New Eastbourne War Memorial lifted into place on seafront

The new Eastbourne civilian war memorial was lifted into place on the seafront this week.


Unlocking Eastbourne’s lost memories at new exhibition

A brand new Heritage Eastbourne exhibition opens on March 19 at The Pavilion, unlocking extraordinary memories from the past and revealing lost pieces of time spanning more than 2,000 years.

Josh Barbarinde. Photo by Jenny Lewis

Eastbourne man cracks it with phone fixing business

An entrepreneur from Eastbourne who set up his own smart phone repair service and employs ex-offenders has been named Social Enterprise of the Year at the prestigious Centre for Social Justice Awards.

Chris Hooker SUS-180227-090109001

MORE OUT IN THE FIELD COLUMN: Birthday shout outs and holidaying in Eastbourne

• A rather large dumping of the white stuff last week – flights cancelled and a red weather alert across southern Ireland – somewhat thwarted my plans to get to the Emerald Isle to see the family ahead of St Patrick’s Day so I spent an enjoyable long weekend in Eastbourne visiting some places I had been meaning to for some time. My first stop was the Hydro Hotel where a rather splendid gazebo has been erected on the front lawn. Second stop was the Boathouse in Princes Park for a breakfast (and very nice it was too), the Black Cat in Meads (equally delicious) and I even made it to the new auditorium at the Towner on Sunday afternoon to watch the British cinema classic Brighton Rock.

OUT IN THE FIELD COLUMN: Tragedy of little boys’ death at clifftop

OUT IN THE FIELD COLUMN: Tragedy of little boys’ death at clifftop

Exactly what went on behind the closed doors of the Twickenham family home, where a mother was found stabbed to death this week while her husband and their two young sons plunged to their death from cliffs at Birling Gap, will take some time to unravel. The family has yet to be formally identified but the plight of these two little boys – one ten and the other just seven – has touched the hearts of so many people not just locally where most people know what a lonely and frightening place Birling Gap is, but across the country. What was going through their poor little minds as they fell to their deaths just doesn’t bear thinking about. It was a hard night for all concerned, their devastated family first of course but also those at Birling Gap including the member of the public who discovered three bodies on the beach, medics, police officers and coastguard teams who will no doubt struggle to forget the scene they were met with that afternoon.


VIDEO: Launch of Chestnut Tree’s latest challenge

Chestnut Tree House, the only children’s hospice in Sussex, has opened up registration for its forthcoming fundraiser.


A Band of Brothers: Helping boys with transition to manhood

“Hurt people, hurt people – so what we do is try and help them overcome the issues that have dogged them for much of their young lives so they can develop into young men that make a positive impact on the community.”

Beamsley Road / Seaside area where road works will take place in Eastbourne (Photo by Jon Rigby) SUS-180222-090723008

The power of prayer (and Facebook)

If like me, and Her Majesty, you rarely carry cash and rely on your debit card everytime you nip to the shop for supplies, you may in the past have encountered a cashier telling you if you pay by card, you’ll be charged for using your flexible friend. Well, not anymore. Because last month a new ban came into force meaning card carrying shoppers cannot be penalised for choosing to pay by card, either in store or online. All, and I mean ALL, surcharges are banned. It’s now illegal. If you do come across any shopkeepers trying to impose this penalty, put them right and let Trading Standards know who will be more than happy to point out the error of their ways.


Tunnels under Eastbourne pub? Is there or isn’t there?

A tunnel running from St Mary’s Parish Church in Eastbourne’s Old Town and the neighbouring Lamb Inn has been the subject of local folklore for many years.

Road works in Rodmill Drive,  Eastbourne (Photo by Jon Rigby) SUS-180102-100658008

Take my organs but not my eyes!

I have already told my loved ones that when the time comes for me to shuffle off the end of life’s perch, I want my organs – should they be any good – to be donated. Not my eyes though. I don’t know what it is but I don’t want anyone touching my eyes when I am alive let alone dead. Whatever is in full working order and not pickled or overused, I want to go to help somebody else live or be used in medical research. My feelings were confirmed last week at a special preview of a lovely organ donation story entitled The Boy Who Gave His Heart Away read by Eastbourne author and broadcaster Cole Morteon at the Birley Centre. Cole penned the tale of two teenage boys who both fall desperately ill at the same time. Within days the boys are close to death and although they have never met, their lives become bound together. One dies, and without knowing it he saves the other’s life. Cole tells the story of how the heart of one boy is taken from his body and transported by land and air to the other in a race against time. But that is only the beginning. It is extremely rare for those who receive organs to have direct contact with the families of their donors, but in this case a remarkable set of coincidences makes it possible and against all the odds the mothers of the two boys meet and become friends. It’s real heartstring-tugging stuff and makes you confront your own fears and feelings about what you would do and what you would like your children to do if, God forbid, anything ever happens to them. It’s a difficult conversation to have but one that needs to be had if we are to stop hundreds if not thousands of people dying on the transplant waiting list every year.

