David Arnold: Dripping Yarns! The Story of a Lewes Sporting Icon
The origins of the Dripping Pan in Mountfield Road are a mystery. A favourite theory is that it was once a medieval salt pan linked to the nearby Priory. Others have surmised that it was a monastic fish farm. What’s not in dispute is that it has been a popular sporting venue for several hundred years past and host to cricket, stoolball games and numerous sports days for local schools, the police and fire brigade. Since 1885 it has been home to Lewes Football Club, affectionately known as the Rooks.
Seven years earlier in 1878 the “ground commonly known as the Dripping Pan” became part of the “Mountfield Estate” owned by wealthy local landowner George Molineux. It was a move popular with the townspeople of Lewes. The Sussex Express of 24th August 1878 waxed lyrical: “The sale of the Dripping Pan, the recreation ground of Lewes, last Tuesday, ended in its purchase by George Molineux, Esq, the senior partner in the Lewes Old Bank, for the sum of £4,600; and we are authorised to state that, so long as it is in that gentleman’s hands, it will continue to be devoted to sporting pursuits.”
David Arnold paints a portrait in words and pictures of the Dripping Pan and some of the people and events that give it a unique place in Lewes history.
The Dripping Pan in the 19th Century (Image from Lewes Football Club’s collection)
All are welcome from 7.00pm for free refreshments and updates on the Group’s activities. The talk will begin promptly at 7:30pm and will finish by 9.00pm.
There is an entry fee for these meetings, payable at the door, of £2 for members, and £3 for non-members.
Venue: The King’s Church building on Brooks Road, Lewes, BN7 2BY. (Between Tesco car park and Homebase)
See the Meetings page for a list of forthcoming monthly talks organised by the Lewes History Group.