I’ve

got fond memories of it, meeting friends there.

How would you spend the perfect Sunday?

There are two church services I’d go to, at 10am

and 6.30pm. But I’d also Skype to catch up with

friends, go to Youth Group and have a Sunday

roast chicken cooked by my mum, with roast potatoes,

broccoli, cabbage and good gravy.

Recommend a good book. The Night Circus by

Erin Morgenstern. It’s by far the best book I’ve

ever read.

And a film? Now You See Me, a film about magicians

performing a bank heist. I love doing magic

tricks. I’ve got an hour-long repertoire, and I develop

and sell new ideas for tricks on theory11. I

always carry a pack of cards with me.

Interview by Emma Chaplin


Detail © Matthew Smith (Australia) Sailing By


2 MAY TO 6 SEPT 2015

100 awe-inspiring images, from fascinating animal

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its and bobs

town plaques #1

Located on the southern side of School Hill, the Cinema de

Luxe had 490 seats, all on a single level when it opened. In

the early 1930s the rear of the roof was raised and a balcony

was fitted, which increased the seating capacity to 620 when it

reopened in 1934. The cinema closed on 11 May 1963. The

building lay derelict for several years before it was demolished.

It was manager Reg ‘Fatty’ Briggs’ habit to give private showings

of Pathé News newsreel of the Grand National to members

of the Lewes racing fraternity in the pre-television days

of the 1940s. It was also claimed that he made his own local newsreels rather than subscribe to the ones

bringing national news. New series by Marcus Taylor of Friends of Lewes

lewes in numbers:

accommodating wartime troops

Wartime in the 20th century put severe pressure on Lewes, with a resident population of around

12,000. Exactly 100 years ago in spring 1915 over 12,000 artillerymen of the 22nd Division were

billeted in the town, before embarking for France in September 1915. During WW2, troop numbers

are hard to establish, but the YMCA hostel, with about 20 beds, provided 6,907 nights’ accommodation

to servicemen in the year 1943-44. And a volunteer canteen served 3,598 breakfasts, 20,004 hot

drinks, 30,450 main meals and 131,977 snacks that year. Sarah Boughton

lewes worthy - john delap

Rev. Dr. John Delap was vicar of Iford and Kingston for 47 years, though ‘his interests in pastoral

work were not extensive,’ local historian Charles Cooper notes. He spent those 47 years living in

Lewes, writing ‘poor poetry’ and plays which, when staged, only ran for a few nights. Hecuba, from

1761, was described as ‘not void of merit, but it cannot by any means be called a good play’. One witness

noted that his drama The Captives (1786) was met with ‘roars of laughter’. He’s notable for having

written an early anti-slavery play, Abdalla (performed in Lewes in 1803); though, less nobly, in 1792 he

wrote a long anti-revolutionary poem - Sedition, An Ode - which called Paine ‘Anarchy’s black agent’.

Born in Lincolnshire in 1725, Delap studied at Cambridge, becoming a Doctor of Divinity. He seems

to have been smart and knowledgeable, but also a self-promoting obsessive who was preoccupied

with the opinions of others. After one encounter with him, Fanny Burney wrote ‘he would not let me

rest without either praising what I did not like, or giving explicit reasons why I did not praise.’ He

never married, and died in 1812, having suffered from ill health for most of his life. He knew Samuel

Johnson, Hester Thrale, Burney and David Garrick, though, in the Dictionary of National Biography’s

words, ‘his acquaintance with important literary figures of the day does not seem greatly to have

enhanced his own dramatic abilities.’ Steve Ramsey

With thanks to Timothy Ambrose, who’s working on a biography of Delap







peace of


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photo of the month

marathon woman

Our April photo of the month is by James McCauley. He was up on the Downs on the morning of

Sunday 15 March, taking pictures of the first ever Lewes marathon, The Moyleman. “I think it’s one

of the few marathons where a participant can see the whole course from many places on the route”, he

tells us. Named in honour of local runner Chris Moyle, who sadly died aged 42 in 2009, this inaugural

race saw Chris’ sister Camilla taking part. We ask James how he came to be taking photos: “I’m friends

with the organisers and they asked if I’d help out and take some pictures. This shot was taken at Housedean

Farm. It was a dull grey day, making pretty scenic shots difficult. I’d already taken pics of the

runners further up the hill and was just leaving to drive to another vantage point. As I passed through

the gate I thought it might make an interesting composition, framing the runners and giving an

impression of depth that I couldn’t get on the open hill.” The race was a great success, ending with a

pint in Harveys Yard, and supported by over 30 volunteer marshals. Runners pictured are Claire Rank

and Nick Jones. Technical details – James was using a Nikon D3s camera with 70-200mm ƒ2.8 lens,

exposure 1/1000 @ ƒ4, ISO 800. We ask if he fancies taking part next time: “I plod about occasionally

but I’m not a runner, although I have lots of admiration for them. It’s a great event to cheer on and I’m

already looking forward to next year.” James has kindly donated his £20 prize to support the event.

Please send your pics to We’ll choose our favourite for this page, which

wins the photographer £20. Unless otherwise arranged we reserve the right to use all pictures in

future issues of Viva magazines.


its and bobs

local hustings

Lewes’ prospective parliamentary candidates will be answering questions at a local hustings on Weds 8

(All Saints, Friars Walk, 7pm for 7.30, 50p). Steve Ramsey profiles five of them - more next month:

Norman Baker, Lib Dems

Baker, whose previous jobs include EFL teacher, wine-shop manager

and regional director of a record-store chain, was pulled into politics by

issues including the environment and Tibet. He has lived in the constituency

since 1985, and was leader of Lewes District Council before being

elected MP for Lewes in 1997. He was a transport minister, then a Home

Office minister, in the coalition.

Maria Caulfield, Conservative

A long-serving breast cancer research nurse, Caulfield first got involved in politics

as part of the campaign to stop Haywards Heath’s Princess Royal hospital from

being closed. A “natural conservative” who believes in small state and low taxes, she

spent four years as a Brighton councillor. She lives “just a mile from the constituency

border”, and has “lots of local connections”.

Ray Finch, Ukip

An MEP for the South East, Ray Finch spent about 20 years as a telecoms engineer, but

“just got sick of watching people [ie politicians] lie… we’ve been sold out.” He admits

straight up that he has no local connection, but says: “Who wouldn’t, who considers

themselves a radical Englishman, want to make a splash in the home of Thomas Paine?”

Lloyd Russell-Moyle, Labour

Russell-Moyle has lived in Lewes for most of his life. He’s “always cared

about political issues”, and recalls collecting signatures for a save-the-Pells

campaign at a young age. A former union activist who’s campaigned against

cuts and privatisation, if elected he’ll join Labour’s parliamentary Socialist

Campaign Group. His background includes two years running a café, and a

role in UN environmental and sustainable-development negotiations.

Alfie Stirling, Green

Stirling, an economic researcher for a policy charity, has lived in Lewes for most of

his life. His CV includes development work in West Africa, and four months working

for Caroline Lucas. Having been interested in political matters “for as long as I

can remember”, he found the major parties weren’t “representing what I felt were

the really important issues,” but the Greens were.


its and bobs

spread the word

CD review: Animal Countdown

As we countdown to

the General Election,

our local MP has

been busy with one

of his other loves. His

second CD release

Animal Countdown (by

‘Norman Baker and

friends’) is an eclectic mix of blues, jazz and folk,

and comprises four songs. It begins with a swaggering

saxophone intro as jazzy undertones kick in,

juxtaposed with a message of support for wildlife

conservation. The sombre Nothing Left with stark

piano melodies contrasts with the heartfelt I’m Sorry

where violin meets emotional vocals. One of the

standout tracks is the folky One Way Blues. Accompanied

by an expertly-played harmonica, it evokes a

touch of the Wild West - saloon bar with swinging

doors and tumbleweed blowing past. £5 Si’s Sounds

Kalera Nichols-Agard

book review: The White Cross

This photo, by Michael Cotgrove, is of Sheila

Wood reading Viva in Hassayampa River

Preserve state park near Phoenix, Arizona.

“We were doing a very slow route between

Las Vegas and San Diego, with lots of bird

watching.” Excellent saguaro cactus.

book review:

The Girl from Cobb Street

The links between Lewes, the East End of

London and Bombay might not be immediately

apparent, but local author ‘Merryn

Allingham’ acts as a kind of literary nexus

between those and other locales, not to

mention eras. She’s just published the enjoyable

The Girl from Cobb Street, the first part

of a trilogy tracing East End orphan Daisy

Driscoll as she travels to India on the eve of

World War II to marry a cavalry subaltern –

with disastrous consequences. Nick Jones

£6.99, Sussex Stationers

Writing in coloured ink

has traditionally been the

preserve of children and

fevered correspondents to

the letters pages of newspapers,

but local author (and

farmer) Richard Masefield

hit upon a novel – literally

– use for coloured writing

when he decided to print

part of the text in his fourth

work of historical fiction, The White Cross, in colour

– “a warmish brown, somewhere between chestnut

and burgundy”, as Richard himself puts it. Richard

elected to self-publish when his previous publishers

baulked at the notion, and though the first printing

of the book left a lot to be desired (“the colour was

too pale”), the second printing “turned out fine”.

And with a story set partly in Lewes and the surrounding

area (including on Mount Caburn), there’s

much to recommend the novel besides the hue of its

type. Nick Jones £10.99, Waterstones


lewes peasant





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its and bobs

vox pop

how do you like your eggs?

“I don’t like them!”

Georgie William

Laetitia “Disguised”

Lin “Fried, sunny side up”

Laetitia Yhap and Lin Ireland

Janet “Fresh”

John “Pickled”

Janet and John Coles

charleston festival competition

Charleston Festival returns next

month, from 15-25 May, with a cultural

cornucopia of literature, art and ideas.

With speakers from Stoppard (pictured)

to Hambling, themes from Magna

Carta to phone hacking, and their first

original musical commission the festival

promises to be more thought-provoking

than ever. Win a pair of tickets to a

performance of your choice (subject to

availability), by answering this question:

Family Romances is the theme

of David Nicholls and Polly Samson’s

event at the festival on May 15. Which

of Thomas Hardy’s novels has Nicholls

recently adapted for the screen?

Email with ‘Charleston Festival Comp’ in the subject line, stating your answer,

plus your top three preferences for performances you’d like to see, or write to Viva at 151B High St,

Lewes, BN7 1XU. The winner’s name will be drawn from all correct submissions on April 24. Good luck!

Photo by Matt Humphrey 2015


news: battle for newhaven beaches

West Beach and Tide Mills

A fight for the beaches

On 25 February, Newhaven residents discovered

that their battle to regain access to the West

Beach had been unsuccessful. The Supreme

Court ruled that the public have no right to use

the beach because it’s owned by NPP (Newhaven

Port and Properties Ltd), the port authority.

NPP first closed the West Beach in 2006, citing

health and safety reasons (which locals say could

be relatively easily addressed). In response,

Newhaven Town Council applied to register

the beach as a ‘village green’, a legal term that

preserves outdoor spaces for public recreation.

Appeals and counter-appeals rumbled on, and

the battle moved higher and higher up the legal

ladder, culminating in the Supreme Court’s verdict.

The decision was a huge blow. Locals had

rallied around the campaign to ‘save’ the beach,

with one anti-closure Facebook group counting

over 3,500 members. Online, people share stories

of visiting the beach as children; they scan

in old monochrome postcards, showing a thriving

seaside town. Lord Carnwath, the Justice

who served on the Supreme Court case, rejected

the idea that Newhaven counted as a ‘historic’

beach because it was created in relatively recent

times. The fondly-held memories of generations

of locals stands in stark contrast to his opinion.

NPP have now requested planning permission

to extend their building work on the east side

of the harbour towards Tide Mills – one of the

only other sandy stretches in the area. Various

campaign groups have sprung up in opposition.

One of the most prominent is Save Our Wave,

spearheaded by surfers concerned that the

proposed development will destroy water sport

culture in the area. At the time of writing, over

3,000 people had signed a petition against NPP

being granted planning permission.

“Save Our Wave has captured people’s imagination,”

says Martin Sinnock, a Newhaven resident

who took this beautiful photograph from a point

above the West Beach. “But it’s not just surfers

who care about Tide Mills. It’s the dog walkers,

it’s the birdwatchers, and it’s the people who just

want to take their kids down to the beach.”

Devastating as the loss of the West Beach was,

it has galvanised people to fight for Tide Mills

beach. As this issue of Viva Lewes went to press,

NPP had not yet been granted planning permission.

Moya Crockett

To sign the petition, visit To

read more about NPP’s plans for Tide Mills, visit and search LW/15/0034


on this month: unarmed combat


Victorian martial arts

We speak to Chris Chatfield.

What is the 1595 Club? We began in Brighton

in 2002, as a group of people with backgrounds

in various different martial arts, who wanted to

learn how people in the past defended themselves.

When people think of martial arts, they

often think of ‘Eastern’ arts, like judo or karate,

but in Europe we have our own historical physical

arts. Our teachings are based on the work

of a sixteenth-century Italian soldier, Vincent

Saviolo. We teach unarmed combat, classical

pugilism – bare-knuckle boxing – and fighting

with canes and swords.

What will you be teaching at the workshop

in Lewes? Savate, a French street-defence

form from the Victorian period that’s similar to

kickboxing, and fighting with canes – safer than

sword-work, and easier to pick up.

How did you come across Vincent Saviolo?

I’d studied classical fencing for years, and while

reading manuscripts by old fencing masters, I

came across Saviolo’s instructions on sword and

dagger work. He was the Leonardo da Vinci of

the fencing world, in terms of his understanding

of the body.

What made you want to develop your own

version of his teachings? It began as an experiment.

Saviolo says that what he teaches is the

foundation of all martial arts, so we tried to

develop techniques based on his exercises and

principles. We needed to make what was being

said in the manuscript relevant to today.

Was there a philosophy behind Saviolo’s

manuscript? Peacefulness, respect and selfawareness.

Everything is defence-orientated. If

he had to fight someone, he’d try and out-think

them. That’s the most important thing we teach:

thinking, rather than lashing out.

It seems like there’s a popular nostalgia,

at the moment, for a more ‘gentlemanly’

past… Many people in European martial arts

are attracted to an idea of the past. A philosophy

of respect isn’t that different from ‘gentlemanly

behaviour’. People get nostalgic for what they

think was, but whether it actually was like that is

another matter.

What kinds of people do you get coming to

your workshops? People who are interested in

swords; martial artists wanting to try different

techniques; actors who want training in

sword-work for Elizabethan and Shakespearian

productions. We get men and women, and a

range of ages.

