Hassocks Village Market seeks local support

Hassocks Village Market

Hassocks Village Market

Hassocks Village Market is seeking local businesses and causes to take up stalls, and aiming to help the local economy grow and develop new directions.

On the fourth Saturday of every month, apart from December when it’s the third, the centre of Hassocks is transformed into a village market, which features local businesses and also offers a showcase to local charities and good causes. The Market is based outside National Tyres, on the corner of the High Street’s junction with Dale Avenue.

The market has an array of longstanding stallholders, offering goods ranging through breads, cakes, local cheeses, fresh fish, fresh farm vegetables, pies, fresh meat and hand-made chocolate. These are well known in the village and many stalls have their regulars who look forward to the fourth Saturday just so they can replenish supplies.

And those regulars are encouraged to keep coming back not just by the quality of what’s on offer but also by a loyalty scheme, where customers can complete a card full of stamps and enter into a quarterly draw where the winners get a free hamper provided and stocked by the stallholders.

Opening at 9am and running through to 12.30pm, the market also offers local causes a great opportunity to show themselves off to villagers, by offering one pitch in every market free to local charities and causes. This could be anything local, from small fundraisers to organisations like the local hospices, and is worth doing to raise a profile.

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In addition, a stall is reserved for local pursuits such as arts and crafts: for example, recently the Made in Hassocks stall was manned by a group selling knitwear, while it could just as easily be Hassocks artists offering their masterpieces. Taking this stall could not only give opportunities to sell local products but could also bring in new enthusiasts who hadn’t been aware their main interest is covered in the village.

The Village Market is managed by Catriona Hawksley, under the auspices of Hassocks Community Organisation. If you would like to take up a stall there simply email Catriona on: hassocksvillagemarket1@ gmail.com, it’ll be worth it.

The next market is on Saturday 24th August 2019.

Hassocks Goes Gold, this September 2019

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In 2014, September was declared a united international month for raising awareness of childhood cancer and this September, Hassocks Goes Gold too. The aim of the Glow Gold September Campaign is to literally shine a gold light on the issue of childhood cancer. Edinburgh Castle, The Brighton Wheel & Sydney Opera House have all glowed gold to show support. Now Hassocks is joining in too.

Many of you will be aware that, in 2017, a much-loved Hassocks resident and Windmills pupil, Pearl Dixie BartlettBundy died from bone cancer, aged ten. In Pearl’s memory, her family desperately want to stop similar tragedies affecting other families.

One child in 500 will develop some form of cancer by the age of 14 years and, tragically, 1 in 5 of those children diagnosed with cancer will die as a result.

Medical experts still don’t understand the cause of many childhood cancers and, though there have been improvements in some childhood cancer survival rates, some have not changed for over 30 years. Diagnosis, treatments and survival rates for children can improve through research and increasing awareness.

Hassocks businesses are already signing up to host ribbon/wristband boxes, sponsor giant gold ribbons and display lovely golden sunflower posters that the children of Hassocks are helping to design.

There are lots of ways in which Hassocks residents can be involved too:

• Decorate your garden: grow golden yellow flowers in your window boxes or garden; light gold fairy lights in the September evening.

• Decorate your homes/offices: shine a gold light; display a poster; decorate your front window with anything gold.

• Think gold: wear a gold ribbon/wristband; dress in gold clothes; gold nail varnish; sport a gold wig.

• Host a gold event: bake gold cakes; have a gold themed street party; the sky is the limit…

• Sponsor a Giant Ribbon: £10 will buy a giant gold ribbon bow tied around a prominent Hassocks tree or landmark with your name attached to show you care.

Please pledge your support, share your gold ideas, download a poster, or sponsor a giant ribbon - by emailing: HassocksGoesGold@gmail.com or by joining Facebook/HassocksGoesGold and let’s turn the whole of Hassocks GOLD together!

Riding the HeART to Heart Trail via Hassocks

Sue Collins, Hassocks

Sue Collins, Hassocks

By Deirdre Huston

I dropped in on Sue Collins, local printer, designer and workshop tutor, to find out what she has going on this summer and - my goodness - she is certainly busy, and very talented too. A combination of photography and sketching forms the base on which she creates her striking and colourful images. In her unique body of work,

it’s possible to recognise local features and landmarks and yet she portrays each place or animal in an original and memorable manner.

