Lewes History Group: Bulletin 60, July 2015

Please note: this Bulletin is being put on the website one month after publication. If you would like to receive the Bulletin by email as soon as it is published, please contact the Membership Secretary about joining the Lewes History Group, and to renew your membership at the start of the calendar year.

  1.  Next Meeting, Monday 13 July: Joanna Wilkins, ‘Making Medieval Meals’
  2. The Cattle Market
  3. Lewes postcards on Ebay (by Ian Hilder)
  4. Lewes Schooling in 1818
  5. Lewes Racing Stables in 1914
  6. 6. Royal Visit to Lewes
  7. Lewes School of Art successes


  1. Next Meeting                7.00 p.m. for 7.30 p.m.          Monday 13 July
    Joanna Wilkins          ‘Making Medieval Meals’

Joanna Wilkins, is a Sussex Archaeological Society education officer, based at Anne of Cleves House, where she regularly gives visitors advice on how to be a successful Tudor housewife. For this evening will be taking us back a little further in time, to the medieval period. Unfortunately the church building lacks some key medieval cooking facilities, such as a large open-hearth cooking fire, so this cannot be a hands-on demonstration. Long-standing members will recall that Joanna has spoken to us on two previous occasions; about Anne of Cleves House and also about William de Warrenne. She is an excellent speaker.

As usual the meeting will be at the King’s Church building, Brooks Road, and all will be welcome. Coffee and biscuits will be served from 7 pm.


  1. The Cattle Market


This hand-coloured Edwardian postcard of the Lewes cattle market was published by W. Brooker of Sussex Gardens, Eastbourne, and was posted in 1907. It shows the cattle and sheep market in progress, with buyers examining lots. The shed in the foreground carries an advertisement for Lloyd & Son, gunmakers.

  1. Lewes postcards on Ebay                                                                 (by Ian Hilder)


This postcard shows H.R.H. the Duchess of Albany laying the foundation stone of Lewes Victoria Hospital in 1909. The mayor (Alderman George Holman) stands to the right.


This postcard-sized photo has on the reverse “The Dutch children who came to Lewes in Feb 1946. Mrs Rainer’s party”.


  1. Lewes Schooling in 1818

In 1818 the Parliamentary Select Committee for the Education of the Poor conducted a survey of the school facilities available in parishes throughout the kingdom. The replies were published by Parliament on 1 April 1819.

The response from St John-under-the-Castle parish, population 1,126, was made by the rector, the Rev P.G. Crofts, a gentleman who lived in some style at Malling House. He reported that the parish had a school based on the Lancastrian system, supported by voluntary subscriptions and open to the whole town, in which about 400 boys and girls were instructed. There was also a day school for children, paid for by their parents. His conclusion was that the poor had sufficient means of education.

The response from St Michael’s parish, by the Rev G. Shiffner, reported that there were two day schools and one Sunday school, supported by voluntary contributions. He too considered the poor had sufficient means of education.

The curate, Thomas Airey, responded for All Saints parish, population 1,427. He reported a Sunday school containing 70 girls and 55 boys who attend the Lancastrian schools in St John’s during the week. There was also a Sunday school at a dissenting place of worship called The Tabernacle at which the number of children on the books was 124 boys and 111 girls. There was also an establishment on the new system in an adjoining parish to which many of the principal inhabitants of All Saints were subscribers, which enabled the children of the poor of both sexes to be educated.

The churchwarden replied on behalf of the parish of St Peter and St Mary Westout, population 918. He reported a free grammar school in which 12 boys are taught by a master, who received £25 p.a. accruing from lands in the parishes of Hamsey and St John the Baptist, Southover, £3 p.a. from a dwelling house in the parish of St Michael’s and £53 5s 0d interest in money in the public funds. The master was besides provided with a house in which he resided, a schoolroom, yard and garden, the same being portion of the endowment vested in feofees. A few of the poor received education at a subscription school on Mr Lancaster’s plan in the parish of St John-under-the-Castle, but many were without the means of education, and were desirous of possessing them.

The Rev W. Courthope, rector, replied for St John the Baptist, Southover, population 543. There were four small schools containing 52 children, all under 7 years of age. He thought the poorer classes had not the means of education, and were desirous of possessing them.

The Cliffe parish response was also from the rector, the Rev J.Lupton. The population there was 1,258. There were several schools containing 103 children, and a Sunday school, chiefly supported by Dissenters, in which 220 were instructed. He said the poorer class did not have the means to educate their children and would be glad to obtain them. As minister he much regretted that he had not been able to establish a Sunday school on the principles of the Church of England.

The final response was from South Malling parish, population 443. The respondent was W. Courthope, the curate – probably the same man as the rector of Southover. In this parish there was no provision whatever, and no comment from the curate.


  1. Lewes Racing Stables in 1914

Source: 1914 Local Directory (Pike’s Blue Book)

  • C. Poole, Elm Tree Stables, High Street, Southover
  • A. Butcher, Black Horse Stables, Western Road
  • Escott, Astley Stables, Spital Road
  • Fitton, Winterbourne Stables, Winterbourne Hollow

  1. Royal Visit to Lewes

Source: Deacon’s Court Guide, Gazeteer and Blue Book of Sussex, 1st edition, 1881

“The town had the honour of a visit, in 1830, from William IV and his queen, Adelaide, who were entertained at The Friars. The members for the town, Sir John Shelley, Bart., and T. R. Kemp, Esq., with the chief officers of the borough, magistrates, and clergy assembled to welcome the royal guests, and a painting in oil, in which are portraits of the principal personages, was executed in commemoration of the event, and placed in the dining-room of the mansion, to the proprietor of which his Majesty granted the addition to his armorial bearings, of a lion borne in chief.”


Visit by William IV to The Friars: painting in the Lewes Town Hall collection


7. Lewes School of Art successes

Source: 19 July 1873 Hastings and St Leonards Observer

LEWES. Lewes School of Art.—The works by the students of this School, which were sent to South Kensington in April for examination, have obtained a National Bronze Medal and fifteen third Grade Prizes. These awards have been made by Her Majesty’s Art Examiners.


John Kay

Contact details for Friends of the Lewes History Group promoting local historical events

Sussex Archaeological Society
Lewes Priory Trust

Lewes Archaeological Group and go to ‘Lectures’
Friends of Lewes
Viva Lewes

Facebook:   https://www.facebook.com/LewesHistoryGroup
Twitter: https://twitter.com/LewesHistory




This entry was posted in Agricultural History, Art & Architectural History, Cultural History, Economic History, Education History, Lewes, Local History, Social History. Bookmark the permalink.