Is there a dress code? Whatever you feel comfortable

in. Once people have progressed, they’ll

need protective gear, but initially, we don’t

encourage people to go that hard.

What can one gain from studying these

kinds of martial arts? The aim isn’t to hurt,

the aim is to improve. The old-fashioned Italian

word for swordsman is giocatore, which means

a player, like a player of a musical instrument.

Like an instrument, the more you practice these

techniques, the better you get. There’s a fitness

aspect, and a self-defence element. But mainly,

it’s just really enjoyable. Moya Crockett

Chris teaches an introductory workshop on The

1595 Club’s unarmed and cane system at St John’s

Church Hall, Talbot Terrace, Sun 12, 1pm, £25.

For more information, see


on this month: literature

Iain Sinclair

Exploring with psychogeography

Photo by Joy Gordon

The last time I picked up a book about walking,

it recommended an Ordnance Survey map

and sent me along a coastal path towards a cosy

pub. That’s not the kind of book Iain Sinclair

writes. For example, his London Orbital describes

a walk alongside the M25 motorway, with vibrant

research-peppered observation that’s likely to

leave the reader as exhausted as the author. Iain’s

a poet, novelist and film-maker, although he’s

currently best known for his subversive walkinspired

works: a genre that’s often referred to as


“This is something that really belongs in the late

1950s and early 60s in Paris”, he explains. “It was

to do with confronting a consumerist society by

inventing conceptual ways of behaving, largely in

cities.” A series of non-fiction books, starting with

1997’s Lights out for the Territory, have drawn on

those ideas of unconventional urban exploration.

Yet today the word psychogeography is “almost

meaningless”, Iain tells me, “because it could be

applied to absolutely anything. Some of the more

interesting writers in that area have started to

call it something like ‘deep topography’, because

it’s more about researching by repeated walks or


But even if the word is lost, the process has

retained its value. For Iain Sinclair, walking was

originally recreational travel. When he began

writing professionally, it developed into an enjoyable

research method. “The walking was part of

how I constructed a book, but it wasn’t the actual

subject matter. It took quite a long time for the

process of walking to actually become the way

of writing… and then that evolved, and I sort of

became stuck with it.”

Would he recommend walking to other writers?

“Yes, very much. Sitting at the desk, working on

my laptop for hours, I used to get backache but

that’s been totally dispersed by just doing an hour

walking. Loosening yourself up, I suppose. And

mentally as well. There’s a freshness by the time

you come to sit down.”

“In a grander sense, to take more substantial and

serious walks is a way of breaking out of being

locked into reflex ways of thinking and behaving.

It’s a great way to ‘go beyond your knowledge’, as

the poet John Clare would say. To take yourself

into something you don’t know and to see what

happens. Like walking round the M25.”

Iain Sinclair is speaking at the Monday Literary

Society this month. What’s he going to be

talking about? “I have a book coming out in June,

called London Overground, which is about a single

day’s walk around a newly linked-up railway line,

seeing the social and cultural changes that the

railway brings. So in a sense I’m using that as a

metaphor for a talk about walking, and ways of

walking, and the way walks fit into the world as it

is now.” You’ll probably want a pair of stout shoes

for the journey home. Mark Bridge

Under the Overground: Walking as a Way of Writing,

Mon 27, Pelham House, 8pm, £7.50.


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best views Lewes has to offer. Set across 3 floors, finished to

the highest standard with 2 bedrooms, spacious bathroom, south

roof terrace and fabulous living space.

on this month: exhibition

(c) Ladybird Books Ltd, pub date (from left to right): Sound and Pictures: Book Four, 1976, Gerald Whitcomb; Shopping with Mother, 1958, Harry Wingfield;

Tricks and Magic, 1969, Robert Ayton; Sound and Pictures: Book Four, 1976, Gerald Whitcomb (on left hand page) Things to Make, 1963, G. Robinson

Ladybird by Design

The cosy world of Peter and Jane

Visiting the Art Deco glory that is the De La

Warr Pavilion perched over Bexhill seafront is

a joy in any season. In the winter’s rain you can

gaze over grey slate seas; in the sun you can

imagine yourself in the South of France. And

that’s before you even get into the exhibitions.

Visiting their current exhibition of children’s

Ladybird books from the 1950s to the 1970s,

however, the joy is all in the rediscovery of

images you had forgotten you knew but are

seared in your mind. At least, it is for me and,

I guess, many others who grew up in Britain

during that time. When we visited, the average

age seemed to be upwards of 55, which fits the

1960s demographic peak for Ladybird. Perhaps

children might still be entranced by these,

although given the explosion of visual media I

could equally see them wondering what all the

parental fuss is about.

Entering the foyer, there are two parallel rows

of these books that you can rifle through, and

discover or rediscover. For me, it was Great

Inventions, and, as I picked up a copy, I was

transported back to the age of six.

I remember few of the words – although it

explains my odd snippets of knowledge about

Caxton, Morse code and penicillin. But it’s the

pictures I recall most vividly – all the faces alive

with joy at the discovery of radio waves, printing,

safety lamps and so on.

And rightly therefore it’s the art and illustrations

which the exhibition itself showcases. I

knew little of the artists, but they are celebrated

as talented draughtsmen and creators, as amply

demonstrated by the 200 pieces of original

artwork on display.

The size of the books were just right for little

hands and fingers. And they also seemed the

right length – long enough for repeat gazing,

but not too heavy. This turns out to be a happy

accident. In post-war Britain, Ladybird wanted

to optimise the use of their largest 30”x40”

paper, and so carefully arranged the 56 pages

from just one sheet of printing.

The accompanying book Ladybird by Design

by Lawrence Zeegen makes for great reading

itself, setting the books and production process

in context. There’s an interesting socio-cultural

analysis, about the Ladybird world view – a

safe, conservative vision of white families, with

two kids, and traditional male and female roles.

The social upheavals of the 1960s and strife of

the 1970s get no look in. There is lots of the

realism of working life - on farms, down mines,

in factories and offices – but it’s all optimistic

and eager for the future.

As we leave, I linger once again over the books.

Happy to rediscover that safe and enthusiastic

vision, but pleased that a more nuanced bookworld

is available to children now. Rob Read

Ladybird by Design at the De La Warr, Bexhill,

runs to 10 May, free,



An exhibition by Richard Billingham

25 April - 28 June 2015

In association with the Anthony Reynolds Gallery

Towner is registered charity no. 1156762

on this month: art

FOCUS ON: The Mountain by Ori Gersht

What’s the story behind this photograph? My father-in-law survived the Holocaust. He vividly remembers

events that took place on this mountain in Kosov, a village in Ukraine. When the Germans entered

Kosov, they dug two pits on top of the mountain, and summoned the Jewish community. My father-in-law

was five years old. His family was on their way up the mountain when a German officer told them to go

back. On the mountain, the Jewish people were shot, and pushed into those pits. Some managed to crawl

out, and later told what had happened. No one wanted to believe them. In 2005, my wife and I travelled

to Kosov, and saw that the ‘mountain’ is actually a small hill. But in the memory of a five-year-old, seventy

years later, it was a mountain.

How did you create the effect on the photograph? I exposed the film for a long time. The processed

image is ethereal, ephemeral, quite removed from our mundane experience of standing in front of a hill.

I’ve always been puzzled by the relationship of photography to truth. I wanted to create a fusion between

what was tangibly there, and something more elusive – a memory.

What is the connection between your films and your photography in the exhibition? Geographically,

thematically and historically my photographs and films are all connected. For my film The Forest, I

returned to Kosov, working with the image of a nearby forest as a veil for lost memories.

Who inspires you? Goya, Juan Sanchez Cortan, Josef Koudelka, Andreas Gursky, and Josef Sudek.

If you could take one piece of art to a desert island, what would it be? A Cup of Water and a Rose,

by Francisco de Zurbarán.

Ori Gersht – Don’t Look Back exhibits at the Towner Gallery, Eastbourne, until April 25.


Beautiful art, affordable prices

Beyond Words by featured artist Leila Godden

Chalk Gallery

4 North Street, Lewes


Telephone 01273 474477







T: 07971 512132 | WWW.ANNASTANDISH.COM


Eastbourne College, Carlisle Road,

Eastbourne, East Sussex BN21 4EF

WEEKENDS ONLY Saturday 28 March – Sunday 26 April

10am – 4pm

on this month: art

art & about

There is a great array of

artists exhibiting in Lewes

this April. Pelham House

boasts gifted printmaker Mark

Greco and talented mixed

media artist Jill Tattersall,

who will be exhibiting their

work throughout the month.

Leila Godden exhibits her

textural seascapes at the

Chalk Gallery from Mon

6-Sun 26. From Mon 27,

Chalk’s featured artist will

be Louisa Crispin, whose

recent work concentrates on

lichen and feather drawings

and experimentation with


Laina Watt Gaylord Meech

Laina Watt

Around town

Mark Greco

Leila Godden


(Aegithalos caudatus)

On Sat 11, Gaylord Meech returns to the Hop Gallery with his third

solo exhibition, The Dark and the Light. Running until Thu 23 (closed

Mondays), Gaylord explores one of the most fundamental tensions in

painting: that between dark and light. A retrospective of art by Laina

Watt can be seen in Here be Monsters, an exhibition of sculpture, maps,

ceramics and printmaking at The Stable Gallery, Paddock Studios, from

Sat 18 until Sat 25. And then take the opportunity for a cup of

coffee and a pastry at Lewes Patisserie, where the bold and colourful

prints of Maya Cockburn will be hanging throughout the entire month.

Dates for your diary Artwave 2015 opens for applications from Wed 1.

Artists United will be returning to the Foundry Gallery this summer, so be sure to save the dates now: 25-28

June. Please send all exhibition information to Isabella,


on this month: art

David Armitage

Helen Brown

Further afield

There are plenty of exhibitions this month if

you’re looking to venture out of town. Until Sun

26, the vivid paintings of David Armitage can be

seen in A Decade of Colour at The Birley Centre,

Eastbourne. On the Downs, an exhibition of woodcuts

by Helen Brown, shows at Alfriston Arts

Gallery from Fri 10. Between Mon 20 and Wed

29, the Crypt Gallery in Seaford will be displaying

Patrick Goff’s work in Breaking Waves. The

Sussex home of the Surrealists Lee Miller and

Roland Penrose Farley Farmhouse and Gallery

is open every Sunday from April-October. And

finally, Towner in Eastbourne will be displaying

Panoramic, a photography exhibition by Richard

Billingham, from Sat 25.

Child’s Pose

Romanian cinematic revival

on this month: cinema

The last decade has witnessed a remarkable revival

in the fortunes of Romanian cinema. It started with

Cristi Puiu’s The Death of Mr Lazarescu winning the

Un Certain Regard prize at the 2005 Cannes Film

Festival. That was followed by Cristian Mungiu’s

4 Months, 3 Weeks & 2 Days going one better at Cannes in 2007, carrying off the Palme D’Or. Since

then, there’s been no lack of praise from the critics for films such as Mungiu’s follow-up Beyond the

Hills (2012), Corneliu Porumboiu’s sophisticated and witty satire of police bureaucracy, Police, Adjective

(2009) and Radu Muntean’s Tuesday, After Christmas (2010), a brilliant study of the emotional fall-out of

adultery. Unfortunately, distribution of Romanian films in this country has grown increasingly haphazard.

Some never get released, others don’t make it beyond London. The Duke of York’s, where I first

saw both the aforementioned Cannes Festival winners, seems to have thrown in the towel.

So it’s especially enterprising of Lewes Film Club to be showing Calin Peter Netzer’s Child’s Pose

(2013). Netzer has been winning film festival awards across Europe for more than a decade, but Child’s

Pose (Golden Bear winner at Berlin) is the director’s first feature to secure UK distribution. Luminita

Gheorghiu plays Cornelia, an overbearing mother of sixty, moving heaven and earth to extricate her

worthless son, Barbu, from the manslaughter charges he faces when, speeding, he knocks down and

kills a fourteen year old girl. Highly recommended. David Jarman

All Saints, Fri 3, 8pm.

Farley Farm House & gallery

Home of the Surrealists

Experience the extraordinary atmosphere of the Sussex home of the

Surrealists Lee Miller and Roland Penrose whose friends and guests

included Picasso, Max Ernst, Man Ray and Miró. We re-open for our

2015 season on Sunday 5 th April with 50 minute guided tours, two new

gallery exhibitions and the sculpture garden to explore.

Farley Farm House

Muddles Green, Chiddingly

East Sussex, BN8 6HW

Tel: 01825 872 856

Open to visitors every Sunday from April - October 2015 from 10. 00 am - 3.30 pm

Viva ad 94x66 april2_Layout 1 12/03/2015 16:36 Page 1


Sat. May 23 – 7pm

Anna Tilbrook (piano)

Phillip Dukes (viola)

Benjamin Hulett (tenor)

Schubert, Britten,

Vaughan Williams, Gurney

Sat. June 20 – 7pm

Louis Schwizgebel (piano)

BBC New Generation Artist

Mozart, Beethoven, Schumann,


Sat. July 18 – 7pm

Esther Yoo (violin)

BBC New Generation Artist

Robert Koenig (piano accompanist)

J.S.Bach, Beethoven, Debussy

Glazunov, Tchaikovsky

House open May/June & August

Bank Holiday.


For tickets & information: Tel: 01273 858224

is delighted to present...


Performance Nerves Specialist

Waving goodbye

to performance


Friday April 24 th 6.30 – 9.00

Pelham House Hotel, Lewes

£10 in advance, £11 on the door, £5 students

To book your place please visit:

on this month: music

Classical round-up

From Paul Austin Kelly

The Brighton Festival Chorus offers us St

John’s Passion on Good Friday. This semi-staged

version of JS Bach’s Easter masterwork was last

performed by BFC in 2009 to high acclaim.

Presenting it at Brighton Dome, with the characters

moving in and out of the audience, should

provide an intimate experience. James Morgan

will conduct the Chamber Domaine, and the

Evangelist will be sung by Robert Murray.

Fri 3, 3pm, tickets from £15 (£5 proms area) at

Dome Box Office or on 01273 709709.

Local soprano Sue Mileham-Paine will give a

song recital as part of St Michael’s First Sunday

recitals on the second Sunday this month. With

pianist Nicola Grunberg she will perform Richard

Strauss’s Morgen, Elgar’s The Shepherd Song, a

set by Henri Duparc, an Italian set with songs by

Bellini and Donizetti, and several other songs.

Sun 12, 3pm, St Michael’s Church. Admission free

with a retiring collection in aid of church repairs.

