Viva Lewes Issue #161 February 2020

VivaMagazines



161

VIVALEWES

EDITORIAL

A game is ‘an activity that one engages in for amusement or fun’ says the first definition

I call up on Google. Stuff we all need some of, while coping with the fears of these

times. And our interpretation has been pretty broad – read board – but I think the key

must lie in that word ‘engages’. People find fun the things they find engrossing?

So, what’s that for you? For me, it’s most likely working on a poem(!). While Mike

Ellicock paddles the length of the Ouse, Reid Savage listens for the connecting notes

in a guitar piece, and Sam Watts and Dave Sinclair mull over strategy games.

Some of course enjoy Toads: I love Carlotta Luke’s photos of the Toad tables of Lewes.

A (pub) window on a whole, tiny world. While other Lewesians – plenty of you – relish

researching (very) local history: the Lewes History Group is ten years old, and its

meeting walls bulge.

We touch on ping pong, cricket (for girls), football (for women) and trampolining. And

having fun can of course be super(8)-productive. Benjamin Verrall of Toffee Hammer

has just released his first feature film, and says the process of devising, writing, casting,

directing, producing and shooting it (all over Lewes) has been great FUN.

Meanwhile, of course, February brings Pancake Day – we share a recipe from Zu Café

Crêperie – and Valentine’s Day – if a Limetree Kitchen cocktail might appeal? On we

go, heading at least towards the longer, lighter days of spring…

THE TEAM

.....................

EDITOR: Charlotte Gann charlotte@vivamagazines.com

SUB-EDITOR: David Jarman

PRODUCTION EDITOR: Joe Fuller joe@vivamagazines.com

ACTING ART DIRECTOR: Rebecca Cunningham rebecca@vivamagazines.com

ADVERTISING: Sarah Hunnisett, Amanda Meynell advertising@vivamagazines.com

EDITORIAL / ADMIN ASSISTANT / HAND MODEL: Kelly Mechen admin@vivamagazines.com

DISTRIBUTION: David Pardue distribution@vivamagazines.com

CONTRIBUTORS: Jacqui Bealing, Michael Blencowe, Mark Bridge, Hasia Curtis, Lulah Ellender,

Mark Greco, Anita Hall, John Henty, Robin Houghton, Eleanor Knight, Dexter Lee, Alex Leith,

Lizzie Lower, Carlotta Luke, Nione Meakin and Galia Pike.

PUBLISHER: Becky Ramsden becky@vivamagazines.com

Viva Lewes is based at Lewes House, 32 High St, Lewes, BN7 2LX, all enquiries 01273 488882



THE ‘GAMES’ ISSUE

CONTENTS

David Hockney, ‘Self Portrait’, 1954 © David Hockney

Photo: Richard Schmidt. Collection Bradford Museums & Galleries, Bradford, UK

Bits & bobs.

8-25. Cover artist Matt Webber brims

with imagination; VR expert Sam Watts

works and plays; a tree house strides

out; Trinity Gaming Café; little Olive;

the Lewes History Group, thriving for

ten years; sign up for Skittles; St Peter

& St James Hospice is our Charity

box; Five minutes with ping pong

teacher Rob Hoy; Jacky Adams spreads

the word to Iceland; Carlotta Luke

photographs Lewes Toad tables; and

Craig wouldn’t hurt a fly.

Columns.

27-31. Eleanor Knight on ways to play;

David Jarman reads Maigret; and John

Henty’s love letter to the Rooks.

42

32

On this month.

32-41. The making of a movie in Lewes;

The Boy with the Top Knot author

comes to The Lewes Lit; LewesLight

Festival 2020; the Early Music Festival

wows Brighton; and Dexter Lee’s films

to see.

Art.

42-47. Hockney and Davie at Towner;

and Art and about from Chalk Gallery

and Paddock Road Studios, plus others.

Listings.

49-61. Diary dates from Seedy Saturday

to strategies for small gardens; Gig of the

month is Mad Professor live dub show;

Classical round-up leads with Brighton

Philharmonic Brass; Freetime listings,

the Trampoline Academy Uckfield, and

Press Play Films.

Photo by Toffee Hammer Films

5


THE ‘GAMES’ ISSUE

Food.

63-69. Joe and Rebecca enjoy

Limetree Kitchen cocktails; a Pancake

Day recipe from Zu Café crêperie;

Café du Jardin; and more food news.

70

The way we workout.

70-73. Rebecca King photographs

local personal trainers.

82

Photo by Rebecca King

63

Features.

75-84. Mike Ellicock paddles the

Ouse; Reid Savage plays guitar;

Michael Blencowe on the playfulness

of Woodpeckers; dating equations;

calling all girls to Lewes Cricket;

Claire Rafferty joins Lewes FC; Alex

Leith updates local retail news.

Inside left.

98. February 1921: friendly footie

pre political correctness.

VIVA DEADLINES

We plan each magazine six weeks ahead, with a mid-month

advertising/copy deadline. Please send details of planned events

to admin@vivamagazines.com, and for any advertising queries:

advertising@vivamagazines.com, or call 01273 488882.

Remember to recycle your Viva.

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 Magazines.

Viva retains copyright for any artwork we create.

Love me or recycle me. Illustration by Chloë King

6


WHO THEY WILL BE STARTS HERE

At St Andrew’s Prep we encourage our pupils to build lines of

character that help them be who they want to be.

Visit our open mornings on 7 and 8 February 2020, 9.30 am to 12 noon

Book your place today

www.standrewsprep.co.uk/whats-on/open-days


THIS MONTH’S COVER ARTIST

Recent Graphic Design graduate Matt Webber

designed our glorious cover. I love its textures and

palette, and asked how he went about it? “I started

with the idea of a pinball machine,” he said. “But

then decided to focus more on Lewes games: golf,

toads, pool. They’re all about getting a ball in a hole

– so that became the central theme. Left over from

the pinball machine, though, was the idea of the

letters separated, the separate blocks.”

Looking through Matt’s work, it’s clear ideas often

‘travel’ like this, with him. His work brims with imagination.

He says he likes having regular commissions

such as his promotional material for ‘Foundations’;

a weekly club night held at Patterns, in

Brighton – because that brings certain constraints

as well as, within those, allowing him freedom.

“The job has a brief, a style: a collaged background

photo playing with geometric shapes. That’s their

brand identity, and they want something that will

bring people in. Beyond that, I do exactly what I

want each week…”

8


MATT WEBBER

Matt likes quirky ideas and pursuing them. Take his ‘On

Board Entertainment’ project. This is a cartoon strip following

the antics of a character called Jeff who behaves

completely selfishly on a flight. “I was thinking about liminal

space,” smiles Matt. “And that took me to the thought of the

limited space we each have on a flight, and how we cope with

that. I went on a flight myself and took notes: including a

timeline of when the baby behind me cried. It’s based on a

safety card… though I’ve reversed the advice.”

The style of much of his presentation has a retro feel. “For

these university projects,” he says, “I used an old-fashioned

printing method – called Risograph. You apply only one

colour at a time, and often the register is slightly out: an effect

I like. I also always favour a limited palette. At the beginning

of any project I choose between two and five colours at most,

swatch them in a corner. With Risograph printing, the orange

particularly is brilliantly bright – really popping.”

Another project he shows me, Lost in Translation, was also

printed by this method. Again, the idea’s wonderfully idiosyncratic.

“My mum’s French,” Matt says – his ‘Matt’ is short

for Matthieu – “and she’d told me about some French phrases

whose meanings are completely lost in translation… L’esprit

de l’escalier, for instance, which means thinking of the perfect

reply too late, loses everything if you literally translate it…

But I enjoyed playing with this for my project.”

Or Ça cartonne – it’s cardboard. How does that relate to the

idea of a box-office hit? Perhaps strangest of all is the expression

‘C’est le petit Jésus en culotte de velours’ – which is used

to describe a fine wine. Matt had enormous fun with this….

The other piece of work we have room to share is his lovely

‘postcard’ of Lisboa,

2019 – which he constructed

from a photo

he took on a recent trip

to Lisbon… Again, colours

and shapes meet

beautifully with his

distinctive, retro feel.

Charlotte Gann

mattwebber.co.uk

@matt_webber_design

9


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Photo by Charlotte Gann

MY LEWES: SAM WATTS

You’re Director of Immersive Technologies at

Make Real, in Brighton? I am. Apparently, I’m

the 12th most influential VR person in the world!

Make Real is an ‘immersive content’ studio. It

was founded by people with a background in full

flight simulators and the games industry. Today

we focus on immersive technologies, offering a

unique blend of absolute technical performance

and accuracy, coupled with the driving ethos

of gaming: fun, where players are motivated by

a carefully-considered design, incorporating

progression and rewards. We also believe in

technology for good, and operate under the

banner of ‘serious fun’.

The client-based work we do is about 70%

enterprise and 30% entertainment – which

pleasingly (to my mind) mirrors the 7:3 ratio

of the two words ‘serious fun’! We’re unusual

in having a dedicated R&D team, who spend

their time testing out new technologies. We’re

renowned for our content, and enjoy leaving little

‘Easter egg’ surprises for users even in the most

serious learning contexts. Our team has grown

from four to 25 since I joined; we’re mostly aged

over 35 too, so life-work balance is prioritised.

You also set up the Lewes Boardgamers

Club? I moved back to Lewes (having originally

grown-up here) 12 years ago. I set up the club,

partly really to kick start a social life. We meet

fortnightly, on Tuesday evenings, currently in

the Elephant and Castle. We’re the nerds in the

corner, but people do wander over. The games we

play are visually appealing – intricate and made

of wood. We typically play Eurogames – the socalled

gateway games, like Catan, or Carcassonne

or Ticket to Ride and more complex affairs

too. There are about ten to 15 regulars (unlike

the Brighton Boardgamers, which has 3,000

members!), and newcomers are always welcome.

(There’s also another, newer Lewes club, that

meets at St John sub Castro, see page 14.)

Every game has a ruleset: in each case, you grow

skilled in understanding how to excel within

those rules. It’s a kind of athleticism of the mindmuscle.

I think adults, with all our responsibilities,

can forget how to have fun.

You grew up in Lewes? I did. I lived in

Leicester Road, and went to Western Road,

when it was in Spital Road, and Priory. Then

Lewes Tertiary College (now East Sussex

College), which I dropped out of in the second

year for family reasons. But then I went back

and did an AS Level, and ended up in Leicester

De Montfort University, on the then (in 1996)

brand-new Multimedia Computing course. After

graduating, I moved to Brighton for ten years,

met my wife, and we thought about moving to

Lewes so came over to visit: the first time I had

done so in a decade. Sitting in Bill’s we picked

up the Sussex Express and there, in the ‘Do you

remember when?’ section was a picture of the

Western Road football team with me in it! This

I took to be a sign…

Interview by Charlotte Gann

11


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PHOTO OF THE MONTH

TREE LIFE

Jodie Cartman sent in this striking and unusual shot. She wrote:

‘Going through some photos from the past year I came across this one, of a

wonderful mystical tree house, taken during a misty winter walk close to Barcombe

Mills. I shoot on 35mm film, so there’s an added layer of texture grain and light leaks

to add to the magic.

It was around midday in December of last year when we spied the tree house in the

distance: it almost looked as if it was walking towards us – the trunk of the tree as its

body and the branches as its arms and hair.

A truly magical and eerie sight which I’m delighted to have captured on such a

winter’s day.’

Please send your pictures, taken in and around Lewes, to photos@vivamagazines.com,

or tweet @VivaLewes. We’ll choose one, which wins the photographer £20, to be picked

up from our office after publication. Unless previously arranged, we reserve the right to

use all pictures in future issues of Viva magazines or online.

13


BITS AND DICE

TRINITY GAMING CAFÉ

Why do we need games? I ask Dave Sinclair, who

runs the Lewes Boardgame Club and Trinity

Gaming Café every first and third Thursday

evening of the month, at the Trinity Centre, St John

sub Castro. “Because they provide opportunities for

us to have fun with other people in the real world”,

he says, [as opposed to virtual] “which are today so

often lacking.”

Dave describes the scene: the café area and hall

given over to tables with different games in

progress. “Last Thursday we had two Dungeons and

Dragons campaigns going, a game of Warhammer, a

few card games, like Pokémon, consoles set up and

being used, and several boardgames…”

Currently, typically, between 30 and 35 people turn

up, including about eight under 18s. “We’d welcome

more: anyone who’s interested.”

The Café is the new incarnation of what started

out as the Lewes

Boardgame Club,

created by Rob

Whitford, which

used to meet at

St Mary’s Social

Centre. It runs from

7.30 till late (“because some games are long!”) with

a tuck shop to fuel the evening.

Dave works as Youth Minister for the Trinity

Church, but stresses “everyone is welcome; this

is not a ‘church only’ club. I have always been a

gamer. I like strategy. All sorts. Computer games,

boardgames, you name it. I hadn’t played D&D

before, but am getting into it now…” CG

The Trinity Centre, St John sub Castro, 7.30-

11.30pm, February, 6th and 20th.

trinitylewes.org/community/gaming

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CATS AND BOBS

PETS OF LEWES

Olive, 12, classic tabby. Olive was six months old and

on her way to Battersea Dogs & Cats Home after

a marriage breakdown (not hers) when a chance

encounter brought her to Lewes. Olive has spent

most of her life with her best cat pal Phoenix who

sadly died last year. Olive now sleeps on the garden

grave of the departed.

Loves: kaleidoscopes, dressage, Beowulf

Hates: automatic writing, Jason Donovan, swivel

chairs

One of Olive’s owners has epilepsy and Olive often

appears when a seizure is impending. It’s believed that

this ability in cats and dogs has less to do with psychic

skills and more with detecting minute biochemical

scents which are released in advance of a fit. All far

too subtle to be picked up by us primitive humans.

