Scaynes Hill

40 years of Scaynes Hill Flower Show


By Claire Cooper

Visitors to the 40th anniversary Scaynes Hill Flower Show took a step back in time earlier this month.

Organisers Dianne Elliott and Angela Hicks had decided to mark the historic occasion by reproducing the original 1978 schedule, which included traditional vegetables flowers, cakes and crafts.

Exhibitors rose to the challenge producing graceful gladioli, mammoth marrows and baking bread and sausage rolls alongside the traditional homemade jam.

Crochet and embroidery made a comeback, including a tablecloth that was originally entered for the show back in 1978. The traditional heaviest marrow category proved popular and was won by Phia Castillo with a 24lb whopper!

“We discovered that nobody makes wine any more but we were pleased to see plenty of bread and jam” said organiser Dianne. “It was good fun but we’ll revert to our usual schedule next year.”


Conservation Shield – Cat Newington

Flower Show Trophy – Nick Hawes

The 40th Anniversary Cup – Brenda Holdforth (a new exhibitor)

Eileen and Peter Pratt Trophy – Phia Castillo (awarded this year only for best exhibit in vegetable class)

Betty Hayter Memorial Salver – Jos Kingston

Artists Cup – Jos Kingston (awarded this year only for best artistic exhibit in Floral Art)

WI Cookery Award – Barry Rapley (a new exhibitor)

Helga Race Trophy – Bobby Whittome

Hawes Handicraft Cup – Liz Townsend (new exhibitor)


Conservation Group Cup – Mollie Hainge

Scaynes Hill Cricket Club Trophy - Mollie Hainge

The Farmers Pub, Scaynes Hill, revived in 2017

The Farmers Pub reopens in Scaynes Hill

Father and son team Michael and Jack Willis have recently opened the doors of The Farmers in Scaynes Hill. The pub has seen numerous attempts at running it over the last ten years, but this duo say they are here to stay.

“We fought hard to sign a 20 year lease with the owners,” Michael commented. “We will make a success of the pub, but we know that takes time. So we are committed to invest in the business over the long-term.”

The pair have already made a success of their first pub together, The Barley Mow in Selmeston, which is approaching its third anniversary.

“We first noticed this pub about a year ago as we drove past it,” explained Jack, “but it had a tenant at the time. Then, when it became available, we looked round it as soon as we could – the building, and its past, has a lot of similarities to The Barley Mow.”

The building has been completely refurbished in a ‘country pub’ style, complete with muted tones on the walls and plenty of taxidermy adorning the walls. Not to mention the large kids’ play area they have installed in the garden. “We want this to be a real family pub,” Jack says, “so we know the outside space will be a real draw for locals.”

They hand delivered letters to all homes in Scaynes Hill inviting them to a preview night of Prosecco and canapes – which was attended by over 400 people! “We were delighted with the response from our neighbours in the village,” Michael said. “We look forward to proving we can be the pub they’ve wanted for years.” 

The Farmers is open every day from midday and will serve a full traditional pub menu with plenty of seasonal specials.

A Pet Service in Scaynes Hill


By Claire Cooper

There were furry paws, waggy tails and twitching whiskers among the congregation at St Augustine’s Church in Scaynes Hill earlier this month when the church held a special pet service.

Vicar Lisa Barnett invited parishioners to bring their furry friends to church for a celebration and blessing and was delighted so see the pews filled with a 25 dogs, a selection of guinea pigs, an enormous rabbit and even a tortoise named Lisa!

The service included specially chosen hymns, such as All Things Bright and Beautiful, a Bible reading read by Thomas Martin, while parishioner Bev Sotiri, accompanied by her four dogs, read a poem for dog owners.

Those unable to bring their pets to church, and those who wished to remember their former pets, brought along photos.

Following the service, there was a chance for pets and owners to mingle and enjoy refreshments in the church hall.

This was the first pet service to be led by Lisa, and is part of the church’s commitment to strengthen community spirit. “I was more than a little bit nervous before the service,” she said. “How many pets would be brought along? Would they behave? But I needn’t have worried!

“The animals all behaved beautifully, staying quiet during the talk and joining in with gusto during the hymns! It was a very special occasion, celebrating the joy that our pets bring us, and committing ourselves to caring for all of God’s creatures. We’re definitely planning to do it again sometime!”