St Laurence Church in Falmer is hosting an all-

English recital by baritone Stefan Holmstrom,

cellist Angie Wilson and pianist/composer Basil

Richmond. Mr Holmstrom will sing three of the

Songs of Travel by Vaughan Williams and Three

Songs of Shakespeare by Brighton’s own Roger

Quilter. Also on the menu is piano music by

Delius and two compositions by Basil Richmond:

Three English Songs and the first performance of

his Cello Sonata.

Sat 18, 5.30pm, Admission free with a retiring collection

in aid of church repairs.

East Sussex Bach Choir and The Baroque Collective

are bringing us Samson, Handel’s powerful

oratorio, at Lewes Town Hall. Sometimes

performed as an opera, this three-act work

features at least two oft-excerpted arias: Total

Eclipse for the tenor and Let the Bright Seraphim

for the soprano. It was given its premiere in 1743

at London’s Covent Garden. Here conducted by

John Hancorn with Baroque Collective leader

Alison Bury and a fine quintet of singers, this

promises to be a memorable evening. A ‘don’t

miss’, in my opinion.

Sat 25, 7.30pm, tickets from £12, under 16s free.

Finally, at St Pancras Church in Lewes, the

Corelli Ensemble present an all-French

programme featuring dramatic tenor Marcel

Xerri (pictured). Also on the bill are Bizet’s

L’Arlesienne Suite No. 1, Debussy’s Clair de

Lune, Meditation from Massenet’s opera Thaïs,

Faure’s Pavane Op. 5, and two pieces by Rameau.

Sun 26, 4pm, tickets £10 in advance, £12 on the

door, children free


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Wed 1st

Talk: The Gardens of Westminster Abbey. Jan

Pancheri will be talking about this peaceful

garden in the centre of London, reputed to be

the oldest in England. Cliffe Hall, 7.45pm, £3,

free for members of Lewes and District Garden

Society. 01273 474110

Thurs 2nd Sat 4th & Sun 5th

Film: The Theory of Everything

(12A) The extraordinary

story of Jane and

Stephen Hawking. All Saints,

Thu 3.45pm, Sat 6pm, Sun

5pm, £5-£6.50,

Fri 3rd

Passion Play. Third of the four sections, trial and

crucifixion. Cliffe Precinct then Procession to the

Mount, 1pm.

Sat 4th

Craft Market. Local crafts and art. Market

Tower, 10am-2pm, free.

Farmers’ Market. Cliffe Precinct, 9am-1pm.

Film: Boyhood (15) Filmed over 12 years with

the same cast, this stars Patricia Arquette, winner

of Best Supporting Actress at the recent

Oscars. All Saints, 6.30pm, £5-£6.50,

Thurs 2nd

Passion Play. This is the second, Maundy

Thursday part, of the drama depicting the Passion

of Christ. The whole event takes place over

several days, outside, in various venues around

Lewes, the first section on 29 March. Some

limited seating available. Please bring your

own chair or rug. Priory Ruins, Cockshut Road

entrance, 8pm, free.

Film: A Most Wanted Man (15) Featuring the

late Philip Seymour Hoffman. A Chechen Muslim

refugee illegally travels to Hamburg, where

he gets caught in the international war on terror.

All Saints, 8.30pm, £5-£6.50,

Sat 4th & Sun 5th

Film: Love is Strange (15) Drama about a gay

couple who are forced to live separately when

one of them loses his job. All Saints, Sat 4pm,

Sun 7.30pm, £5-£6.50,

Sun 5th

Passion Play. Last section of this Easter drama,

about the Resurrection. Refreshments available on

completion of the play. Priory Ruins, 3pm, free.

Sun 5th & Mon 6th

Eleanr Austin

Easter Family Festival. Quality racing on both

days. Traditional funfair, free face painting, pony

rides, smoothie bikes, plus a rock climbing wall,

laser tag and an Easter egg giveaway. Plumpton

Racecourse, gates open at 11am, £18, £14, £10,

under 18s free. 01273 890383


APRlistings (cont)

Tues 7th

The Group. A club for single men and women

aged 45+. Walks, dinners, theatre, pub evenings,

holidays. Meets in a pub on the first Tuesday

evening of every month, 8pm.

Wed 8th - Sat 11th

Theatre. Synergy Theatre’s production of

Arcadia by Tom Stoppard. Kingston Parish Hall,

7.30pm, £7.

Fri 10th

Dial Medicine for Murder. The story of the

two most notorious physicians of the 20th century,

Dr John Bodkin Adams and Dr Harold Shipman.

A consultation with Dr Andrew Johns and Dr

Harry Brunjes. Folkington Manor, 8pm. A range

of dining options and ticket prices available. www. or 01323 483946

Talk. One of a series of three talks hosted by

MakingLewes in the run up to the election on

the future of architecture and housing. Guest

speaker is BBC writer and housing specialist

Anna Minton. The Needlemakers, 7.30pm, free.

Visit for details of other talks

and guest speakers.

Sun 12th

Run Wild: A gentle jaunt out over the Downs to

Black Cap and then onto The Jolly Sportsman,

East Chiltington. Minibus return by arrangement.

Start at Landport Bottom, 11am, free.

Pop Up Panorama. Pick up your drawing materials

and create your own Lewes landscape using

the spectacular views from the Castle. All ages

welcome. Lewes Castle, 1-4pm. 01273 486290

APRlistings (cont)

Mon 13th

Sussex Russian Society Talk: Shostakovich:

Unforgettable 1961, by Terry Metheringham.

Two Shostakovich symphonies had their first

performance in 1961: the 12th celebrating the

1917 revolution, and the 4th written in 1937

but withdrawn before its scheduled first performance.

The talk will explore what these two

symphonies tell us about Shostakovich and his

times. Friends Meeting House, 7.15pm, £3.

Talk. Lewes through the eyes of a flint knapper.

Flintman, David Smith covers the history of

flint, showing its use and versatility as a building

material. Using local references, he will

also demonstrate how the material has given

Lewes its distinctive look, with examples of the

good, the bad and the unusual. There will be a

demonstration of flint knapping. King’s Church

building, 7pm, £3/£2.

Tues 14th

Beginners Stained Glass Course. Structured

six week course leading to completion of a finished

work. All materials provided. Isfield Village

Hall, 2.30-4.30pm. For more information

and to book, contact

New Calligraphy Class. Every Tuesday during

term time. Cliffe Hall, 10.30am-12.30pm, £15

per session, includes refreshments and limited

parking at the hall. tinawarren@alphabition. 01825 712569.

Tues 14th - Sat 18th

Lewes Operatic Society: Anything Goes.

Town Hall, 7.30pm, £10-£14.


aprlistings (cont)

Wed 15th

Death Café. Coffee, cake and conversation about

dying, death and the end of life. Buttercup Café,

7-9pm, free (voluntary donations). 01273 933115

Telltale Poets and Friends: Martin Malone,

Peter Kenny, Ryan Whatley & Helen Fletcher.

Lewes Arms, 7.30pm, free.

Thurs 16th

Comedy at the Con! Jimmy McGhie, Francis

Foster and Mike Gunn take to the stage,

with MC Neil Masters. Con Club, 8pm,

£10.50/£9/£8/£7.50. Tickets from 07582408418


Sat 18th

Farmers’ Market. Cliffe Precinct, 9am-1pm.

Nearly new sale. Selling children’s clothes, toys

and equipment, age 0-5 years. Tea & cakes also

available. Ringmer Village Hall, 10.30am-12pm,

£1 per family.

Sat 18th & Sun 19th

Film: St Vincent (12A) A young boy whose

parents have just divorced finds an unlikely friend

and mentor in the misanthropic, bawdy,

aprlistings (cont)

hedonistic war veteran who lives next door.

All Saints, Sat 5.15pm, Sun 5pm, £5-£6.50.

Film: The Drop (15) Bob Saginowski finds

himself at the centre of a robbery gone awry

and entwined in an investigation that digs deep

into the neighbourhood’s past, where friends,

families, and foes all work together to make a

living - no matter the cost. Featuring the late

James Gandolfini’s last role. All Saints, 7.30pm,


Thurs 23rd

Talk: Brighton and George Augustus Sala, by

Dr Peter Blake. This talk will reappraise Sala’s

links with Brighton, in the process revealing

the seedier side of a respectable Victorian public

figure. The Keep, Woollards Way, Falmer,

5.30pm, free but booking is essential. 01273


Fri 24

Food Market. Healthy, seasonal food from

local suppliers. Market Tower, 9am-1.30pm.


PelhamHouse Hotel

(sandwiches, cakes, scones

and tea/coffee

& glass of Pimms)

From 2.30pm until 5.30pm

Enjoy Vintage vocals from

Corrinne Williams

aprlistings (cont)

Fri 24th-Sun 26th

The Garden Show.

Amazing plants,

garden goodies and

a great day out for

all. 20 local artists

and makers will be

exhibiting their work

and wares in the rustically


Old Georgian Riding

School. Firle Place, 10am-5pm daily.

Sun 26th

Nearly new sale. Clothing, toys and equipment

for children up to 10 years. Priory

School, 10.30am-12.00pm, £1.50.

Sun 26th & Mon 27th

Experience Musical Theatre. For potential

new members who are aged 16+. The Barn

Theatre, Seaford, 3pm Sunday, 7.30pm Monday.

Wed 29 April- Fri 1 May

Theatre. The Plumpton Players present

Caught in the Act by Ray Cooney. Plumpton

Green Village Hall, 8pm, £8. sandie@ampros.

Thurs 30th

Fri 24th-Sat 25th

Talk. World Poets:

Dante Alighieri.

Graham Fawcett marks

the 750th anniversary

of Dante’s birth in

Florence. Lewes Arms,

6.30pm, £10. Advanced

booking is recommended.

01273 473152

Sat 25th

Play: Paul Zenon

in Linking Rings.

Compelling storytelling

from a master

magician. A true tale

of interlocking lives,

a misspent youth

and unsung heroes.

Lewes Arms, 7.30pm,

£5, 01273 473152

Put in your diary

Sat 9th May. Dawn Chorus Walk at Charleston.

Entry is free, but book now: l.bailey@

Fri 22-Mon 25 May. Elderflower Fields

Family Festival. Book your tickets now:

Coffee Morning. Organised by Lewes Support

Group, for St Peter & St James Hospice.

Coffee, tea, homemade cakes, books, plants,

jewellery and tombola. Cliffe Hall, 10am-12

noon, free, 01273 474061.


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22nd, 23rd & 24th MAY



Over 15 real ales & ciders to sample!

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@ The Con Club














Thursday 2nd to Sunday 5th APRIL

THURSDAY Open 4:30 to 11:30pm

Live music with THE INVITATIONS from 9:00pm

FRIDAY Open 12 midday to 11:30pm

Live music with THE MEOW MEOWS + DJ’s from 9:00pm

SATURDAY Open 12 midday to 11:30pm


SUNDAY Open 12 midday to 10:30pm

Live music with FLEUR DE PARIS from 3:00 to 5:00pm

All welcome to all days and evenings - FREE entry see website

for more details, Lewes Con Club, 139 High Street, Lewes BN7 1XS

gig of the month

Rolling Stone describe Cale Tyson’s music as “old school,

sad-bastard outlaw country for a new generation.” At

only 23, the Nashville musician has far more in common

with Waylon Jennings than Kid Rock. His critically

acclaimed 2013 EP, High on Lonesome, sounds like

a slow-dance in a dark bar: faces pressed into shoulders,

sawdust on the floor, silver streamers tacked to cork

walls. On tracks such as Honky Tonk Moan and Is The

Flame Burning Low? Tyson’s steady croon occasionally

shifts into a classic country yodel, while Hawaii-moon pedal steel guitars swell in the background. Lyrically,

the man’s constantly alone by the phone, waking up feeling blue, or discovering, with a start, that his whiskey’s

run dry. It’s not revolutionary, but an old-fashioned formula redone extraordinarily well, with emotion

and sincerity. Con Club, 7.30pm, £10 in advance.

april listings

wed 1ST

The Invitations. Soul and Motown. Con Club,

8pm, free

Dr Bluegrass & The Illbilly 8. Bluegrass.

Lamb, 8.30pm, free

Swing DeVille. Vintage hot swing. Pelham

Arms, 8.30pm, free


Meow Meow + DJs. Ska. Con Club, 8pm, free


Big World Blue. Folk singer/songwriter. Union

Music Store, 3pm, free

Not the Authorised Version. Folk. Dorset,

8pm, £3

Butchers Blues Band. Chicago blues. Lamb,

8.30pm, free


English dance tunes session. Folk. Lamb,

12pm, free

Fleur de Paris. Chansons, Con Club, 3pm,


Open Mic. All welcome. Elephant & Castle,

7pm, free

David Celia. Roots rock. Lamb, 8.30pm, free


Lou Beckerman, Steve Thompson & Terry

Seabrook. Jazz. Snowdrop, 8pm, free


English dance tunes session. Folk. John Harvey

Tavern, 8pm, free

Ceilidh Crew Session. Folk. Lamb, 8.30pm, free


Old Time Session. Americana. Lamb, 8pm, free


Larkin Poe. America. Union at the Con Club,

7.30pm. Tickets £14 from Union Music Store,

more on the door

FRI 10

Mudlow + Rooster Cole. Swamp blues. Con

Club, 8pm, free

The Blacken Blues Band. Rocking blues. Lamb,

8.30pm, free

SAT 11

Emily Barker. Americana. Union Music Store,

3pm, free

John Spiers. Also of Bellowhead. Folk.

Elephant & Castle, 8pm, £8


gig guide (cont)

Vile Electrodes, Battery Operated Orchestra

+ DJ Digitalis. Live electronica. Con

Club, 8pm. Tickets £5 + b/f at wegottickets.

com, £6 OTD

Dende. Afro-Latin, cumbia, calypso and reggae.

Lamb, 8.30pm, free

MON 13

Art Theman, Milo Fell & Terry Seabrook.

Jazz. Snowdrop, 8pm, free

TUE 14

Goodtimes Music Open Mic. All welcome.

Lamb, 8.30pm, free

WED 15

Kris Delmhorst. Americana. Union at the

Con Club, 7.30pm. Tickets £10 from Union

Music Store, more OTD

THU 16

Kathryn Roberts & Sean Lakeman. English

folk duo. Union Music Store, 3pm, free

Live in the Living Room Spring Tour. With

acts including Scott Free. Lamb, 8.30pm, free

FRI 17

Big Blue. Rock/blues. Con Club, 8pm, free

Live Music. TBC. Lamb, 8.30pm, free

SAT 18

Record Store Day. In-stores and guests

throughout the day, including Police Dog

Hogan. Union Music Store, all day, free

Contraband. Acoustic ballads and full-on Celtic

jigs and reels. Barcombe Village Hall, 7.30pm.

