Society Programmes

Here is a list of the events/meetings organised by members of the Forum over the coming months.

Barns Green and Itchingfield Local History Society

Programme of meetings to be added.



Beeding and Bramber Local History Society

Meetings are usually held at 7:45pm in Beeding and Bramber Village Hall on the first Wednesday of the month. The talks cover a wide range of subjects relating to the history and natural history of the local area and Sussex in general.

Visitors are welcome for a £3 entrance fee.

Thursday 7 December 2017

Christmas Social for members only.

2018 programme of meetings to be added.

Billingshurst Local History Society


Thursday 14 December 2017

A seasonal talk entitled “A History of Christmas Food “ will be given by Rupert Matthews. ‘ This talk traces favourite festive foods over the centuries. He may bring snacks to try!

Thursday 11 January 2018

This month we have the delayed talk by Kevin Gordon “History from the Churchyard – a study of Sussex gravestones” . On his website, he says: ‘I have toured Sussex looking for examples of odd and interesting gravestones’.

Thursday 8 February 2018

Alan Barwick , Curator of Henfield Museum, will give a talk using Walter Drewett’s pictures of West Sussex villages 1904-1930. This should be an interesting insight into life in nearby communities in the early twentieth century.

Thursday 8 March 2018

“The Sussex Agricultural Labourer’s Tale” is the title of a talk to be given by one of our best known local historians, Jennifer Goldsmith. She says it should be very relevant to Billingshurst.

Thursday 12 April 2018

The season closes with Jackie Marsh-Hobbs giving a talk about the history of the well-known West Pier in Brighton. Useful websites include and

The Summer Programme 2018 for members will be announced at a later date.

Cowfold Village History Society

All meetings take place in Cowfold Village Hall, Bolney Road at 7:45pm for 8:00pm.

Everyone welcome. Members free and non-members £3 including refreshments.

Friday 23 February 2018

“Time to Thank Them”-  the story of the Voluntary Aid Detachment nurses. Presented by John Drewry on behalf of the Nursing Memorial Appeal.

Friday 6 April 2018

AGM and “The Godmans of South Lodge” presented by Robina Arbuthnot.

Friday 20 July 2018

“The Coach Roads to Brighton” presented by Geoff Hewlett.

Friday 19 October 2018

“Sussex in the Great War” presented by Kevin Gordon.


Henfield History Group

Meetings are held on the second Tuesday of the month at 8 pm (doors open from 7.40 pm) in the Free Church Hall, High Street, Henfield, BN5 9HP (via the side entrance in Coopers Way).

Everyone welcome. Admission £3 Non-Members (Members by Subscription)

Enquiries to Maureen Fletcher, Tel. 01273-492194.

Tuesday 12 December 2017

“A Sussex Christmas”. Entertainment with Cotillion Folk Group, a local folk group specialising in Sussex based writings, songs and poetry.

Tuesday 9 January 2018

“Side Saddle Travels in England with Celia Fiennes (1690’s)”, presented by Janet Pennington.

Tuesday 13 February 2018

“The Story of Crystal Palace”, presented by Ian Gledhill.

Tuesday 13 March 2018

“Droughts, Deluges and Dust Devils – 300 Years of South East Weather” presented by Ian Currie.

Tuesday 10 April 2018

AGM – Talk TBA

Horsham Society

The Society publishes articles in its own newsletter and has also contributed articles to the West Sussex County Times since February 2008.



Rudgwick Preservation Society

Meetings are held in Rudgwick Village Hall at 7:30pm.

All welcome (£2 entry for non-members).

Monday 4 December 2017

“RSPB Pulborough Brooks: Past, Present and Future” by John Oliver, Volunteer Support Team.

Monday 30 April 2018

AGM – Speaker: David Johnston.

Full 2018 programme of meetings to be added.

Rusper Chronicle


2018 programme of meetings to be added.


Shipley Local History Society

Meetings are held in the Andrew Hall, commencing at 7.30 pm.

Membership dues remain at £10.00 per person for the entire season. Visitors are always welcome at £3.00 per person.

Thursday 30 November 2017

Our famously short AGM, followed by Christmas themed entertainment by Cotillion, a local folk group specialising in Sussex based writings, songs and poetry.

Thursday 15 February 2018

“Dark Age Sussex” by Mark Perry-Nash. The history of Sussex from the departure of the Romans to the arrival of the Anglo-Saxons and subsequent conversion to Christianity in 681.