@dogsoflewes

my vet

understands

exotics

Karin Stratford, Brighton

The Coastway Vets hospital in central

Brighton has a team of exotic vets and

nurses who have experience in caring

for all types of exotic pets and wildlife.

Our in-patients benefit from purpose

built warm wards and vivariums too.

01273 692257

coastwayvets.co.uk


BITS AND TWITTENS

LEWES HISTORY GROUP

It is ten years ago this

month that the Lewes

History Group hosted

its first formal monthly

talk: Jim Etherington

spoke about ‘The

History of Bonfire’.

Today, typically, close

to 200 people attend

each one, held on the

second Monday of 11 months in the year (they

break for August); and last January a staggering

286 people swelled the room.

Clearly there is a real appetite for Lewes History.

So, I asked LHG’s publicity & comms

person Jane Lee, and founder John Kay why they

think that might be.

“I think learning about history can be reassuring,”

suggests Jane, “especially in these crazy times.

It’s like a blanket: the security of knowing about

your roots.” “And,” adds John, “you see all these

unexplained things left over in a place like Lewes.

People are curious. They look at things and they

want to understand – if they have time.”

So, every month someone with a story to tell

about the history of Lewes (“Every speaker has

to speak on Lewes”, says Jane) does so, at the

LHG public meeting. And there’s more. “These

levels of attendance mean we make a surplus,”

says John, “which we plough back into our

research and other projects…”

John started the group. He was already running

(and still does) the Ringmer equivalent, (he’s

lived in Ringmer for 50 years), and said he was

surprised such a group didn’t already exist in

Lewes. “The town was and is great on individual

historians. Colin Brent. Graham Mayhew. John

Bleach. And, of course, the Sussex Archaeological

Society is based in Lewes. But that’s so professional

it can seem intimidating for amateurs

pursuing their own

individual interests.”

So LHG offers an

alternative: the kind of

history, as John puts it,

that “ordinary people

are interested in –

perhaps, for instance,

about their own street.

We provide a forum

for people to talk, and we teach them how to

research.”

The Sun Street project – one of the Lewes History

Group’s ‘Lewes Street Stories’ – is an excellent

example. “This was conducted by a team of four,”

says John: “including a builder – who brought his

own perspective.” The project resulted in a book,

the History Group’s first publication, which sold

out its print run of 300 copies.

“Researching the street where you live is fascinating,”

says Jane, who’s just finished doing so

for the Pells history – destined to be the group’s

third book – which it plans to publish to mark

the Pells Pool’s Centenary next year. Church

Row is that idiosyncratic row of cottages which

face out onto the wall of St John sub Castro.

“The smallest of the cottages, at the end,” says

Jane, “according to the 1841 census housed

TEN people (including the lodgers’ two-month

old baby). In three rooms…”

Lewes History Group welcomes anyone who’s

curious. “And we’d especially welcome,” says

Jane, “anyone who’d like to actively help – from

putting a poster in your window, to organising

ad hoc outings – which, incidentally, don’t need

to be in Lewes.” Charlotte Gann

Next meeting is 10 Feb, King’s Church Hall,

Brooks Road, 7-9pm. Dan Swift will be speaking

about ‘Lewes Between the Twittens’.

leweshistory.org.uk

Photo of Dusart’s fire, Lewes High Street, 1904; from John Kay’s postcard collection

16


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You are warmly invited to our

Senior School Open Morning

Saturday 7 March 2020

9.30am to noon

HMC – Day, weekly and full boarding

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(Entry at 13 and 16)

To register please contact:

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T 01323 843252

or online at bedes.org

Bede’s Senior School

Upper Dicker

East Sussex BN27 3QH


BITS AND SKITTLES

SKITTLES, ANYONE?

Every June, in the Grange Gardens, there is (of

course) a Skittles tournament. This has been

going for more than half a century, and since the

1980s has been organised by the Rotary Club of

Lewes. Do you fancy forming a team? Or maybe

taking out a ‘hoarding’? Now is the moment to

give it some thought.

The tournament is popular, with more than 750

people taking part, organiser Peter Boyse says.

Teams come from local businesses, pubs, Bonfire

societies, sports clubs, local organisations and just

bands of friends.

In addition, “sponsors can provide an advertising

board which gets hung with others on scaffolding

behind the 16 lanes,” says Peter. “Or there are slots

on the lane boards themselves.”

The event is all in aid of charity, and raises around

£7,000 a year. That’s from the £30 entry fee from

each team, money on the gates – split between the

Friends of Victoria Hospital, and the St Peter & St

James Hospice (see opposite) – a bucket for extra

donations, and a raffle each evening.

Plus, there’s a bar and hot food stall, run by local

Bonfire societies.

“The 2020 event will be held from 15th to 19th

June,” says Peter. “Entry forms with full details will

be available in March. Early entry is advised: last

year there was a full house…” If you’re interested

in any aspect, email Peter on peter.boyse@farmline.com.

Charlotte Gann


BITS AND BOX

CHARITY BOX:

ST PETER & ST JAMES HOSPICE

What is St Peter &

St James Hospice?

We provide care and

support for people

towards and at the end

of life, and also help and

support their carers and

families. We have 14

beds in the Hospice, and

also support over 200

people in the community

every month. We cover Lewes, Uckfield,

Burgess Hill, Haywards Heath, Hurstpierpoint,

Hassocks and the surrounding villages.

How did the Hospice start? We always say

it started with a donkey, as we were a donkey

sanctuary first, and still have two donkeys

today. In 1951, Jim Dinnage, whose wife Susan

founded St Peter & St James, came home with

a donkey he’d bought. They then rescued a

further 13.

A year later, their son, Peter, was diagnosed

with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, and they started

to run donkey derbies to help fund his care.

Unfortunately, Peter died in 1954, but Jim and

Susan decided to set up a holiday home for ill

and disabled children. That moved to the site

here in Wivelsfield in 1975, and later became St

Peter & St James Hospice. It has nothing to do

with any saints – it’s named after Jim and Peter!

What do you do? We help people have the

best possible experience at the end of life, and

to live well until they die. We try to provide

whatever each individual needs, at home or in

our hospice – so we might have the whole family

staying here, sometimes including pets.

We also help to unpick all the various issues

involved when someone is ill or dying, from

a carer taking time

off work, through

to available benefits

and allowances. We

offer counselling and

befriending services,

drop-in activities and

respite care. We also

provide expert advice

to GPs, nurses and

others involved in

caring for people who are dying.

While the NHS provides palliative care, people

say hospice care offers a qualitative difference, as

we have more time to spend with each person.

We have a holistic focus, and we find the individual

underneath all the anxiety and illness. Our

beautiful grounds are full of wildlife, and our

two cats, Willow and Jasper, provide comfort to

visitors. We even bring our donkeys, Dylan and

Dudley, in to visit – there’s something special

about a nuzzle from a soft nose!

How can people help? We encourage people

to donate items to our shops, volunteer with us,

or leave a gift in their wills. Less than 20% of

our income comes from the NHS or statutory

sources; the rest is fundraised through events

such as our Virtual Triathlon, which takes place

throughout February.

This year it’s our 45th birthday, and we want to

launch Hospice in the Home, so we can offer

people more choice at the end of life. Then, if

someone says they’d rather go home to die, we

can say, ‘Okay, we’ll come with you and support

you.’

Anita Hall spoke to Chief Executive Barbara Williams

and Data & Insight Officer Steve Clements

stpjhospice.org

19


BITS AND BOBS

FIVE MINUTES WITH...

Rob Hoy, a chartered

civil engineer

who worked most

of his career for

Southern Water,

has lived in Lewes

with his wife Jan

for 33 years. He’s

been running table

tennis clubs since 1979 in West and East

Sussex. Since 1991, he’s run one in Lewes.

Rob’s a TT England Level 2 Coach at

St Michael’s TT Club, which meets on

Tuesday evenings at the ex-YMCA gym in

Westgate Street, during school term time.

‘Our members’ ages range from seven to

89’, he says.

WHAT MAKES YOU HAPPY? Family

and friends. Water projects in Rwanda and

the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Visiting in Lewes Prison. Singing in the

choir, and being part of Trinity Southover

Church. Oh, and teaching table tennis. In

summary, trying to make others happy!!

Focusing

on you

WHAT IS YOUR TOP FILM / BOOK?

Chariots of Fire / The Bible – lucky this is

not Desert Island Discs!

WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE TV

SHOW/ VIDEO GAME/ PODCAST?

No TV! / Dead Ringers (tongue in cheek

of course)

TOP PLACES TO EAT OUT OR

DRINK, IN LEWES? Côte for breakfast.

Had a good Sunday roast at The Brewers

Arms recently.

Counselling, Psychotherapy

and Psychological services

in central Lewes

01273 921355

www.brightonandhovepsychotherapy.com

admin@brightonandhovepsychotherapy.com

WHO ARE YOUR HEROES? Aid workers

and peace makers in conflict areas.

20


TRIPS AND BOBS

SPREAD THE WORD

Jacky Adams sent this lovely picture from

Iceland.

‘This is me and my son Charles’, she wrote.

‘We are holding Viva Lewes in front of Stokkur

Geyser! The Geyser spouts water 30 metres

into the air every few minutes.

Iceland is amazing. Geysers, waterfalls, snow,

frozen lakes and extinct volcanos…’

Keep taking us with you and keep spreading the

word. Send your holiday photos and a few words

about you and your trip to us at

hello@vivamagazines.com.



PHOTOGRAPHY

CARLOTTA LUKE

FOCUS ON: TOADS

Toad in the hole is, of course, a very Lewes game.

Only played in East Sussex, the Lions Club of

Lewes holds the world championship each year.

The idea is you throw your ‘Toad’ (metal coin)

onto the table. You earn one point if it lands flat;

two points if it goes in the hole.

Can you identify where each of these toad tables

is, from the pubs of Lewes?

carlottaluke.com

Answers. From top left, clockwise: The Black Horse, The Elephant

& Castle, The Lewes Arms, The Pelham Arms and The Brewers Arms.

23


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25


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COLUMN

Eleanor Knight

Keyboard worrier

It’s not often I dispense

relationship advice,

but as February brings

Valentine’s Day, I feel

that a well-marked lesson

now may save the sensitive

reader a life-time of

disappointment. Here it

is. If you find yourself in

the company of someone

who says ‘Don’t play

games with me,’ then ditch them immediately in

favour of someone more given to amusement.

There are many benefits to playing games, some

of them scientifically proven. Board games, let’s

say Snakes and Ladders, are said to reduce not

only your blood pressure, but also risk of cognitive

decline, stress levels and your likelihood

of breaking the law and being chased by a fat,

rosy-faced policeman in 1950s-style uniform.

Few who played Snakes and Ladders as a child

can ever forget the broiling ignominy of finding

themselves with an unexplained bag of sweets in

the company of a vengeful Mr Plod all because

‘the dice were against me, officer!’ Oh, what a

cruel and unjust world it is.

A world in which for every beneficial drop in one’s

resting heart-rate, a painful memory is replayed.

Perhaps, like me, despite its useful rudimentary

lessons in property tycoonery, you remain faintly

scarred by the remembrance of Monopoly games

past (Me: I am NOT going to jail again! It’s NOT

FAIR! Whole family: Ha ha ha ha!) Worry not.

I’m not sending you back to any board for your

fill of February fun. Here instead are two adult

games – and no, we are not that sort of publication

– adult in that they are the amusing, mostly

harmless pastimes of

childhood subtly adapted

for use in two common

adult situations. For

‘adult’ here read ‘not really

very interesting’.

1. Priory Parents’ Information

Evening Bingo

Regain that back-of-theclassroom

frisson with

this simple yet satisfying

challenge. Prepare your bingo card in advance

with such phrases as ‘The powers that be,’ ‘Our

lords and masters,’ and ‘Your guess is as good as

mine,’ and score two points for each time they

are used by a member of staff. An OK score is,

obviously, six. An almighty score is anything over

12. Anyone achieving an almighty score may share

their success – and score a bonus into the bargain

– by raising their hand and asking a question

about uniform.

2. Coffee House People Drive

Like Beetle but with real Lewesians. And yes, this

is a Wickle business-opportunity alert. Any café

will do, just keep an eye on your fellow caffeinators

and match their fashions to the corresponding

items in your box of cut-outs which may

include some or all of the following: dungarees,

stripy top, New Balance trainers, any item from

Seasalt, furry-pencil-case coat, tote-bag with antiplastic

slogan, any knitted accessory, dog.

No doubt readers will have their own ideas for

livening up these otherwise dull days, but in case

of a failure of imagination there’s always dominoes

down the pub.

February is not the month to turn your back on

fun. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

Illustration by Hasia Curtis

27



COLUMN

David Jarman

My back pages

The Italian film director, Federico Fellini was

born on 20th January, 1920. To mark the centenary

of his birth BFI Southbank are holding a two

month retrospective of his work, the centrepiece

of which is a 4k restoration of La Dolce Vita. The

film caused a scandal at the time of its release,

and it’s 60 years ago this month that, after a gala

screening in Milan, an outraged audience member

spat in Fellini’s face, and the film’s star, Marcello

Mastroianni was roundly abused. ‘Marcello

and I only just saved ourselves from a lynching’,

Fellini recalled. La Dolce Vita remains his most

famous film. And it’s the film’s most famous image,

of a fully dressed Mastroianni and a slightly

less fully dressed Anita Ekberg, fooling around in

The Trevi Fountain, that features prominently in

BFI’s publicity. Which is fair enough. Asked once

what in particular Fellini remembered

about the film, he replied that La

Dolce Vita was, for him, most

identified with Anita Ekberg.

