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Prestonville friend

WINTER ISSUE 2013 || Issue 9





The HallHistory Get Involved Local this month


COMPETITION! SEPTEMBER Discover the lost cinemas Vineyard tours Brighton! inofSussex


Do you own or run a business that you want local residents to hear about? Do you have a local story that you want to share? To advertise or contribute to next month’s issue contact: Gill Hasson on 01273 272 911 or


From The Editor.




ew year, new approach.

This year, the Prestonville Friend is going to become a quarterly magazine. Sarah has had to leave the magazine because of her other work committments. I’ve also got a lot on (I work in adult education and write books) this year and can’t keep on top of all the work required produce a monthly magazine. So, rather than stop altogether, the magazine will come out four times a year - a winter edition in January, a spring edition in April, a summer edition in July and an autumn edition in October. Apart from that, everything else remains the same. All the regulars will still be here; both the Prestonville Community Association and The Hall Get Involved group will be keeping us updated on their news and events.


News from St Luke’s


The Local Beat 7 Wartime bombing


Community Issues


Martin Poole will continue to write his page, as will Sgt Lane and Ty Goddard. We are always keen to hear from anyone who’d like to write our local history page so do get in touch if you have something that you think our readers would be interested in. This month we have a double page by Peter Groves, who interviewed local resident Geoff Green a few years ago, about his wartime experiences.

The Hall group


What’s On


It’s My Business


Finally - we have a competition - see page 13 if you would like to win two tickets for one of Julian Clapp’s ‘Lost Cinemas of Brighton’ tour.

It’s My Business extra


If you have any news, stories or ideas, that you would like to be featured in future issues please get in touch. I’d love to hear from you!

- Gill

Advertise With Us.

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St. Luke’s Welcome Church // EDITOR’S / MARTIN POOLE LETTER


‘Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose’


ean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr coined the phrase plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose in 1849 and it’s often been requoted by others such as Winston Churchill and George Bernard Shaw as ‘the more things change, the more they stay the same’. As we enter a new year I have been reflecting on this in relation to the changes that 2013 will bring us. The money realised from the sale of the church hall will allow us to begin planning for the redevelopment of the church to make it a more useful space for the whole community. This is being developed in tandem with the plans for the hall so that the two spaces are complimentary to each other and will both benefit the residents of Prestonville in different ways. The church draft plans involve the creation of a new entrance to the church in Stanford Road and the creation there of a café and meeting rooms which can be open seven days a week. We thought we were being very radical in suggesting this, but recently I was given a bound collection of Parish magazines from 1903 - 1916 (see picture, right) by Mark Jago, our Boy’s Brigade leader. I was surprised to see that the address of the church on the front cover of these magazines was Stanford Road. Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose!

‘To connect the church with the community’ This change or redirection is about much more than a set of building plans though, it’s about a change of attitude. Moving the entrance of the church to Stanford Road symbolises our desire to connect the church with the community of Prestonville, rather than facing away from it. This is a commitment to being the parish church of Prestonville and serving the residents here in all the ways that a parish church should. We want to be the place where you feel comfortable to mark the important transitions in life through baptisms, weddings, remembrance and funerals. The focus for community action through the Big Freeze scheme and community composting

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and gardening. A place where children can feel safe and comfortable in a playgroup, or through interaction with our local schools.

‘A place where we can share in each other’s lives’ A place where we can discuss the issues that are important to us as a local community; from development of Seven Dials to the protests outside Wistons. And most of all a place where we can share in each other’s lives in generosity and love in the way that I believe God shared himself with us. I look forward to sharing 2013 with you and to learning more about what that sharing together means.

