Events Chronicle

 

This section comprises reports, written by Members, on all of

the events organised by the Society during the past 12 months.

Those reporting are asked to tell their fellow Members what

they saw and how they felt about the event, in their own words

and in their own style.   Editing is purposely kept to a minimum

 

 

How to Win Prizes for Photography:      21 May 2018

Our chairman Cec welcomed a large audience of members, including some new members, to the Plant Exchange evening and a talk by Jean Holmwood, our Show Photography Judge, on How to Win Prizes for Photographs.

A large number of plants were brought by members for exchange resulting in great activity in this area during the evening.

Our speaker Jean has been interested in photography since the age of 13 and in 2006 was awarded a Credit of the Photographic Alliance of Great Britain (CPAGB).

Jean came equipped with a large portfolio of very interesting photographs which she had taken over the years, she then used these to illustrate her talk on some of the main points to be considered in achieving award winning pictures. These points are:

  • Keep it simple – don’t put too much into the picture as it can detract from the main subject.
  • Don’t ‘loose’ or crop tops or bottoms of subjects – when taking pictures of buildings ensure all of the roofs, chimneys, spires, etc., and the bottom of doors are in the pictures; similarly don’t subsequently crop these off.
  • Take subjects from unusual angles – this adds interest to the picture and may reveal some unseen aspect.
  • The Rule of Thirds – mentally divide the picture with two vertical and two horizontal lines, then place the subject near or on a line and not centrally in the picture, in a landscape put the horizon on a line not in the centre; this all makes for a more interesting picture.
  • Lighting – for most pictures front lighting of the subject is best, i.e. with the light source behind the photographer, but back lighting can produce some interesting pictures, particularly for portrait pictures.
  • Abstracts – by getting in very close to subjects unusual pictures can be obtained, focusing on the subject or the background varies the image and makes for more interest.
  • Long exposure – this can make for interesting pictures of subjects, such as moving water, where the rest of the picture items are stationary.
  • Processing effects – many interesting and unusual effects can be achieved by making changes after capture of the picture, such as cropping, going negative, changing colours, sepia, monochrome, etc.

Many thanks to all the committee members and the many volunteers for providing the refreshments and organising the Plant Exchange, and to Jean Holmwood for her talk, all of which made it an enjoyable and interesting evening.

DAVID MATTINSON

 

     

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Spring Show: 7 April 2018

Could it really only be four weeks since the early leaves of our narcissi were surrounded and then covered in snow?   Was it such a little while ago that our shrubs were weighed down by snow?   How slowly it seemed it was to melt and allow those harbingers of spring to show their true beauty and colour.   In our hearts, we gardeners knew we could rely on nature to overcome adversity.

A drizzly start coupled with a cold wind, hardly changed throughout the day.   In contrast, the warm welcome of Phil from River Mead, Sue at the society plant stall and Judy at the ticket office helped dispel any gloom.   Through the doors of the main hall. visitors glimpsed part of the very colourful display they had come to see.   As they entered the hall, the full feast, for indeed it was a feast, of colour was a delight.   Isn't it amazing how many different colours, tones, shades, hues can be found in our gardens which, at first glance, all seem to be regulation green with white, yellow and blue, plus a hint of red.   It was at this point that they were hit by the amazing scents from the exhibits in the show.  

Just inside the main hall, the viewers found the raffle prizes displayed.   The Bobin family, sometimes just 2, but often 5 under the supervision of the youngest member of the family, did the early stint of selling tickets.   The whole family was relieved about halfway through by Jenny and Brenda.   Behind the stage curtain, show administration was in progress with Show Secretary, Carole aided by Chris and Geoff.  

After spending some time viewing the floral and plant exhibits, visitors went on to view the photographic entries and, if you will forgive the expression, to salivate over the cookery entries.   Someone suggested there should be an additional judging requirement for the bakery section: the viewers should be asked to cast their vote on the tastiest baking entry after sampling each of the exhibits.   That might prove to be somewhat impracticable, however much the idea might appeal !!

After all that viewing, it was necessary, maybe essential, to visit Cathy and Hilary to buy drinks and delicious home-made cakes before finding a seat in the busy pop-up cafe.  Each of the home-made cakes came from the kitchen of an ordinary society member, all of whom volunteered under our “Bake-a-Cake-a-Year” scheme for shows and open gardens.   The cakes were almost as memorable as the flowers, plants, photos and baking.

We all owe a special “thank you” to the stalwarts who quietly got on with the washing up. It is the work done by members, often in the background and out of sight, before, during and after events which ensure they all run smoothly.

