Last 3 Months
We have had a very busy time:
13th: Pashley Manor Officers Lunch, as always excellent good food, good company and an excellent venue, our thanks to fellow officer Jim Sellick.
25th: Interment of Peter the Lamb, again a superb turnout with members from all Branches attending. When visiting Hertmonceux Castle take five minutes quiet and sit on the Eastbourne Memorial Bench
25/26th: Armed Forces weekend, functions around Sussex with Branches taking part I attend military display in Worthing on the Saturday and a Drumhead Service on Sunday where a set of the Regiment’s drums were used
28th: Illustrated talk by Alan Readman, on the Battle of Boar’s Head and the Somme. Alan has retired but he has lost none of his expertise and pride in the Regiment he did us proud it was excellent.
30th: Boar’s Head Richebourg:
The interest in the 100th Anniversary of the battle was amazing, I had at least 20 calls asking for details and photographs, I manage to satisfy all.
There were events throughout Sussex.
Most churches in Sussex remembered the soldiers in their Parish who never returned.
Chichester Cathedral had a peel of bells on the 30th.
Worthing had a drum head service outside the Town Hall at 1700hrs on 30th, 150 people attended.
There is also a garden display in Beech House Gardens - see above and cover picture.
Brighton had a display showing details of the battle and names of all Brighton soldiers who were killed and wounded in the battle.
My small church in Angmering had a display detailing the battle and naming soldiers of the Parish who fell.
The Association had a two day trip to Richebourg where we joined in a service arranged by “The Living History Group” despite my reservations it was an excellent and moving service. The Service was well attended with a 100 plus from the Association
3rd : Hastings “Somme Sunday”. The Town of Hastings marked Sunday 3rd July as “Somme Sunday” as a mark of remembrance for the Battle. Colonel Arnold gave a short talk on the Somme and Boar’s Head, and the Hastings connection. Well attended by Association Members.
30th: Goodwood: A superb sunny day I had given out 200 tickets and we again had a box this year.
The event was well attended with our President and his wife presenting the cup to the winner of the Royal Sussex Regiment Stakes.
Can someone tell me how one wins I never have
* Annual Reunion Dinner Lewes Town Hall. Timings as usual 17:00hrs for start at 18:00hrs.We have new caterers, this year, I am assured that they are very good.
* Do not forget, AGM at 16:00 hrs.
Field of Remembrance at Westminster Abbey. The service in the Morning starts at 1100hrs when a member of the Royal Family walks around the plots showing respect to the fallen of all conflicts, it concludes at 1200hrs.
Why not try to make it we have a small service in the afternoon at 1600hrs where we pay our respects to fallen comrades and then go to the Red Lion in Parliament Street (just across the road)
A letter from Barry Lane re progress for Museum
Just to summarise the last two meetings that Brian and myself have attended:
Following the (not) Policy Group meeting, we both met with Wendy Walker and Matthew Jones from West Sussex Records Office to discuss their future plans and to see if they could help us.
They are currently putting together a bid for Lottery funding to digitise the entire archive including the Royal Sussex collection. We fully supported this and said we were prepared to partner with them and the University on this project.
In the longer term they are putting together a bid to extend the building to include museum storage, a small display area, research rooms and a lecture facility. So they asked us to provide what cubic capacity we would require to include in the bid as well as the humidity levels we would require for the store. We have supplied a figure to include both collections.
However with the best will in the world, nothing is likely to come to fruition for at least five years (if at all), which doesn’t address our immediate needs.
Yesterday we met with the PWRR hierarchy at the Tower of London and they were most supportive. English Heritage now see the museum at Dover as a useful income generation stream and have offered them a barrack block next to the museum as storage space. At the moment this needs work to be done and not likely to be ready until early in the new year and have offered us space.
They are currently revamping their museum, which isn’t huge and plans have not yet been finalised but will include forebear Regiments.
They were also supportive of the idea of partnering with West Sussex and moving the bulk of the collection there if the project comes to fruition and linking up both sites digitally.
We also have the Invicta Military Vehicle Society interested in taking on Von Arnim’s staff car and are coming to survey it on Sat 3 Sept. PWRR support this going elsewhere as they don’t have a space to display it which meets humidity levels.
Therefore a potential plan is crystallising – We continue boxing up as agreed with EBC, apparently some boxes arrived yesterday. I have enough volunteers for 2 people a day, plus the staff member for five days a week and Brian, John and myself will be going in twice a week as well. The timescale for this is likely to slip for various reasons including lack of staff member (there was no one available last Wed) and this is the sort of thing that will impact on the schedule. Therefore I think a realistic completion date is early Feb 2017. Now I have names I will get the staff to put on training day for the volunteers and I will draw up a packing schedule for them for both collections.
This date will fit with the Hussars departing to store in that area if the Dover facility isn’t ready.
When the facility at Dover is ready we can transport to the storage space there and then await the West Sussex bid.
I am liaising with the Regional Secretary and hopefully in Sept/Oct we can return the silver drums to PWRR, freeing up space in the casemate to dismantle Von Arnim’s car in November.
My recommendation is to go with this option as it gives us flexibility, but we will need more work to resolve the storage issue for the SCMT collection.
Still actioned on our behalf by PWRR they pay £200 pounds to each case on our behalf with remainder from other charities, mainly ABF the soldiers Charity.
Most grants are in the region of £1000 and cover debts, funerals of former members and assistance towards central heating and other household maintenance costs.
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