She has recently opened her light-filled new gallery, Scots Pine Studios: an exciting development because it enables her to display a selection of her linocut work including cards, coasters and prints. The gallery earned its name from the giant Scot’s pine tree, a local landmark, at the corner of her garden. This is a prime example of how we can incorporate inspiring outdoor areas into our working life. Being able to work

somewhere so tranquil and uplifting is definitely a perk of being an artist but it’s not all about creative inspiration. There’s a lot of hard graft in being an artist too and it’s clear that Sue works hard to get her work seen through many different platforms. She has recently exhibited at the Horsham Museum & Art Gallery during the Horsham Year of Culture, is a member of numerous art groups and will be participating in the Hassocks Open Artists’ Autumn Fair at Garden Sage. She is also a member of the Chalk Gallery in Lewes, a collective of twenty-one artists, which is unique because they rehang their work every six weeks meaning there is always something new for visitors to see. Sue is brimming over with plans and also intends to use the space next to the gallery as a print room.

[excerpt from Hassocks Life magazine, issue number 4, August 2019

Music and ale festival rolls into Hassocks

James Walker

James Walker

Hassocks resident James Walker is putting on a mini music and ale festival in the village later this month.

The Mid Sussex Americana & Ale Festival is now in its third year, and is a celebration of the best UK Americana artists. The event takes place at The Hassocks Hotel, with main acts performing in the 300 capacity hall. Outside there will be an ale tent and trailer to add to the festival vibe.

James, as founder of Brighthelmstone Promotions, has put on many shows, from Brighton all the way to Nashville. “It’s really important to me to bring quality music to my village and when Rich and Chris Lambe at The Hassocks showed me the stunning function room, I just knew I needed to do something in one of the best sounding and looking halls in Mid Sussex,” he explained.

Ten artists are booked for the festival, including winners of the Fender Undiscovered Artist of 2018 ‘Lucas & King’ and also ‘Porchlight Smoker’, who have been described by legendary country music DJ Bob Harris as ‘an absolute gem’.

“It’s a tradition that Hassocks resident Ben Featherstone is a part of the festival,” James commented, “and we’re delighted that he will be celebrating the release of his new album with us.”

The Mid Sussex Americana & Ale Festival will take place on 24th August at The Hassocks Hotel, and starts at 11.30am. Tickets are available now from The Hassocks and Proper, as well as online.

Behind the Counter: The Purple Carrot Hassocks

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By Deirdre Huston

Brighton’s loss is Hassocks’ gain. I’m not in The Purple Carrot for long before I realise just how much there is going on. Many years ago when Chris went travelling he was fascinated by the cafe culture he saw. The mixing of the generations (not just families going out) and the general feeling of bonhomie. Back in the late 80s, inspired by his travels around Israel, Chris made tentative attempts to start a Mediterranean style café in Brighton, but loans were not readily available and, sadly, Chris had to shelve his plans.

He put in a good few years working for the council but when redundancy created an opportunity for him to make a change, he was eager to rekindle his earlier ambitions. He accepted that he’d become rooted in Hassocks and found his first premises on the west side of the station where many of you will have sampled the excellent cheeseboards at book club or card evenings. When the lease at No 6 became available, Chris recognised its potential and the prominent corner location between high street and station is well suited to his vision for The Purple Carrot’s future.

The interior is light filled and relaxed. Customers wander in and out and Chris is quick to put people at their ease. As he talks to me, although he is diffident and self deprecating, his motivations soon shine through. Rather than bean counting, it’s a wish to create a community which is at the heart of his business plans. He elaborates: “I’ve always been drawn to dealing with a range of people of varying ages and backgrounds. I want them to be allowed to be able to take their time and enjoy their food and drink.” Chris has a real passion for the food side of things; the invention and experimentation, the getting people to try out new things.

Summer Trail created by Hassocks youths

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By Deirdre Huston

When I went along to Hassocks Youth Hangout a group of young people were engrossed in developing the Adastra Summer Trail. This activity is being designed by them and is hoped to be popular with children and families over the summer.

The initiative uses recycled materials and works in a similar way to geocaching but without the app.

Families will be able to download the trail from https://sussexcyp.org.uk/news/hassocks-science-trail/.

They must solve clues to find boxes hidden across Adastra Park which contain hands-on science challenges to complete and a stamp for marking their entry form. Everyone who completes the trail can take their completed sheet to the Hassocks Market on 24th August where they will receive a small reward and be entered into a prize draw. The Turner Dumbrell Foundation in Ditchling funded the activities, staff and promotion necessary to make the Adastra Summer Trail a reality, while Hassocks Parish Council were very supportive in allowing Adastra Park to be used. “It was lovely to have that immediate response and support,” admits Liz Jeavans, local resident and scientist extraordinaire.

