Mark Tristan Cooper 073


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NLHG Newsletter Archive







March 2016

Census: It seems certain that it will never stop raining so I have decided to renew my Ancestry subscription (instead of thinking about gardening!) and begin work on Census data for Ashburnham, Boreham Street and Hooe. The information we collected for Ninfield has been very useful in research work but it is clear there was a lot of crossover with these other local communities as families would move to and fro for work or family reasons. John


Forthcoming meetings: 7.30pm in the Methodist Hall unless stated otherwise

March 17th                 A History of Sussex Trug Making by Sarah Page

April 21st                    AGM

May 19th                    Sussex Graveyards and Gravestones by Kevin Gordon

June 16th                   Northeye Medieval Village by Leah Fusco

July 21st                    Windmill Hill Windmill by Bee Frost

August                       No meeting, maybe a group outing?

September                 Shepherds of the South Downs by Ian Everest

October                      TBA

November                 Inside Lewes Prison by Barry Wilkinson


Other Local Events


A Landscape Passed By: A talk on the Pevensey Levels by Geoffrey Mead. Friday 11th March 7.00 for 7.30pm Herstmonceux Village Hall. £6.00 including tea or coffee, in aid of the Windmill Hill Windmill restoration.

At the Redoubt: Eastbourne on Film. Discover film of Eastbourne from holidays past, spot familiar people on trips to familiar places! Sat 26th and Sun 27th March 10.00 to 17.00 Children welcome, Free entry. Redoubt Fortress & Military Museum, Royal Parade, Eastbourne, East Sussex, BN22 7AQ, Tel: 01323 410300.


Kilk Pulling

Two members (thanks Thelma & Kevin!) came back to let us know that “kilk” is an old name for wild mustard or Charlock which is a fast growing annual weed. It has edible leaves but the seeds are toxic if allowed to develop and contaminate the crops. It was so important to keep it out of harvested crops that children took time off from their studies at school to help eradicate it.


The Past Beneath Our Feet

The amount of historical material lying in the ground seemingly everywhere in this part of the world is quite amazing. A recent archaeological investigation carried out as part of a local planning application is a good example.

Two trenches each 5 metres long and 800 mm deep were dug at a site near the river at Boreham Bridge. These identified an excavated gully that had been infilled with pottery, burnt clay and charcoal. This could be the remains of a kiln or bread oven. The date could not be fixed exactly but there were shards of Saxon pottery and late Iron Age and Roman material. In Saxon times there was a wooden jetty to allow inport/export of goods, animals and people. In those days, as I am sure you are aware, the sea came much further inland than it does today. The site of Boreham Bridge would have been our local port.

In addition, prehistoric flints from the Mesolithic and Bronze Age periods were found in the surrounding soil, indication a long history of settlement on the site. Late items included fragments of clay pipes (tobacco smoking) ceramic and glass fragments etc. from the 19th and 20th centuries.


Also from Boreham Bridge:


This photo from the Cyril Wells collection shows an earlier find from the local area.

Cyril said in his notes:

“This pot was found at Boreham Bridge and has been identified as Roman. Note the size compared to the 50p coin. Quite a few fragments of Roman pots have been found in the area so there must have been life around Ninfield for a very long time.”


Have you found anything interesting while digging in your garden? If so, please let us know!



Group Contacts:

Rod Ffoulkes (Chair)  Tel: 893635, Janice Wood (Secretary) & Martin Wood (Treasurer) Tel: 892895,   Corinne Gibbons (Membership) Tel: 892612, Jan Cooper (Archivist)  Tel: 893381, Liz Darbyshire Tel: 893575, Janet Savage