Perhaps the most noticeable element of the whole show was the atmosphere.   There is now a constant buzz of chatter and laughter throughout the show.   It makes everybody's visit so much more enjoyable.   The only problem is this hubbub creates a bit of a dilemma for chairman Cec.   Whenever he chooses to make any announcement or presentation, he has to interrupt several conversations.   While he may continue to be reluctant to interrupt, he has been assured that nobody takes it personally and he should carry on doing his job, albeit facing the same dilemma, for at least a little while longer.

 

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Member's Report

The major worry of the Spring Show organizers must be the lack of exhibits and the weather leading up to it.

There is no doubt that the weather this year has been well below par, but most gardeners are optimists and will rise to the occasion whatever the weather. This was proved by the magnificent displays which greeted us at the opening of the Heathfield & District Horticulture Society Spring Show on Saturday the 7th April 2018.

The hall was decked with the most wonderful exhibits of colour and scent, not only from the flowers but from freshly baked bread and pastries.

It was evident from the quality of the exhibits that the long dark nights of winter had given people time to plan what and how they were going to show their talents.

The floral art and photography categories have become more popular attracting more entries this year and were most impressive, the judges were impressed with the very high standard of the entries. The baking and preserve section was a wonderful sight to see and smelled most delicious.

All flowers and plants were of suburb quality and to the untrained eye it is difficult to know how the judges are able to decide which daffodil deserves first prize and which gets a third, but that is part of the mystery and intrigue which surrounds the village flower show.

The raffle is a very important part of the show as it brings in much needed funds and any unwanted gifts to support this are very welcome, our thanks go out to the volunteers and all who supported this.

Overall it seems that the number of entries this year were slightly down on last year and this is no surprise because of the 'Beast from the East' who laid waste to many of our gardens. Even so the Spring Show 2018 was very successful, but more entries are needed to ensure that next year’s show is even better.

The winners of the various section categories were presented with trophies by Vice President, Shirley Rose and the overall winner this year was Marian Stoneham. Well done to her.

A vote of thanks must go to all the dedicated members who go to so much trouble to put it all together, and to the members in the kitchen who made the tea and served the delicious home made cakes.              GILL POULTON

 

 

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Spring Show Results

FLORAL Classes 1-21

PIERSON CUP - Most Points. Classes 1-8. Daffodils & Narcissi:

Marian Stoneham

CHRISTINE FELTON CUP – Best Exhibit. Classes 1-8:

Marian Stoneham

CORONATION CUP No. 1 – Most Points. Classes 9-21 Floral:

Marian Stoneham

DURRANT CUP – Best Exhibit. Class 21 Patio Container:

Marian Stoneham

DECORATIVE Classes 22-26

CORONATION CUP No. 4 – Most Points. Classes 22-26:

Sue Bobin

HALL CUP – Best Exhibit. Classes 22-26:

Doris Holt

COOKERY & PRESERVES

PRICE CUP – Most Points. Classes 27-33:

Rosemary Kay

PHOTOGRAPHY SECTION

J G SMITH TROPHY – Best Exhibit from Classes 34 & 35:

John Evans

CLAUDE HERBERT TROPHY – Person gaining most points in all Show sections:

Marian Stoneham

 

 

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Wildlife of the New Forest:19 March 2018

On a bitterly cold winter's evening to a well attended audience of members our chairman for the evening, Nick, introduced our speakers Melvin Smith and his wife.   Melvin then took members on a delightful meander through the New Forest which was accompanied by photographs they had taken, these showed us the delightful woods, glades and heathlands wherein lie many rare plants, fungi and flowers which are not found anywhere else in the UK.

Originally a royal hunting ground the New Forest is now a National Park incorporating areas along the south coast as well as the more well known woodland areas.  It is administered by the Court of Verderers who protect the commoning practices whereby commoners occupy land and property to which various rights are attached - these include common of pasture - i.e. to turn out ponies, cattle, mules and donkeys onto the forest.  Less well known is the common of mast or pannage which gives commoners the right to turn out pigs during the 60 day pannage season to forage for acorns and beechmast which, in large amounts, are poisonous to cattle and ponies.

Agisters (Verderers’ officials) assist with the management of the forest and carry out the practice, which still exists to this day, of cutting the tails of ponies to different lengths to signify that rent has been paid.

The meeting concluded with shots of glowering skies and magnificent sunsets accompanied by the haunting gentle tones of Satie's Gymnopodies 5 lightening our spirits and reminding us of the joys of the summer to come.

LEIGH LONSDALE

 

 

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Through the Garden Gate: Monday 19th February 2018

The meeting was very well attended with 96 people present, 5 more than at any previous evening meeting. Chairman Cec introduced our speaker, Irene Eltringham-Willson, who is the County Organiser for the East Sussex National Garden Scheme. In her illustrated talk she outlined the Scheme’s history, its objectives and the requirements for gardens that are to be opened.