Top Hassocks businesses get praised

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Muddy Stiletto Awards

By Caz Houghton

No, this isn’t about inappropriate footwear and getting stuck as your heels sink into wet grass on a walk up to Jack and Jill.

Muddy Stilettos has become the ‘urban guide to the countryside’, a reference for the best local things to do in local areas across 21 counties, including Sussex. Since 2013 it has been running an awards programme to celebrate independent, creative businesses.

During May you might have noticed a hive of activity as Hassocks residents made it their mission to show support to our local businesses, nominating and voting across 24 lifestyle categories. With over 15,000 businesses involved and 750,000 votes cast, you can’t help but feel proud that five of the Sussex finalists were from Hassocks:

Best Beauty Salon FINALIST: Profiles Health and Beauty

Best Hairdresser FINALIST: Reflex@42

Best Gift Shop FINALIST: Indigo

Best Jewellery Store FINALIST: Marvellous Marmalade

Best Florist WINNER: Bella June Flowers

Art that takes the biscuit - Village People

Kellie Miller, artist, Clayton -

Kellie Miller is a local artist who creates, curates and collects a multitude of art from all around the world. Having been highly sought-after for her ceramics in Japan at the beginning of the millennium, she’s now settled in Clayton and has turned her house and garden into a beautiful display of work featuring a number of renowned international artists.

By Joe Wayte

Kellie Miller was born and grew up in Battersea before venturing down to Brighton University to study 3D design. “I always wanted to be an artist,” Kellie said confidently, “my course included a mix of woodwork, paint, ceramics and more besides, so over the years I’ve worked with lots of different materials.”

In 2002 Kellie was offered an artist’s residency by the Arts Council which took her to Shigaraki in Japan. She was later selected for her second international exhibition for which she fired 101 cups to create a conceptual piece of art, inspired by the book The Art of Possibility. “The cups were sold individually after the exhibition,” she explained, “with the idea that they’re like seeds, going off into the world, and maybe one day, somehow, they’ll all come back together.”

Having spent a lot of time in the country, Kellie says she has a deep love for Japan and is still influenced by its culture today. “Going to Japan is like going to the moon,” she described, “you’ve got to experience it at least once in your life.”

Kellie has always based herself in the South of England. In 1996 she founded the Biscuit Studio in Hove, which was initially a centre for ceramics artists. Over the years, aspiring artists of all medias have rented space in its inspiring environment.

It was at the studio that Kellie met her husband, Kim, who lived in the house adjacent to Biscuit Studio. “The studio didn’t have its own toilet,” she explained, “and when new tenants arrived in the unit next door they denied us access to the facilities we’d been using since we opened.” Kim came to her rescue and offered Kellie a key to his house so that she could use his loo until the issue was resolved. 12 years after they first met, Kellie and Kim were married in 2011.

[Excerpt from full article printed in Issue No2 Hassocks Life magazine - June 2019]

Introducing Deirdre, your new assistant editor

Deridre Huston, assistant editor at Hassocks Life

Deridre Huston, assistant editor at Hassocks Life

By David Tingley

I am delighted to announce that Hassocks resident Deirdre Huston has been appointed as Hassocks Life’s assistant editor.

Deirdre is a guidebook author, writer and photographer, and has lived in the village for more than 25 years. “I was drawn to Hassocks Life when I saw the first issue,” she explained. “I really liked the format and could see its potential in our community – so I was keen to be part of it.”

Deirdre is married to Ian Rayland and has three children, all of whom have grown up in Hassocks. She’s been part of local fundraising committees, NCT groups and helped set up a book club 13 years ago, which is still going strong today.

The role of the assistant editor will deal with the day-to-day communication about content going into the magazine, in addition to writing up both news and feature articles for inclusion on our pages. Deirdre will also be ‘sniffing out’ stories about events and activities that are taking place in the village!

If you know someone we should be talking to, or have an event which you’d like promoted to our area of Hassocks, Keymer and Clayton – then do please email Deirdre via editor@hassockslife.co.uk. We will always welcome ideas, suggestions and articles of local interest.

We also need great cover photos of the village, taken throughout the year. If you have any, please email them in to: photos@hassockslife.co.uk. We will file them, and if we publish yours on a cover, you’ll get a £20 shopping voucher to spend on the High Street.