Thursday 26 April 2018

“William Penn and West Sussex” by Martin Hayes, County Local Studies Librarian. Penn, an energetic and devout man who helped set up the Blue Idol Meeting House, inspired many West Sussex people to follow him to Pennsylvania. We will explore Penn’s links to many places in the county.

Thursday 21 June 2018 at 6 pm

We will take our local summer evening walk to a place of interest followed by our annual summer social evening. This year it will take place at the Old Vicarage, hosted by Colin and Lucy West. Full details will be published in the spring.

August 2018

We are currently planning our summer visit to a local place of historical interest, and will publish full details in the spring.


Steyning History Society

Visitors are welcome at all our meetings, for a small entrance fee of £3.00. The annual membership fee is £10 per person (and the Society year runs from September through to May).

The meetings are held in the Saxon Room, Steyning Centre, Fletcher’s Croft, Steyning, commencing 7.45 pm and running until approximately 9.30 pm with a refreshment break in the middle; we ask for a £1 donation per person at each meeting towards tea, coffee and cake, in the interval.

Wednesday 13 December 2017

“History of the Evening Argus” by Paul Green.

Wednesday 10 January 2018

“Shepherds of the Sussex Downs – their lives and times” by Ian Everest.

Wednesday 14 February 2018

“The Royal Sussex Regiment at Gallipoli 1915” by Matthew Jones (West Sussex Records Office).

Wednesday 14 March 2018

“Send Us Some Women” by Dianne Mannering.

Wednesday 11 April 2018

“Biggin on the Bump” by Bob Ogley.

Wednesday 9 May 2018

Annual General Meeting followed by: “Lost Ships Found- Maritime Detective Stories” by Ian Friel.

West Grinstead Local History Group

This Group was formed in 2006 to encourage local people to understand better the Parish of West Grinstead’s history and to increase knowledge of the area’s past.

Public meetings with a guest speaker are held on the third Tuesday of alternate months (January, March, May, July, September and November), commencing at 7:30pm, and take place in Partridge Green Village Hall, High Street, Partridge Green RH13 8HP.

Tuesday 20 March 2018

Annual General Meeting followed by “History of the Tower of London” by Alan Kingshott

Museum Events

Christ’s Hospital Museum

Welcome to 460 Years of History!

The Museum has a remarkable collection of some 35,000 artefacts and archives dating from 1552 to present day. Paintings, photographs, prints, china, sculpture, costume, social history, books, medals, coins, ephemera and much more chart the history of our unique school from its founding and 350 years in London, through its time at Hertford and finally Horsham since 1902. We are staffed by a small team of curators and volunteers who regularly respond to numerous research and family history enquiries, donations, conservation and exhibitions on and off site, learning sessions for pupils across all academic departments, tours for staff, public visitors and Verrio tours.

Extensive displays occupying what used to be the old isolation wards for the Infirmary or “Sicker” allow you to explore the school’s illustrious history, boasting patronage from all British monarchs dating back to Edward VI, links with important historical figures such as Samuel Pepys, Isaac Newton, Captain Cook, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Charles Lamb, Edmund Blunden and Barnes Wallis. Yet perhaps the most interesting areas celebrate the day-to-day life at Christ’s Hospital for its many generations of pupils and staff. Where else at CH can you marvel at a perfectly preserved 1902 Nurse’s Kitchen, a “Lav End” or observe how the uniform and customs at the school have changed, yet equally some remain unchanged for over four and a half centuries?

If you’ve no idea what a “Beadle” did and you’ve never seen the “Punishment Bands” for Hertford girls, or indeed realised the devastating impact two World Wars had on CH in the 20th century or the harsh reality of life for pupils in the past….then you need to visit the Museum!

Our opening times are: Tuesdays and Thursdays, 10am – 4pm

View by prior arrangement: 247444;

We are on the top floor behind the Medical Centre.

Henfield Museum and Friends                                             


A temporary exhibition on the 100 year history of the Women’s Institute in Henfield is on show at Henfield Museum until 12th January 2018. The exhibition included photos from the scrapbooks, and other items of ephemera.

Henfield was the second W.I. to be formed in West Sussex, after Singleton, in October 1917. To cater for working women the Henfield Tipnoak W.I. was formed in 1957 and ran evening meetings. This folded in 1993, and the Henfield W.I. folded in December 2002 because numbers had dwindled, and no one came forward to run it. In 2007 the Woodmancote W.I expanded to become the Woodmancote & Henfield W.I. with meetings being held at The Henfield Hall. There was a split in 2016 with the formation of The Wild Violets W.I.