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Sergeant Chris Lane // THE LOCAL BEAT

The Local Beat



core part of the work of our Neighbourhood Policing Team is preventing crime. We try to achieve this in many ways, such as high visibility policing, press releases, our website, community newsletters like the Prestonville Friend and simply by talking to people or dropping crime prevention advice through letter boxes. So, what do we want to know from you? Quite often the advice is simple and to many, blindingly obvious, which then leads to us being accused of stating the obvious or patronising people. It’s a difficult balance to strike, as we wish to keep people informed without risking alienating them by being perceived to insult intelligence. Here’s a recent example. Sussex Police issued a press release before Christmas reminding people not to leave presents on view, especially under the Christmas tree. Reading the comments page of the local newspaper, I noted the usual outcries of “plod stating the obvious again” and suchlike. However, it’s a genuine security risk, highlighted by a number of burglaries in the Prestonville area where Christmas presents under trees were indeed targeted by burglars.

Speaking of acquisitive crime such as theft, vehicle crime and burglary, it should be remembered that the average thief is not a criminal mastermind. They are far more likely to be opportunist and will scour an area trying door handles or looking for obvious targets. To that end, you can massively reduce the risk of becoming a victim of crime by following some simple advice.

“Keep your car free of clutter” For example, just keep the inside of your car clean and clear of clutter. You might think that your messy car couldn’t be less appealing to a thief but where you see clutter, they see an opportunity and may break in to see what’s lurking under the mess! If the car is clear, then it will be obvious to them that there is nothing to steal and they are likely to move on to the next car. As I have said, it’s not rocket science but how many of us would actually consider this unless it’s pointed out? We have various crime prevention booklets in an email-able PDF form. If you’d like a copy then please pop me an email.

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LOCAL HISTORY // Wartime Bombing

Exeter Street, Dad’s Army and the Bombing of the Royal Pavilion LOCAL RESIDENT GEOFF GREEN’S WARTIME MEMORIES - FROM A 2005 INTERVIEW By Peter Groves

In 2005, Local historian Peter Groves interviewed Geoff Green about his experiences of wartime Brighton. Geoff Green, Dyke Road Park, 1943 Geoff, one of the founder members of Hove Park Miniature Railway and a keen Albion fan, spent virtually all his life in the area, before dying in 2008. “I was born in Tidy Street in 1923, but we moved to 28 Exeter Street when I was four or five years old.” “Exeter Street was an idyllic location. Just a short walk away, up the Dyke Road past the Upper Drive, it was still almost rural.”

There were open fields beyond “Houses were just beginning to be built to the south of Dyke Road. The new streets, today considered posh, still had unmade roads. A little further up the road, just past Woodruff Avenue, was Tongdean Farm with open fields beyond.” “By the late 1930’s, I was aware of the impending war but I was too young to join up. When it finally broke out, I joined the Local Defence Volunteers, which later became the Home Guard.” “Our Company was based at St. Nicholas Church in Dyke Road,” he said. “By day, I was training as a structural engineer at James Couper’s, who had offices above


Lloyds Bank, on the corner of North Street and Pavilion Buildings. By night, I was on LDV duty” With the German invasion expected at any time, one of the night patrols was on guard in front of the West Pier. “We would take turns on watch. When we weren’t on, we would bed down in the tearooms opposite. I’m not sure what we’d have done if the Germans had actually invaded. We only had a few rifles and a small amount of ammunition between us!”

Keeping watch from the roofs One of the other duties carried out by his Company was fire-watching. “My patch was on the roofs of Marlborough Place, just by the King and Queen pub. We took it in turns here as well; two on watch while the others slept on camp-beds in the roof space.” At Geoff’s employers, James Couper Structural Engineers, all company work was focused on the war effort. As a junior structural engineer, he was involved in the inspection of air-raid shelters. Many had been constructed in haste in the lead-up to the war, and a design flaw had been identified which occurred under certain particular conditions. Geoff explains, “If certain types of shelter suffered a near-miss, there was a possibility that shock-waves could cause the roof to collapse, crushing any occupants sheltering within. Each shelter had to be inspected and, if required, remedial work put in place.” “The shelter used by Prestonville residents was located under what is now the children’s playground, at the top of Crocodile Walk 2000. It was given a clean bill of health.” During the course of the war, less than two hundred people were killed in Brighton due to bombing, but for


The Bombing of Brighton / LOCAL HISTORY

Geoff one night stands out. “I’ll never forget the night of Friday, November 29th 1940.” Central Brighton suffered serious damage from five German bombs that night.