Tickets £5-£8.50 from Barcombe Stores and; any remaining OTD

One Sheet Short. Folk. Royal Oak, 8pm, £7

Shauna Parker & the Saloon Bar Band.

Country, Americana and western swing. Lamb,

8.30pm, free

SUN 19

Wildwood Jack. Folk and roots. Con Club,

3pm, free

MON 20

Abi Flynn, Russ Gleason & Terry Seabrook.

Jazz. Snowdrop, 8pm, free

TUE 21

Ceilidh Crew Session. Folk. Lamb, 8.30pm,


FRI 24

The Contenders. R&B. Con Club, 8pm , free

Wakin’ Snakes. Lively Cajun. Lamb, 8.30pm,


SAT 25

Tom McConville. Folk. Elephant & Castle,

8pm, £7

Live Music. TBC. Lamb, 8.30pm, free

SUN 26

Murray Shelmerdine, Diane & Steve Nevill

and Bing Lyle. Folk concert, with all proceeds

going to The Oyster Project. Westgate Chapel,

2.30pm, £5

April Delta Bell. Americana. Union Music

Store, 3pm, free

Swing Time. Swing DJs. Lamb, 5pm, free

MON 27

Roy Hilton, Malcolm Mortimer & Terry

Seabrook. Jazz. Snowdrop, 8pm, free

TUE 28

Goodtimes Music Open Mic. All welcome.

Lamb, 8.30pm, free

Kathryn Roberts & Sean Lakeman.

Note to music venues: if you want your gigs to appear in this space next month

please make sure details reach us by mid month,



Glimpse into Britain’s wartime past at this fascinating and award-winning

attraction. Audio-visual presentations and exhibits, including the First

World War and the Home Front, promise any visitor a remarkable day out.

For more information please contact 01273 517622

or email us at

under 16


What’s on

Until Sun 12th

Easter trail. Complete the puzzle and collect

your chocolate prize, by hunting out clues and

hidden sculptural bunnies. Children can explore

the adventure playground and families can picnic

alongside the scenic lakes or walk in the woods.

Borde Hill Garden, Haywards Heath, 10am-6pm


Thur 2nd

Film: Frozen Singa-long

(PG) Back

by popular demand,

a special sing-a-long

screening of the

insanely popular 2014

animation. All together now ‘Let it Go…’ All

Saints, 1.30pm, £5-£6.50,

Saturday 4th

Easter Family Eggstravaganza. Kids’ Easter

arts and crafts, Easter Story, hot cross buns

and, of course, eggs. King’s Church, 10-


Sun 5th

Wed 1st & Sun 5th

Film: Paddington (PG) Who doesn’t love a

bear with marmalade sandwiches in his hat?

This is a hilarious adaptation of Michael Bond’s

wonderful stories about a furry Peruvian in

search of a new home. All Saints, Wed 4pm, Sun

3pm, £5-£6.50,

Wishworks Puppet Sunday: Whispering

Smith. Whispering Smith is a shy creature

who gets stuck up a tree whilst trying to reach

fruit. He has to learn to find his voice before

he can find his way down again. Particularly

suitable for children aged 2-7. Christ Church,

2.30pm, £5 each or £15 for a family.

Sun 19th

Film: Penguins of Madagascar (U) The

frighteningly smart monochrome flightless

birds from Madagascar; Skipper, Kowalski,

Rico and Private, join forces with undercover

organization The North Wind to stop the

villainous Dr Octavius Brine from destroying

the world. All Saints, 3pm, £5-£6.40,

Sun 26th

Junior Film Club. A feature length screening

of animation shorts in collaboration with the

London International Animation Festival. All

Saints, 2-4pm, £5/£4. Tickets from,

01273 470175 or on the door.

Explore the ‘near Lewes’,

Middle Bronze Age

Hoard at Lewes Castle

Stone Age to Bronze Age,

Sat 28th March

Handle replicas & Bronze Age activities.

Digging for Treasure*

Tues 31st March & 7th April,

Explore the Hoard & make your

own treasure.

Torcs, Loops & Rings,*Wed 8th April

Make pieces inspired by the collection.

Tudor Textiles, Thurs 9th April

Anne of Cleves House

Spinning, stitching & costumes for all.

Pop up Panorama, Sun 12th April

Create your own Lewes landscape.

Explore our website for more

details & times!








under 16 êêêê

shoes on now

#8 Car Park Commerce

My Middle Child has embraced car boot sales with a passion

that borders on the obsessional. Reared by a mother

who always has an eye for a bargain, it’s perhaps no surprise

that this child likes to spend his Sundays bargaining away

at Lewes’s well known Car Boot Sale, located at the back of

Waitrose. Armed with a well-deserved £5 pounds- he does

a lot of chores- Middle Child goes into battle. First up is a

large 70s disco ball. “Five pounds,” demands the stall holder perhaps a bit out of touch with the disposable

income of a 7 year old. “I’ll give you 50 pence,” says my son - only he doesn’t. He’s too embarrassed

to haggle so instead I, reared on a diet of English reticence, am forced into the ignominious position of

Family Haggler. The stall holder laughs, although not unkindly, at my miserly offer before agreeing on

a more modest £2.50. We browse through some books and some DVDs before I grant permission for £1

to be spent on a large tub of sweets. With £1.50 left to go, Middle Child heads off towards a stall selling

a range of jewellery. Here his money secures a brooch festooned with large green ‘emeralds’ which glint

in the Sunday sunshine. I smile indulgently before heading home with him to Google his final purchase.

Maybe we’ve nabbed a real bargain after all. Jacky Adams

Lewes Car Boot Sale, every Sunday, at the back of Waitrose 6am-1pm.

Western road centenary

Lewes Western Road Council School (mixed) opened amidst great excitement on Monday 12 April

1915 as the town’s first Council School, designed for ages 9 to 12, with 50 boys and 39 girls on the roll.

This month the school celebrates its centenary with a reunion and open afternoon for old pupils and

staff on Fri 24. If you’d like more information or would like to share your own memories, please contact

the school office 01273 473013 or email Maya Fender

Photos from 1937 & 1938, courtesy Emily Sanders





Please phone

for details

We’re open again.

Many thanks for your

patience, support and

encouraging smiles.

Opening hours

Mon-Fri 4pm-10.30pm

Sat Midday-late

Sun 12.30-3pm and 4pm-8.30pm

All the old favourites and

some new treats.

Happy Hour 4-5.30pm Sunday—Thursday.

FREE 8” pizza with every 12” pizza. 01273 470755

Eastgate St, Lewes BN7 2LP (Bus Station, opposite Waitrose)

êêêê freetime

Magnus Carter

M agnus]


A fable about justice and liberty

Magnus Carter is a children’s book about a brave and

friendly little mole who lives in a place of injustice. When

the great storm of 1214 comes, Magnus isn’t going to sit in

his flooded tunnel while King Moldewarp stays warm, dry

and well-fed in his palace above. It’s time for him to rise up

with his friends and family against the king’s unfair ways. Written by Julian Warrender

Illustrated by Lyndsey Smith

This story was enjoyable to read and I loved the description

of Magnus, and the illustrations too. I especially liked how

they show the moles underground in their tunnels. I also

like the way that, even though Magnus gets thrown in jail for speaking up, his friends and family

don’t give up; they keep on fighting for their rights. I loved the interactive side of things, like the

tunnel maze and the worms and ladders at the beginning. Lois Gould, age 10

Magnus Carter, a fable about justice and liberty, by Julian Warrender, illustrated by Lyndsey Smith and

designed by Carlotta Luke. £6.99, Bags of Books

Magnus Carter’s Fun and Games event, Cliffe Hall, Wed 1, 10-12, £10 per child, parents free, suitable

for children aged 5-8. Tickets from Bags of Books, 01273 479320.

wallands warbler

Viva’s editor Emma Chaplin went to meet the pupils behind the

new Wallands newsletter, The Warbler. She was asked some tough

questions, and if you want to see her answers, follow this link:

young Photo of the month

Evie Flynn, aged 12, sent

this in. “We had a massive

bonfire in our back

garden in February, and

no bonfire is complete

without a s’more!” For

those unfamiliar with

this American camping

treat, it’s digestive biscuits

(‘graham crackers’) sandwiching

chocolate and a

marshmallow melted over

the campfire.


A Great

British pub

with some

bistro oo la la

The Pelham arms

HigH Street • LeweS

Vintage Hot Swing with Swing De Ville on

Thursday 2nd April, from 8.30pm, FREE!

New menu every month - relaxed drinking & eating

in our bar or dining room, secluded courtyard garden,

children friendly & dogs welcome

We can look after your special occasion whether its full,

private hire or a family gathering

Opening Hours

Tuesday to Thursday

Bar 12noon to 11pm &

Food 12noon to 2.30pm and 6 to 9.30pm

Friday & Saturday

Bar 12noon to Midnight &

Food 12noon to 2.30pm & 6 to 9.30pm


Bar 12noon to 10.30pm & Food 12noon to 8pm

Get in touch!

Tel. 01273 476149


Twitter @PelhamArmsLewes

Book online @


The Sussex Ox

Beer-battered fish in Milton Street

It’s a gorgeous spring

afternoon when we

arrive for lunch at the

Sussex Ox. The twenty-minute

drive from

Lewes has reminded

me just how beautiful

the world is round

here, all thatched

cottages and whitepainted


very Darling Buds of

May. The pub sits on

the corner of a winding

lane, of course. Inside, it’s surprisingly busy for

a Wednesday lunchtime. The South Downs Way

is just minutes away, and ramblers pad around in

woolly socks, having discarded their muddy wellies

at the door.

All the Ox’s draught beers are made in Sussex, so

we give Harveys a miss. My friend Jon opts for an

American pale ale from Gun Brewery, while I order

a Copper Hop, made at the Long Man Brewery in

nearby Litlington. His is a bit ‘pale’; mine is malty,

delicious. I win.

To start, I choose the Sussex Smokie. This classic

dish has seen a bit of a local renaissance recently,

and this version is excellent: flakes of smoked haddock

in a creamy sauce, with a crispy, cheesy, peppery

topping. As a pescetarian, there are plenty of

options for me at the Ox, but a committed carnivore

would be properly delighted. The Ox’s beef

and lamb comes from their own organic cattle and

sheep, and the meaty options are many and varied.

Jon, who converted to vegetarianism years ago,

reads the menu with a haunted, dreamy look. “Wild

boar and apricot pastry with a blackberry jus,” he

whispers, as though in prayer, before getting a hold

of himself and ordering

the griddled

halloumi with lime

caper dressing. “It’s

fine,” he reports, in

the cranky manner of

someone who has recently

quit smoking.

Our waitress is so

cheery and competent

that it’s a while

before I notice that

she’s juggling every

table in the place –

top marks. For mains, I have beer-battered fillet of

Newhaven haddock with house chips and mushy

peas. The fish – its batter golden and crunchy – is

so fresh it melts in my mouth. Jon’s happy with his

sweet potato Thai curry, but having moved onto a

glass of Rioja, he’s missing the cooling properties of

the pale ale. “It’s – bloody – hot,” he gasps. While

sniggering, I spill Copper Hop over my fish, adding

an unwelcome literality to the term “beer-battered”.

By the time dessert rolls around, we’re both stuffed,

but plough on in the interests of research. Jon’s

poached pear with meringue and Chantilly cream

comes with the unexpected addition of chocolate

sauce, which it doesn’t need. My sticky toffee

pudding is fine, although not as gooey as I’d like.

Champagne problems, eh? Any disappointment is

made up for by the fact that our bill comes to just

over £50, and the view as we wander back outside.

Cuckmere Valley glitters in the afternoon sunshine.

In the distance we can see Firle Beacon, dramatic

against a blue sky. The Sussex Ox’s menu changes

daily. I might have to visit again just to check it’s still

up to scratch, you see. Moya Crockett

Milton Street, 01323 870840,

Photo by Moya Crockett



Photo by Mark Bridge


Poached eggs

Indianna Dabson from Laporte’s prepares the

cornerstone of a perfect Sunday brunch

You can’t rush a poached egg, which is

why it’s a great choice for a relaxed weekend

breakfast. Poached eggs are all about

the original taste and texture with nothing

added, so it’s important to start with the

best eggs you can find. We use organic,

free-range eggs from Eridge Farm for our

breakfasts. To check an egg for freshness,

gently put it in a glass or bowl of cold water.

A very fresh egg will rest horizontally

on the bottom, while eggs that aren’t quite

so fresh will stand upright. If an egg floats,

it’s definitely old.

Half-fill a shallow saucepan with water

and put it on the hob until it boils. You

don’t want too much water in there. When

you’re ready to cook your eggs, turn the

heat down to a simmer. Don’t leave it

boiling vigorously because the egg white

will disappear completely. Adding a dessertspoon

of white wine vinegar to the

water helps the egg white hold together.

Some people swirl the water but I find that

makes the whites turn ghostly. You don’t

need to swirl if your eggs are really fresh.

I crack each egg straight in to the water.

It’s important not to drop it from a height

because it’ll stick to the bottom. To reduce

the risk, crack your egg into a little cup or

bowl, then hold the cup next to the surface

of the water and let the egg slide into the

pan. If you’re nervous you may prefer to

dip the edge of the cup into the water and

allow a little of the boiling water into the

cup. As the egg starts to solidify, slowly tip

it out and pour the water over the top.

Occasionally an egg may stick to the base

of the pan. Watch out for this because the

yolk could break if you let it cook there.

Loosen the egg carefully with a spoon if it

seems to be stuck.

It usually takes about three minutes to

poach an egg. When you think the egg is

ready to serve, bring it gently out of the

water with a slotted spoon and touch the

yolk with your finger. You want the outer

part of the yolk to be solid and the inner

part to be soft. If it feels too wobbly,

return it to the water for another 30 seconds.

Eventually you’ll get a feel for when

an egg is perfectly cooked.

It helps to have a warm plate ready, otherwise

your eggs will go cold really quickly.

Rest your serving spoon on a tissue to

make sure the water has drained completely

from the eggs, then serve them with

thickly-sliced toast and butter. Our bread

is from the Real Patisserie in Brighton,

with South Downs butter from Bookham

Harrison. Finally, garnish the eggs with

parsley and black pepper, although chives

also work nicely. I like my poached eggs

with ham as well, although you can also

serve them with smoked salmon… or watercress…

or béchamel sauce… there’s so

much choice. As told to Mark Bridge

Laporte’s, 4 Lansdown Place, Mon-Fri

8.30am to 5.30pm, Sat 8.30am to 5pm, Sun

10am to 4pm.



