East Sussex Federation

Autumn Show and Game Fair 2017

The Autumn Show and Game Fair is being held at the Ardingly Showground on 30th September and 1st October from 9am – 5pm. Schedule and multiple entries are permitted for all classes.
The WI competition entries under the title ‘Box of Delights’ will be on display in the Upper Queen’s suite on the first floor of the Norfolk Pavilion.
We look forward to seeing you there.

Finalists in Federation Quiz 2017

Well done to all the teams who took part in the four heats of the Federation Quiz 2017.
After a hard fought competition, the six highest scoring teams who will be taking part in the final on Friday 30th June at ESFWI Headquarters are ……….

Four Candles from Westham Evening WI
WI’s Owls from Hailsham Nightingales WI
Seagirls from Ovingdean WI
All the President’s Women from Pett WI
Heffle Buccaneers from Heffle WI
Hastings Mermaids from Hastings Ore WI.

Westham and Hailsham Nightingales are previous winners and it’s Heffle’s first time in the Quiz. Good luck to all six teams in the final.

Save the Date – Women Go Wild!

SAVE THE DATE 22 – 24 June 2018

Yes! It is really going to happen! A camping weekend for WI members, at Blacklands Farm in beautiful Ashdown Forest in East Sussex, organised as part of the Sussex WI Centenary Celebrations. The event will start on Friday afternoon and continue until Sunday afternoon. Loads of activities, both outdoors and inside, are being organised by a group of enthusiastic WI member volunteers.

Bring your tent, camper van or sleep indoors in one of the camp lodges.

More details and booking coming soon.

Picture shows the Peewits camping field, which has been reserved exclusively for us!


Gill NokesEast Sussex Federation of Women’s Institutes (ESFWI) was formed in 1919 having originally been part of the Sussex Federation which was the first to be created in the country in 1917 – just slightly earlier than the National Federation.

Today we have 101 WIs across the County in both towns and villages. They each have a regular monthly meeting and many WIs have interest clubs and other activities in between. One thing is certain, wherever you live in East Sussex you are not too far from a WI.

Each WI has its own character, activities etc. and we encourage prospective members to visit several to make sure they find the one that suits them. Many of our members enjoy the WI so much that they belong to two WIs.  As a member in East Sussex you will also have access to the wide range of activities, workshops and outings arranged by ESFWI.

Our friendly office staff are happy to give information about local WIs for you to visit. In the unlikely event of you not finding a WI to suit you (wrong day or time) then why not gather a few like-minded friends, contact Hailsham HQ and we’ll talk about starting a brand new WI.

Come and join us!

Gill Nokes
County Chairman, ESFWI

Beading Treasure Trove ACWW Raffle

Through Toni’s initiative of the incredibly successful ‘Christmas Crumbs’ event for ACWW she met a lovely lady called Eleanor. Although not a WI member, Eleanor became very interested in the event which she wanted to support. Her very generous donation to Toni was an amazing array of beading equipment, which Eleanor is delighted to have raffled for ACWW, as one bumper prize. The lucky winner will receive the beading loom, a great assortment of beads, beading accessories and several books to help make beautiful beading items. There are also ‘practice pieces’ and the loom has been left ‘warped up’ ready for you to begin! So a huge thank you to Toni and Eleanor for the lovely prize.

Where to buy raffle tickets? -Tickets are on sale at HQ, £1 each, (where photographs of the Beading set are available). The beading set will also be displayed at the ACWW table at the ESFWI Annual Meeting on 29th March. All proceeds will go to ACWW projects. The present project is number 1015 The Romania Art Project – Women will be taught art techniques in order to create cards. They will also learn business skills and they will be responsible for helping to advertise and sell their own products locally.

When will the raffle be drawn? – The draw will take place when we have sold tickets to cover at least our latest ACWW project, the outstanding amount being £199. The challenge is to reach this target by the ESFWI Annual Meeting on 29th March and therefore be able to draw the winning ticket. There is one prize of the complete Beading set.
Should we raise additional funds then this will go towards another ACWW project that will be chosen at the next Board of Trustee meeting.

East Sussex Commemorative Reception

On 5 September 1917, the first Sussex Women’s Institutes Conference was held at Little Ote Hall, Wivelsfield, the home of Mrs Josephine Godman. One hundred years later, we have the unique opportunity to celebrate this event in the stunning grounds of Great Ote Hall, which has been in the Godman family for almost 500 years!

The Commemorative Reception will be held by ESFWI in partnership with our generous host, Mrs Carola Godman Irvine on on 5 September 2017 from 2pm to 5pm in the grounds of Great Ote Hall, Wivelsfield, East Sussex.

Full information on the event:

Reception Programme
• Welcome by Gill Nokes, ESFWI County Chairman
• Great Ote Hall & the Godman family (Carola Godman Irvine)
• Sussex: Cradle of the WI (Anne Stamper, past NFWI Archivist)
• Tea and sumptuous cakes!

More information and details for application can be found on the Events Page.