The Scheme began in 1927 to raise money for the charity that became the Queen’s Nursing Institute (QNI). In that first year 609 gardens opened, including Herstmonceux Castle Gardens, and £8,000 was raised. The Scheme has grown steadily over the years and now over 3,700 gardens open each year across the country. The money raised goes to various British charities, mainly nursing and hospices and including the QNI.

County organisers are responsible for vetting gardens to ensure they are suitable, that they will be of sufficient interest to visitors and to offer practical advice to owners about opening them. Irene came across as being friendly and helpful, acknowledging that gardens are sometimes limited by the weather. Each county produces a booklet listing the open gardens with dates and opening times.

There are a few practicalities to take into consideration, the most important being car parking and toilets. Visitors will also expect refreshments and hence some home made cakes are required. It is a nice touch to serve the refreshments on trays with teapots, milk and sugar plus proper cups and plates. A few helpful friends will be a godsend.

Every garden is different, and that is what makes a garden of interest to visitors, but generally the visitors will expect 40 – 45 minutes of interest in them. Lawns should be mown with edges neat and hedges should be trimmed. The owner should be on hand to name plants and chat to visitors if asked, hence the ability to communicate with the public is also useful.

Health and safety must be observed. The NGS provide full public liability insurance up to £10 million. The garden owner should be aware of slip and trip hazards and minimise them, those that cannot be minimised must be clearly signed. Be aware of poisonous plants, these should be protected from young prying fingers, alternatively you may decide to stipulate no young children.

Do you allow dogs into your garden? Ideally guide dogs maybe allowed in, but the county organiser can help with these decisions.

If there is space in the garden for a small stall and the owners are willing, some more money can be raised by selling plants, jams, chutneys and crafts.

The talk concluded with some interesting questions and answers on the subject, then finally our chairman thanked Irene for a very interesting talk.         JENNY GUNSTON

Editors Note. The HDHS has its own Open Gardens each year, when members open their gardens to fellow members and friends. Visitors make a minimum donation of £2.50 per person, which includes refreshments; plentiful cuppas and delicious cakes made by volunteer members. The proceeds are split equally between HDHS and a good cause chosen by those opening their gardens. The HDHS carries £5 million public liability insurance covering all its activities.   If you would like to open your garden for fellow members and friends, please contact Nick Jeggo.

                                       

 

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Rudyard Kipling's influence on the gardens at Batemans:

15 January 2018

Luckily the disgusting rain of the January day abated and encouraged our fellow members to venture out in exceptional numbers to renew their annual membership (only £5 this evening !) and in anticipation of our speaker.   They were not to be disappointed.

Gary Enstone, House and Collections Manager at Batemans, was an entertaining and informative speaker.   He tried to explain some of the possible history of the house before the Kipling family purchased it in the early 1900's.    There appear to be more questions than answers – but does it really matter?   Kipling was delighted to take on the unimproved Jacobean style house and develop what had been a farmyard to give his family a garden.   Not the sort of garden being developed elsewhere but a space to be enjoyed that flowed fairly seemlessly into the coutryside.   He used his Nobel Prize money to build, what we now see as a formal pond, to encourage his children in safe water activities away from the river.

Gary quoted from Kipling's verses, The Glory of the garden - “Our England is a garden, and such gardens are not made by singing 'oh how beautiful' and sitting in the shade” !!  He also encouraged us to read, or re-read, Kipling's most famous Sussex stories; “Puck of Pooks Hill” and “Rewards and Fairies”.   Today they would be described as fantasy or even sci-fi, but both are heavily influenced by the Dudswell valley and the South Downs.   They bring together his view of English history with the landscape and nature that he felt most encapsulated his ideal England.

Gary kept the 80 plus members and friends interested and amused throughout.   We will probably see the house and gardens with different eyes in future. 

While refreshments were being served, a long term member was heard to  favourably remark how different the Society had become in the last few years.

Members were told of the sad death of David Price just before Christmas.   He was a long term member and supporter of the Society, serving as treasurer for 42 years.

The results of the 2017 members meeting competition were announced: third place Gill Burdett with 14 points; second place Sue Cook with 26 points ; and the winner Sue Bobin with 35 points.   Shirley Rose, vice president, presented the cup.                                                             SUE COOK

 

 

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Chairman's Report for 2017

A further notable year for the Society

as membership continues to increase

During the year at our indoor meetings, we enjoyed talks on a wide variety of subjects ranging from the experiences of a lady tree surgeon to Michael Blencowe and his close encounters with bear poo.   I think Michael must yet again take the prize for our most entertaining speaker.   Our thanks go to Cathy Constable for continuing to obtain speakers to suit all tastes.

Our Gardeners Forum in May, comprising a plant swap and sale, proved such a success in 2016, the first year we had trialled such an event, that we repeated it to universal approval.   The evening started with an insight from show judge and Society Vice President, Colin Rose into the art of preparing fruit and vegetables for the show bench.