Less charitably, he also

recalled that Mastroianni later

told him that the statuesque blonde

Swedish bombshell ‘reminded

him of a storm-trooper in the

Wehrmacht.’

I had always taken Mastroianni’s

apparent diffidence in

joining Ekberg in the fountain

as informed by his character’s

understandable reluctance to

involve himself in her exhibitionist,

kittenish high spirits. But as

BFI programmer, Giulia Saccogna

explained in her introduction

to the particular viewing that I attended, the

truth is probably more prosaic. Whereas Ekberg

embraced the water and cold (they were filming

at night, in March) with equanimity, Mastroianni

had to get undressed, don a frogman’s suit and get

dressed again. Fellini later added in an interview

that ‘to combat the cold Mastroianni polished off

a bottle of vodka and when we shot the scene he

was completely pissed.’

The chairman of judges at Cannes in 1960 was

Georges Simenon, and it was his advocacy that

led La Dolce Vita to winning the Palme d’or. I

mention this because January saw the end of

an admirable publishing marathon undertaken

by Penguin Books. Starting in November 2013

they brought out, at the rate of one a month,

all 75 of Simenon’s ‘Maigret’ novels. With a

couple of early exceptions – The Two Penny Bar,

The Yellow Dog – these were not just reissues but

specially commissioned new translations by the

likes of Siân Reynolds, David Coward and Shaun

Whiteside. Goodness how I’ve enjoyed my

monthly Simenon fix – The Foyle’s at Waterloo

Station was my most reliable supplier. What on

earth will I do now that the final novel in the

series has been published? Just start again at the

beginning, I guess.

Early volumes were reviewed by Julian Barnes in

the Times Literary Supplement. In a charming letter

responding to the review, Gabriel Josipovici, writing

from Lewes, reminisced: ‘my mother liked to

recall that when she and my father were students

at Aix-en-Provence in the 1930s, their idea of a

perfect Sunday morning was to stay in bed eating

chocolate and reading the latest Simenon or

Raymond Queneau.’ Sounds like bliss.

Illustration by Charlotte Gann

29


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COLUMN

Lewes Out Loud

Plenty more Henty

Ten minutes to go at the Pan

– goalless with three vital

points there for the taking.

“Come on you Rooks!” time,

so how do you explain my

loudly urging the referee to

blow his whistle to end the

game?

Anxious to get home for

another edition of Pointless

maybe or just disenchanted

with the lack of chances created

by either side on a cold

Saturday afternoon?

To those around me on the

terrace, I intimated that, as usual, I had paid

a pound on admission to Ethel for a ‘Time of

the first Goal’ ticket. When I looked at it, there

was no time printed, it just read ‘0 – 0’. “That

means” said an amused if somewhat puzzled

Ethel, “That if there is no goal scored, you win

the prize.”

Fat chance of that I thought to myself – wrongly.

However, word soon got round my fellow supporters

as the minutes ticked away and there was

a generous cheer on my behalf as the final whistle

went! Strangely enough, I was not the only

winner that afternoon and as I collected my £25

prize, a delighted Karen arrived at the club shop

with her similarly goalless ticket. We congratulated

each other and agreed that, despite the lack

of goals or perhaps because of the lack of goals, it

had been an excellent afternoon.

And that sums up what I like most about our

club and what I shall call ‘the peripherals’. At

the Dripping Pan, people count and are not just

counted, although it is always heartening to hear

applause when the attendance

figure is announced. I also

appreciate that kids go free,

dogs are welcome and away

supporters can mingle with

the home crowd amicably. It’s

also a great opportunity to

natter generally which many

seem to do whilst keeping

one eye on the game!

You see, to me the Isthmian

League is the complete antithesis

to the pampered Premiership

with its absurd kick

off times, foreign ownership

and overpaid players. I also fear that ‘wall to

wall’ television coverage will eventually mean

that genuine football fans will stop going to

actual games, resulting in half empty stadiums.

There is evidence of this already with some of

the matches I have watched recently.

The best answer in 2020 is to buck the trend,

join our club and become what should be known

in future as ‘Pan’s People’. The pie and mash

dispensers, the pint-pullers, Barbara’s raffle and,

of course, Ethel with her tickets.

Talking of games. Over a year ago, I mentioned

here, an American board game I had acquired

in Seaford, called ‘Trump – The Game’. I said it

came complete with 60 Trump cards, impossible

rules and even Trump money! No one believed

me! In fact, several readers suggested that it

had to be a fevered figment of my overactive

imagination. Not so, as you will see on this page.

Unsurprisingly, no one has been prepared to

play it with me either!

John Henty

31


Incidental Characters

A game of Consequences, set in Lewes

Benjamin Verrall, writer and director of the film

Incidental Characters says “playfulness is really important

to me. When I started writing the script,

I wanted to make a film about people. I thought

about the game Consequences. The film was going

to be called Consequences, in fact!”

I can see why: that game captures something of

the film’s nature. How the people we incidentally

meet can both “define us, and hold us back”. And

that, as well as challenging, this can also provide

a source of exploration and creativity. We push

against each other – and learn about ourselves.

Incidental Characters is also set entirely in Lewes.

Three of the four central characters (perhaps,

two mismatched pairs) work in a fictional book

publishers (McGinley’s) based in Lewes House

(where I sit, writing this). There are scenes in

Tizz’s, and various familiar local hostelries. One

character does my regular ‘loop’ over the near

Downs in reverse; towards the end, another walks

right past my door. It’s FUN to watch all this. But

the film is much more.

The (arguable) hero of the piece is Alf, “a proper

nerd, who miscommunicates all the time”, played

by Howard Perret. “It was important, however,

that Alf communicated with the audience. We

knew Howard was perfect for the role from the

first audition”, says Ben. “We spent a lot of time

finding the right ensemble cast and it was great to

watch the actors bring the characters to life.”

And why Lewes? “The practical answer is we

were making the film without much money. I’d

been learning film-making – writing and directing

– all my adult life, and eight years ago left the

London agency where I was working, frustrated,

and moved to Lewes. I put my money where my

mouth was and started Toffee Hammer. Most of

my time is spent making promotional films for

32


ON THIS MONTH: FILM

clients. But I also knew it was now or never to make my

first feature film.

“So I dug out my old scripts, but found you don’t want

to be brushing dust off before starting your dream

project. So I chose the best characters from those, and

transplanted them all to Lewes, disregarded all received

wisdom and made a film I find I’m really proud of.

“It helped (financially) to have all the filming take place

within one mile of our studio (in Star Brewery). Lewes

is exactly the right setting for the story: a magical place

where you bump into people, until you start nodding,

and then become friends. And finally, it’s an unbelievably

beautiful location – at the same time as having

something universal (the small castle town, and so on).”

Ben’s film is about loneliness. AND it’s funny – as well

as surreal at times (hence cardboard robot, drinking

in the Lewes Arms!) – “and it was also really, really

important it would be fun to make”, he says. “That was

our ethos. And it was!”

Charlotte Gann

Incidental Characters goes on independent release in

February – look out for screenings at Depot – and will

become available on DVD and to stream in April.

All photos by Toffee Hammer Films

33


Join the 1,500 who already own a

share in Lewes Football Club.

www.lewesfc.com/owners


ON THIS MONTH: TALK

Sathnam Sanghera

Multi-form writer

“I’m not a writer,” says

Sathnam Sanghera,

novelist, author of the

best-selling memoir The

Boy with the Top Knot, and

weekly Times columnist.

“I’m a rewriter. I think

it was Hemingway who

said that the first draft is

always shit. With me, the

80th draft is always shit, too. I rewrote my first

book 120 times. All I do is write nonsense and

keep rewriting till it gets good. It’s an idiotic way

of writing.”

Sathnam was born in Wolverhampton in 1976,

the fourth child of a couple who had emigrated

from the Punjab – separately – in the 60s. The

first book he’s referring to, The Boy with the

Topknot, is a look at his (largely) traditional Sikh

childhood in the Black Country; the narrative

is framed by a visit home (from a Western-style

existence in London) in his 20s, during which he

accidentally discovered his father was long-term

schizophrenic, and that his elder sister, too, had

suffered from the condition.

“It was very, very, very, very, very painful,” he says,

of the experience of researching and writing the

book. “My memory isn’t actually very good, so in

journalistic fashion I interviewed a lot of people

who were there at the time.” This included his

parents, siblings and 54 first cousins. “If you patch

a lot of other people’s memories together, you can

actually paint quite a detailed picture.”

A lot of what he wrote was then edited out. “I

was really worried about losing my family, and

made the decision not to publish anything they

weren’t happy with. They all read a draft. There

was one particular chapter

I had to get rid of. At the

time it killed me, but now

I’m really grateful [to his

elder sister] because we’ve

got something in our family

which is still private.”

The book was made into

a film, for BBC2, in 2017.

“That was agony,” says

Sathnam. “You have a stranger reinterpreting

the worst things that ever happened to you, for

TV.” But he’s happy it reached a wider audience.

“Schizophrenia is never, ever on TV. It’s led

to people having conversations they wouldn’t

normally have. That’s a very rewarding thing, as

a writer.”

Sathnam doesn’t do things by halves. His 2013

novel A Material Marriage was an adaptation of

Arnold Bennett’s 1908 novel The Old Wives’ Tale,

set in a contemporary (2011) corner shop; to

research it he worked ‘for a few months’ behind

the counter of a number of Black Country

convenience stores. “There,” he says, “you see a

microcosm of the world.”

He gave up his day job at the Times while he

was researching his last two books. During the

preparation of his soon-to-be-finished third, ‘a

popular history about the British Empire’, he

has continued to work for the newspaper, which

he finds difficult. “Moving between journalism

and writing books is knackering; it’s like flicking

between the 100 metres and the long jump.

Journalism is about answering questions, and

literature is about asking them.” Alex Leith

The Lewes Lit, 11th February, All Saints Centre,

7.30pm. lewesliterarysociety.co.uk

35


36

Photo by James McCauley


ON THIS MONTH: FESTIVAL

Green light

New focus for LewesLight festival

You might think a lighting designer wouldn’t

be considering environmental issues as they

worked. If so, you’d be wrong. “It’s something

I’ve been concerned about professionally

for a long time”, Graham Festenstein

tells me. In fact, stories about our environment

– from the beauty of moonlight to the

impact of rising sea levels – are the theme

this year for LewesLight, the annual festival

of light he’s curating. “We’re probably using

less energy on one installation than someone

would be using in their house for an evening”,

he reassures me, before pointing out

that effective lighting doesn’t always need

to be bright. “We want to demonstrate that

darkness is nothing to be frightened of; it’s

something to be embraced and enjoyed. Our

eyes adapt to darkness really well.”

Key locations across town will be transformed

by lighting and projections for

three nights. As with previous LewesLight

festivals, the choice of sites is very important

– and, at the time of our conversation, still

very secret. “We want to find special places”,

Graham explains. Each illuminated installation

will be staffed with well-informed

volunteers. “We’d like visitors to understand

a little bit more about why it’s been created.

Lots of arts events don’t provide that.”

LewesLight is undeniably a collaboration,

generously supported by the lighting industry

alongside production partners Sussex

Events Limited. Lighting designers and

organisers give their time for nothing, whilst

an Arts Council grant means local artists can

be paid for their contributions. The whole

thing is run as a not-for-profit Community

Interest Company, with a new emphasis this

year on mentoring college and university

students through the whole process. Safety

concerns mean younger children can’t

participate directly; instead LewesLight

is working with schools to create projects

that will form part of the festival. A desire

to work with young people is one of the

reasons the festival has moved from October

to February, fitting much better with term

times. And, as Graham adds, “It’s darker

earlier, so we can kick off at six o’clock

rather than seven o’clock, which is great for

families and children.” Also involved are the

Linklater RATS (Raising Awareness of Tides

and Sea levels), a youth group linked to the

Lewes Railway Land Project. “It’s 20 years

since the Lewes flooding in 2000”, Graham

reminds me. “We wanted to work with them

as this coincided with our ideas of exploring

climate emergency and environmental

issues.”

Ultimately, Graham insists, LewesLight is

about more than just light and darkness.

“It operates on two levels, in a way. You can

come and see it, you can enjoy it for what

it is. But there’s also the wider back story.

I think the process of putting the thing

together, engaging with people and bringing

people together, is as important as the final

result. We’re not a gallery – this is a town.”

Mark Bridge

LewesLight runs at sites across town from

28th February until 1st March 2020.

Free admission; full details at leweslight.uk

37


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ON THIS MONTH: MUSIC

La Dafne

‘A #metoo tale of its era’

“The closest natural human sound to opera singing,”

says internationally acclaimed stage director

Thomas Guthrie, down the phone from Barcelona’s

Barrio Gotico, “is actually a baby crying.”

Thomas is in the Catalan capital in order to direct

Verdi’s Aida, at the Gran Teatre del Liceu, which

is about as big as it gets, opera-wise.

But he’s talking to Viva about his subsequent

project, of a rather smaller nature: a performance

in February, by young musicians, at

Hove’s Old Market, of Marco da Gagliano’s little

known 1608 opera La Dafne.

“It’s great to work in a space like the Liceu,” he

says. “But my work is the same wherever I do

it. It’s important to make the work interesting

and fun – to bring it to life – however big the

stage, however much or little money you have

to spend.”

He likens his job to that of a film director: “the

conductor deals with the music you hear, I deal

with everything you see,” he says.

La Dafne is a Brighton Early Music Festival

performance, and Thomas is a big fan of that

institution. You might remember his staging of

Monteverdi’s Orfeo, reset in the 60s Brighton of

the Mods and Rockers, also at the Old Market,

which received five-star reviews.