Lazy Sunday breakfast

Devilling Holmansbridge kidneys

When I was growing up, a squishy, brown-paper package arrived in

the post every Saturday morning. Eight sausages, kidneys and bacon

rashers. The meaty bounty came from a friendly butcher whose

daughter was briefly dating one of my brothers. But for years, after

summer dreams were ripped at the seams, the packages kept on coming.

We saved this package of delight – greasy and tied up with string

– for lazy Sunday breakfasts, the highlight of our 70s culinary week.

And after a recent trip to the Holmansbridge Farm Shop, I’m determined to recreate this childhood

meal. Eight shiny lamb’s kidneys, half a dozen sausages and a box of their extra-large eggs. The sausages

deserve particular comment, flavoured as they are with Harveys and hops, a truly delectable combination.

I oven-bake the bangers, while pan-frying the kidneys in a devilish (and devilishly simple) marinade,

equal parts Colman’s English mustard and Lea & Perrins. And the eggs? Simply fried, with the hot

oil spooned over the yolks. As an ensemble, this was the perfect antidote to Saturday night’s over-indulgence

– boeuf en croûte made with Holmansbridge fillet, dauphinoise potatoes, and a glass of Rioja too

many. I honestly can’t remember the last time I ate kidneys. It might have been from one of the butcher’s

brown-paper parcels. But having discovered a supplier of such fine offal so close to home, I won’t leave it

so long until the next time. Perhaps the good burghers of Holmansbridge might start a delivery service…

Sam Knowles Open 9-6pm, Tues-Fri, Sat, 9-5pm, Sun/Mon 10-4pm. 01273 401964


2 tickets



hove lawns

MAY 2-4

0844 995 1111


shopping masterclasses tasting


2 tickets from £11 by quoting VIVA241 at


Photo by Katie Moorman

Juicing for Health

A shot of goodness

Bradley Carr is an acupuncturist and kinesiologist,

but he also runs ‘juicing for health’ workshops,

because he feels these complement each

other, and he’s keen on “preventive medicine”.

He comes to my house with a juicer, a liquidiser

and a lot of vegetables, and makes me several

drinks. We start with a shot of apple and fresh

ginger root, made in his large juicer (which,

unlike my smaller one, takes whole apples). Very

zingy indeed. “Full of vitamin C, plus the ginger

is anti-inflammatory and antiviral”. His second

juice, made with apple, carrots, cucumber, celery

and ginger, is cheerily orange-coloured and very

refreshing. “My kids love juice. I try to make it

about 90% veg and 10% fruit, otherwise there’s

too much sugar”.

You can’t juice avocado, soft fruit or banana,

so, if you want to include these ingredients, you

can pour freshly-made veg juice into the blender

with some of those. Bradley also favours supergreen

powder (spirulina, chlorella, barleygrass

and wheatgrass), chia seeds (“rich in protein

and omega oils”) and maca powder (“Peruvian

Viagra” – which, frankly, doesn’t sell it to me).

For my third drink, he liquidises water, celery,

cucumber, whole lime chopped into quarters, an

apple, half an avocado and chia seeds. It might be

full of goodness, but this is the most challenging

to drink. He often adds beetroot, he tells me,

which is both nutritious amd sweet, and turns

the drink a stunning shade of pink. EC

Juicing for Health Workshop, Sat 16 May, Cluny

Hall, St Pancras Church, Irelands Lane, £30.

01273 220 159,


food: the nibbler

Edible updates

Sunday dining

If it’s Easter, then the wonderful Southover Grange tea window

of joy must be opening. Get your lollies, sandwiches and homemade

cake and grab a bench or a patch of grass in Lewes’ most

beautiful public space to admire the flowerbeds.

There’s a new food business in the North Street area, set up by

Mark Gray, called The Prep Kitchen. If you’re an event organiser,

caterer, market stall holder or restaurant in need of extra

space, this might be useful. Located by the Foundry Gallery, it’s a fully equipped preparation area that

you can hire out by the hour (minimum two hours), day or half day. Mark tells us that a deep clean

takes place at every changeover to ensure to avoid cross contamination. But you still have to clean up

after yourself! £140 half day, £225 full day, 07742 697834,

This issue has a theme of Sundays, and Lewes has many fine food establishments well known for

excellent roasts during the day, pubs: Pelham Arms, King’s Head, Elly, Dorset, Swan, JHT, Rights

of Man, Lewes Arms, Black Horse, Snowdrop. Then there’s Pelham House, Limetree, Real Eating

Co and Shelleys. But many don’t serve food Sunday evenings, so it’s also worth mentioning some

places where you can get food then – for example, Famiglia, Bill’s, Shanaz, Beijing, Spice Merchant,

Pailin, Chaula’s, the Lewes Fish Bar and the newly-re-opened (hurrah!) Hearth Pizzeria. Food

news?, or follow me @LewesNibbler

Yorkshire puddings from Pelham Arms

drink: review

Photo by Katie Moorman

Cocktails on Fisher St

Very happy hour

We’ve reason to raise a glass this month, so we

close up the office one Thursday evening and

head to Happy Hour at the Coffeehouse bar.

Ever the genial host, Cam has a table reserved

and ushers us into a back lounge with more than

a hint of the Speakeasy about it. The scene is set

for sipping some hard liquor.

The menu is an informed selection of both

classic and contemporary cocktails, and induces

a moment of collective indecision. Who will go

with the time-honored Margarita, Cosmopolitan,

Old Fashioned or Negroni? Should we hang

convention and opt for an Espresso Martini,

made with Small Batch coffee, Absolut vanilla

vodka and Kahlua? The Apple Jack Gin Sour

sounds delicious – bathtub gin, shaken with citrus

and bitters (£8.50) but I opt for a Margarita

(£7). A cocktail bar acid test, the Coffeehouse

version is exactly as it should be. A perfect gumsucking

blend of sweet, sour and salt, served

– as is only right – by generous measure in a

salt-rimmed Mexican hat glass complete with a

wedge of lime.

It’s 2-for-1 until 7.30pm on Thursdays, so the

table is soon filled with the objects of our indecision.

My Margarita has some stiff competition

from the perfectly blush Cosmopolitans and

verdant Mojitos. The taste-testing continues

late into the evening but must not have proved

definitive as none of us can quite remember

which one was best. Lizzie Lower

The Bar at Coffeehouse, Fisher Street, Thurs-

Sat, 6.30-11.30pm, 07721 942845

wild food

Elderflower Fields Nature Walk

Go wild in the country

“Go on, eat it,” says Paul. He’s handed me some

small nettle leaves, the first I’ve seen this year. “Pick

the top four leaves, scrunch them up in your fingers

to get rid of the sting, then eat them like a rabbit.

Front teeth first, not just your molars, otherwise all

you get is a bitter taste. There’s actually quite a lot

of sweetness in them.”

Paul is in charge of the environmental activities at

the Elderflower Fields Festival, and we’re just finishing

a tour of the site in Pippingford Park, near

Nutley in the Ashdown Forest. Elderflower Fields

is a family-friendly festival, about to clock up its

fourth edition. As usual there’ll be plenty of music,

food & drink and sporting activities, but Paul’s main

job is to take both adults and kids round the site,

showing them the abundant wildlife that will share

the four-day adventure with the 5,000 human visitors

expected to attend.

He’s a brilliant teacher, it must be said. It’s March

4, four days into (meteorological) spring, and, in

his words, ‘everything’s started to wake up.’ We’ve

been walking round for an hour and a half, and

every moment he’s enlightened me with a fascinatingly

detailed fact about the surroundings, drawing

questions from me, and giving out pithy, fact-full


It’s a fairly rugged looking environment, part heath,

part woodland, part open field, with native trees

– plenty of silver birch, plenty of Scotch pine – to

the fore. I learn that these two trees were ‘pioneer’

trees, the first to take root in Britain after the Ice

Age. I learn loads of things, in fact: the flight patterns

of fieldfares, murmurating like starlings above

us; the hybrid nature of the larch; how sap feeds

trees; how medieval people made candles from rush

stems; how to use sphagnum moss to carry water;

how the hazel tree cross-pollinates; why to be careful

when you’re picking edible bull rush roots out of

pond (accidentally eat their similar-looking neighbour,

and you’ll end up in hospital).

The second-best moment is finding a huge woodant

nest, that’s just been disturbed by a woodpecker.

He gets a worker ant to walk onto his finger, and

shows how it bites him, raising itself up onto its

back legs and injecting formic acid into his skin.

Then, happy the creature is so small, I ask for it

to be transferred onto my finger, and it has a go

at me, too.

The best moment? Eating the nettles, of course.

Masticating in Paul’s approved manner, I do indeed

taste a pleasant sweetness, tempering the bitter

aftertaste that follows. On my springtime country

walks I’ll never be short of a snack again. Alex Leith

So Sussex brings you the Elderflower Fields Festival,

Pippingford Park, May 22-25,

Paul will be conducting bug hunts and nature walks

throughout the Bank Holiday weekend, supported by

the Sussex Wildlife Trust and Circle of Life Discovery


Sunday Roast

£18.50 two courses

£21.25 three courses

Choose from 21-day aged roast beef,

free-range chicken, roast pork or lamb. Two

choices every Sunday. Plus,

homemade beetroot and carrot nut roast.

Kids Sunday Roast £6.95

Kids eat free between 11.30am-12.30pm

accompanied by an adult ordering a main


18 Cliffe High Street

Lewes BN7 2AH

T: 01273 402650




David Bland, Flint Owl Bakery

We’ve been in this building since around 2010.

I wanted to have the bakery in Lewes but couldn’t

find any suitable buildings. And then I spotted this

little unit in Glynde.

Our building is the old dairy. I think this was

the bottling room, which is why it’s on a slant.

Underneath there’s a deep bunker with thick brick

walls, where they’d store the milk.

My first customer was The Ram in Firle, so

they’re our oldest friends. Today we cover an area

from Alfriston, across to Haywards Heath and

down to Brighton. We supply around 30 food

businesses: restaurants, gastro pubs, cafés and farm

shops, plus our own shop in Lewes.

In my 20s I went travelling a lot. I loved travelling

around Scandinavia and started eating such

characterful breads. When I got the travelling bug

out of me, I wanted to learn a craft – and found I

was good at baking. I love it.

Photos by Mark Bridge

Someone’s usually here from 8pm and we bake

until around 8am. Then the kitchen opens, preparing

food for the shop. Friday night’s the big night,

so we start earlier. We could bake up to 1,500 loaves,

plus cakes and tray bakes.

Essentially we’re making bread the old-fashioned

way. We’ve got linen cloths, a mixer, a wooden table

and an oven. And our hands.

All the bread is made from our own blend of

flours. We might call a loaf ‘white’ but really it’s

white with a bit of light rye, a bit of malt… That’s

how we produce distinctive products. All those little

changes will adjust the flavour.

Sunday is the only day we’re shut. We work

Sunday night but don’t work on Saturday night.

It’s always been that way. I like to see my kids on a

Sunday. As told to Mark Bridge

209 High Street. 01273 472769.


Nestling below the South Downs with a picturesque cottage garden.

The Cricketers’ Arms is a popular destination for discerning customers who enjoy

quality Harvey’s ales served direct from the cask and delicious homemade food

prepared by our enthusiastic chefs. We are open all day with food served between

the hours of 12—9pm daily.

Twitter: TCricketersArms Facebook: thecricketersarmsberwick Tel: 01323 870 469

feature: food boxes

Fin and Farm

Muir Jankowski

What is Fin and Farm? It’s like a veggie box

service, but we also sell a lot of fresh, seasonal, local

produce items, such as fruit juices, milk, charcuterie,

cheese, spice blends and meat. It’s all sourced from

Sussex producers, between Chichester and Hastings.

Where’s your warehouse? We don’t have one! All

our produce is collected and delivered on the same

day in our refrigerated truck, which ensures freshness.

Customers can order online, and there are up

to two deliveries a week.

How many different products do you offer? Over

a thousand in any given month; this will increase in

the summer, when there’s more diversity.

Are you an ethical company? As ethical as we can

be. We feel that we are supporting the local economy,

and attempting to limit our carbon footprint

at the same time. We offer a very fair and personal

service to our producers, too, because we see them

twice a week and offer them customer feedback.

Who are your customers? A surprisingly diverse

range of people from young singles to families to

old couples. And a number of restaurants and pubs,

such as The King’s Head, The Snowdrop, Limetree

Kitchen and Laporte’s and Iydea, The Foragers, The

Chimney House and Troll’s Pantry in Brighton and


What’s your role in the company? My partner

Nick and the third member of the team Jim do

all the collecting and delivering. They sometimes

have to be up at 4.30am. My job is the nice one:

administration and customer relations. I visit a lot of

farms and keep track of what we’re offering online.

I spend most of my time on the internet looking at

pictures of food.

What problems do you encounter in the business?

Usually the weather: droughts, floods or snow

can cause havoc with crops and delivery. Once, donkeys

trampled a field of carrots. We’ve never failed

to make a delivery, though we’ve been late once or

twice when it’s been snowing. In January 2010 during

that cold snap, Nick had to heroically jump out

of the van and stop it sliding down Southover Street,

one of the steepest in Brighton. It was a baptism of

fire… or ice maybe.

Where’s the ‘fin’ come in? We used to deliver fish

as well, and we might do again, but we’ve decided to

concentrate on other products.

Is the vegetable produce dull in winter? We try

to avoid that “oh no, not another turnip” response.

We offer peppers and salad leaves all year round.

Local producers are very imaginative and there’s

always a wide variety of vegetables on offer.

Give us a top cooking tip… Make a paste of

smoked paprika and smoked salt mixed with maple

syrup and spread this, with a little olive oil, on

grilled slices of aubergine. This makes great fake

bacon, for a credible vegetarian BLT. Alex Leith

07966 972530,


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we try

Eco Skyhouse

Rooms with a view

Twenty years ago, one of my favourite ever holidays

came out of one of the worst. We cut short a terrible

foreign stay and for a week ‘holidayed’ in our own

town. It gave a whole new perspective. So when offered

the chance to try the new luxury eco bed and

breakfast at the top of Cuilfail estate, I’m excited.

I arrive on a beautiful spring day, wending my way

to the aptly-named two level Skyhouse – an angled

and striking Baufritz building (Grand Designs viewers

may remember this German manufacturer of

eco-friendly ‘kit’ houses so well engineered that

they take just days to erect). Almost the entire

frontage is glass. I walk up the drive past the front

lawn and elegant pond - and look back at astonishing

views over Lewes and the Downs.