The bomb fell in Pavilion Gardens “The first bomb fell in Kings Road, just by the Queens Hotel and East Street. The second fell at the junction of East Street and North Street, right outside Hannington’s department store. The third fell in Pavilion Gardens, between the Pavilion and the Dome. The fourth and fifth ones fell close together behind Church Street, about where the Jubilee Library is now.” Apart from the damage to Hannington’s, the bomb on the corner of East Street blew out all the windows at the lower end of North Street, including the office windows at James Couper’s, where Geoff worked. “There was a shortage of glass at that time, so throughout that winter we had to work at our drawing boards wearing gloves and overcoats.”

Damage to Hannington’s on the corner of East Street and North Street

Thanks to the autumn rain, the bomb that fell in Pavilion Gardens buried itself deep in the soft ground before detonating. “This caused the shock waves to be absorbed below ground, limiting damage to both the Pavilion and the Dome.” But, “It left a huge crater which the authorities took advantage of. It was converted into a static water tank, to be used in case of fire.”

I will never forget that night In 1943, Geoff had reached the age of 20, passed his National Certificate in structural engineering and joined the regular army. “Most of my time was spent in Western Scotland on construction projects, in support of the D-Day landings in France. I was demobbed early in 1946 and went back to my parents’ house in Exeter Street.” Britain was in the process of rebuilding and Geoff’s trade was heavily in demand. He was able to start work again with James Couper’s almost immediately. Geoff married in 1947 and moved to Ferndale Road, just off Old Shoreham Road and in the early 60’s he moved to Lloyd Road, close to Hove Recreation Ground.

Pavilion Gardens and The Dome during the war, with the unexpected static water tank facebook: ‘prestonvillefriend’

“The war had a huge impact on my life, which I will never forget, particularly the night the Dome and the Pavilion were very nearly destroyed by a German bomb.” twitter: @prestonvillemag //


NEWS // Prestonville Post

Prestonville Community Association Supporting community activities in the Prestonville area

We Have An Issue Here The anti-abortion protests against Wistons Clinic in Chatsworth Road have been going on for two years, and it doesn’t look as though they are going away. They have attracted the attention of the national media and opposition from a Brighton-based group. But although people in our area also feel strongly about the campaign, we have not yet discussed or responded to it as a community.

“A Community discussion about the protests..”

If you would like to join the PCA committee or just come along to a meeting, get in touch. Chair: Richard Denyer-Bewick Tel: 07859 076141 Secretary/Prestonville Post Jannet King Tel: 509653


The PCA will be holding a community discussion about the protests on The Chimney House (upstairs). 21 February in the Exeter Street Hall. We won’t be inviting people from 17 January, 8.00pm groups involved in the controversy, or other outside speakers; and we will “Wolf Hall” by Hilary Mantell. not be discussing abortion itself. For more information, contact: Jeremy Cartland Tel: 882933 We’ll be talking about how we as local residents feel about the protests, the effect they have had on people living locally, their impact on women attending the clinic, and the protesters’ right to express their beliefs. Please come and take part, whatever your views. The activists, the Council, the politicians, the media and the police are all involved in this issue. It’s time to talk about whether we in Prestonville should be too.

You are invited to a public meeting: How should we respond to the ANTI-ABORTION PROTESTS in our neighbourhood? 7.30pm, Thursday, 21 February at Exeter Street Hall Followed by the Prestonville Community Association AGM The posts of Hon Chair, Hon Treasurer, and Hon Secretary, plus six ordinary committee members are elected annually at the AGM. Nominations are therefore sought for the positions. If you are interested, please get in touch with the Hon Secretary, or Tel: 509653



First Tuesday of the month 48 Stafford Road during winter months GARDEN WORK PARTIES Third Saturday of month @10.30am Meet at Café in the Park Contact: Jannet King Tel: 509653 To garden during week: Steve Golds 07771 389 427 BUY A PARK BENCH If you would like to contribute, please get in touch on 509653 or email