Our June outing, on a splendid summer evening, was to the National Trust gardens at Standen, where we had privileged private access under the guidance of head gardener, James, who displayed his enthusiasm for the garden under his control whilst speaking to us.   Thanks for arranging our visit to this wonderful garden go to Derek Bobin.

Coach trips went to RHS garden at Wisley and to Loseley Hall near Guildford.   Our thanks to Sue Young, aided and abetted by Chris Kemp, for organising these trips.

The Open Gardens continue to go from strength to strength with a variety of gardens providing interest (with tea and cake!) for fellow members.   Our thanks to the brave members who invited others to see their garden.   They say unanimously (after the event) how much they enjoyed it.

A personal perspective of these events can be found in our Events Chronicle.   An innovation continued from last year, it contains reports by members of their impression of our events.   I must thank those who have taken the time and effort to produce these reports.   A wealth of literary talent revealed from within our membership.

Both of our annual spring and summer shows attracted a good number of high quality entries and presented their colourful appearance for visitors.   Our thanks are extended to the local traders and individuals who continue to support both shows with advertising in the summer show schedule and donations of raffle prizes.   For the first time ever, we have cleared our expenses and have a small surplus on these shows.

I would like to thank all the officers, committee members and members of the society for their contributions in the past year.   It is particularly encouraging to note the willingness of our members to volunteer their help in many areas, incuding the cake baking rota organised by Hilary Elphick, to cater for the Open Garden and Show refreshments.   Thanks also go to those who find their way to the kitchen and help with the washing up after meetings.

These examples of working together as a team for the benefit of the society and their fellow members bodes well for the future.

Your committee feel they have supplied a full, varied and interesting programme for the year.   However, if you feel there are things you would like to see included in future programmes that are not currently covered, please say.   All ideas will be considered.   It is after all your society.

Our website is administered by Graham Young.    The site is generously sponsored by Frogheath Landscapes, owned and run by Society President, Stephen Moody, holder of numerous landscaping industry awards and many Gold Medals from both the Chelsea and Hampton Court Flower shows.

                                                                       CEC EARL,  CHAIRMAN

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Christmas Social: 18 December 2017

The evening started with a fascinating presentation by Andy Thomas entitled “Christmas: a celebratory history”.   He covered many of the origins and traditions of Christmas in various countries and over the centuries.   He sprinkled his talk with theories, suppositions, facts, figures and connections completely enthralling his audience.   Celebrating the light in the darkness – literally and spiritually - seems to be the basic premise for celebrations in so many cultures and religions. 

Stonehenge seems to provide the key to our understanding.   It is an enormous annual “calendar” based upon the fact that the sun appears to rise from the same point on the eastern horizon, for about three days around the winter solstice.   That makes 25 December the first day when the length of day starts to increase, heralding the return of spring and giving everybody hope; a source of immense relief and great celebration in ancient cultures.

Few of the audience were aware that Christmas was abolished in England for 13 long years from 1647.    In Scotland the Calvanist, John Knox, had banned the celebration of Christmas as early as 1583.   However, the Scots still felt the need to celebrate the the new year on 1 January.  

The removal of decorations, originally just evergreens, by the twelth night is supposedly due to the belief that mischevious creatures, who lived in the greenery, called a truce for two weeks, but would end their truce and cause havoc if their hiding places were still within the house.   These and many other stories and insights coloured his presentation.   The whole talk was extremely interesting, informative, entertaining and thought-provoking.  

After the presentation, as ever, there was a wonderful spread and variety of food and drink for everyone.   All our thanks go to the committee and to everyone who contributed food, time and effort to make the evening possible and so enjoyable and successful.                                                                                    HILARY ELPHICK

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Landscape Projects: 20 November 2017

preceded by Annual Review

After the short annual review, President, Steve Moody started by commenting on the particularly friendly, welcoming and even jolly atmosphere of our meeting.    He seemed proud to be so closely associated with us.

He then proceeded to bring members up to date with some of the show, domestic and commercial projects he had been undertaking during the past year  ◦ ◦ ◦ ◦  and his recent burglary !!     Steve's continuing enthusiasm for and love of landscape gardening was evident throughout his enjoyable presentation .   The sheer range of work involved and the transformations achieved are very impressive.    The end results are a joy to the gardener's eye. 

The President presented the Society's “125th Anniversary Cup” to the member who had gained the most points in total at both shows during the calendar year.   In third place was Show Secretary, Carole Smith, with 27 points.   In second place was Marian Stoneham, with 58 points.     In first place was Rosemary Kay, who amassed a total of 99 points.

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The Women’s Land Army; a Sussex connection

Monday, 16 October

There was a very good turnout to hear the captivating account by Ian Everest of the Women’s Land Army [WLA].