He’s not worried that the obscure nature of the

latest work will limit the audience to baroque

opera aficionados, few, let’s face it, in number.

“Deborah [Roberts, BREMF founder and director]

has done enough brilliant work to build up an

audience who are going to trust her – and trust us

– to give them a good ride,” he says, hoping that

the familiar faces will be bolstered by audience

members looking for something a little different.

And La Dafne, one of the very first pieces of work

identifiable as ‘opera’, is certainly unusual. The

libretto is an adaptation of a tale from Ovid’s

Metamorphoses, itself a retelling of an old Greek

myth. The ‘Dafne’ of the title, a young nymph,

attempts to escape the lecherous clutches of the

all-powerful god Apollo, eventually maintaining

her chastity by turning into a tree. “Being a myth

it’s the sort of story we can all relate to,” he says.

“You could say that it’s a #metoo tale of its era.”

It’s not the sort of opera you’d search out on

Spotify for a bit of background music, he admits.

“But in my opinion opera is both a visual and an

oral medium – it’s not either, it’s both, and when

they come together to tell a story, the whole thing

comes to life, which is a unique thing.”

And as for the baby-wailing analogy: “It’s something

we all have hard-wired into us. Babies don’t

cry all the time, it’s usually life or death. If they

don’t get attention, they don’t survive. And opera

is usually very much about human need. Combine

that sort of sound with a great story, and that’s

why the medium is enduringly popular.”

Alex Leith

The Old Market, Feb 8th–9th, theoldmarket.com

Photo by Theresa Pewal

39


18–29 March

HASTINGS

ARE WE ASKING

ENOUGH QUESTIONS ?

www.altpitch.org


ON THIS MONTH: FILM

© Universal Pictures International

Film ’20

Dexter Lee’s cinema round-up

Emma, Almost Famous, Into the Wild

The Academy Awards take place on February 9th,

which means an end to the New Year spate of

heavily hyped contenders. New, lower-key releases

include Trey Edward Shults’ family drama Waves

(w/b Jan 31st), Korean black comedy Parasite

(3rd), road movie Queen & Slim (7th), the latest

version of Jane Austen’s Emma (14th), and Céline

Sciamma’s costume drama Portrait of a Lady on Fire,

which looks unmissable.

Depot’s Chair of Trustees Robert Senior is running

‘Robert’s Genre Club’, a six-week course on

‘the Western’, alongside seven screenings. You can

attend the films without the course, or vice versa.

His February choices are: High Noon (2nd); The

Searchers (2nd); Rio Bravo (9th); The Winning of

Barbara Worth (12th, with a live piano accompaniment);

and The Wild Bunch (23rd). A ticket for

£15 gets you into both films on Sunday 2nd, with

a Western-themed meal served between them.

Which, we’re promised, will be more than just a

can of beans. Yee-hah.

Talking supper, there’s a film-related meal to be

had with Depot’s special offering on Valentine’s

Night (14th, obvs), the Cameron Crowe-directed

comedy-drama Almost Famous, starring Patrick Fugit

as an up-and-coming 70s rock journalist, and

featuring an ensemble cast including Billy Crudup,

Frances McDormand, Zooey Deschanel and

thinking-person’s-favourite-actor Philip Seymour

Hoffman. And there’s a romantic feel to the main

offering on Sunday 16th, too, the three-hour 1945

love-pentagon Les Enfants du Paradis, directed by

Marcel Carne.

There’s the third edition of the popular Japanese

Festival to look forward to, with seven films on

offer, five in February. These are Shadowfall (17th),

a psychological drama about a burglar attempting

to atone for past misdemeanours; Her Sketchbook

(19th), preceded by Supper Club and introduced

by Japanese film student Rina Uno, about a ‘shutin’

girl, forced out of her bedroom by a new job

as a computer games tester; Ride the Wave (22nd),

an anime about a surfer and a firefighter falling

in love; Organ (24th) about a group of kids who

flee the bombing of Tokyo at the end of WW2;

and Lying to Mom (26th) about a family hiding the

tragic death of her son from a mother who has lost

her memory of the event.

There are a few one-offs to mention. On the 6th,

the book-to-film offering is Into the Wild, directed

by Sean Penn; on the same day check out the

‘mystery film’ offered by the young programmers’

Kino Club. The BSL Club, the first of a quarterly

film-and-discussion sessions for people who can

sign is on the 17th, and Odd Man Out (19th), the

1947 Carol Reed thriller about an IRA man on the

run in Belfast, is book-ended with an introduction

and discussion with Ann and Michael Voigt.

Enfin, there’s a very European feel to the Lewes

Film Club, which offers the cold-war classic The

Lost Honour of Katharina Blum, based on the Heinrich

Boll novel (7th), the uplifting 2016 French

drama Heal the Living (21st) and the moving 2017

French psychological drama Custody (23rd).

Check times, dates and other releases at lewesdepot.org

and lewes-filmclub.com

41


Alan Davie, ‘Seascape Erotic’, 1955

Early Works

When Hockney met Davie

In March 1958, fresh out

of Bradford Art School, the

young David Hockney visited

an exhibition of the work of an

abstract expressionist, of sorts,

the 39-year-old Scot, Alan

Davie.

“The experience was to have a

profound influence on Hockney’s

early artistic style,” says

Sara Cooper, sipping a coffee

in the Towner Cafe. Cooper is

the Head of Collections and

Exhibitions at the Eastbourne

gallery, and is telling me

about their big winter/spring

exhibition, Alan Davie & David

Hockney, Early Works.

“Hockney, who was shortly to

start his course at the Royal

College of Art, in London, was

liberated by what he saw,” she

continues. “Here was a way

to work that wasn’t tightly

crammed into some pigeonhole.

It allowed him to be a lot

freer with his painting.”

The exhibition was Davie’s

first retrospective, and a lot

of the pieces that were on

show in 1958 will be displayed

at the Towner show. As will

Hockney’s responses to Davie’s

paintings, when he was experimenting

with abstraction,

before turning to the more

figurative style that came to

define his work.

There are parallels between

the two artists that the exhibition

teases out, says Sara. “Both

are producing works of semiabstraction,

in a similar palette.

Both men were influenced by

other art forms: Davie, who

was also a musician, by jazz,

and Hockney by poetry. They

were both influenced by the

42


ON THIS MONTH: ART

David Hockney, ‘Self Portrait’, 1954 © David Hockney

Photo: Richard Schmidt. Collection Bradford Museums & Galleries, Bradford, UK

David Hockney, ‘We Two Boys Together Clinging’, 1961 © David Hockney

Photo: Prudence Cuming Associates. Collection Arts Council, Southbank Centre

poet Walt Whitman.”

Neither artist, as I glean from

a quick viewing of some of the

images that will be on show,

were afraid to make frequent

sexual references in their work.

And both are fond of inserting

figures and letters into their

paintings. In Hockney’s case,

numbers were an obscure code

for letters of the alphabet: thus

in the 1961 painting We 2 Boys

Clinging Together, the figure

‘4.2’, I learn, represents the

letters ‘C’ and ‘R’, standing for

Cliff Richard, who Hockney

had a crush on at the time.

The exhibition was shown

at the Hepworth Gallery in

Wakefield over the winter

(2020 marking the 100th anniversary

of Davie’s birth); the

Towner have a Davie painting

in their permanent collection,

and lent it to the Yorkshire

gallery. When the opportunity

to house the exhibition arose,

they jumped at it, “to give the

Towner audience the chance

to see the early work of these

two major figures of post-war

British painting.” Hockney, I

imagine, will be a particular

draw.

The surviving artist, I’m told,

(Davie died in 2014) was consulted

in the curating process

of the original exhibition at the

Hepworth, but didn’t go and

see it there. So is Britain’s most

famous living artist likely to

turn up at the Towner? “Would

he swap sunny California for

rainy Eastbourne in February?”,

smiles Sara. “Still, he

has been known to pitch up

unannounced at exhibitions of

his work, so you never know.”

Alex Leith

Towner Eastbourne, 15th

Feb-31st May, £5-£11, free to

members. townereastbourne.

org.uk

Alan Davie, ‘Crazy Gondolier’, 1960

43



ART

ART & ABOUT

In town this month

The Art of Temptation continues at Chalk Gallery until February

23rd, offering a 20% discount on all work in the gallery for this

limited period. From the 24th, the first featured artist exhibition of

the New Year is Lewes resident Rue Asher. With a background in

hypno- and psychotherapy, Rue’s abstract and mixed-media paintings

explore the ‘psychological landscape’ and how we receive, retain and

sometimes distort the memories that ultimately form our life experience.

Continues until the 15th of March. (chalkgallerylewes.co.uk)

‘Interference’ by Susan Lynch, part of The Art of Temptation

Photo by jimholden.co.uk

At Paddock Road Studios on the 22nd February, the artist, sculptor

and printmaker Keith Pettit will give a talk about his creative

career to date. All his work – be it organic, environmental sculptures,

ephemeral flaming bonfires or precise wood engravings – is inspired

by local history and landscape, giving each piece a strong sense of

place. (3pm, tickets available on the door, £5 or free to members of

Lewes and District Visual Arts Association.) An Art Sale will be held

at Paddock Studios on the same day (1-3pm), with artbooks, materials,

drawings, prints and handprinted aprons and bags on sale to raise funds for LADVAA. (Free entry.)

Follow the trail of illuminated installations around the town in this

year’s LewesLight festival, taking place over the weekend of the 28th

February to 1st of March. Inspired by environmental stories, this

year’s contributing artists explore themes from the beauty of moonlight,

to the menace of the growing climate emergency. Free and

open to all. See page 36 for more. (leweslight.uk)

Photo by James McCauley

Out of town

Janet Sutherland

From the 27th of February until the 1st of March, the Crypt Gallery in Seaford

is home to Litfest 2020: a celebration of words and music by a lineup of largely local

authors, poets, storytellers and musicians. There are 12 events to choose from

over the three-day festival, featuring Simon Parke, Barry Winbolt, Umi Sinha, Janet

Sutherland, Nicholas Royle, Maeve Jenkinson, Alex Josephy, Richard Wright, Wendy

Atkinson, Peter Martin, Ruth Figgest and Susan Evans. Tickets are available from

eventbrite.co.uk and cost £5 for individual events, or £40 for a three-day pass. (thecryptgallery.com)

45


Featured Artist: Rue Asher

24th February to 15th March

Original Art in the Heart of Sussex

Chalk Gallery Artist-run gallery

Open everyday

4 North Street

10am to 5pm

Lewes BN7 2PA chalkgallerylewes.co.uk 01273 474477

TOWNER Eastbourne

Alan Davie

and

David Hockney

Early Works

15 February to 31 May 2020

Devonshire Park, BN21 4JJ

@TownerGallery

#EastbourneALIVE

www.townereastbourne.org.uk

Towner Members can enjoy unlimited

free access to this ticketed show.

Join for as little as £35 per year.

David Hockney, Arizona, 1964, acrylic on canvas, 60 60 ins

© David Hockney, photo: Fabrice Gibert


ART

ART & ABOUT

Out of town (cont.)

Queer the Pier opens at Brighton Museum & Art Gallery on the

22nd of February. Researched and curated by residents of Brighton

& Hove, the exhibition explores the experiences of LGBTQ+

people in Sussex over the last 200 years through an expansive

collection of personal accounts, letters, photographs and various

ephemera. Items belonging to notable Brightonians – including

Aubrey Beardsley’s original cover illustration for volume IV

of The Yellow Book – will be on display. Also opening at Brighton

Museum this month is an exhibition of 100 First Women Portraits by acclaimed photographer Anita

Corbin. In this series she sets out to answer the question: ‘how will women be remembered over

the past 100 years?’ The resulting portraits capture 100 women – from iconic celebrities to unsung

heroines – who have made their mark in the fields of Sport, Science, Politics, the Arts and Education.

Continues until the 7th June.

Queer the Pier

‘Yellow Wallpaper II’ (2012) courtesy of the artist and Connaught Brown

On the 1st of February, Shani Rhys James:

tea on the sofa, blood on the carpet opens in the

Wolfson Gallery at Charleston. In this major

exhibition of portraits, interiors and still

lifes, the celebrated Welsh artist explores the

transience of being. Earlier paintings stage

the drama of the mother/daughter relationship,

while her recent work confronts the

fragility of domestic life, ageing and the

curious infantilisation we face during our

first moments of life and again, in old age.

(Continues until 19th April.)

Five exhibitions run concurrently at Hastings

Contemporary this month. Earthly

Delites is the first major UK exhibition by the

contemporary Irish artist Anne Ryan, who

has curated The Studio at 4 a.m. – a showcase

of work by eight emerging contemporary

artists – which hangs alongside. The Age of

Turmoil: Burra, Spencer, Sutherland features

rarely seen works by the three seminal

Modern British artists, and Quentin Blake:

Airborne shows a collection of whimsical flying

creations and madcap characters created

especially for the space by the gallery’s artist

patron. Finally, Drawing Life features artwork

produced

during life

drawing sessions

with

local artists,

carers and

people living

with dementia,

as part of

the gallery’s

ongoing

Wellbeing

programme.

‘Welsh Landscape With Yellow Lane’ (1939-40) by Graham

Sutherland. Photograph Estate of Graham Sutherland

47


Lewes

Little

Theatre

By David and Robert Goodale

Directed by Rebecca Warnett

Saturday 21 March - Saturday

28 March 7:45pm excluding

Sunday. Matinee Saturday 28

March 2:45pm.

www.lewestheatre.org

Box Office: 01273 474826

£12/Members £8

Jeeves and

Wooster

in Perfect Nonsense

FILM

MUSIC

PERFORMANCE

TALKS

FESTIVALS

University of Sussex, Gardner Centre Road, Brighton BN1 9RA

01273 678 822

attenboroughcentre.com


Feb listings

SATURDAY 1

A Night on the Wild Side. Talk with Jay

Griffiths, author of Wild: An Elemental

Journey and Kith: The Riddle of the Childscape.

