Mark Tristan Cooper 073


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NLHG Newsletter Archive







May  2016



AGM:  After some confusion about the start time for our meeting (trying to avoid clashing with the lighting of the beacon for the Queen’s birthday), there was a good turnout for our AGM. Rod outlined our activities over the past year and Martin presented a very healthy set of accounts. We are in a strong financial position largely due to the sales of our publications. In particular, Liz Darbyshire’s book on the Shopkeepers and Traders of Ninfield has been a great success. Corinne was able to tell us that membership has grown too, so all in all a very good year. It is membership renewal time again so please remember to bring subscriptions to the next meeting (or send in your £10 to Corinne using the form provided).


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

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 15th   Shepherds of the South Downs by Ian Everest

October 20th        The Battle of Hastings

November 178th   Inside Lewes Prison by Barry Wilkinson


Sad News


Ann Winborn sadly passed away in April. Ann was a stalwart of the Ninfield Methodist congregation and was known for playing the organ in the chapel for a great many years. Ann took part in our “All Our Stories” project and I had the pleasure of recording her story (I think she was 101 years old at the time). Ann’s father was born in Ninfield and the Winborn family can be found in the Ninfield Census in the 1870s and1880s. Her Grandfather was the head stockman at Pashley farm.

Ann left school aged 14 and went to work at Mr Gammon’s hardware shop in St Leonards Road, Bexhill. Following this she decided to train as a nurse/midwife and left the area to learn these skills at the Windsor Hospital. She worked for many years as a Midwife in the Maidstone area. There was no NHS when she started work and new mothers had to pay to have their babies delivered, 25 shillings for a first born and 20 shillings for subsequent births. On retirement she returned to Bexhill. She was a bright and intelligent woman with a fascinating story to tell. John


Arson or Accident?


From an old newspaper cutting……….

Arson At Ninfield –Jesse Noakes (33), a discharged soldier, was charged with maliciously and feloniously setting fire to a stack of wheat, of the value of £120, the property of Reuben Retler. Mr Willoughby prosecuted. The prosecutor in this case is a farmer at Battle, and on October 13th, about 5pm , the prisoner was seen by a boy named Langridge, walking along the high road, past the prosecutor’s stack yard, which was about 100 yards from the road. He suddenly left the highway and went into the stack yard, and immediately afterwards one of the wheat ricks burst into flames, and the prisoner was seen to walk leisurely away smoking a pipe. He was followed and when questioned said he had not seen any fire. A matchbox was found in his possession, in which there were several matches. The jury found the prisoner guilty. Mr Willoughby said that he was informed that the prisoner was discharged from the army with a good character. He was sentenced to 12 months hard labour.


A Photo from the Archive



























Left  to Right: Ray Tarry, Ushie (Dorlond) Catt, unknown, unknown, Jim Hobden.

We were recently given a recording of Ushie Catt being interviewed by Jane Simmons which had taken place as part of Jane’s school project. Ushie was quite an age when this interview took place but he clearly had a great sense of fun throughout his life. In the recording he talks about growing up in Ninfield, the hardships and the pranks he and his friends played on a local shopkeeper, shooting spilt peas at her shop window with a peashooter!



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 Tel: 892749, John Cheshire (Newsletter)  Tel: 892248.