Ian is a local historian and his talk covered the role of women on Sussex farms and their vital contribution to feeding the country during both WW1 and WW2.   He was inspired by his mother’s experiences as a Land Girl in WW2.  She lived in Tottenham, North London, so it must have been quite a culture shock coming to the country!   He persuaded his mother to write her memoirs in the last 4 years of her life and she provided 3 shoe boxes of photographs taken during her time in the WLA.  

The Land Army was formed, under the guidance of Gertrude Denman, in 1916 during WW1 when the country was suffering from a shortage of labour within the farming industry.   Britain had only 3 weeks of food supply when the Women’s Land Army was formed.   The Board of Trade then sent Agricultural Officers around the UK to persuade farmers to take women as labourers and farm hands.   By 1917 there were 260,000 women working as farm labourers.  Life was very tough for these girls with long hours and mostly no holidays. They were poorly paid, initially attracting women from middle-class families who could afford to subsidise them.  In October 1919 when they were stood down there were some 23,000 Land Girls.

In 1939, on the brink of war, the decision was taken to reform the Land Army. Gertrude Denman was once again called upon and took up the position of Director.  The women were called upon to perform all farming tasks, including catching rats!  Pests such as rats posed a serious threat to supplies of food and animal fodder on British farms. Teams of Land Girls were trained to work in anti-vermin squads.

The Women’s Timber Corps was set up in 1942 to help source and prepare wood which was needed urgently for pit props and telegraph poles. The work carried out by women in the Timber Corps, known as “Lumber Jills”, included selecting and measuring trees suitable for felling, sawing and lifting timber and burning  brush wood. Around 6000 women worked in the Timber Corps.

Many Land Girls lived at the farms where they worked. However in many rural areas living conditions could be very basic and the lifestyle lonely. As larger numbers of women were recruited, hostels were set up to house the Land Girls.  In 1941 the government allowed the conscription of women into the armed forces for vital war work.  By 1943 more than 80,000 women were working in the Land Army.  Although the work was hard, conditions were often bad and the pay was low, many women enjoyed the experience and formed lifelong friendships with fellow Land Girls. 

It was not until 2000 that the LA were invited to take their place at the National Service of Remembrance.  When they were disbanded they were issued with a certificate signed by the late Queen Mother, but in 2008 they were finally recognised with a badge of honour for surviving members.

Around the country there are surviving Land Girls who continue to meet up on a regular basis.                                          JANE SKIRROW

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History of Garden & Grounds of Ashburnham Place: 18 September 2017

The Society was treated to an excellent illustrated talk detailing the history and development of the house, grounds and gardens at Ashburnham Place from its origins as one of the country’s foremost country estates through to its present day ‘life’ as a Christian Centre providing retreat, rest, refreshment and connection for people from all walks of life.

The Estate has been owned by the Ashburnham family since the 12th Century and possibly before; their wealth deriving from the local iron industry. It was a magnificent house ( 9 state rooms, 38 bedrooms and a marble staircase!) and all the trappings of a great country house. Its heyday was from 1850 -1900; then there were 37 gardeners now Jay is one of four! The Ashburnham line came to an end in 1953 with the death of Lady Catherine and the estate passed to a young clergyman John Bickersteth who after much deliberation gifted the house and estate to the Ashburnham Charitable Trust. Much work was needed on the rather run-down house (reducing it to a more manageable size)and in clearing the grounds as well as the disposal of large parts of the estate in order to pay the death duties, but all this was achieved in the 1960s

The grounds and lakes that we see today were created in the 1760s by Capability Brown; records indicate that the project took 10 years but he is thought to have only visited once! The Estate shows all the hallmarks of his skills, three lakes (Frontwater, Broadwater with its Temple, and Reservoir Pond), reshaped landscape with groupings of trees  as well as  magnificent ‘specimen’ trees. He also created wonderful sight-lines and paths back to the house as well as building a Walled Kitchen Garden and Orangery.  The ‘Italianate’ fashion of the 1800s brought further change to the gardens when George Dance the younger built the stone bridge on the approach to the house and created the stone terraces in front of the house - then laid out as formal parterres but which are now areas of lawn and iceberg roses  (easier to maintain !).

The Orangery, now converted to a very popular tea room, still houses two Camellias dating from 1883. Below the Orangery is the West garden planted in the gardenesque  style  with lawns and shrubs to bring year-round colour – Rhododendrons and Azaleas in spring followed by Fuschia and Hydrangea. There are also some magnificent trees including the Black Walnut by the Orangery steps.

The Walled Kitchen Garden, created by Capability Brown, covers six acres but is now divided into three working areas.  Orchards provide apples which are juiced and the juice sold in the Shop and Orangery; another is gardened organically for vegetables  some of which are used in the kitchens and  a ‘veg.box’  scheme is being  trialled, in addition flowers are grown for the house. The third area has been transformed into a  ‘Prayer Garden’ planted with scented perennials and shrubs including Daphne, Witch Hazel and Sweet Box.