FILM CLUB 2 February: Film to be announced 5.00pm, Café in the Park. £2.50 membership on door. Keep up to date via:


The Hall Get Involved / NEWS

Exeter Street Hall - Used By All! JANUARY 2013

The Trefoil Guild are regular users of the Hall. Long-time member Judy Stanger tells us all about them.


ven if you have never been involved in either Guiding or Coming events in the hall over the next few weeks Scouting, there is always a warm welcome for anyone who likes the idea of learning something new, travelling, meet- Music and Drama evening, Saturday 26 January 2013 6pm-8pm ing new people or getting involved in local Guiding and Scouting projects. Prestonville Trefoil Guild was officially formed on 31st Open Day at the Hall - taster sessions in lots of activities such as art October 1968. Since then, we have met monthly at Exeter Street exhibition, meditation for kids, guitar lessons, Lindy hop, art class, comic drawing, bridge – Sun 3rd Feb all day Hall. Each year we support a local charity and over the years have donated to the Martlets Hospice, the RNLI, The Rocking Horse Appeal, The Sussex Beacon and many other charities. We have done this by holding concerts, quiz evenings, carol singing, beetle drives, coffee mornings etc. Since 1970 we have held a garden party every summer in Hamilton Road. We also take over the coffee shop at Chapel Royal in North Street for more fundraising.

Quiz Night – date to be confirmed Food Market – date to be confirmed

Our choir has visited care homes and lunch clubs. Each December we have a party for friends and the community in the Hall, with carols and foods.

Our activities are varied. As well as craft and games evenings, we’ve had evenings learning to ring handbells, and have even produced one-act plays. We sometimes have speakers at our meetings – often connected to our chosen charity. The RNLI, Guide Dogs for the Blind Association and the Pet Rescue Service have all given interesting talks.

As part of the Guiding movement, we support our local Brownie packs. We join the 18th Brighton Brownies each year in the Hall for their Thinking Day celebrations.

We have enjoyed meals out at pubs and barbeques and visits to the theatre, Buckingham Palace and Chartwell.

For more information, contact Judy Stanger. Telephone: 01273.883157

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You don’t have to have been a Guide to belong to the Trefoil Guild, so how about joining and having fun?

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OPINION // Ty Goddard

What Will 2013 Bring Us? THIS MONTH TY REFLECTS ON LIFE’S BIG ISSUES “Remember Me” by David Harkins


his month, I was asked to write about my hopes for 2013. It was a brief that has proved harder to write as the deadline arrived. I should have just written it in a surge of optimism as we sprinted towards the New Year. Time can be a great healer, but it’s not working for me. People have all sorts of displacement strategies; it often includes using a non-scratch cleanser in the bathroom. I’m unsettled by the voices of two fathers separated by continents. Both have lost daughters in unspeakable ways and yet speak with searing dignity. One daughter killed by a landmine in Afghanistan whilst fetching fresh water with her friends and the other murdered at her Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, in the USA. The on-line biographies of the teachers from the Sandy Hook Elementary School remind me of the school leaders and teachers I’ve met over the years.

I have never listened so acutely On the Monday I listen intently in the South Chapel to my friend Paul, who is officiating at his sister-in-law’s funeral. Calm and purposeful he gives eloquent purpose to her life. I may have never listened so acutely in the thirty years I’ve known him. Unsurprisingly, he talks about death and the choices it offers – “To look down in the dust or up to the blue horizon.” He says, you mourn by remembering and acting. Because ‘life is beautiful and the world is beautiful.’ I’m saved from a sleepless night by finding the poem that was read at the service. It was known as ‘She’s Gone’ for years and was thought to be by an anonymous author. In fact, it was called ‘Remember Me’ and is by David Harkins and had been written for a lost love. Here’s the original poem......