All proceeds will go to the Linklater Pavilion.

Linklater, 7pm, £6-£10. There will also be

a writing workshop with Jay, 10am-3pm, 12

places at £50 each. Tickets available from

Eventbrite.

TUESDAY 4

Life Drawing. Drop-in session, bring your

own materials. Lewes Arms, 7.30pm, £5.

(Also on Tuesday 18).

Seedy Saturday. Seed swap, talks, children’s

activities, community growing projects,

plants on sale, café and more. Lewes Town

Hall, 10am-3pm, £1 (kids free).

Photo by Howard Grey

Colin Grant & Howard Grey: Lost Images

of the Windrush Generation. Colin

Grant talks to photographer Howard Grey

about his collection of images lost for over 50

years then salvaged by digital technology. All

Saints, 7.45pm, £8/£10, see leweslivelit.co.uk.

WEDNESDAY 5

SATURDAY 1ST, SUNDAY 2ND,

SATURDAY 8TH & SUNDAY 9TH

His Dark Materials Part II. Lewes Drama

Collective’s Youth Group presents part II of

the Philip Pullman epic fantasy. All Saints,

3.30pm, £9.50/£7.50.

MONDAY 3

Introducing Mantellisaurus. Gideon

Mantell birthday memorial lecture with Joe

Bonsor of the Natural History Museum,

describing the latest research on the dinosaur

now named after Mantell. Lewes Town Hall

Council Chamber, 7.30pm, £3 on the door.

Strategies for small gardens – from design

to maintenance. Lewes & District Garden

Society talk with Nigel Philips. St Thomas

Church Hall, 27 Cliffe High St, 7.30pm for

7.45pm, £3 for visitors.

THURSDAY 6

Comedy at the Con. With Angelos Epithemiou,

Danny Buckler and Eryn Tett. Con

Club, 7.30pm, £9-£12.

THURSDAY 6 – SUNDAY 9

New Queers on the Block. Brighton’s The

Marlborough presents a national touring

programme which develops new performances

by innovative LGBTQ+ artists. Events over the

weekend at The Marlborough and ACCA, see

marlboroughtheatre.org.uk.

49


Feb listings (cont.)

SATURDAY 8

Fundraising event. Stalls, games, raffle,

tombola and more. Raising funds for the

Gurkha Welfare Trust, attended by soldiers

from the Gurkha Regiment. Ringmer Village

Hall, 10am, £1 (kids free).

OUTing the Past. Events at Charleston

as part of the international celebration of

LGBT+ history. See charleston.org.uk for

programme.

Lewes Town Hall, 7.30pm-midnight, £8 adv,

£10 on the door.

MONDAY 10

Lewes Between the Twittens. Lewes History

Group talk with archaeologist Dan Swift,

who provides an update on the post-excavation

analysis of four Lewes digs undertaken

by Archaeology South-East. See, too, page

16. King’s Church, 7pm for 7.30pm, £3/£1.

Vegan Evening: Mind, Body & Spirit. Talk,

food tasting with Café12/31, spices from

Seven Sisters, Q&A and recipes to take away.

Café12/31 TRINITY St John sub Castro,

7pm-9.30pm, £10/£12.

Ditch the Detox: Battle of the Decades. Fundraiser

for Patina, with DJs, bar & cocktails.

Photo by Dan Swift

A F F O R D A B L E W E B M A R K E T I N G P A C K A G E

F O R A R T I S A N S

E N T R E P R E N E U R S

S T A R T - U P S

S M A L L B U S I N E S S E S

STEP

2

DIGITAL

Including WordPress website, branding,

product or service photo session, online shop and more.

W W W . S T E P 2 D I G I T A L . C O . U K


TUESDAY 11

The Lewes Lit talk. With award-winning

columnist, and novelist, Sathnam Sanghera.

All Saints, 8pm, £10 (£5 for under 25s). See

page 35.

TUESDAY 11 – SATURDAY 15

SATURDAY 15

Repair Café. Take along damaged clothes,

broken electrical appliances, bicycles, china,

jewellery and more. Tea, coffee and cake available.

Landport Community Hub, BN7 2SU,

2pm-5pm, no charge is made but donations

are welcome, see lewesrepaircafe.org.uk.

Beautiful – The Carole King Musical. Olivier

award-winning West End and Broadway

show. Congress Theatre, Eastbourne, see

eastbournetheatres.co.uk.

FRIDAY 14

Sensory Immersive Theatre Experience.

The Unity Centre, 7.30pm, see annafrearson.

com for more details.

Headstrong Club. Talk, followed by discussion

with Matthew Brown on community

wealth building. The Elephant and Castle,

8pm, £3.

SUNDAY 16

Sussex by the Sea. Musician and writer

Marcus Weeks talks about the rich history and

variety of music played and composed in the

county, illustrated by rare and unpublished

recordings. Lewes Little Theatre, 2.30pm, £5.

51


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Feb listings (cont.)

MONDAY 17 – SATURDAY 22

Educating Rita. Willy Russell play starring

Stephen Tompkinson as Frank and introducing

Jessica Johnson as Rita. Congress

Theatre, Eastbourne, see eastbournetheatres.

co.uk.

TUESDAY 18

Snow Q. Poet

Maria Jastrzębska’s

Anglo-Polish live

literature production,

re-imagining

aspects of the story

of The Snow Queen

to explore contemporary

themes

of social isolation,

gender, sexuality,

migration and exile.

All Saints, 7.45pm, £8/£10, see leweslivelit.

co.uk.

THURSDAY 20

Friends of Lewes talk. Carmen Slijpen &

Natasha Padbury talk on the Depot Cinema,

the back story, and being sustainable. Lecture

Room, Lewes Town Hall, 7.45pm, £3 (free to

Friends of Lewes members).

FRIDAY 21

Excavations at Lewes Library, Baxter’s

Printworks and Lewes House. Lewes Archaeological

Group talk by Dan Swift. Lewes

Town Hall lecture room, 7.30pm, £4/£3, free

for under 25s.

SATURDAY 22

Talk with Keith Pettit. Artist, printmaker

and sculptor, Keith talks about the aspects of

his creative career, and the different elements

Photo by Sara Bahadori

that make up his output. Paddock Art Studios,

3pm, £5 (free to members of LADVAA).

THURSDAY 27

The Group. Meet new friends in a welcoming

atmosphere. For those 50+ and unattached.

A pub in Lewes, see thegroup.org.uk.

THURSDAY 27 – SUN 1 MARCH

Litfest 2020. A weekend celebration of

words and music, with authors, poets,

storytellers and musicians. The Crypt Gallery,

Seaford, see thecryptgallery.com for

programme and prices.

FRIDAY 28

Berwick Church

Community

Archaeology

Project Talk.

Exploring the

archaeological and

historical background

of Berwick. Alciston & Selmeston

Village Hall, 7.30pm, free, email berwickchurch@gmail.com.

FRIDAY 28 – SUNDAY 1 MARCH

Lewes Light. An eclectic mix of installations

inspired by the town and its special location

on the South Downs. This year the festival

celebrates the moon, dark skies and explores

the challenges we face addressing the impact

on our planet caused by human civilisation. See

page 36, and leweslight.uk.

SATURDAY 29

Lewes Climate Café. A space and opportunity

to talk about what climate change means

to you. The Unity Centre, Friars Walk,

3.30pm-5pm.

53


GIG GUIDE: FEBRUARY

GIG OF THE MONTH:

MAD PROFESSOR LIVE

DUB SHOW

‘He might be called Mad Professor, but he is one of the sanest working

musicians around.’ Gaining his name from a childhood fascination

with experimenting and electronics, the Professor started his career as

a service engineer for mixing desks and amplifiers, before turning his

talents to music in the early 80s, when he built a studio at his home

in Thornton Heath. In his now long and accomplished career he has worked with the likes of Johnny

Clarke, Mikey Dread and Reggae Regular, and has amassed a fine discography.

With support from Sir Coxsone Outernational Sound, it’s going to be one hell of a party.

Sat 29th, Con Club, 7.30pm, £15

SATURDAY 1

Urban Voodoo Machine. Bourbon-soaked

Gypsy blues. Con Club, 7.30pm, £15

Ska Tunes. Lamb, 8pm, free

Vic & Tina Smith: ‘All the Birds of the Air’.

Folk music presentation with illustrations.

Elephant & Castle, 8pm, £7

Original 45ers DJ Set. Royal Oak, 9pm, free

Live music at King’s Head, every Friday

through the month

SATURDAY 8

Sound Tradition. Folk, English trad, four-part

vocal harmony. Elephant & Castle, 8pm, £7

Los Twangueros. Think Santana playing

Chemical Brothers. Lamb, 8pm, free

MONDAY 3

Andy Panayi, Darren Beckett, Nigel

Thomas & Terry Seabrook. Jazz. Snowdrop,

8pm, free

THURSDAY 6

Owen Ridley & Friends. Comedy with musical

support from Joe King. Lamb, 8pm, free

MONDAY 10

Martin Speake, Nigel Thomas & Spike

Wells. Jazz. Snowdrop, 8pm, free

THURSDAY 13

Open Mike. Lamb, 8pm, free

FRIDAY 7

Groove Hoover. Classic rock covers. Con

Club, 8pm, free

Maia Eden EP Launch. An evening of songs,

poems and music. Lewes venue given on

booking, 7.30pm, see maiaeden.com

Maia Eden

54


GIG GUIDE: FEBRUARY

FRIDAY 14

Jacquemo. Ska beat Valentine special. Lamb,

8pm, free

SATURDAY 15

Damo Suzuki. Ex-Can, Krautrock. Con

Club, 7.30pm, £12.50

Sam Lewis. Country. Con Club, 7.30pm, £15

Dead Man’s Wood. Rock. Lamb, 8pm, free

Martyn Wyndham-Read & Iris Bishop.

Folk, British & Australian Trad, guitar,

concertina, accordion. Elephant & Castle,

8pm, £10

Understory.

Folk, experimental

trad, voices,

mandolin, piano,

fiddles, strings,

accordion and

slide guitar. Elephant

& Castle,

8pm, £7

SUNDAY 23

Arcelia. Sundays in the bar session. Con

Club, 3.30pm, free

Understory

SUNDAY 16

Martin Carthy. Folk. Con Club, 7.30pm,

£17.50

Pam & De Femmes. International cabaret.

Lamb, 8pm, free

MONDAY 17

Quinto with Raul D’Oliveira & Tristan

Banks. Jazz. Snowdrop, 8pm, free

THURSDAY 20

Triversion. Terry Seabrook jazz trio. Lamb,

8pm, free

FRIDAY 21

Sam Lewis. Roots country and soul. Con

Club, 7.30pm, £12

Captain’s Beard. Pirate folk. Lamb, 8pm, free

Friday Night Jazz. More details at

halfmoonplumpton.com

SATURDAY 22

The Original John Rossall Glitter Band.

Glam rock. Con Club, 7pm, £18

Kent DuChaine. Blues. Lansdown, 8pm, free

Los Twangueros. Latin beats & Balearic

treats. Royal Oak, 8pm, free

MONDAY 24

Lawrence Jones, Dominic O’Meehgan &

Terry Seabrook. Jazz. Snowdrop, 8pm, free

THURSDAY 27

Count Kujo. Worldbeats and fusion funk.

Undercover Hippy. Reggae-flavoured rap.

Con Club, 8pm, £12

FRIDAY 28

Let’s Get Funked. Funk & soul dance night

with DJ Steve Mason & live band Supernatural

Things. All Saints, 7.30pm, £8/£6

Amuse Manouche. Three-piece French gypsy

jazz swing band. Café du Jardin, 8pm, free

Blackjacks. Classic R&B. Con Club, 8pm, free

Monster Groove Night. With Lost Organ

Unit. Lamb, 8pm, free

SATURDAY 29

Mad Professor. Live dub show. Con Club,

7.30pm, £15

Jim & Luke Murray & band. Tyneside folk

old & new, guitar, fiddles, concertinas, melodeon.

Elephant & Castle, 8pm, £6

Manitees/Sweet Onions/Ibex. The Lamb,

8pm, free

55



CLASSICAL ROUND-UP: FEBRUARY

PICK

OF THE

SUNDAY 9 TH MONTH

FEB 2.45PM

Brighton Philharmonic Brass. As part of its new initiative

of showcasing sections of the orchestra, the Brighton Philharmonic

this month gives its brass players the limelight.

The sheer variety of music written for brass ensemble can

sometimes be surprising. In this concert the audience is

promised ‘a musical journey across the centuries’ from

Tylman Susato’s Rennaissance Dances to 20th century works

such as Chris Hazell’s jazzy, light-hearted Brass Cats Suite.