The grounds of Asburnham Estate now extend to 220 acres, but were once over 200,000! There are wildflower meadows rich in orchids, large areas of bluebells and, of course,  wonderful trees. The estate is rich in wildlife and one area has been designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest because of its valuable and rare flora.

The wonderfully illustrated talk delivered with Jay’s enthusiasm and obvious love for Ashburnham  left those who had not visited wanting to go and those who had been before itching to return.                                  TREVOR HINCE

 

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Visit to Loseley Park: Sunday 10 September 2017

I must admit that after I agreed to do the write up on the trip to Loseley Park, I was a little worried.    Having wandered briefly around the gardens while visiting the location to attend a fair, I thought there would not be a lot to say.   I was wrong!

After a cup of coffee in the small but pleasant courtyard cafe we set off to The Walled Garden.   The weather was gloomy but apart for the odd spot of rain, thank goodness, we stayed dry.   The garden was originally started in the 16th century and has been adapted many times since.    It is amazing and in the summer it must be breathtaking.   Even at this time of the year there is a lot to see.   One of the things I feel I must return to see is the ancient Wisteria which is supposed to be at its best in May.   I do not think I have ever seen such a large or old specimen before.

The garden is divided into five main rooms and each garden has a completely different layout.   The first you come to is the Rose Garden which is the latest addition added in 1991. It has over a thousand old fashioned roses and was a birthday present to Sarah More- Molyneaux from her husband!   Wonder how he kept that secret?    The scent must be wonderful in the summer.   We then moved on to the Herb Garden and then the White Garden.   Both these gardens had a lot to see but the next two gardens interested us the most. 

The first was the Vegetable and Cut Flower Garden.   This is a working garden and supplies fruit, vegetables and flowers for use in the house.   What we did not understand was why they were growing so many forget-me-not seedlings, thousands in blue and white.   There were still vegetables being produced but the experts among us thought that the beetroots had had it!   The most beautiful garden for me was the Flower Garden.    It was a perfect autumn garden absolutely ablaze with colour.   A mix of late perennials and annuals, that had replaced the summer bedding, kept the promise to provide interest throughout the season.

After the garden we went on our guided tour of the house our guide was great and a mine of information.   What I find amazing was the same family has lived in park for 500 years.   The present house was built when Queen Elizabeth the First, who liked to come to stay and hunt, complained that their previous house was not suitable for royalty.   It is not overwhelmingly grand but has many beautiful and historical features.   In fact the room that they believe Elizabeth slept in was a bit pokey.

One of the lovely things is that there are portraits of the family from every generation up to and including the present generation.   The family still run the estate and have branched out in various ways to support the upkeep.   Wedding ceremonies, dinners and making ICECREAM!

After the house tour we popped back to the cafe and then went to have a quick look at the moat and the Mulberry tree.    It is believed that Queen Elizabeth I planted the tree and that the family will remain there as long as the Mulberry survives.    It did fall over during the 2nd World War but was propped up and continues survive.

Sadly at this point of the visit the rain arrived so we did not get to walk round the lake and we returned to the coach for a slightly slower journey home. 

Everyone seemed to enjoy the trip.  Thank you Sue Young for arranging it.             JENNY BRYAN

 

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Summer Social; 19 August 2017

I doubt there is anything held in any other country to match the Great British Flower Shows and Heathfield & District Horticultural Society's version has all the attributes required to avoid falling short of the mark.   A real community event held for the joy of growing, making and creating, with a healthy dose of competition for extra excitement and interest.

This year, on Saturday 19 August, the doors of the hall were open at 9am for the all important staging of entries and the quick appraisal of the competition to be faced at judging time.   The more classes entered, the greater was the haste to complete staging prior to 10.30 am, when everyone except judges, stewards and other officials, would have to leave the hall.   Aside from all the “chatting”, activity and general “buzz” there occurred a spontaneous display of country dancing in the aisles.   Probably the first time in the history of the Society, and certainty not worthy of inclusion as a class in future shows !!

Emerging from its array of empty boxes, trugs, buckets and trays, the completed 2017 Summer Show was ready – judging could commence and we, the competitors, members and friends have to wait until 2pm when the doors re-open to discover who had won an award. 

Arriving back in the hall in the afternoon, the results were at last revealed; vegetables, fruit, flowers, flower arrangements, crafts and cooking all judged.   The entire hall looked magnificent and full of interest.   As at the Spring Show, the pop-up cafe was busy providing a supply of teas, coffees and cakes; always a welcome feature at any social gathering.

Once a thorough viewing of all the exhibits had been completed, it was time to sit and enjoy a relaxing time “chatting” and comparing the wins and losses on the show benches until the time for the presentation of cups and the drawing of the raffle which would signal the completion of yet another successful show.

