Mountfield news
Mountfield news

CYRIL WOODGATE: It was standing room only in All Saints Church, Mountfield on Monday 20th March, when around 160 family and friends gathered to say a final goodbye to Cyril Woodgate. The service, conducted by the Reverend Ann-Marie Crosse, was a celebration of Cyril’s life.

The coffin entered the church to ‘Country Gardens’ followed by the hymn “Morning Has Broken”. Philip, Cyril’s son , gave a tribute to his father, his lifetime of gardening both professionally and at home, as well as his love of sport. Cyril skilfully played both football and cricket for Robertsbridge and for Mountfield, played football for the RAF during his National Service and had even at one time been offered a trial for Tottenham, although at 26 had felt he was too old. Cyril’s life was governed by the seasons both as a gardener and in his sporting life, cricket in the summer and football in the winter and Philip remarked that even on a wet and blustery day as Monday was, his father would still have been outdoors busy in his garden; inclement weather didn’t put him off.

The service concluded with the hymn “All things Bright and Beautiful” and his coffin then left the church for committal in the churchyard to “Sussex by the Sea”. Following the interment, Jean and the family invited all those present to join them in Mountfield Village Hall where a splendid spread of refreshments was waiting.

Thanks to Trish for that report. A reminder that if you wish to donate to the family’s chosen charity, St Michael’s Hospice, either ring 01424 728728, visit www. or post to Unit 1, Queensway Avenue South, Queensway, St Leonards on Sea, TN38 9AG.

MOUNTFIELD HISTORY YOU CAN VISIT: I gave a talk, “Mountfield’s Tudor Ironworks”, to the Robertbridge Arch. Soc. in January. Unfortunately, a lot of people were unable to make it either because they were tucked up with one nasty virus or another, or because they were put off by the forecast of 0°C before the doors even opened — not a nice thought for people driving any distance. So I am repeating the talk on Friday March 31st at 7.30 in Mountfield Village Hall.

Entry is a suggested donation of £3.00 per person or free if you are either very mean or a member of DACS. This really is history right on our doorstep. This site is extraordinary for a number of reasons: not least that its existence is almost entirely unknown locally, despite it being freely visible from a well-known public right of way. Even after 450 years, there is still much to be seen — if you know what you are looking for.

Again, all those attending the talk will be invited to join simple guided tours of the site over a couple of subsequent weekends: Sundays 2nd and 9th April in the morning. A pleasant stroll through lovely countryside that should have some flowers such as the kingcups doing spectacular things as well.

MOUNTFIELD WALKS: Peter writes: Lucinda and Simon have kindly given me permission to repeat the walk I have led for the last three years as word of mouth has been at work. Under the title “Through Trees & Time” the walk will look at a wide range of clues to why our local landscape looks the way it does. The clues will include medieval earthworks from the 13th century, industrial remains from later centuries (mine pits, quarries and kilns), evidence of historic woodland crafts (e.g. coppicing, charcoal burning, saw pits), the network of old roads which covered the parish, the clues in the botany of the Ancient Woodlands (including a rare plant population), and in the trees (including an even rarer tree, one of only three known in the parish), foraging (with a recipe leaflet to take home with you as part of the extensive take home info pack) and, above, lots of fun and laughter. The walking is easy (though muddy and brambly).

The walks will take place on Sunday April 23rd, April 30th and May 7th. The cost is £10.00 per person including the follow-up information to take away with you. Worth every penny, as those who have already done the walk will vouch plus proceeds will go to the maintenance of All Saints, Mountfield. To book or for more details, call me on 01580 880614. And please alert anyone you think might be interested.

SW MEETING: To follow up on last week’s column with its report on the special meeting about Southern Water’s plans, Peter had a very good meeting with the Head of Environmental Health. Over the coming weeks, Mountfield Parish Council, in association with Rother District Council will produce a questionnaire and a detailed information sheet for all householders eligible to connect.

MOUNTFIELD COMMUNITY ARTS: Juliette Dodd writes: “I’m holding a series of special Art Workshops over the next few months. Saturday 25th March: ‘Cabaret’ themed costumed portrait/figure painting day on; 22nd April: ‘Edwardian Lady in her Boudoir’; May 27th: Art Deco-themed portrait/figure workshop, model re-creating the mood of the 30s with Nancy Cunard inspired pose and costume; 22nd July: Futuristic ‘Fifth Element’ costumed figure drawing session, acrobatic model in a series of poses throughout the day. Each workshop is £45.00, 10.00–3.00 pm, tutored and strictly limited to 10 participants so early booking advised. More information can be found at A deposit of £20.00 is required on booking. Contact Juliette Dodd on 01424 424010 or mobile 07900 466709.”

A reminder that Juliette is always looking for portrait models for her Tuesday morning classes, no experience necessary, just the ability to sit still essential, cash paid, 10.00 – 12.30, above contact details or message me through my Facebook page

MOUNTFIELD CLUB: A reminder too that is be another Quiz Night on Easter Saturday April 15th starting for about 8.00 pm. There will also be a Buffet and Easter Egg Raffle. £2.00 entrance fee per player with no more than six per team.

CONTACT: We can always be contacted on 880614 (if no reply, just leave us your details on the answerphone) or via We always welcome contributions and feedback.

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