According to the composer, ‘The Cats Suite is loosely based

on the cats (all former strays) who share my home.’ If you have any preconceptions about brass

instruments being loud or not given to subtlety, prepare to be amazed and delighted by the sound

of French horn, four trumpets, three tenor trombones, a bass trombone and a tuba. Brighton Dome,

£14.50-£42.50, 50% student/U18 discount, ticket Office 01273 709709, brightondome.org

SUNDAY 2 ND , 4PM

Corelli Ensemble. If you missed it last month

here’s a chance to hear the Corellis play John

Rutter’s Suite for Strings, based on English folk

tunes, together with Mozart’s ever-popular

Eine Kleine Nachtmusik and works by Handel

and Beethoven. Seaford Baptist Church. £12 in

advance from the website or Seaford TIC, £14 on

the door. Children free. corelliensemble.co.uk

SUN 9 TH , 3PM

Seaford Music Society. The new season kicks

off with the London Mozart Players Chamber

Ensemble who bring a varied programme to

Seaford, including Mozart Sinfonia Concertante

K364/K320d and Richard Strauss Metamorphosen

TrV290/AV142. The latter was composed

75 years ago when the Second World War was

nearly at an end. St Leonard’s Church, Seaford,

£8/£5, accompanied children free, seafordmusicsociety.com

SATURDAY 15 TH , 7.30PM

Myths, Mystique and Mayhem. The Baroque

Collective Singers present a concert of English

and German partsongs, including works by

Brahms, Schubert, Haydn, Britten and Holst.

Also on the bill is Vaughan Williams’s glorious

Serenade to Music. Directed by John Hancorn and

Tony Jay with guests Helen Arnold (harp) and

Nancy Cooley (piano). St Michael’s Church, £15 /

£12 under 16s free, thebaroquecollective.org.uk

SUNDAY 23 RD , 11AM

Castalian Quartet. Wigmore Hall regulars the

Castalian Quartet are at the Attenborough Centre

for this month’s Coffee Concert, performing

Schumann, Janáček and Brahms, with their

‘abundant mega talent in works great and small’

(The Arts Desk, 2018). Attenborough Centre for

the Creative Arts, £18.50, concessions £16, attenboroughcentre.com

FRIDAY 28 TH , 7.45PM

Nicholas Yonge Society. Formed when its members

were students at the Royal College of Music,

the Ensemble Solaire wind quintet won the Elias

Fawett Prize for Outstanding Ensemble in the

final of the Royal Over-Seas League Competition

in 2018. Hear them in Lewes this month when

they play Ravel, Barber, Carraptoso, Canteloube,

Ibert, Hindemith and Arnold. Cliffe Building,

East Sussex College, Mountfield Road, £16, free

for 8-25 year-olds, available from the website, from

Baldwins Travel or on the door, nyslewes.org.uk

Robin Houghton

57


JO O’SULLIVAN

INSTANT MESSAGING

Think before you text

When I first started in practice (2001), the fax

was the fastest way to get letters between

solicitors and others. But they weren’t

necessarily instant. If the fax machine was

heavily used there would be a queue to both

send and receive documents. Then the letter

had to make its way to the actual desk. So,

although it felt like faxes were ‘flying about

on a Friday’ the reality was a little different.

Compare the relative slowness of the fax and

the communication available today.

With emails, live chat messaging, WhatsApp,

texting (and apps I’ve never heard of), it is

now possible to contact your solicitor, or your

ex-partner, or the other parent, instantly.

Just because we can does not mean that we

should.

I do try to respond to my clients within 24

hours. But sometimes, I can’t or won’t.

If I’m in meetings then I physically can’t.

Sometimes, I want to THINK about an issue

or a piece of law. I want to mull things over.

I wonder if I might suggest that when going

through a break up, you might pause before

you communicate. Don’t press send. Wait.

Do you really need to send that text, email

or message? Does it need to be sent now or

more importantly or does it really need to be

sent at all?

There is an app/online tool called Our Family

Wizard (www.ourfamilywizard.co.uk) which

can help improve communication between

separated parents. It actually monitors your

communication and suggests when it might

be perceived by the other parent as rude,

aggressive or unhelpful. (I think that probably

some solicitors need this tool when they

write to each other too!!).

Here’s to slow, thoughtful, careful and caring

communication.

Please call to discuss what might be the best process for you

on 07780676212 or email jo@osullivanfamilylaw.com

For more details about how I work visit

www.osullivanfamilylaw.com


FreeTIME

êêêê

THURSDAY 13 & FRIDAY 14

The Bear. Stage show based on the book by

Raymond Briggs, telling the story of a little

girl who befriends a mischievous polar bear,

suitable for age three plus. Chichester Festival

Theatre, £15, see cft.org.uk.

WEDNESDAY 19

Pugs of the Frozen North. Theatre show

based on the book by Philip Reeve and Sarah

McIntyre. Eastgate Baptist Church Hall, 2pm,

£7/ £5 concs/ £20 Family (two adults and two

children under 16).

FRIDAY 21

Milkshake Monkey’s Musical. Starring

Fireman Sam, Noddy, Shimmer & Shine,

Digby Dragon, Wissper, Nella the Princess

Knight and the Floogals, alongside two

Milkshake! presenters. Congress Theatre,

Eastbourne, see eastbournetheatres.co.uk.

SATURDAY 15 – SUNDAY 23

Kids for a Quid. Half term special. See

bluebell-railway.com for more details.

Half term fun at Wakehurst. Variety

of family-friendly events, workshops and

activities. See kew.org/wakehurst for full

programme of events.

February half term: play ambassadors. A

range of activities for children of all ages. See

nationaltrust.org.uk/sheffield-park-andgarden.

MONDAY 17 – FRIDAY 21

Live Like a Roman. Find out what

the Romans did for us, from potterymaking

to dressing up, creating mosaics

to spinning and weaving. Fishbourne

Roman Palace, see sussexpast.co.uk for

more info.

SPECIAL OFFER

SEALIFE CENTRE BRIGHTON

Pick up a copy

of our sister

magazine Viva

Brighton this

month for 50%

off entry to

Brighton Sealife

Centre for up

to five people.

Viva Brighton is

available at Lewes House or various

pick-up points in Brighton, including

the station, Jubilee Library

and Churchill Square. You

must present the voucher

at entry, or you can use

the special voucher code

(VIVA20) to book online.

59


UNDER 16s

êêêê

Sky High Trampoline

Reach for the stars

Fit and active children are more likely to become

fit and active adults. So says Gail Andrews,

head coach at the Sky High Trampoline Gymnastics

Academy in Uckfield – and she should

know. A former competitive gymnast herself, she

has introduced hundreds of children to the sport

in the ten years the Fun Abounds Trampoline &

Gymnastics Centre (home of the Academy) has

been running.

“It helps to get into sport as early as possible,”

she says, “as children who start young are

statistically more likely to continue as adults.

Keeping it fun is the important thing, as once

you have a love for a sport, you are more likely

to carry it on.”

Some children join the club at just three years

of age, she adds. “We start with pre-schoolers,

then go on to after-school classes from five years

upwards. We have adult classes too, and also

run groups for children and adults with special

needs, and one-to-ones. It’s great for flexibility

and strength, and very good aerobically too. We

have a few children with Cystic Fibrosis who use

the trampoline for the aerobic benefits.”

As well as the 400 to 500 children who enjoy

gymnastics recreationally at Fun Abounds, there

are about 100 who take part competitively and

make up the Academy side of the club.

One of these talented youngsters is 12-year-old

Alex Oakley (pictured), who recently represented

Great Britain in The World Age Games

at the Olympic stadium in Tokyo.

“I started gymnastics when I was three, then

trampolining when I was eight,” he recalls. “I

was a bit shy at first, and, when I first got on the

trampoline, I was all over the place. But it was

such fun that I wanted to learn how to stay in

the middle and do it properly, so I started coming

regularly. I got spotted to be on the England

Squad, and took part in my first national competition

when I was nine.”

Disciplines include Trampoline, Tumbling and

DMT (Double Mini Trampoline); Alex competes

in Trampolining and DMT.

“Tokyo was amazing, but hard work,” he says of

his appearance at The World Age Games. “The

whole team travelled out together, wearing the

GB kit, and it was a 12-hour flight. Then we

went straight into training. It was really strict.”

All that effort certainly paid off, as Alex got

through to the final and is now ranked seventh

in the world.

“Alex was one of those toddlers who was always

balancing and flipping,” says his mother, Helen

Oakley, “but I’d recommend trampolining to

anyone. It’s so much fun. Just come along and

have a go!” Anita Hall

funabounds.co.uk; 01825 768479

60


êêêê

UNDER 16s

Press Play Films

Making your own animations

“Kids really need a space to be creative,” says Lara

Leslie. “There’s very little time for it in the school

curriculum yet it’s so valuable.” It’s one of the reasons

the Fine Art graduate-turned-TV producer

set up Press Play Films – which offers animation

and film classes for children aged from seven to

13. “Animation is a great way for kids to explore

ideas and create their own worlds; it involves

drawing, storyboarding, performing and hands-on

making – and it’s a lot of fun.”

Lara spent her 20s working in TV and animation

– including a stint at Bristol’s famous Aardman

studios, where she helped make models for the

much-loved Wallace and Gromit films. (“It was

actually pretty formulaic,” she admits. “You had

to mix the clay to exactly the same formula and

quantities every day…”)

When she later had two sons, she found the long

hours and busy schedules of the film industry

incompatible with family life. “I wanted to carry

on doing something creative but where I could

still spend time with my children.” She struck on

the idea of animation classes and with the help of

a fellow animator held a sold-out pilot in Lewes.

A few years later, Press Play runs regular afterschool

clubs, workshops in libraries, galleries and

museums and even animation birthday parties

across Sussex. Lara covers everything from traditional

2D drawn animation to documentary film

production, as well as Lego animation, zoetropes

and claymation, better known as stop-motion. “I

particularly like claymation because it involves

so much hands-on making, which is really where

my interests lie, and it’s also really popular with

children.”

A typical class is a mix of study and practical work.

“We’ll usually look at some examples of animation

at the beginning, then do a story plan – an

essential part of good animation. From there we

make storyboards, then the models and set, before

photographing them to make the film. Finally,

we’ll record any voiceovers or sound effects.”

Examples of work made at Press Play workshops

show a huge variety of styles and interests, from

an animation devoted to biscuits to a brilliantly

surreal cooking sequence featuring Lego and

paper spaghetti. “We’re not prescriptive,” says

Lara. “The classes are really about kids having an

opportunity to try out whatever ideas are in their

brains and to experiment with different forms.”

She thinks boys in particular benefit from the

classes. “Boys between the ages of eight and 13

often stop wanting to create because it’s not seen

as ‘cool’. But because animation involves technology

they feel more comfortable giving it a go, and

then they end up learning all the creative, arty

stuff along the way.”

Many children come back term after term: “Animation

is kind of addictive,” says Lara, “and the

possibilities are endless.”

Nione Meakin

pressplayfilms.co.uk

61


The Kings Head

9 Southover High St, Lewes, BN7 1HS

01273 474628 | www.kingsheadlewes.co.uk


FOOD & DRINK

Limetree Kitchen

Quietly brilliant

A cocktail is a fine way to celebrate Valentine’s

Day, or indeed any day. And Limetree Kitchen offers

an elegant, surprisingly spacious environment

to drink and dine in. It’s stylish, but laid back, and

our service is friendly and approachable.

Their ‘Gin Kitchen’ promises gin and tonic with

a twist: there are six different gins on the menu,

listed alongside their botanicals. I’m drawn

to the cinnamon, cloves and cardamom of the

Bathtub gin, and match it with a rosemary and

thyme mixer (£9.80). It’s startlingly fresh, like

drinking a fragrant garden on a crisp autumn

afternoon. As I write, I can recall the flavour

distinctly, which is always a good sign!

Rebecca goes more maverick, opting for the

Chapel Down gin (with notes of citrus peel and

juniper) and chooses a marmalade and chilli mixer

(£9.80). It’s certainly more colourful: a pale

yellow to dark orange gradient, with flakes of

chilli, and bits of orange zest. The gamble pays

off: too overwhelmed to describe it immediately

after her first sip – due to its intense flavour –

she then collects herself and calmly declares that

it’s the “nicest drink she’s ever had”. (And this,

from one of Viva’s most established food reviewers,

is saying something.) It has a fruity, fun,

mostly marmalade flavour, with an occasional

chilli hit, and a striking sherbet-like tang from

the orange zest.

There’s also the small matter of the food for us

to try, too. I choose the steak tartare, which is

rich and herby, and comes with bone marrow

butter on toast, which is like an oily, meatier

version of eggy bread (£9.50). We share a bowl

of tasty skinny fries (£3.70), which we pair with a

nice, garlicy aioli.

Rebecca chooses the salt-baked celeriac, and

enjoys the gooey texture, “like potatoes cooked

just right” (£8). It comes with a vegan feta and

coconut yogurt, which has been whipped into

a mousse-like texture: a strong cheesy taste.

Thinly-sliced apple and hazelnuts give the dish

some complementary sweetness – and a satisfyingly

crunchy texture – and also help to make

it the most visually impressive dish of the day.

We share a bowl of green beans with truffle oil,

which raises the topic of how to adequately describe

good truffle oil: for this we settle on salty,

and gleefully umami (£4.20).

There is a quietly brilliant tone to Limetree

Kitchen, which sits well with us. One would feel

equally at home on a formal occasion, or with a

friend for a relaxed catch up. Joe Fuller

14 Station Street, limetreekitchen.co.uk

63


64

Photo by Saskia Puxley


RECIPE

Buckwheat crêpes with

sweet potato and spinach

Martin, from Zu Café in the old bus station building,

cooks up a vegetarian treat, perfect for Shrove Tuesday

Samira and I spent nine years running Zu Studios,

a Community Arts Centre on the Phoenix

Estate; we had to leave in 2016 after developers

got planning permission. The next chapter saw

the birth of Zutopia, a café and performance

space in a big marquee which featured at a

number of festivals. This was when I developed a

range of healthy buckwheat crêpes.

As well as the events and festivals, Samira went

back to her healing practice and I set up a new

wood workshop in the Bus Depot warehouse,

next to the Bus Station. While working there late

one evening a friend brought me over a slice from

the very last pizza made at the Bus Club Pizzeria.