A group pictured at St Elisabeth's Church, Eastbourne SUS-180602-112459001

NOSTALGIA: Look back at history of St Elisabeth’s Church

As the debate over whether Eastbourne’s imposing St Elisabeth’s Church should be demolished to make way for a redevelopment of the site Looking Back has been through the photographic archives with the help of reader George Turner.

Brufords in Cornfield Road was badly bombed.....

Work begins on Eastbourne Peace Garden as fundraising gathers momentum

Work has begun on transforming the moat surrounding Eastbourne’s Wish Tower into a Peace Garden, providing the setting for a new memorial to the town’s 180 civilian bombing victims in World War Two.


OUT IN THE FIELD: Princes Park cafe, Second World War bombings and birthday shout outs.....

During my time on Planet Earth I have made some monumental mistakes and try as I might, no doubt I will continue to make the odd faux pas. I find in those times though the only thing you can do is put your best lipstick on, fall on your sword and say sorry. In all honesty it’s really the only thing you can do. So I take my hat off to the management at the Boathouse in Princes Park which was forced to do just that when it found itself in the middle of a storm after announcing late on Sunday night on Facebook that it would no longer be serving just drinks to customers and instead would be operating as a restaurant. Cue social media uproar as people voiced their upset online and criticised the management for alienating families, dog walkers and everyone else who just wants to pop in for a nice hot cuppa on a wintery day or a cold drink on a warm one. Within hours the Boathouse had taken on board those comments, done a major U-turn and changed its mind to appease its existing and potential customer base. And said a very big sorry. The management went one step further and admitted that many of the comments posted in response to the Facebook onslaught had possibly been lost in translation. So, there you have it: people power wins the day and hopefully everybody is happy. Now people need to put their money where their mouth is and go along and check it out. Local businesses need the support.

Building and improvement works at Princes Park, Eastbourne (Photo by Jon Rigby) SUS-170123-114955008

Eastbourne cafe’s U-turn over drinks policy

The owners of an Eastbourne park cafe have done a dramatic U-turn over selling drinks only to customers.

Eastbourne SUS-180102-090027001

OUT IN THE FIELD: Show some milk of human kindness

I realise this may be an image that may disturb or indeed ever leave you but picture if you will the scene at my house Wednesday evening.

Urban Ground in South Street, Eastbourne (Photo by Jon Rigby) SUS-180124-124022008

Number of licensed cafes and restaurants in Eastbourne rises

The number of licensed premises in Eastbourne is on the increase, according to latest statistics.

Gill Mattock will be the new mayor of Eastbourne SUS-180130-105057001

Eastbourne’s new mayor is unveiled

Longstanding Liberal Democrat councillor Gill Mattock has been nominated as the next mayor of Eastbourne.

Herald memorial SUS-180125-082140001

Take a look inside my box of tricks

I am one of life’s hoarders. Take a gander through one of my many “memory boxes” and you will uncover my children’s drawings from infant school, the first Valentine’s card I ever received, ticket stubs, meaningless receipts along with birthday, christening and Holy Communion cards. It’s the same at work. I have a mini Beckett Newspapers museum in drawers and a box filled with old fashioned newspaper accounts ledgers, old camera lenses from the press hall in Commercial Road and hundreds of black and white photographs of days gone by. The vast majority will never see the light of day but I am delighted that one particularly large artefact rescued by myself and colleagues during various office moves will take pride of place publicly. The wooden plaque honouring staff members at Becketts who lost their lives having left Eastbourne to fight in the Great War has been given some much needed TLC by Jo Seaman and the team at Eastbourne Heritage Service and is taking pride of place in a new exhibition starting in March. Eastbourne Remembers is the name of the expo at the Pavilion and it starts on Monday March 9. It will uncover some of the ways we have remembered and sometimes forgotten and explore commemorations and memorials spanning the last 2,000 years including of course our memorial plaque, which has been cleaned and polished with specialist wax. It looks absolutely splendid.


NOSTALGIA: Pubs of Eastbourne featured in new book

We continue our look this week at the history of some of the town’s public houses, which are documented in a new book by Alan Smith.

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