Hassocks Bike ‘n’ Fun returns this month

Hassocks Bike ‘n’ Fun 2019

Hassocks Bike ‘n’ Fun 2019

The community bike ride returns later this month, as resident Pippa Crouch takes over the reins this year.

The event will take place on Sunday 30th June 2019 and will feature two safe, marshalled routes – a four and eight mile ride. Both start from The Hassocks Hotel with registration at 9.30am. The shorter route will go via Oldland Mill (which will be open until 1pm) and Ditchling, ending back at The Hassocks. The longer route will go via Oldland Mill, Ditchling, Underhill Lane, Hurstpierpoint and back to the same place.

Pippa explained: “This fun event is for the whole community, regardless of age and cycling ability.” The event will be kindly marshalled by volunteers from the Proper Cycling Club, and will feature a BBQ too.

For more information pop into Proper Coffee, QD Stationery or like the Facebook page – search for Hassocks Bike ‘n’ Fun.

Behind the Counter: Bella and Megs, Hassocks

Chantal and Phil from Bella and Megs Cafe in Hassocks

By Joe Wayte

When Phil and wife Chantal decided to move into their corner plot on Keymer Road, they heard the cries from the people of Hassocks hoping it wouldn’t be ‘yet another coffee shop’. While during the day you can turn up any time for a quick beverage and a bite to eat, Friday nights at Bella & Megs are quite different, and if you haven’t already booked, you’ll need to join the waiting list.

In April 2018, Bella & Megs café and bistro opened its doors for the first time. The sun was shining, prosecco was on tap and many locals showed up to see what owners Phil and Chantal had done with the place. “It was very white when we first acquired the shop,” Chantal explained, “so we decided to do a refit. I wanted somewhere that felt homely, yet rustic and modern.” The launch was a huge success and, after twelve months in business, the pair are pleased with how things are going.

Originally from Newick, Phil started his career in stage management at the theatre in Worthing. After ten years of commanding crew behind the scenes, he decided he was ready for his next challenge and turned his hand to hospitality. “I went into training with the British Institute of Innkeeping,” Phil told me, “and then advertised myself locally when I was ready to take on a job.” Phil received an offer shortly after and moved to Poynings to work at the Royal Oak. It was there that he met Chantal, who grew up in the village.

This isn’t the first time the duo have gone into business together. For a number of years they ran Dolly’s Pantry in Ditchling, which they sold in 2007.

[Read the full article in the May 2019 issue of Hassocks Life magazine]

Mr Wignall - Village People interview

Mark Wignall, Downlands Community College

By David Tingley

If you want to learn something about community, just have a chat with Mark Wignall, Headteacher at Downlands Community School.

Although born in London, Mark spent most of his childhood in the Midlands – living just down the road from the Cadburys factory; anyone who has heard him talk in an assembly has heard his soft ‘brummy’ accent. Mark has been married to Lynne for 24 years and they have three children Ellen, Harry and Joe. He describes his devotion to Birmingham City Football Club as ‘a life sentence’!

Mark has always been keen on sport. He has always loved rugby, football, cricket and squash, to name but a few, so it is no surprise that he went on to study Sports Science at Brighton Polytechnic. “I didn’t know what I wanted to do at the time, but I did love sport,” he explains, “although there weren’t as many options for a Sports Science graduate back then.”

Mark started his working life as a fitness instructor in the gym at the House of Commons; a role which ranged from designing personal fitness programmes for MPs, to collecting towels. After moving up to Harrogate to work at a luxury hotel doing a similar role, it wasn’t long before Mark asked himself: ‘Is this the rewarding career I really want?’. After some soul-searching, he returned to Sussex to complete a Post Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) with a view to being a teacher. Placements during his course were in secondary schools in Bexhill and Cuckfield.

[Read the full story in the May 2019 issue of Hassocks Life magazine…]

Hassocks Community Organisation (HCO)

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Hassocks Community Partnership (HCP) and Hassocks Amenity Association (HAA) have merged to form Hassocks Community Organisation (HCO)

By Erika Woodhurst-Trueman, Trustee

HCO is a registered charity (No. 1183097). Its main aims are to: provide recreation and leisure activities for residents of Hassocks and the surrounding area who might otherwise struggle to access such activities, and, by providing them, also benefit the general public so as to improve social welfare; protect and improve the environment we live in and look after features of historic or public interest.