I love the building and started mulling over the

idea of taking it on, to start a café. It wasn’t long

before we had the keys and were on an unexpected

new adventure: Zu Café was born!

We are offering delicious vegetarian and vegan

food in a friendly, comfortable space. Downstairs

is the coffee house and crêperie, upstairs

the restaurant and bar. We also have a late bar

license and offer live music, open mic nights,

talks, something for everyone.

As well as great fair-trade coffee, amazing cakes

and snacks we make sweet and savoury buckwheat

crêpes, also known as galettes. They’re

made with ethically sourced, gluten free ingredients;

we make them on crêpe-maker hotplates,

but you can do them at home in a frying pan.

Here’s how… (serves 4).

For the batter, mix 200g buckwheat flour, 50g

chickpea flour, 2 free-range eggs, a teaspoon of

sea salt, 50g of melted butter and half a litre of

coconut (or cow’s) milk. Whisk till it’s smooth.

Heat the pan until hot, then coat with coconut

oil or butter. Slowly pour in the mixture until it

thinly covers the bottom of the pan (moving the

pan in your hands to facilitate the process). After

about 30 seconds turn the pancake over (toss it if

you’re confident, or use a spatula).

Spread your chosen ingredients in a vertical stripe

in the middle third of the crêpe: in this case it’s

thick-grated mature cheddar cheese, green Genovese

pesto, sugar cube-sized chunks of boiled or

roasted sweet potato, and baby-leaf spinach.

When the cheese starts melting, fold either

side of the crêpe over the filling, from the left

and the right, to form a rectangular shape, and

glaze with butter. Turn the crêpe over, and glaze

the other side. This’ll make it nice and crispy.

Fry for a further minute or so to make sure the

filling warms up nicely, and the batter hardens.

Serve with a dollop of sour cream, a handful

of chopped parsley, and a couple of cherry

tomatoes; add toasted pumpkin seeds for extra

flavour. Don’t worry if the first one goes wrong:

you’ll soon get the hang of it. Happy Pancake

Day! As told to Alex Leith

zucafe.co.uk

65


We are a family-owned business in the heart of Lewes,

offering organic & biodynamic fruit and veg, zero-waste shopping,

organic skincare, artisan breads, local and ethically sourced

produce, vegan and gluten-free products.


FOOD

Café du Jardin

Quirky classic

Lucinka Soucek, who runs Café du Jardin, is also a brilliant printmaker. Her

linocut, Passing Trains, which we’ve featured before in Viva Lewes (June 2016),

is truly wonderful. I was delighted to spot it on the wall when we visited.

We went for lunch the day after the café reopened in January. Set within the

courtyard off the street, the café’s outside tables offer a lovely spot to sit in

summer. It being still January, however, we slunk below – to the quirky and

welcoming large downstairs dining room.

It’s a lovely room, cheering, with loads to look at, including table football, standard lamps, and a couple of

tables served by armchairs. A charmingly quirky space. Everybody was very friendly. Pete ordered Croque

Monsieur £7.95, and I tried the Herb Crêpe filled with ratatouille and brie £7.95, both served with beautifully

fresh salad and crisp, flavoursome frites. The helpings were generous without being intimidating. The

Croque was excellent – a classic dish that hadn’t been mucked about with. My crêpe was comfortingly rustic,

with herby juicy ratatouille and the lovely surprise of brie.

We couldn’t resist two cakes for afters: lemon drizzle £2.95 and salted caramel millionaire’s shortbread £2.95.

Again, classic recipes beautifully enacted. These came on little mismatched plates with tiny cake forks. Nostalgic

details like these make me a very likely return-visitor… Charlotte Gann

15 Malling Street, cafedujardin.co.uk, open on Valentine’s evening


enjoy a complimentary

Kir Royale

- For you and your guests when dining -

To redeem, simply present this advert when dining

Côte Brasserie Lewes

82 HIGH STREET, LEWES, BN7 1XW

01273 311 344 | www.cote.co.uk/lewes

Valid until 31/03/20 at Côte Lewes only. One complimentary glass of Kir Royale per person 18 years and

over ordering a main course from our À La Carte menu.

Not valid in conjunction with any other offer.


FOOD

Lewes bites

Seven Sisters’ Spices is selling Love Boxes

for Valentine’s Day: choose from Middle

Eastern, Sri Lankan or Indian (which includes

recipes for a 3-course meal and hand-ground

organic spices), £10 apiece, or a Valentines

Mini Hamper, for £12. Check out the Seven

Sisters’ Spices website. Oh, and don’t forget

Common Cause’s Seedy Saturday in the

Town Hall on the 1st February. Lots of

food seeds, and growing

veg tips, among other

things. Seven Sisters’

Spices will be running

the café, while

Hamsey School hosts

the cake stall.

Tina of Tina’s Kitchen and yoga teacher Alison

Harvey have joined forces to put together

an Everyday Wellbeing Day on Friday 7th

February, 10-4pm. The programme combines

yoga, breath work and nutrition with a healthy

and delicious lunch. The

cost is £80, which

includes the food.

Contact tinadeubert@gmail.com

or

abharvey@gmail.com

to book.

www.lewesfoodmarket.co.uk

The Seasons health food shop in the Cliffe

run free tasting sessions on Fridays. For

February, these are: on the 7th, Kefirco and

Carrinet!, learn how to make Kefir; on the

14th, Flax Farm, Flaxjacks and the benefit of

linseed oil; 21st, Old Tree Brewery, sharing

their Kombucha; and

28th, coffee substitutes,

such as dandelion

coffee, barley cup and

Yannoh. Everyone

welcome.

69


THE WAY WE WORKOUT

Lewes-based portrait and wedding photographer Rebecca King

captured four local personal trainers at work, asking each of them:

How do you like to keep fit?

millsandkingphotography.com

Katie Weir at Lewesfit

‘I run, lift weights, walk my dog and would love to do

more yoga – that’s my 2020 goal.’


THE WAY WE WORKOUT

Gyles Abbott at Soulfit

‘Running on the Downs, whatever the weather, as well as training and

competing with the ace community at Lewes Athletics Club.’


THE WAY WE WORKOUT

Lisa Dickson at Body Happy Lewes

‘Regular exercise and healthy eating. My workouts consist

of weight training, boxing, and running.’


THE WAY WE WORKOUT

Nick Williams at ThatCoachNick

‘I’m training for an Ironman later this year so it’s swimming, road cycling and hill running for

me at the moment. But from April to October, sea swimming is definitely my favourite.’



FEATURE

Ouse ‘Source to Sea’

Welcome to the jungle

Lewes local Mike

Ellicock would occasionally

commute

to his previous job, in

Newhaven, by canoe.

He enjoys challenging

himself, having also

broken the Guinness

world record for

running the London

marathon with a 20lb

pack on his back. I

meet Mike at the Waterside Centre – where

he works as CEO of maths education charity,

National Numeracy – to discuss his most

recent achievement: paddling the river Ouse

from ‘Source to Sea’.

Mike was inspired to make the journey by his

friend John Cattermole, who came up with the

idea and made the trip in 1987. Mike paddled

the 37 mile route from Slaugham to Newhaven

on 17th November 2019, in 10 hours 59 minutes.

“The first 15 miles are basically a ditch.

There will be 50 metres where you can paddle,

and then you have to get out and climb over a

log. It’s quite jungly: there’s lots of brambles.”

After wading through the jungle brush on a

paddle board for the first 15 miles, Mike then

switched to a ‘Surf ski’ (a longer boat that one

sits in), which allowed him to travel faster. Was

the idea to go as fast as possible? “It went dark

when I was just north of Lewes, but I was keen

to complete the challenge in a single session. It’s

difficult to do: you probably have to do it in the

winter. In the summer there’s less water, and the

vegetation is more overgrown.”

Mike has taken part

in various challenges

and races before, but

finds that they can be

time consuming and

costly. “One of the

points of doing the

Ouse ‘Source to Sea’

was to show that you

can actually have quite

a chunky adventure

right on your doorstep,

with the river and the Downs here, for example.

One of the things I had a go at before Christmas

was to start paddling out to the wind turbines

in Brighton. I think they’re about eight miles

offshore. It’s doable, probably [laughs].”

Mike clearly loves being active outdoors, and

sees it as “much more our natural environment

than spending time behind desks. Homo

sapiens has evolved to move; genetically we are

hunter gatherers. It’s good physically, but more

importantly it’s good mentally to get out and

commune with nature. It’s beautiful, but it’s also

kind of uplifting.

“When you’re into your 40s like I am, you’ve

got responsibilities: kids, mortgage, all of that

kind of stuff. It’s quite important to continue

to play, and not to get weighed down by all the

other crap.”

Joe Fuller

Anyone interested in attempting the Ouse ‘Source

to Sea’, or in sharing suggestions for local adventures,

can email mikeellicock@gmail.com. Mike’s

‘Source to Sea’ journey can be viewed at strava.

com/activities/2872680019

75


FEATURE

Reid Savage

Lewes Guitar Teacher

“I’ve been surrounded by music all my life. My

father was a big-band arranger”, says Reid Savage,

Lewes resident and guitar teacher who currently

teaches pupils aged seven to 70. Reid recorded his

first album, aged 17, as guitarist in a band called

Sore Throat “in Studio 2, Abbey Road. It was

almost too good to be true,” he says, looking back

now. “I see all the photos of the Beatles working

on those same orchestral chairs…”

Sore Throat were a regular Camden Town band;

his next, called Way of the West “sold records”. It

also did brilliantly in America, and Reid remembers

fondly a tour of Europe and the States, when

he was 23. “For years, this became my life. I was

in and out of studios, supporting other bands –

The Stranglers, Madness, The Pretenders, The

Jam – then doing session work. I’ve jammed with

Keith Richards, Ronnie Wood and Eric Clapton!”

He’s also worked as a producer, among others for

Carole King’s daughter, Louise Goffin, and Pink

Floyd’s David Gilmour. Today he still offers a

production service – “people bring a song, and I

arrange it for them” – as well as songwriting and

production classes.

The music world has changed beyond recognition,

he says, due to the “technological revolution”.

Today “my production studio is here” – indicating

his laptop. “In the mid-90s people started

being able to make their own records. The first

people who went out of the window were session

drummers: laying a good track of drumming cost

serious money. But it’s been the end of an era. A

return to democracy – which is great; anyone can

record their own music – but it’s a double-edged

sword. It became harder to stay in business.”

Reinventing himself as a guitar teacher has been

great for Reid, though, he says. “I’ve been unbelievably

lucky. Kids come to me who are really

serious about their music. And adults, sometimes,

who say I love guitar and always meant to learn

to play: now I have some time, can you help me?

I’ve developed a USP: when people come to me,

whatever stage, whatever age, I ask them to name

some songs they love. We then work together on

learning how to play these – and I mean, really

play them. So they sound like they do on the

record. Together we listen hard: notice the connecting

notes. This makes all the difference.

“I’m so happy I’ve found a way of sharing my love

of music with others who love it too. Teaching

guitar has proved more of a blast than I hardly

dared imagine possible.”

Reid is also just now launching his own, first

solo album – called Response. “It’s my response

to flying solo,” he says, “without the safety net

of a band. It features some great guest vocalists

– Grace Harwood, for instance, is really, really

good…”

So who, I ask, is his all-time favourite guitarist?

“Jimi Hendrix. You only get a human like that

landing on the planet once in a lifetime.”

Charlotte Gann

guitarteacherlewes.com; reidsavagemusic.com

76


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WILDLIFE

Great Spotted Woodpecker

Keep your pecker up

Illustration by Mark Greco

My New Year’s resolution was that I would try

to be more positive about the future. It’s only

February and I already feel like banging my head

repeatedly against a tree. Standing out in the

street this morning I heard a noise that reassured

me that I’m not alone.

The drumming of the Great Spotted Woodpecker

is a familiar sound throughout February,

surely earning this striking black and white bird

a reputation as one of Britain’s most famous

drummers along with Ringo Starr and Phil Collins.

The bird’s drumming serves an important

function because the Great Spotted Woodpecker

realises it can’t sing and doesn’t attempt to.

Sadly, the same can’t be said for Ringo Starr and

Phil Collins. Instead its drumroll is a percussive

proclamation that hammers home the message

to other male woodpeckers to stay away from its

territory in the treetops. It also serves to drum

up support from female woodpeckers in the

vicinity who may be looking for a pied partner.

This ‘song’ may not be as sweet as the melodies

sung by the Robin or Blackbird but it still gets

its message across. Indeed, the drumming can

carry the bird’s message across half a mile of

countryside with a male broadcasting up to 600

drumrolls a day. Each drumroll consists of up to

ten to 16 beats typically in a one second burst.

Of course, if I did attempt to take my frustrations

out on a tree in a similar way I’d suffer

some form of concussion but woodpeckers are

specially designed to avoid this by having shock

absorbent tissue between the base of their bill

and their strengthened skulls to cushion the

impact.

Their incredible beak is more than just a drumstick,

it’s also a pickaxe, which allows them to

chip away at trunks to excavate their own nest

hole, and a chisel with which the woodpecker

prises open tree bark to find food. That mighty

beak is a formidable weapon too which sends

other birds on the peanut feeder scarpering pretty

sharpish. And Great Spotted Woodpeckers are

becoming more greatly spotted as it is a British

bird which is actually increasing in numbers.

The pecker’s population leapt in the 70s and 90s

with some estimates stating they have increased

by 300 per cent over the past five decades. The

availability of dead wood thanks to Dutch Elm

Disease and the availability of peanuts thanks to

British bird lovers being among of the reasons

for this increase. See, I ended the article on a

positive note, maybe I haven’t broken my New

Year’s resolution after all. Well done to me. Now

to put the kettle on, put my feet up, and turn on

the news.