Do not shed tears when I have gone but smile instead because I have lived. Do not shut your eyes and pray to God that I’ll come back, But open your eyes and see all that I have left behind. I know your heart will be empty because you cannot see me, But still I want you to be full of the love we shared. You can turn your back on tomorrow and live only for yesterday, Or you can be happy for tomorrow because of what happened between us yesterday. You can remember me and grieve that I have gone, or you can cherish my memory and let it live on. You can cry and lose yourself, become distraught and turn your back on the world, Or you can do what I want - smile, wipe away the tears, learn to love again and go on.” To me, this means hope can never be held hostage by horror.

SPRING // What’s On

What’s On - January WALKING TOURS


ascinating insights into the history of Brighton’s long-lost cinemas, with Julian Clapp. The Lost Cinemas of Brighton: A Walking Tour

The city of Brighton has a secret past; dozens of cinemas. Nowadays, there are just a few left; most of them having been closed, converted or, like the Regent cinema in North Street, demolished. That particular cinema closed on 14 April 1973, with the final showing being ‘Cabaret’. With only a small placard dedicated to the memory of the Regent Cinema - it would be easy to let the many Brightonian cinemas of old drift into complete obscurity. One person who is not willing to let this happen is Julian Clapp. With his richly informative and thoughtfully planned out tour, encompassing film houses stretching back more than a century, Julian provides an intriguing experience for both cinema fans and novices. This illuminating walking tour is not to be missed. Julian is an established local tour guide and has extensive knowledge of Brighton, its history and its characters. As well as his ‘Lost Cinemas of Brighton’ Julian currently guides on two other popular tours: The Brighton Story and Brighton Rock Walk. The Brighton Rock walk will take

you back in time to 1930s Brighton. Graham Greene’s thriller, ‘Brighton Rock’ is brought to life on this fact-filled walk visiting locations featured in the Boulting brothers’ classic film. The Brighton Story guided walk is a tour of Brighton’s fascinating old town. Visit famous landmarks, hear about Brighton’s history and culture and explore its hidden past on this unique and illuminating tour. Julian is able to provide personal tours from one person to groups of up to twenty people. He can generally fit in with your time and day requirements, subject to other commitments. All walks are 90 minutes and cost £7 per person, although you should contact Julian on prices for group tours.

Phone: 07941 256148

Competition! Julian has kindly donated two places on his Lost Cinemas tour for two lucky Prestonville Friend readers. Just tell us which famous film made in Brighton and set in the mid-1960s, features fighting between mods and rockers? First name out of the hat wins! email answers by February 18th, only please to: The editor’s decision is final. facebook: ‘prestonvillefriend’

Useful Contacts LOCAL COUNCILLORS Mike Jones Tel: 01273 291149 Email: Amy Kennedy Tel: 01273 296445 Email: Leo Littman Tel: 01273 291152 Email: ANTI-SOCIAL DRIVING AND PARKING For dangerous or obstructive parking, call the local police team on 0845 6070999 or the Parking Enforcement Team on 0845 6035469. Dangerous or anti-social driving can be reported online to Sussex Police follows up all reports. NOISE COMPLAINTS Weekend Noise Patrol will respond to calls about late night noise on Friday and Saturday evenings, 10pm – 3am Tel: 01273 293541 For other noise complaints or issues, phone 01273 294490 / 294407 during office hours or email POLICE Emergency – 999 Non-Emergency – 0845 607 0999 If it worries you, report it. All non-emergency calls are logged and the police use these reports to help direct their work and set local priorities. Local police team: Sergeant Chris Lane Mobile 07771 806909 Email: Next street surgery Jan 7, 2013, 10.30am Preston Park Chalet Cafe. Sergeant Lane says, “I’m interested in hearing from community members, please come along to discuss issues or just for a chat.” Refuse and recycling If you have an issue about refuse or recycling, or need information about bulky waste collection and charges, contact Cityclean by phone 01273 292929 or email cityclean@

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IT’S MY BUSINESS // Tuition Interview: LEO HANLON // Guitar Tutor

We interview Leo Hanlon; an experienced and dedicated guitar and bass player and tutor. Here, he tells us more about his passion for all things guitar.