HCO supports a wide variety of ‘life-improving’ projects, such as:

Monthly Village Market - A community market bringing local produce and crafts to those who might otherwise be less able to get to them.

Green Group - Protecting and improving the physical and natural environment by creating an attractive and welcoming village.

Hassocks Community Cycle Hire - Hiring out mountain bikes, cycle servicing and promoting cycling and environmental tourism in Hassocks and the surrounding area.

Rail Group - Representing our rail users to ensure rail services meet the needs of all residents.

Star Cinema - Bringing high quality films to Hassocks residents using professional projection services at Adastra Hall and providing an opportunity to socialise, especially for those for whom getting to a town cinema is difficult.

Village Flood Mitigation - Raising funds and working with experts and volunteers to tackle problems and sustainably address local flooding issues.

May Day Event - A traditional spring fair for all the community at Adastra Park.

Village Discount Card - For many residents access to shops is difficult due to transport or mobility challenges. This initiative aims to ensure that our community continues to benefit from the many and varied shops in Hassocks by encouraging shopping locally. Being trialled now – this card is currently free to existing or new Supporters this year.

Each of these projects is run by a small team of individuals and HCO provides support in the background.

We are on hand to provide help, advice and, in some cases, finance, and insurance. The Trustees at HCO are all volunteers and are passionate about the community and protecting and improving the environment we live and work in. We are always keen to encourage ideas for new projects and those who want to lead them. If you have a burning idea for an activity that would improve life in the village, please get in touch!

Open House and Sculpture Garden

Artist and Clayton resident Kellie Miller is inviting locals to a very special exhibition as part of the Brighton Artists Open House Festival.

For the very first time, the renowned artist will be opening her home and gardens, which nestle on the South Downs on Underhill Lane. The house and gardens is a work in progress project and, after four years of development, she wants to share the story so far.

“Over the last few weeks we have been preparing the space, land clearing and unpacking the cabin that housed our belongings while the house has been developed,” Kellie explains. “We have enjoyed getting in touch with the land and planning the exhibition and are looking forward to welcoming guests throughout May.”

For Kellie it is an opportunity to exhibit sculpture in a natural environment other than her award-winning gallery in Brighton.

Visitors can expect to see work artists such as Alexia Weill, Félix Valdelièvre and Radek Andrle, who is inspired by the idea of conception and the beginning of life.

The exhibition will be open between 11am-5pm on weekends during May, by appointment only. Email: info@ kelliemiller.com to book a slot at address in Clayton.

Norma opera comes to Hassocks

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Touring operatic company Heber Opera is once again playing at Adastra Hall with its current production of Norma.

According to Heber: ‘Bellini’s Norma is an opera that is not performed very often but has a strong story and lovely music, including, of course, one of opera’s most famous arias Casta Diva (or in our English version Sacred Goddess)’.

Heber’s production will be sung in English and performed in the round, and it will feature the talents of local performer Steve Hawksley (pictured) from Hassocks.

This tour is made up of just five dates, including 7.30pm on Friday 24th May at Adastra Hall in Hassocks and Sunday 26th May at nearby Hurstpierpoint’s Village Centre where the show will start at 6pm.

Tickets may be purchased online or by calling 07503 783403.

Copy dates for 2019

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Issue 4 - August 2019
Tues 23rd July - copy date
Tues 6th Aug - distribution

Issue 5 - September 2019
Tues 27th Aug - copy date
Tues 10th Sept - distribution

Issue 6 - October 2019
Tues 24th Sept - copy date
Tues 8th Oct - distribution

Issue 7 - November 2019
Tues 22nd Oct - copy date
Tues 5th Nov - distribution

Issue 8 - December 2019
Tues 19th Nov - copy date
Tues 3rd Dec - distribution

Issue 9 - January 2020 onwards

Dates to be confirmed

Hassocks Life launched this week!

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By David Tingley, editor

Hassocks Life is a new community magazine which will be hand-delivered free to the homes in the village every month. It will be a bright and colourful magazine full with content which is specifically local to Hassocks and the close surrounding area. My goal is to not only carry news, but also stories of people in the village and events which are happening or have already happened. We will celebrate the successes of folk in the village who may have completed the marathon, raised money for charity, expanded their business or got a new project off the ground, as just a few examples.

The first issue will be published and delivered on Tuesday 7th May 2019. The copy date for that magazine will be Tuesday 23rd April.

I’d love all community groups and organisations to get involved in this new venture for Hassocks. Do get in touch with us!