East Sussex Federation

For the Love of

The NFWI is a founding member of The Climate Coalition (TCC), a group of over 100 organisations and over 15 million people working for action on climate change. One of the TCC core campaigns is focussed around Valentine’s Day, and is called ‘For the love of…’. This campaign aims to show people that climate change is affecting the things in their life that they love, such as chocolate, bees and beaches, and it asks millions of people to wear and share green hearts to show that they would like to see action on climate change. Last Valentine’s Day green hearts connected millions of people, and this resulted in an historic pledge from the leaders of all three main political parties to take action on climate change. This year NFWI are aiming for an even greater impact, and they would like to do so through encouraging members across the country to make, wear and share green hearts, and to hold green heart making workshops across the country.

With the WI’s reputation for crafting NFWI are hoping that WI members will host many green heart crafting sessions across the country. These sessions would allow members to come together to create hearts that can be worn on Valentine’s Day and it would also give them the opportunity to start a conversation about climate change. NFWI are encouraging anyone holding workshop sessions to invite their MP along and to invite the local press. NFWI will be offering as much support as possible to members, as well as highlighting the workshops nationally across all the TCC channels. NFWI have been talking to the National Trust and Oxfam, and both organizations have invited members to approach their properties as venues for workshops, so please do take advantage of this offer wherever possible. Many other organisations will also be encouraging their members to get involved with the sessions so please get involved locally with others as appropriate. A green heart making workshop doesn’t need to be elaborate, however, with the involvement of a range of organisations generating local and national coverage, it will show MPs that there is great support for change and that they should lobby the government to make it happen.

Open Day at the Keep

Keep eating! Celebrate food through the ages at The Keep’s Open Day- 26 September 2015

The focus of The Keep’s Open Day this year is food! The Lewes Octoberfeast festival which supports creative and sustainable food culture in East Sussex is back for its sixth year, running from 18 September to 4 October. As part of this celebration, join us at The Keep on Saturday 26 September as we explore the history of food and drinking culture.

Visit the archives to investigate mealtimes from our past and find out more about what The Keep has to offer. Exhibitions and activities taking place. Contribute to the creation of a Sussex family recipe collection – bring along your own family recipe book and share that favourite dish that has been passed down through the generations.

11.30 – 12.00 Anne Stamper will be giving a talk about 100 years of the WI and Food!

The Open Day will be running from 10am-3pm, so feel free to drop in; no prior booking is needed.

All ages welcome, refreshments available.

Results of Lady Denman Cup Competition 2015

Title – A President’s Log: Star Date 2115

Imagine what your WI would be like in 2115… WI members were invited to write a futuristic president’s annual report using no more than 500 words.

The three winning East Sussex entries sent to the National Competition are:
1st Margaret Savill – Hampden Park WI
2nd Angie Lintott – Ovingdean WI
3rd Sheila King – Little Common WI

So our members can also enjoy reading our winning entry, here is Margaret’s report President’s Log Star Date 2115.
Thank you to all the entrants. We hope that one of the East Sussex entries will once again become the National winner!

Results of South of England Show

Well done to all those WIs who entered the ‘Centenary Celebrations’ competition at the South of England Show, Ardingly and congratulations to the nine East Sussex WIs who achieved firsts out of the fourteen categories.

List of Results showing the first three places in each class.

Following the Olympic ethos of “it’s not the winning but the taking part that counts”, the Autumn Show will soon be here and there are lots of exciting classes in the schedule for you to enter to continue with our Centenary celebrations. Remember that in the Autumn Show multiple entries can be submitted for all classes.  Autumn Schedule

Flower in Pen & Ink
Flower in Pen & Ink
A  Hand Embroidery
A Hand Embroidery
A Hand-Made Board Game
A Hand-Made Board Game
Single root vegetable cake
Single root vegetable cake
A Knitted Scene
A Knitted Scene
Fresh Plant Material
Fresh Plant Material
A Rag Doll
A Rag Doll
An Illustrated News Report
An Illustrated News Report


Child's Aran knitted jacket
Child’s Aran knitted jacket

Buckingham Palace Garden Party

Gale force warnings were in place, the rain was torrential. Smart hats and outfits were covered with raincoats and anoraks, shoes had to be changed at the last minute. This was the start of a memorable day for the East Sussex Federation, celebrating 100 years of the W.I. with a garden party at Buckingham Palace, hosted by Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall.

By the time our coach from Hailsham had arrived in London, however, the rain had cleared, even though the strong winds persisted all day. Our group was booked in for lunch at a nearby hotel, which was most enjoyable and a fitting start to our visit.

With 8,000 visitors to the Palace, and security in place, it soon became evident that a long queue had formed around the perimeter. Having decided to enter by the Grand Entrance, it was so entertaining to be photographed by passing tourists , one American lady thought we looked “AWESOME” !
Having passed through the Grand Entrance and foyer, we proceeded to the west terrace overlooking the huge garden with its marquees and bandstands. The Royal party arrived at exactly 3.00 p.m.. The Duchess of Cornwall was joined by Sophie, Countess of Wessex, Princess Alexandra and the Duchess of Gloucester. They all circulated, speaking to several ladies, including the ‘Calendar Girls’. Our own Federation Chair, Kathryn Hutson chatted to the Countess of Wessex in the Royal Tent. After tea, we listened to the band playing music from the shows, followed by the National Anthem.

Our departure was accompanied by strong winds eddying around the forecourt. Hats and buttonholes were flying everywhere but this did not dampen the jolly atmosphere. In fact it produced hoots of laughter and great hilarity both from the W.I. ladies and the attendant police officers !
Coaches started to line up from all over the country, from Northumberland to Devon -including our own from East Sussex.
After an amazing day we were all ready to return home for a quiet and relaxing cup of tea.

It was such a privilege to have been there and to listen to the band of the Grenadier Guards playing the National Anthem in the grounds of Buckingham Palace. It was an experience I will never forget and the same was felt by many others, I am sure. Report by Margaret Dove – Cross in Hand Press Officer.