If you did not enter this year why not look at the next Show's schedule, with its many and varied classes on offer, and select at least one to join in the fun – and it is fun – by participating in the 2018 Spring or Summer Shows.

A huge thank-you to all those who worked long and hard to make yet another “Horti” event so successful and enjoyable.                          RITA HOBDEN

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SUMMER SHOW RESULTS

DECORATIVE CLASSES Classes 1-5                                   Winner                                                                                                                              

                                                                                                                             

 

TOTTINGWORTH PARK CUP - most points in section              Maggie Hayes

 

BROAD OAK DOWNS CUP - best exhibit                                Maggie Hayes

 

FLORAL CLASSES Classes 6-17

 

THE NELLIE HALL TICEHURST CUP - most points                   Rosemary Kay

 

FOORD MEMORIAL TROPHY - best exhibit                             Rosemary Kay

 

BERT LUCK CUP - best patio container                                  Rosemary Kay

DAHLIAS Classes 18 - 21

 

SOMMERVILLE – COWEN CUP - most points                          Marian Stoneham /

                                                                                       Theresa Fennings                              

                                                                                                             

                                                                                                 

BROAD OAK SPRINGFIELD CUP - best exhibit                        Carole Down

 

ROSES Classes 22-26

 

BARTLETT CUP – most points                                              John Logan

 

COURIER ROSE BOWL - best exhibit class 26                        Jane Skirrow

Fruit Classes 27-31

 

THE MAJOR REID CUP - most points                                     Marian Stoneham / Sue Cook

 

Class 32 Trug or Basket of homegrown mixed vegetables

 

CUCKMERE CUP                                                                 Marian Stoneham

 

VEGETABLES Classes 33-50

 

THE HEATHFIELD PARK CUP - most points                            Rosemary Kay

 

SPECIAL AWARD CUP - 45/46 Best tomato                     Cathy Constable

 

COOKERY & PRESERVES Classes 51-62

 

CLIFFORD TURNER CUP - most points                                   Rosemary Kay

 

C A HERBERT CUP -  57 - best Loaf of Bread                          Nick Jeggo

 

BROAD OAK C.A. ATKINSON CUP -  58 - best Bara Brith          Carole Smith

HANDICRAFTS Classes 63-67

 

THE CHALLENGE TROPHY- most points                                 Faith Smith

PHOTOGRAPHY CLASSES 68 and 69

 

THE BROAD OAK GLEN CUP – Best photograph                      Gill Earl

 

JUNIORS HDHS Medals

 

Class 70 best exhibit                                                           Calla Constable

 

Class 71 best exhibit                                                           Jamie Blake

THE RHS BANKSIAN MEDAL – most points horticultural classes 6-50

 

Marian Stoneham

THE CORONATION SILVER BOWL – most points in all adult show classes

 

Rosemary Kay

 

SECTION 1 DECORATIVE

CLASS 1: KAY WHITE/MARIAN STONEYHAM/THERESA FENNINGS

CLASS 2: MAGGIE HAYES/MARIAN STONEYHAM/DORIS HOLT

CLASS 3: MAGGIE HAYES/CAROL DOWN/JANE SKIRROW

CLASS 4: MAGGIE HAYES/THERESA FENNINGS/JANE SKIRROW

CLASS 5: DORIS HOLT/CAROL DOWN/JUDY HORTON

 

SECTION 2 FLORAL CLASSES

CLASS 6: ROSEMARY KAY/CHRIS SHEPHERD/CHRIS KEMP

CLASS 7: MARIAN STONEHAM/THERESA FENNINGS/JUDY HORTON

CLASS 8: ROSEMARY KAY/M J HAMPER/U MOCKFORD

CLASS 9: THERESA FENNINGS/JUDY HORTON/TREVOR HINCE

CLASS 10:JOHN LOGAN/ROSEMARYKAY/ -

CLASS 11: THERESA FENNINGS/ROSIE EVANS/ROSEMARY KAY

CLASS 12: JUDY HORTON/BETTY WARD

CLASS 13: BETTY WARD/ROSEMARY KAY/JANE SKIRROW

CLASS 14: - / - / -

CLASS 15:  - /TREVOR HINCE/ -

CLASS 16: - / ROSEMARY KAY/ -

CLASS 17: ROSEMARY KAY/NICK JEGGO/ -

 

SECTION 3 DAHLIAS

 

CLASS 18: THERESA FENNINGS/DAVID KING/MARIAN STONEHAM

CLASS 19: CAROL DOWN/JOHN LOGAN/MARIAN STONEHAM

CLASS 20: MARIAN STONEHAM/JUDY HORTON/GILLIAN BURDETT

CLASS 21: ROSEMARY KAY/THERESA FENNINGS/JANE SKIRROW

 