Michael Blencowe, Senior Learning & Engagement

Officer, Sussex Wildlife Trust

79


RICHARD GREEN FUNERAL SERVICE

The only truly independent, family owned and run

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01825 760601 (24hrs)

uckfield@rgreenfs.co.uk

Living with Loss

“It’s all about hope, kindness and a connection with one another.”

Elizabeth Taylor

In this small therapeutic support group you are invited

to explore your experiences around loss which may include:

Loss of Love

Loss of Independence/Freedom

Loss of Financial Security

Loss of Good Health/Vitality

Loss of a Sense of Self

The group of max. 6 people will meet on Monday mornings

in a central Lewes location

from the beginning of March until Easter

For more information please contact

Diana Collins, Dipl. Psych. UKCP

via email at dianamcollins@gmail.com

or call/text me on 07801 418 474


FEATURE

Playing Cupid

The maths behind dating

In the 2001 biopic A Beautiful

Mind mathematician John Nash

(played by Russell Crowe) devises

a dating strategy for his friends.

Although they all fancy “the

blonde” in a group of women, he

points out that none of them will

get her because they’ll end up

blocking each other. And if they

then turn to her friends, they’ll be

rejected because no one likes to be second best.

So the solution is for his friends to approach the

blonde’s friends first. Known as Nash’s Equilibrium,

it illustrates that the best result comes

from everyone in the group doing what’s best for

him/herself and the group.

Nash’s Equilibrium is a central application of

game theory, which uses mathematical modelling

to understand the decisions individuals

make and how these decisions affect groups.

It’s not unusual for maths to feature in the

quest for love.Traditional approaches to wooing

have become such a minefield that it seems

reasonable to turn to formulae and algorithms,

in the comely shape of dating apps, to select

potential partners.

But can a robot really play cupid?

“None of the apps is perfect,” says Dr Nicos

Georgiou, a Senior Lecturer in Mathematics at

the University of Sussex who can apply his specialism

in probability and statistics to understand

dating strategies.

“From a statistical perspective, the best strategy

for an app like Tinder is to ‘swipe right’, or accept

every ‘like’, to give yourself the largest pool

of people. However, your chances of success

depend on you being more desirable than others,

while the most desirable people who have

the widest choice often behave

really badly.”

The apps that create matches

based on similar personality traits

are also seriously flawed, says

Nicos. “They don’t take human

elements into account. You don’t

necessarily want to be with someone

who has all the traits that you

don’t like about yourself.”

Once you’ve made a connection, other aspects

of game theory come into play. If it looks like it’s

all going well and you then think you’ve been

“ghosted” (ignored) by your date, you could

become a victim of your own insecurities.

As Nicos explains: “If you’re not feeling confident

about yourself, you’ll then judge someone

else based on your own experience and make the

decision to end the relationship – which could

be the worst outcome for both of you.”

Aside from dating apps, another mathematical

example, the Acceptance Triangle, depressingly

suggests that your chance of finding the person

of your dreams (or at least better than average

according to the criteria you have set) is less

than 50 per cent.

But there is a ray of light offered in Parrondo’s

Paradox, a complicated theory involving losing

strategies that counter-intuitively shows how

incompatible personalities, or personalities that

individually may seem undesirable, can have a

good relationship by strengthening each other.

“If people are easily discouraged by data they

shouldn’t go on dating apps,” says Nicos. “However,

Parrondo’s Paradox suggests that nobody

should lose hope.” Jacqui Bealing

Nicos is a regular contributor to BBC Radio 4’s

Puzzle for Today

81


CRICKET

Bats for Lasses

Lewes Priory Cricket Club

Lewesians are rightly

proud to be home to the

first football club to offer

equal pay to both its men’s

and women’s teams. And

there’s lots happening

locally to encourage more

girls to take up sports that

have traditionally been

male-dominated.

The Lewes Priory Cricket Club was recently

recognised with an award for Most Inspiring

and Diverse Cricket Offer, thanks to their

initiatives to get more girls and women playing

cricket. We spoke to club volunteer Kevin Ives

to find out more.

Tell us about the Lewes Priory Cricket Club

and your award. LPCC has been running for

nearly 200 years, playing at the lovely Stanley

Turner Ground. It now runs three senior Sussex

league teams and a sociable Sunday side known

as the Lewes Priory Ruins. The club is especially

proud of its 150 junior members who form seven

teams from Under 9 to U15.

LPCC has always encouraged inclusive participation

in cricket, and the award from the

Sussex Cricket Board and the England and

Wales Cricket Board (ECB) acknowledges the

collective efforts and successes of our many

volunteers. This season, as well as promoting

mixed cricket we are also looking to run two

girls’ teams, one softball team for U10 and one

hardball team for U13. It’s a great opportunity

for girls to learn the fundamentals of the game,

fully supported by qualified coaches.

How is women’s cricket changing nationally,

and what part can LPCC play? Women’s and

girls’ cricket has really exploded in the last few

years. Considerable effort

and investment nationally

is broadening its appeal

and improving the gender

balance. Shorter versions

(like 20-20, The Hundred)

mean that not all games

of cricket take up even a

whole day, let alone four

or five. We are keen to

give girls in Lewes the chance to play cricket

for fun and to offer opportunities that may not

be available at school.

What have been the barriers to girls playing

cricket, and how can we remove these?

Historically, cricket was a male-dominated

sport, so there were few role models to inspire

girls to play, and also a lack of female coaches.

In schools, girls were offered alternative sports

like rounders.

Remedies include finding a balance between

mixed sessions and dedicated girls’ indoor and

outdoor sessions. By employing a mix of female

and male coaches and volunteers we ensure that

kids see cricket as a completely natural sport

for everyone.

Ultimately, it’s about encouraging kids to try

different things, and to have fun. We don’t

over-coach and we keep the training and games

as lighthearted (and short) as possible.

We are looking for any girls interested in playing

cricket from ages five to 14 in our juniors,

but can also accommodate girls and women

aged 14+. Lulah Ellender

LPCC are running taster indoor sessions at

Lewes Leisure Centre for 6 weeks starting Sunday

23rd Feb. lewespriory.play-cricket.com; email

kevinives_2000@yahoo.co.uk

82


FOOTBALL

Claire Rafferty

Lewes FC’s new non-executive director

“I’m just about to go into

my first-ever board meeting,”

says Claire Rafferty

(pictured on right in

photo), sitting in the admin

office at the Dripping

Pan. “I’m not sure what to

expect.”

I’ve managed to catch

Lewes FC’s newly appointed

non-executive

director for a quick earlyevening

chat, before this

momentous occasion. Is

it possible, I wonder, that the former footballer

– who has played for England in two World

Cups, won three League titles and two FA Cups

at Chelsea, and been a pundit in front of millions

on the TV – is a little bit nervous?

Whatever the case, she’s certainly delighted to

have been asked to take on her latest role in a

long career in the game. “I met Karen [Dobres,

fellow Lewes FC director] at a Women in Football

networking event, and we had a few coffees

together,” she explains. “Pretty soon, she asked

me to join the board. I have long advocated

equality in football, and long admired the payparity

stand Lewes FC have taken. I jumped at

the chance. It’s a great honour.”

Rafferty, 31, has witnessed a lot of changes in

the women’s game. She started out in 2003 as

a teenager at Millwall Lionesses, later making

over 100 league appearances for Chelsea, scoring

12 goals from left midfield. She represented

England at the 2011 and 2015 World Cups, providing

live punditry for ITV for the 2019 edition.

During her long career, women’s football

grew in prestige, with TV audiences and stadium

attendances significantly

increasing.

“But it’s not nearly

enough,” she says. “There

is so much more that

needs to be done, to even

things out. Every single

club is still a long way off

parity. To achieve that,

they have to start making

things even at the grass

roots level. It’s all down

to money: clubs must

invest the same in their

female academy as they do in their male one.

That would be a start.

“And not just the clubs,” she continues. “The Barclays

investment [a three-year, £10m deal with the

WSL] has been great, but other big companies

need to follow suit, with sponsorship.”

I ask her what she can bring to the table, as

director, at Lewes. “I’ve played at the highest

level, and I know what steps a team needs to

take to be successful and win trophies”, she

says. “If we can create more noise around the

club, that can only lead to more people buying

into it, and more money going into the infrastructure

and facilities.”

Having such a well-known figure at the club

has certainly increased the ‘noise’ around

Lewes FC, and particularly the women’s team.

I ask her, as a parting shot, as she gets up to

leave, if she can help out more directly. Would

she ever consider coming out of retirement,

and playing for the Rooks? “Never say never,”

she replies, with a glint in her eye, and, just for

a moment, I think she might be serious.

Alex Leith

83


BUSINESS NEWS

By the time you read this, Hixon Green should

be up and running in the space that used to house

Aqua, on Friar’s Walk. We popped into the Hove

branch to see what to expect, and were told that

the Lewes HG will run the same menu. Which

means the likes of smashed avocado for brunch,

whole baked bream for dinner, and an imaginative

cocktail menu offering the chance to sip a

‘Femme Fatale’ or a ‘Last Mexican’. Oh, and their

coffee, from Grind in Shoreditch, is good, too.

It’s worth checking into the Riverside Centre, if

you haven’t been for a while, because everything’s

shifted around. May’s Farm Cart has downsized,

dropping their fruit and veg section and concentrating

on doing what they do best: meat. The

spot where they used to have their main counter

has been taken over by the indoor plant specialists

Organica, and very colourful it is, too. And

upstairs, into the room that Organica have moved

from, comes Stephanie from Shamalin. Stephanie,

who until Christmas ran a shop on School

Hill, sells self-designed clothing using northern

Thai fabrics, as well as a rack of carefully chosen

second-hand fashion items.

WE Clark & Son, on Cliffe Bridge, are celebrating

their 200th birthday. Perhaps that should be

‘WE Clark & Great-grandson’: it’s still in the

family, run by John and David Clark, third and

fourth generation jewellers. There is also, of

course, a store in Uckfield. Many happy returns

to them, here’s to 200 more.

There are a few up-for-grabs opportunities we’re

keeping an eye on, including: the large unit in

the corridor of the Needlemaker’s; the space recently

used as the smaller meat counter by May’s,

downstairs in the Riverside; the store on School

Hill that for ten years housed Twinkle Twinkle;

and, with the biggest footfall of the lot, the shop

on Cliffe High Street until recently occupied by

Barracloughs. Watch this space…

If you get the train from Brighton to Lewes, you

can just catch a glimpse of a stylish new holiday

accommodation space, The Grain Store, on

the South Downs Way near the Newmarket Inn.

Local businesses might like to know that the

classily designed space is also available for team

meetings, business awaydays and photoshoots.

They’re offering a discount of 10% on all bookings

for February (thegrainstorelewes.com).

There’ll be plenty of work going on down the

A27 at the University of Sussex, who are developing

a ‘West Slope’ residential area, bordering

on Stanmer Park, housing 1,000 students. These

will be catered for by several new businesses,

including a café, a health and wellbeing centre,

and a supermarket.

Finally, the two weeks after the 24th of February

is designated as ‘Fairtrade Fortnight’. While

Uckfield holds ‘Fairtrade Town’ status, it seems

that Lewes doesn’t. One company with a foot in

both towns, Richard Green Funerals, is marking

the fortnight – as you’ll be able to see from their

window display in that period. This will feature

a wicker ‘Ecoffin’, illustrating that ‘Fair-trade’

needn’t just be about coffee, chocolate and artisanal

craftwork. Alex Leith

84


DIRECTORY

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INSIDE LEFT

POLICE AND TRADESMEN

It’s Wednesday February 23rd, 1921 and the

Lewes Police football team are managing to

keep a straight face while posing in front of

Benjamin Reeves’ camera before a fancy-dress

charity match at the Dripping Pan against a

selection of Lewes tradesmen. The match was

a fundraiser for the Lewes Victoria Hospital &

Nursing Home.

There’s a report of the game in the Sussex

Agricultural Times, so we know the names of the

participants, and what they are dressed as. PC

Hobbs, for example, fourth from the left in the

back row, has come as ‘Mephistopheles’, while

PC Holewell, to his left, is ‘Little Red Riding

Hood’. The kilted fellow in the Tam o’Shanter

is one PC Baker, dressed as the entertainer Sir

Harry Lauder, famous for singing Roamin’ in the

Gloamin’. The only other copper who might today

be accused of cultural appropriation, fourth

from the right in the back row, is Sergeant

Foord, dressed as a ‘Rajah’.

We know from the match report that the

weather was ‘splendid’, and that a crowd of over

2,000 turned up to watch a close – though far

from serious – encounter. The game, kicked

off by Mayoress Mrs C Patrick, was a hybrid of

both soccer and rugby, played in ‘catch-as-can

style, nothing barred’. A description of the first

goal demonstrates the levity of the occasion:

‘the scoring was opened for the Tradesmen by

linesman Rutherford, who took a smart pass

from the referee and found the net with a nice

drop goal’.

The Tradesmen-favouring referee in question

was one James Patterson (far left), a doctorfootballer

who had won a Scottish Championship

with Glasgow Rangers and was at the time

of the picture playing for the Arsenal. Perhaps

it’s not surprising, then, that the game finished

3-2 in favour of the Tradesmen, who were

awarded a British WW1 tin helmet as a trophy.

The Police team were awarded a German helmet.

The newspaper announced that over £150

was raised for the hospital. Alex Leith

Thanks to Edward Reeves, 159 High Street,

01273 473274

98


"Never doubt that a

small group of

thoughtful, committed

citizens can change the

world; indeed, it's the

only thing that ever has."

Margaret Mead

Own it:

www.lewesfc.com/owners


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