Host/owner, Amy Burgess, who lives with her partner

Jim on the upper level, greets me and takes

me to the rear door, which opens into a spacious

kitchen and lounge area for guests. My husband

Rob and I are staying in one of three luxurious ensuite

bedrooms (one wheelchair-accessible). Oak

floorboards cover underfloor heating, and there’s a

massive bed. Rob is at the Dripping Pan watching

football, so I make myself a cuppa using the boiling

water tap, curl up on the blue sofa to read, but keep

getting distracted by the view. When Rob arrives

after a precious Lewes win (I heard the crowd cheer

when they scored), we borrow a torch and head to

the Snowdrop, cutting down Chapel Hill. We have

a pint and a tasty pulled-pork burger before walking

back up. It’s a steep walk, but pleasurable. The skies

are clear and the stars beautiful. There’s no moon

though, so we’re grateful for the torch.

Next morning, after a good sleep and an excellent

bath (lovely fluffy towels), we go for a brief stroll

out the back gate, which takes you to Malling

Down. Then we return ready for breakfast made by

Photos by Rob Read

Amy’s young neighbour, Lottie, who has invented

the Skyhouse speciality, the Smoothie Bowl. You

choose red, purple, green or yellow. We’ve picked

red, comprising smoothie, yoghurt, nuts, seeds and

freshly chopped red berries. There’s also Flint Owl

bread and local preserves. Amy makes us both a cappuccino,

and explains how the Skyhouse came into

being. She met Anita Roddick in the States twenty

years ago, and developed a interest in coming to

Sussex to create something environmentally meaningful.

After establishing a successful US mentoring

business, Amy moved to Lewes four years ago,

where she and a team created this zero carbon

house, which includes many eco features such as a

wood pellet biomass boiler, solar power and rainwater


Amy is happy to give guests ‘eco’ tours, but equally,

I’d recommend it as a stunning place to stay, where

you feel miles from anywhere. Emma Chaplin

Dogs welcome. For more information on rates and

availability, and a fascinating blog and video of how

the Skyhouse came to be built visit the website,





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icks and mortar

St John sub Castro

The church under the castle

Walking past the church of St John sub Castro,

standing proud on its ancient site surveying the

Pells, its brick and flint tower a reflection of the

Norman castle which lords over it in turn, it is easy

to imagine it has always been there. But the church

we see today, clad in scaffolding while repairs to the

roof and tower take place, is a relatively modern addition

to Lewes, built in 1839 at the start of Queen

Victoria’s reign. Pictures from the time show the

setting to be surprisingly pastoral. St John’s was

constructed in anticipation of the town expanding

and by the 1851 Religious Census it had indeed

become the most visited church in Lewes, with a

congregation of 500.

The current church, built to the design of architect

George Cheesman from Brighton to accommodate

1013 people, replaced a much older Saxon church,

the arched entrance to which has been built into the

northern outside wall (the church does not lie eastwest,

but rather north-south due to space constrictions).

Set into the eastern outside wall are stones

commemorating Magnus, a nobleman who cast

off his greatness to become an anchorite, walled

up outside the chancel of the old church. The site

was once home to two Saxon burial mounds, but

by 1839 one of these had already disappeared and

the other was demolished to make way for the new

church. A tablet taken from the old church and installed

in the chancel of the new remembers Peter

Guerin Crofts, Rector of St John’s, who died aged

39 in 1784. Fifteen years later, his son of the same

name became Rector, and remained in post for 48

years, overseeing the construction of the current


Now, it is all change once again as St John’s joins

forces with Southover and Malling churches to

form Trinity Church. Phase one of a major rebuilding

programme will see the wooden pews removed

and replaced with metal stacking chairs and a new

floor put in, so that the church can become a true

community centre, replacing the current church

hall on Talbot Terrace. The chancel will be remodelled

and it is hoped will form the centrepiece of

a proposed new band-led family Sunday service.

The cast iron chancel screen, a memorial to the

First World War, may be moved to a new position

around the war memorial plaque, and there are to

be two new rooms near the entrance, including a

new kitchen. Even more ambitious changes are

planned for phase two. Ideas include building a residential

flat in the tower and installing glass doors

giving a clear view from the chancel all the way out

to the street. Ciar Byrne

The church is staging an exhibition in the autumn of

its past, present and future, and would like to hear

from anyone with memorabilia or memories of the

church and the surrounding neighbourhood. Please


Photo courtesy Edward Reeves


we try

Women’s creative retreat

Dance as if no one was watching

“We’re going to

dance as if no one is

watching us”.

It’s easier to move

just one part of

the body at a time.

Keeping my arms

rigidly to my side,

I close my eyes and

try not to feel inhibited.

There are

four of us women,

dancing, building

momentum over

the hour until I no

longer feel so embarrassed. Until, actually, I feel

almost euphoric.

This is my first one day retreat. Lead by serene,

beautiful Riga Forbes, today is specifically aimed

at women. It’s a creative retreat that runs between

10.30am and 5.30pm. The theme is re-birth to mirror

the passing of the seasons, and we each bring

with us an issue we wish to shed.

The setting is ideal - a large farmhouse in the countryside

a few miles outside of Lewes, surrounded

by fields and animals to talk to when we go on our

mid-afternoon walk. The day is cold and we walk

around the grounds with blankets on our heads,

looking like apocalypse survivors emerging from a

long time underground.

I enjoy the movement of the day. Everything has

a natural fluidity and we flow from one activity to

the next. We start by sharing a bit about ourselves

and decide together that the rest of the day will be

in silence - we will speak only when reflecting but

keep to ourselves for lunch, which is included, and

the country walk.

I usually hate silence but this is like a comfortable

old blanket - soothing rather than smothering. It’s

a perfect interlude

for what’s progressively


a very busy life,

and respecting

others’ needs for

introspection feels

more intimate

than life-history

over-sharing. The

silence is also

deeply relaxing.

I ask Riga how she

designed the retreats,

which she’s

been holding for both genders, as well as expectant

mothers, for the past 12 years. She tells me:

“Through the rhythmic process of engaging with

dance (action) and meditation (deep rest) we become

less inhibited in the act of image-making and

the impulse to be creative is given freedom.

My hope is that people will leave the retreats feeling

that they have been nourished at a deep level

and that a space has been cleared for them to continue

to be creative in their everyday life.”

The whole day is leading towards the final hour

where we explore our creativity. We spread out on

the floor, surrounded by paints, pastels, oils and watercolours

and are set free on a blank page. I enjoy

the process of being a child again, experimenting

with different ways of putting colour on paper.

Riga is right. The juxtaposition of movement and

absolute stillness; the country air and healthy, vegetarian

lunch; the permission to be creative, all

form a truly unique day, which continues to resonate,

as I proudly show off my latest masterpiece.

Sophie Turton

Upcoming retreats 2 May, 6 June, 12 July



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the way we worship

Because of our Sunday theme this month, we’ve decided to call this series The

Way We Worship. These lovely portraits of people who produce sound or

music as part of their religious practice have been taken by Cammie Toloui,

who is both a massage therapist and a photographer.,

Stephen Groves, St Pancras church, organist

What is a sacred place for you? “The human heart where God will enter

and dwell if we open ourselves to Him in humility and prayerful peace.”


the way we worship

Nick Cullen, bell ringer, Southover church

What is a sacred place for you?

“A mountain with a wide view of natural wildness.”

the way we worship

David Ollosson, Director of Music, St Anne’s church

What is a sacred place for you? “St Anne’s, which has offered a glimpse into

something beyond our immediate experience for 900 years.”


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5 mins to village. Available for rental. Sleeps 4.

Wi-fi. Lewes owners. E.mail :

Juice your way to better


Workshops across


the way we worship

Karen Dobres, member of the Soka Gakkai International Buddhists

What is a sacred place for you? “Anywhere I go has the potential to be sacred, because

the Buddha state is something we can reveal from within, at any moment, anywhere.”



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52 High Street, Lewes, East Sussex BN7 1XE

01273 473400

we try

Photo by Mark Bridge

Self-Hypnotising for Health

Switching yourself off

I’m sitting on the beach at Cuckmere Haven, strong

sun warming my back, listening to the sea as waves

ebb and flow along the shore, pulling the shingle.

Actually where I am is in a chair in the River Clinic’s

new location in Malling, listening to Lynne

Russell’s voice, guiding me through a visualisation.

Cuckmere Haven is the relaxing place I’ve decided

to imagine myself being in. Lynne is a hypnotherapist

who also teaches self-hypnosis, and we’re doing

a one-to-one taster session to get a sense of what

her day workshops are like. “There are a lot of misunderstandings

about hypnosis, based on the sorts

of things stage hypnotists get up to. That’s not what

I’m about.”

Essentially, she explains, the aim of her workshops

is to teach participants to learn a safe way to get

themselves into (and out of) a light trance. This

“gives our brains and bodies an energising rest and

the inward focus allows the unconscious mind to

become more open to positive suggestion. We can

then tap into our mental resources to learn to feel

calmer and more in control.”

Feeling ‘safe’ is important, because, she explains

“self-hypnotising appeals to those who are interested

in hypnotherapy, but concerned about remaining

in control – which you always are, especially

with this”.

A couple of weeks previously, she’d sent me a form

to complete, which included a question about what

I’d like to get out of the session. My immediate

thought was ‘to sleep better’. Lynne says that’s a

common one, as are “phobias, anxiety and confidence


She reassures me that there’s never any danger of

becoming so deeply self-hypnotised we won’t ‘wake

up’. And getting interrupted, by the front door bell,

a ringing phone or any random noise is not a problem.

“It’s completely natural for brainwave patterns

to go in and out of trance”.

Lynne talks me through the stages by which we can

take ourselves into a trance state. She has lots of

ideas and suggestions as to how to tailor this process

precisely to suit yourself and what you want to

get out of it.

We try going through this exercise together, and it’s

a really interesting experience of feeling present in

the room, but also detached. When we’re finished,

I leave feeling calm and relaxed, and yawning a lot.

But the big question is, does it work? Well, at this

stage, it’s too soon to tell. I did wake that night, but I

felt less anxious about it, and I did get back to sleep.

What I will do now is practise ten or fifteen minutes

self-hypnosis either every day, or a few times

a week, for a couple of weeks, to learn to develop

what Lynne calls mental ‘cart tracks’ towards being

able to switch off an overactive brain.

Emma Chaplin

Next Hypnotising for Health day, Sat 18, 10am-

4.30pm, St Mary’s Church Hall, Highdown Road. £55

per person (concessionary rates available), including

an information pack and CD. 07970 245118




What’s open when

Photo by Mark Bridge

Despite being about as religious as a turnip, I am

a firm believer in Sundays being a day of rest.

Sundays are for nursing hangovers, doing laundry,

watching re-runs of Downton Abbey, and avoiding

leaving the house. For a long time, Lewes businesses

seemed to share this view. Time was when

– to paraphrase The Specials – this town was a

ghost town on Sundays. Nothing opened. Nothing


But nowadays, the demands of the modern consumer

having prevailed, you can actually do stuff,

and buy things, even on the Sabbath.

Super-early risers can grab a tea or coffee from

the Car Boot Sale (behind Waitrose) from 6am,

but you’ll have to wait a few hours if you want a

sit-down breakfast. Le Magasin and Bill’s, open

at 9am. Waterstones is, as far as we could tell, the

only shop in town – chain or independent – open

at 9am on a Sunday, and you can get a coffee there,

too, but most places don’t open until slightly later.

Laporte’s, the Real Eating Company, and Pleasant

Stores all open at 10am, Buttercup 10.30am,

Baltica 11am – but, by 3pm or 4pm on a Sunday

afternoon, not many cafés remain open.

Cliffe is the busiest end of town on a Sunday, with

most places open from 10am onwards. Special

props to the volunteers at Oxfam, Age UK and

Cancer Research for not taking the day off (and

the Heart Foundation, up the other end of the

High Street). Tucked away on Malling Street,

Pastorale Antiques is open 10am-4pm; the other

antique shops on Cliffe don’t open until midday,

but are all worth a visit. The Stitchery and Riverside

Art and Framing are the only places open in

the Riverside, both from 11am-3pm.

All the chain stores in town stay open until at

least 4pm, but things generally get quieter as you

head up the High Street. Exceptions to the rule

are Wickle (9.30am-6pm) and Twinkle Twinkle,

selling women’s clothes and accessories (11am-

4pm). Further up the hill, the usually busy Station

Street practically has tumbleweed floating down it

(although round the corner, Symposium is open

12-6pm); head to Lewes Flea Market instead, and

hunt for hidden gems (10am-5pm).

Although the Needlemaker’s is physically open

on Sundays, most of its shops are closed. However,

you can still pop into the Needlemaker’s Café

(10am-4pm) for a cream tea, or pick up Asian deli

treats from Pestle & Mortar (11am-4pm). If you

fancy a dose of culture, the Chalk Gallery (10am-

5pm) and the Hop Gallery are minutes away.

If shopping’s not really your bag, or you’ve got

kids in tow, Lewes Castle and Museum is

open 11am-5.30pm. Anne of Cleves House, on

Southover High Street, is open 11am-5pm, and

has a café and Tudor tea garden, too. They’re both

essentials to any Lewes day out, so you may as well

make it a Sunday. Because you can, now.

Moya Crockett


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talking shop

Lee Gasson and James Cress at The Outdoor Shop

We’re a footwear specialist with one of the

biggest ranges you’ll find in Sussex. We stock

over 130 styles from sandals, flip-flops and boots

to wellies and shoes. We also have everything

you’ll need to enjoy the outdoors from season to

season. As soon as Easter arrives, we’ll be getting

more camping equipment in.

We’re so lucky here in Lewes. Just five minutes

from the edge of town and you’re up on the

Downs with amazing walks in every direction.

Whether it’s up to Black Cap and on to Ditchling

or over Caburn towards Firle. Being so close to

the South Downs Way, we get lots of walkers in to

pick up some new socks, or a waterproof if they’ve

been caught out by the weather.

Walking/trekking poles are fast becoming an

essential piece of kit with walkers of all ages

and abilities. They add stability and help going

Photos by Lizzie Lower

up and down hills, taking a lot strain off knees and

hips. A pair is always of more use than one.

We’re closed on a Sunday and, as you expect,

take the opportunity to get outdoors. (LG) I

like to be in the sea, having a surf off Brighton or

West Wittering beach, followed by a BBQ. (JC)

I’m out walking on Seaford seafront with my wife

and two year old and then home for a spot of


Never underestimate the importance of a

good pair of socks. A good pair of socks, well

suited to what you’re doing and the time of year,

can transform the fit of your boots or shoes. It’s

great to be out in the countryside but if your feet

are uncomfortable you’re not going to get very

far. As told to Lizzie Lower 01273 487840


feature: football

Sunday League

Callum Archer-Dennis - Elephant and Castle football team

So you run the Elly football team… Me and

my brother. Technically, I’m Secretary and he’s

Manager, but we both do a bit of both.