SECTION 4 ROSES

 

CLASS 22: JUDY HORTON/ - / -

CLASS 23:  - / - / -

CLASS 24:  - /JOHN LOGAN/ -

CLASS 25: JOHN LOGAN/VERENA DANN/ -

CLASS 26: JANE SKIRROW/JOHN LOGAN

 

SECTION 5 FRUIT

 

CLASS 27: JANE SKIRROW/NICK JEGGO/JOHN LOGAN

CLASS 28: MARIAN STONEHAM/SUE COOK/JOHN LOGAN

CLASS 29: TREVOR HINCE/SUE COOK/MARIAN STONEHAM

CLASS 30: MARIAN STONEHAM/JANE SKIRROW/CAROL DOWN

CLASS 31: SUE COOK/ROSEMARY KAY/JOHN LOGAN

 

SECTION 6 VEGETABLES

 

CLASS 32: MARIAN STONEHAM/ROSEMARY KAY/GORDON WEBB

CLASS 33: ROSEMARY KAY/JOHN HOBDEN/GORDON WEBB

CLASS 34: RITA HOBDEN/GORDON WEBB/JOHN HOBDEN

CLASS 35: JOHN HOBDEN/URSULA MOCKFORD/ -

CLASS 36: JOHN HOBDEN/ - JENNY GUNSTON

CLASS 37: JOHN HOBDEN/ROSEMARY KAY/LES HOLT

CLASS 38: LES HOLT/RITA HOBDEN/MARIAN STONEHAM

CLASS 39: LES HOLT/JOHN HOBDEN/GORDON WEBB

CLASS 40: ROSEMARY KAY/GILLIAN BURDETT/URSULA MOCKFORD

CLASS 41: JENNY GUNSTON/ROSEMARY KAY

CLASS 42: ROSEMARY KAY/ - / -

CLASS 43: MARIAN STONEHAM/ - / -

CLASS 44: SUE COOK/TREVOR HINCE/ROSEMARY KAY

CLASS 45: URSULA MOCKFORD/MARIAN STONEHAM/ JENNY GUNSTON

CLASS 46: CATHY CONSTABLE/ROSEMARY KAY/MARIAN STONEHAM

CLASS 47: JOHN LOGAN/URSULA MOCKFORD/ROSEMARY KAY

CLASS 48: MARIAN STONEHAM/CAROLE SMITH/ROSEMARY KAY

CLASS 49: LES HOLT.DAVID KING/CEC EARL

CLASS 50: ROSEMARY KAY/NICK JEGGO/CATHY CONSTABLE

 

SECTION 7 COOKERY AND PRESERVES

 

CLASS 51: ROSEMARY KAY/JENNY GUNSTON

CLASS 52: GILLIAN BURDETT/CAROLE SMITH/JAN SYMS

CLASS 53: ROSEMARY KAY/JENNY GUNSTON

CLASS 54: ROSEMARY KAY/CAROLE SMITH

CLASS 55: CAROLE SMITH/JENNY GUNSTON/CATHY CONSTABLE

CLASS 56: CAROLE DOWN/KAY WHITE/CATHY CONSTABLE

CLASS 57: NICK JEGGO/COLIN ROSE/JENNY GUNSTON

CLASS 58: CAROLE SMITH/GILL EARL/CHRIS SHEPHERD

CLASS 59: MARIAN STONEHAM/ROSEMARY KAY/DINA REDMAN

CLASS 60: ROSEMARY KAY/MARIAN STONEHAM/JENNY GUNSTON

CLASS 61: MARIAN STONEHAM/JENNY GUNSTON/DINA REDMAN

CLASS 62: CAROLE SMITH/JENNY GUNSTON/MISS E WINTER

 

SECTION 8 HANDICRAFT

CLASS 63: FAITH SMITH/JENNY GUNSTON

CLASS 64: TRACY COOK/JENNY GUNSTON/CHRISSIE WALKER/ -

CLASS 65: FAITH SMITH/CHRISSIE WALKER/ -

CLASS 66: DORIS HOLT/ - / -

CLASS 67: FAITH SMITH/ - / -

 

SECTION 9 PHOTOGRAPHY

 

CLASS 68: CAROLE DOWN/CHRISSIE WALKER/CHRIS KEMP

CLASS 69: GILL EARL/JOHN EVANS/ROSEMARY KAY

 

SECTION 10 JUNIORS

 

CLASS 70: CALLA CONSTABLE/KEZIA BLAKE/JAMIE BLAKE

CLASS 71: JAMIE BLAKE/KEZIA BLAKE/CALLA CONSTABLE

 

SECTION 11 WONKY FRUIT AND VEG

 

CLASS 99: CAROLE DOWN/SUE COOK/CEC EARL

 

 

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