Is it hard to get an XI out? It has been lately.

Facebook helps enormously – I don’t know how

people managed before – but we’ve been struggling

to get a team out recently. Yesterday [Sun

15 March] only eleven turned up, so we couldn’t

bring any subs on.

I photographed you before the match [on

Priory School Playing Fields]. How did it go?

We lost 6-2, against Stone Cross Newhaven. It’s

not as bad as it sounds, actually. We let three in at

the end, because we were knackered. We had no

subs, you see… That sounds like a terrible result,

but it’s pretty typical for Sunday League.

What’s your heaviest ever defeat? One game,

in a Cup match, we were playing a team from

a higher division, and only seven of our players

turned up. That’s the minimum you can have for

the game to go on. We lost 24-0.

Do you make sure to get an early night before

a game? [Matches generally kick off at 10.30am]

Not us. The bulk of the team is a bunch of mates,

and we’re generally on the piss the night before,

so we’re playing on a hangover. Some teams take

it more seriously.

And what do you do afterwards? We go to the

pub! The Elephant and Castle, naturally. We do a

post mortem – which can be quite long if we win –

and watch a match or two on the TV.

So how often do you win? We’ve won a couple

this year, and when you’ve been losing as much

as we have, it’s a glorious feeling. It was against

a team in Eastbourne, away, who were second or

third in the League. Sometimes when it’s chucking

it down with rain outside and you wake up with a

hangover and have to play away you wonder if it’s

all worth it. Times like those persuade you it is.

Are there many bad injuries? The occasional

injury happens. I’ve done my knee ligaments a

couple of times, which means six weeks out. One

of our team-mates broke his leg – not a clean

break thankfully – earlier this season.

And what about on-the-pitch aggro? Some

teams are worse than others. We might have a few

slanging matches but no physical stuff, to speak

of. However, one of our players has recently been

suspended for three games after a bit of a scuffle.

Do you ever play in a fancy continental formation?

No. It’s usually 4-4-2 or 4-5-1, though we

did play with three defenders and wing-backs

yesterday [see above]. It worked for a while…

Describe your last goal. Actually I’ve scored

quite a lot this season, for a central defender. A

corner came in, the ball bounced kindly for me,

and I thumped it in, from four yards.

Who washes your kit? Thankfully, they do that

at the Elly.

Alex Leith




Lewes Leisure Centre

8 - 12 years

Week 1

Monday 30th March – Thursday 2nd April

Week 2

Tuesday 7th – Friday 10th April


£7.05 for the whole day

Activities may include:

• Swimming

• Arts and Crafts

• Trampolining

• Roller Booting

Remember to bring:

• Packed lunch*

• Swimming kit

• A change of clothes

• Plenty to drink

• £1 for the lockers

*Lunch boxes should adhere to our packed lunch policy

Please do not bring:

• Mobile phones

• Handheld games

• Toys of value

Lewes • Newhaven • Peacehaven • Ringmer • Seaford 10

feature: football

Lewes FC

Interim gaffer Steve Brown

Being hired to stave off relegation is commonplace

for football managers these days, but new interim

Lewes Football Club boss Steve Brown is no

stranger to pressure.

In 1998 as a player with Charlton Athletic, Brown

was confronted with probably the toughest situation

for any player – the penalty shootout. Not

only that but this was the Division One Play

Off final, at Wembley, for a place in the Premier

League and all the riches that goes with it.

Charlton may have won and Brown scored but the

defender recalls: “it’s so horrific. You’re shaking

walking to the penalty box, shaking when you put

the ball down. You can’t hear anything and you’re

just thinking ‘pick a spot and don’t change your

mind.’ I decided to go to the keeper’s right but the

ball ended up going higher and towards the middle

so that shows how far out I was.”

Brown made 242 appearances for Charlton in his

12 years at the club, before moving to Reading in

2002. He stayed with The Royals for three years

and 40 games until the cruciate ligament damage

he sustained as an 18 year old finally got the better

of him and he was forced to retire.

“I had no real plans to stay within the game,” he

admits, “and I actually wanted to do something different.

I took a year out completely and did all the

things I couldn’t do as a player – I went on holiday

in October and had Christmas away – but I realised

I had a real passion for getting back to football.”

Brown made a move into coaching, acquiring a

UEFA A licence, before moving into coaching jobs

with Charlton, West Ham, and Brighton.

He became assistant manager at Dover Athletic

and then manager at Ebbsfleet United, both clubs

at the time in the Blue Square South, a division

higher than Lewes.

“Ebbsfleet decided to make a change and now I

find myself at Lewes. That’s football in a nutshell

really – you rarely know where you’ll be from one

year to the next. You move on and focus on your

next job.”

And about that ‘next job,’ Brown admits that he’s

“walking into a team which is hovering above relegation.

I want to get away from there as quickly

as possible, so do the players, so do the supporters

and so does the board.”

“The board have asked me to be interim manager

and they’ll review it over the summer. If I’m part

of that then I’ll have some ideas for the future,

if I’m not then I’ll move on. I have a passion for

football, I love being involved in it and if I can, I

am happy to help anyone.”

And Brown also has a word about the supporters.

“Every fan base has a role to play. The Lewes fans

are brilliant, have been brilliant and will be brilliant.

Just get behind the players and drive them

on.” Words and photo by James Boyes



Santon’s visualisations of Phoenix Wharf (top), Pell Cut (above) and the North Street Quarter (right)

feature: development

Reviving the Phoenix

The first of a series looking at what lies ahead for the North Street area

The rise and fall of

John Every’s Phoenix

Iron Works has been

well documented,

from its North Street

birth in 1832 to its

eventual demise in

1986. Even today, the

streets of Lewes bear

witness to the Every

legacy. Not just in

the old warehouse buildings by the river and

the road names of the industrial estate, but

marked on cast-iron drain covers, bollards,

gutters and coal holes across the town. By

2005, Angel Property had acquired much of

the former Phoenix site and was planning to

build a cinema, a car park, shops, bars and

over 800 new properties – including high-rise

flats – on what it was calling the ‘Phoenix

Quarter’. Revised plans later reduced the visual

impact of the development, but little progress

was ever seen because Angel Property went

into administration in 2009. Yet the property

crash that claimed Angel wasn’t bad news for

everyone. Angel’s reported £27 million investment

became a bargain buy for the Santon

Group and investment business MAS, which

apparently paid significantly less for the site in

2012. As well as submitting new plans for the

area, they’re proposing a new name: the ‘North

Street Quarter’. Since then, consultations have

been held, opinions have been gathered and

campaigns have been waged. Which brings us

to today. Or, more correctly, to the middle of

March, when Lewes District Council (LDC)

and Santon North Street Ltd jointly submitted

a planning application that included 416

houses, workshops, a

new health centre and

public spaces. Between

them, they own almost

all the 6.3 hectare

(15 acre) site; LDC is

responsible for around

30% of properties –

those to the west of

North Street – and

Santon owns the

remainder, with a few exceptions. This application

is now in the hands of the South Downs

National Park Authority, which will be holding

a public consultation before making a decision

later in the year. The redevelopment of the

bus station and the derelict Wenban-Smith

warehouses is part of Lewes District Council’s

joint core strategy but doesn’t form part of

these plans. A separate application by Waitrose,

which owns the land behind its supermarket, is

expected by the end of 2015. Meanwhile Lewes

Phoenix Rising Ltd, a community development

company set up last year, is raising £20,000 to

submit its own plan for 3.5 acres of the site.

Although it doesn’t own the land, it wants to

propose “an exemplary scheme” to be considered

alongside the Santon/LDC submission.

Instead of demolishing all the old warehouses,

it’s suggesting 48 rental homes along with work

and social enterprise space within renovated

Phoenix Ironworks buildings.

In the next few months, we’ll take a closer look at

the planned North Street Quarter development

and alternatives being proposed. So far we’ve

spent time with Lewes District Council and

Santon (more next month) and look forward to

talking to other interested parties. Mark Bridge


feature: wildlife


Easter Everywhere

Palm Sunday is when Christians commemorate

Jesus’ famed donkey ride into Jerusalem. Unfortunately,

recreating that palm branch strewn journey

in Britain has been botanically challenging as palm

trees don’t grow in our climate. Instead, churches

gathered sprigs of native yews to provide the

ceremonial decor. In some areas the Sunday before

Easter became known as Yew Sunday. And that’s

why every churchyard has a yew.

Well, actually the yew’s churchyard connection is

because yews are evergreen and can miraculously

regrow from a dead stump. The trees were planted

as a symbol of everlasting life and a reminder of the

Easter resurrection. But, hold up; how come over

500 churchyard yews in England and Wales are

older than their churches? It must mean that the

yews themselves were pagan places of worship and

the churches were built around them. Or they were

planted on the graves of plague victims to purify

the dead. Or it could be something to do with long

bows. Or keeping the waiting congregation sheltered

and dry each Sunday.

No-one seems sure where this association started

but, whatever the reason, yews look right at home

in churchyards. Dark, dense, intimidating and

unmoving they solemnly preside over the sad

ceremonies held underneath their boughs and have

seen generations come and go (but mostly go). Yews

themselves deliver death, every part of them is highly

poisonous; their leaves, their bark, their seeds.

Only the fleshy red arils around the toxic seeds are

harmless, encouraging birds to feed on them and

disperse the poisonous cargo within. Yet death itself

does not seem to inconvenience the yew.

Two rival British yews are advertised as ‘The oldest

living thing in Europe’. At an alleged 5000 years old

these trees had already been around for 3000 when

Jesus went riding into Jerusalem. The problem is

it’s hard to accurately age a yew. As they get older

their blood-red heartwood rots, leaving them hollow

inside and without traditional growth rings. Its

heart may no longer be in it but that won’t stop the

yew from growing.

There are no yews in Lewes which can rival these

great evergreen granddaddies. Some of our whippersnappers

are probably just a couple of hundred

years old. Our nearest ancient old-timer is 20

minutes to the east at Wilmington where a monstrous

yew dominates the churchyard. At a reputed

age of 1600 the tree is 600 years older than the

church. Supported by wooden props and straining

against rusting chains it’s as if a travelling circus is

exhibiting an aging dinosaur. If you’ve never been,

it’s worth a visit over Easter. For me, standing in

the shadow of a plant that is 40 times older than

myself is humbling, and a reminder that for us mere

humans, life is brief.

Michael Blencowe, Sussex Wildlife Trust

Illustration by Mark Greco



Philip Pople

A Lewes gardening legend

Right in the heart of town, just a few steps away

from the bustle of School Hill, the garden of

Lewes House is a green oasis. And for the past 37

years, its lawns, herbaceous borders and ancient

trees have been tended by just one man, Philip

Pople, who retired at the end of March.

The garden has been the scene of royal visits and

when Mumford and Sons came to Lewes, they

were photographed in the pre-1830s grotto hidden

at the bottom of a copse of evergreen oaks.

Philip took over the tending of the garden,

which belongs to the District Council, in

1978, splitting his time between Lewes

House and the glasshouses at Southover

Grange, where all the plants for the district

used to be grown. He comes from

gardening stock – two of his greatgrandfathers

and his grandfather

were gardeners – and he started

training as a gardener when he

left school at 13. His first job

was at Telscombe Manor, which

at the time had a staff of seven

in the garden; both the head

gardener and the assistant

gardener had been trained at

Kew. From there he moved to

a team of two looking after

the glasshouses at the tea

gardens at Litlington.

“I like the country

house, cottagey style

of gardening,” explains

Philip, who is perhaps

best known for the

colourful tubs in front of

Lewes House. He has also

provided cut-flowers for numerous

civic events over the years, including

the Mayor Making ceremony.

Showing me around the garden he has looked

after for nearly four decades, Philip starts with

the hot border, which includes deep scarlet Salvia

grahamii acquired from Margery Fish’s famous

cottage garden at East Lambrook Manor in 1968.

“I’ve taken cuttings every winter since then to

keep the stock going,” Philip reveals. “I don’t buy

many plants. Most are things I’ve brought from

home or swapped with other people.”

At the southern end of the garden are circular

borders of summer bedding around a sundial,

a focal point when viewing the garden

from the house. These are given structure

by box balls, which have so far avoided

the dreaded box blight. “I don’t clip them

until mid-October, once the summer

bedding plants have come out and

I’m getting ready to dig the beds.

I can then rake up every clipping.

Cleanliness is so important.”

In the long border, underneath

a sunny east-facing wall, spring

brings a carpet of blue chionodoxas,

while summer heralds

clouds of sweetly-scented

jasmine. “This garden reaches

its peak between late May and

early July.”

In retirement, local history

enthusiast Philip hopes to

continue helping out at

Heritage Open Days, and

finally to get some time

to tend his fifth of an acre

at home in Bishopstone.

“I hope I’m passing on

something for the next few

years that gives a lot of people

a lot of delight. It’s been a very special

place for me.” Ciar Byrne

Photo by Emma Chaplin



David Jarman

Burra at the Jerwood

The Jerwood Gallery in Hastings,

which celebrated its third

birthday last month, is always

well worth a visit for its regularly

changing displays of works

from the Jerwood Foundation’s

superb collection of, mostly,

twentieth century British art.

Until 6 June, there is the added

bonus of an exhibition devoted

to Edward Burra (1905-76):

wonderful watercolours, drawings,

even a painted umbrella

stand thrown in for good

measure. Two small rooms, one

focusing on Burra and Rye, the

other on Burra and Hastings

itself, form a modest show, but a highly rewarding

one nonetheless.

Burra spent his whole life in and around Rye,

first at Springfield Lodge, the family home in

Playden, then, from 1953 until 1969, at Chapel

House in Rye itself. While there he painted The

Churchyard, Rye (1959-61), which the Jerwood

acquired in 2010. It’s this painting that provides

the jumping-off point for the exhibition. In 1969,

Burra returned to Playden to see out the remainder

of his life at 2, Springfield Cottages.

Burra had a distinctly jaundiced attitude to

Rye. Disparaging references to the town in his

letters are frequent. Here he is, in 1959, writing

to his lifelong friend William Chappell in the

idiosyncratic orthography that characterised his

correspondence: ‘Duckie little Tinker bell towne

is like an itsy bitsy morgue quayte dead.’

Still, it could have been worse. In a 1982 journal

entry, the novelist Anthony Powell, born in the

same year as the artist (their paths crossed in

Toulon in the late 1920s) records:

“When I was young, and people used to say – as

they often did – what an awful place Rye was,

with its tarted up antique

shops, bourgeois bohemians,

horse brasses and lesbians,

there was always someone to

add that Rye was nothing, in

such respects, to Winchelsea,

which was far worse.”

All his life Burra endured

chronic ill health (arthritis,

enlarged spleen, spherocytosis),

and this was, presumably,

the primary reason for remaining

in a town he loathed.

And he got on well with his

sister who lived close by. But

temperamentally, Burra found

Hastings much more sympathetic.

On his travels, intrepid considering his

health, he evinced a particular fondness for dodgy

ports like Marseille and Rotterdam. His friend

John Banting, whose painting of Burra is on loan

to the exhibition from the National Portrait

Gallery, moved from Rye to Hastings in 1965

and took up residence at 6, White Rock Gardens.

He and Burra regularly got plastered on trawls of

Hastings pubs. One of them is depicted in a 1971

painting that’s in the Jerwood show. Entitled simply

Hastings Pub, it’s identified as the Cambridge

Arms in Cambridge Road, now The Union Bar.

The painting is owned by Julian Barnes, presumably

the Julian Barnes. Alas, a more sober connection

with Hastings is that Burra died there, in St

Helen’s Hospital.

And that umbrella stand I mentioned? It was decorated

in 1923/4 by Burra and William Chappell

while they were staying at Florence Rushbury’s

cottage on Burton Common in Petworth. ‘Birdie’

Rushbury is, of course, the mother of Julia Ramos

and grandmother of Dominic Ramos, both ornaments

of today’s Lewes society and both artists in

their own right.

Portrait of Edward Burra by John Banting. ©The Estate of John Banting. All rights reserved, 2013 Bridgeman Art Library



Henty’s 20

John Henty answers the booty call

Whether you are intending to buy or sell

at Lewes Car Boot on a Sunday morning, it

requires an early start and you must be prepared

for whatever the weather may throw at you.

My friends Steve and Jacqueline are regulars and

usually leave their Bexhill home around 6am to

get a decent position for the sale of quality books

and toys. It costs them £10 for the corner pitch

and owner, Roy, told me that his rate has hardly

changed over the years.

When I arrived at 8am, they were already doing

business. Mandy’s snack van was grilling the

bacon and Fox’s Farm free range eggs from Etchingham

were selling fast nearby. In fact, there was

a queue and by 10am, there were no eggs left.

What I enjoy about the place, conveniently close

by Waitrose, are the characters who go there and

the random repartee you can share with them.

For example, I had a lengthy conversation with

Bryan from Ringmer who was a master saddler

working in Lewes before his retirement.

If he reads this article, I urge him

to contact Viva because his

fascinating story deserves a

wider audience. He spoke

enthusiastically of the famous

people he has worked

for and of the horse racing

fraternity in the town. He

bought an illustrated book

on cats.

With our Viva Score (£20)

burning in my pocket, I

acquired the kitsch millennium

gnome (illustrated)

from Geoffrey for

£1, a glass millennium

paperweight for £4 and,

to celebrate the spring

sunshine, a toy spring for

another pound.

One recurring fear I have, though as I browse

the bric-a-brac, is to suddenly come across a

BBC film unit on a Bargain Hunt mission led

by the indefatigable Mr Wonnacott. Tim and

his titfer were again at wind-swept Ardingly

recently, causing the usual mayhem.

Another Bristol-based Antiques Road Trip team

was seen on screen a few weeks ago in the North

Laine area of Brighton. One celebrity guest,

Annie Lennox look-alike, Helen Hall, a relative

newcomer to the programme, purchased a Bakelite

inkstand for £12.

She was then sorely embarrassed when Gorringes

auctioneer, Philip Taylor, struggled desperately

to achieve a single bid for it in Lewes.

Voice-over Wonnacott (who else?) described the

moment as ‘carnage’ but why take the object to

North Street in the first place?

As I’ve observed before, it’s not as though the

fine arts business needs boosting on the box.

In their March review, Gorringes noted

‘a torrent of bids’, 1500 internet

registrations and the jewellery

counter ‘at times under siege

from ladies in need of jewels’.

But not Bakelite inkstands

apparently. John Henty

The next Gorringes Fine

Arts sale in North Street,

29, 30 April, 10am. Monday

auctions in Garden Street, 13,

20, 27. General items 10.30am.

Tuesday markets, Town Hall,

28 ONLY, 9 – 2pm. Ardingly, 21,

22, £5 admission on Wednesday.

Wallis & Wallis, West Street,

arms and militaria, 28, 29 April,



Tel 01273 477071 | 3 Bell Lane | Lewes | East Sussex | BN7 1JU


Huuuuur. Huuuuur. An unfamiliar rattling sound

stirs me from my weekend lie-in. I’m just about to

check Mrs B’s airways before I realise the noise is

coming from outside, not from my sleeping wife.

One of our neighbours is mowing his lawn. Winter

is officially over... as is any hope of an extra halfhour

in bed. Time to put the kettle on.

Rural life has many benefits - but don’t make the

mistake of thinking it’s all twittering skylarks, fragrant

wild flowers and slow-moving Morris Minors

around here. In fact, I reckon Lionel Richie would

never have written the lyric ‘Easy like Sunday

Morning’ if he’d been living in Ringmer. Certainly

not if he’d relied on public transport. Instead of

a gentle ballad we’d probably have something

rather more frantic, inspired by Lionel nervously

checking his watch and wondering whether he’d

end up jogging down the new cycle path because

he’d missed the hourly bus. Neither would Lionel

have been particularly relaxed if he was within

earshot of the village church, where one of the bells

has cracked. Apparently this isn’t covered by the

manufacturer’s warranty, despite being barely 130

years old. The offending bell currently sounds like

an ancient tin bath being struck with an equally

elderly saucepan, which is why it’s staying quiet at

the moment. The other seven bells are still being

rung but the eighth is conspicuous by its absence.

No, there’s nothing especially easy about Sunday

East of Earwig

Mark Bridge senses disharmony in Ringmer

mornings in this part of the world.

But all this pales into insignificance when Mrs B

wakes. She has a Garden Centre look in her eyes.

Unfortunately it’s not a ‘nice mug of coffee and a

bowl of soup’ trip that she has in mind. In the time

it took me to pop downstairs and make a cup of

tea, she’s prepared a shopping list. It looks like a

medieval incantation to rid one’s husband of distemper,

although she assures me it’s merely a few

Latin plant names and some organic fertiliser. My

wife is the one with green fingers; my gardening

performance is more akin to a Vulcan nerve pinch,

inadvertently rendering plants into unconsciousness

with the effortless technique of Mr Spock. It’s

usually safest if I stick to digging and weeding. And

with spring in the air, Mrs B’s seasonal interest

in gardening will soon broaden to include other

activities I’m just as poor at. There’ll be unfathomable

colour charts for interior decoration. There

may even be talk of choosing new cushions.

All this leaves me a long way outside my comfort

zone, so there’s only one thing left to do. One

last desperate attempt to escape all these challenges.

Something that’ll outclass my neighbour’s

garden-tidying efforts, too. Most importantly, it’s

traditional. It’s a ritual that’s been passed from generation

to generation since the dawn of history. It’s

a Sunday morning routine that unites communities.

It’s time I went to the tip.

Photo by Mark Bridge


trade secrets

Sophie Whelpton

Marketing Executive, Mulberry Cottages

Photo by Mark Bridge

What does the company do? We’re a holiday letting

agency with offices in Canterbury, Winchester

and Lewes, providing self-catering accommodation

across the UK. We also help guests looking for

short lets; often they’re moving house or are having

work carried out and need a base for a few months.

And corporate bookings are a growing market for

businesses that want to take their staff away for a

few days of brainstorming or team building.

What’s your role? I’m one of three in our Lewes

office. My job is very varied - I really enjoy chatting

to guests and potential owners. I write a lot of

blogs, contribute to our Twitter account @mulberrycotts,

attend local networking events and recently

went to Belgium to promote our company at a big

travel show.

Why have you opened an office here? Lewes is

a really buzzy place with a great atmosphere. We

looked at other towns but nothing compares with

Lewes. Because we’re an internet-based company,

people who are looking for holidays can find us

quite easily online, but we want to find more

property owners. Our business is growing and the

only way to expand is by adding more properties.

Having a High Street office allows people to walk

in and talk to us to find out more.

What local properties do you have on your

books? There’s a huge variety, from little lovenests

to large country houses. We have a pair of

shepherd’s huts in Danehill, we have a converted

showman’s carriage in Bodiam with amazing views

of the castle – and at the other end of the scale we

have a huge house in Brighton that sleeps 21.

Where do you find your properties? In some

cases, our owners are letting their main residence

while they travel. Other people have created an

annexe in the grounds of their home, a few have

moved abroad but want to keep their British

property for when they return – and we can also

help farmers who want to diversify by converting

derelict farm buildings.

What holiday trends have you noticed? People’s

habits have changed from taking the classic twoweek

holiday abroad every summer. They’re now

spreading out their time and having many more

short breaks. We’re also attracting European visitors;

it seems that English gardens are particularly

popular at the moment. Expectations have changed

too: practically all our properties have WiFi, a lot

are pet-friendly and, of course, all have linen and

towels supplied.

Where do you like to go on holiday? We’re so

lucky with the culture and buildings we have in

this country, I love Europe too – the diversity, the

food and the wine – but I think we have so much

here to offer. My favourite part of the UK is North

Norfolk: amazing beaches, huge skies and wonderful

countryside. Mark Bridge

66 High Street, 01273 475530





Following the huge success of

its inaugural awards, the Lewes District

Business Awards return for a second year.

Celebrating excellence amongst the District’s

business community, the Awards are FREE TO ENTER.


including the prestigious Company of the Year

and Best Independent Retailer, along with special

awards to recognise innovation and customer service,

there is a category for every type of business.

Awards Ceremony • 9 July 2015 • Pelham House

To find out more or to buy tickets, simply head to


usiness news

Entries are now open for the Lewes District Business

Awards. Free entry in up to three categories, so check the

website and prepare for victory. We’ll be assisting the panel

judging the Best Independent Retailer category and are expecting

the decision to be a close call, given the amazing choice in

the district. Of course, you can only win if you enter, so make

a note of the deadline: 6 May. Winners will be announced at a

ceremony on 9 July.

We congratulate family-owned firm Wightman & Parrish on their centenary year. From beginnings as an

ironmongery in Lewes in 1915, they have become a leading distributor of healthcare and hygiene products.

Darcey Sussex Boutiques is now stocking the beautiful Masai clothing line. Join them all day Thurs 9 for

15% off Masia products, a glass of bubbly and the chance to win an outfit.

The Hearth has reopened after its recent fire, putting delicious woodoven-cooked pizza back on the restaurant

menu. Woodruffs Yard has also returned with the arrival of spring, opening the gate to its leafy oasis in North

Court. Selling a wonderful range of plants, they also offer friendly, expert gardening advice and free delivery

within Lewes. We say farewell to Cobblers on Market Street and best wishes for a long and happy retirement

after 40 years in the trade. And The Coffeehouse on Fisher Street has closed its doors in the daytime to

concentrate on evening libations. The party goes on in the bar Thurs-Sat. Cheers! Lizzie Lower



Please note that though we aim to only take advertising from reputable businesses, we cannot guarantee

the quality of any work undertaken, and accept no responsibility or liability for any issues arising.

To advertise in Viva Lewes please call 01273 434567 or email


Directory Spotlight: Richard Soan


When did you become a roofing specialist? I

started in the industry in 1966. I set up my own

company in 1988, and the business has gone from

strength to strength. Our working area covers Sussex,

Surrey, Kent and Hampshire.

What makes your company stand out? I like to

think we are friendly, courteous and efficient and

offer a quality service. We have won numerous industry

awards for our attention to Health and Safety, and

quality of workmanship, both nationally and locally.

This year we’ve been shortlisted at the National

Roofing Awards for a project we’ve undertaken for

Medmerry Primary School in Selsey, which we are

absolutely delighted about.

What’s been your most interesting job? There

have been lots of them. We’re currently working on

the church of St John sub Castro in Lewes. We were

announced winners at the 2013 National Roofing

Awards for our specialist re-slating project at Folkington

Manor, East Sussex - a fantastic achievement

which was certainly a very interesting contract.

How can people take care of their roofs? Keep

an eye out for slipping or broken tiles or slates. Keep

your flat roof clear of debris. Seagulls are the worst

for dropping objects on roofs!

Any other tips? When water gets in it can run for a

very long way, it’s not always easy to spot where the

problem lies. You need professional advice and I’d

recommend that your readers should only use companies

that are members of the National Federation

of Roofing Contractors. Emma Chaplin, 01273 486110


PVC Windows

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Doors and Conservatories

coloured glass splashbacks

Give your kitchen a touch

of colour this summer!

Call for a free, no obligation quote!

(01273) 475123






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GGS1.001_QuarterPage_Ad_01.indd 1 12/11/10 18:24:51

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Viva Lewes 45highx62wide.indd 1 16/11/2010 20:45

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Andrew Wells_Viva Lewes_AW.indd 1 25/06/2012 09:05


inside left


We are delighted to be writing an article which allows us to introduce one of our favourite words: antidisestablishmentarianism,

which is the subject of this protest. This Reeves photograph was printed in the

Sussex Express, 25 July 1913, under the headline ‘Monster Demonstration at Lewes’. What we can see is a

protest against the Welsh Church Bill, held in the ‘Grammar School field’, ie the Paddock, early evening

on Wednesday 23 July. A crowd of some 5,000 people are listening to the Bishop of St Asaph speaking.

Also on the platform are the Revd DA Griffiths (curate of St Anne’s), Canon Southwell (Archdeacon

of Lewes), and Mr Campion (MP for Lewes). The handpainted banner, with splendid lettering which

clearly inspired The Goodies, says in Welsh ‘Duw Gadwo Hen Eglwys Cymru’, which translates as God

Save The Old Welsh Church. This was one of many demonstrations protesting against the proposed Bill

to disestablish and disendow the Church of England in Wales. Welsh Nonconformists were fighting for

this, because they were unhappy with paying tithes to the Church of England (£260,000 annually, according

to this article). The established church in England were vehemently against it; the article quotes

the Bishop of St Asaph comparing it to a person saying “I will cut your leg off but you will not be any the

worse for it”. This ‘splendidly organised’ demonstration was the culmination of a massed ‘protest procession’

march of about 2,000 people, with bands, clergy and choristers, who had come from ‘services of

intercession’ held in local churches (including All Saints). The Express report suggests there were only a

few ‘nonconformist dissidents’ in the crowd. Despite the protests, the Welsh Church Act was passed the

following year. Many thanks to Senior Archivist Christopher Whittick from The Keep for help sourcing this

information, and to Edward Reeves Photography for permission to use this photograph.


A happy, stimulating environment for

children aged 12 months to 13 years.

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