It’s My Business.

Guitar Hero


We talk with Sarah Bell, Principal. Who do you teach guitar to? When did you start playing guitar? I teach every age group from as young as 4 to people with


grammes for GCSEs, SATs and can be completed independently agiKats I started at around 12provides years old.after-school There was an oldand nylonkids of their own looking to rediscover their hobby. stringed acoustic lying around which I messed around with. entrance exams. and quickly. Maths and English tuition Do you teach guitar full-time? By the age offor 14 children I was playing traditional in Brighton andIrish folk in pubs with Yes this is my livelihood. I teach, play in bands, write and family and We friends occasionally popped over from NorthA reward system is available workandPriorities Hove. havewho a range of programmes recordfor forallartists TV, and play and sessiontargets gigs. ern Ireland. completed, with stamp cards and stickfor pre-school to GCSE students.

Howfor can playing guitar benefit your life? ers, which can be exchanged prizes! The first step to enrolling a student is I mentioned before the benefits music has on my life, which This provides motivation and instils the MagiKats, which opened in Hove last I started out by teaching myself - which I regret! Bad habits take to book a placement session. At this beoff. the same for anyone else. My advice would be to concept that hard workcan pays October, provides a dualIapproach to college a long time to lose. However, went to a music straight meeting we discuss the parents’ and create a clear vision of the effects playing an instrument with success. Students afterlearning, school and didproven my degree at Sussex. student’s before would have on their lives. Whatconcerns challengesand andgoals, opportunicome to weekly workshops where they Positive role models with the student one-on-one What do you love about playing guitar? ties would they want toworking meet? Have a plan. If networking work to their best ability through workpickgoal out areas we feel Playing guitar for me means fun, pride, excitement, my liveliwith other musicians to is your then athat teacher can would also sheets, supported directly by a tutor, Our little-and-often approach has seen benefit from extra work. We discuss hood, networking and socializing. Infinite new challenges and help with that. helping them through our excellent already. We not only priorities and set targets. This meeting opportunities, a means to relieve stress, escape, andsoamuch whole success lot Andskills, what’s advice aboutthe buying guitar? activities and resources. We keep ourlife. work on Maths and English but your helps us to identify materialsa that more. For me music is an essential part of Take your time and be patient. Look around the smaller workshops fun and provide a multisenalso on improving confidence, changwe will bring together to offer an effecWhat enjoy about teaching guitar? shops and snatch up a bargain. Second-hand guitars are sorydo styleyou to learning. ing attitudes to learning and providing tive tailor-made programme. You can There is great satisfaction in watching people progress and fine as long as they’re in good condition. Try them out. Are study revision skills. With yearsissues of with then confident that reaching their goals. Some of my proudest moments areand seeing there tuning it?be Do all volume andevery tone minute knobs will teaching and tutoring between us, we be used productively. Strengthening core skills students get on stage for the first time or laying down a groove work properly? There are other things you will need to offer excellent support make to students, in the studio. sure of,and so talk to your teacher. represent positive role models with a Call us today for more information Students are provided with a mini - 01273 468650 or check out our homework pack each week, to fill in any love of learning. website where gaps and strengthen their core skills. We run specialised revision proyou can see a workshop in action! This homework is set at an easier level Where did you train?

14 14




By Gill Hasson What is Eat Now? Eat Now enables you to order takeaway food, alcohol and other items from local takeaway restaurants using the internet. What are the benefits of using Eat Now? • Instant access to the latest menus from a wide selection of restuarants across Brighton and Hove. No more waiting on the phone listening to engaged signals or being put on hold. • Each restaurant on Eat Now features lots of money saving special offers, many of which are exclusive to our service. These range from pizza deals, Chinese meal set menus to beer and wine deals. Ordering your takeaway on www.eatnow. costs the same or less than ordering by phone. • Takeaway food ordering has never been this easy before: Save favourite orders to your profile. Keep track of those meals you love and reorder them with just a few clicks of the mouse. • Simplicity! No more confusion, ambiguity or mistakes when ordering; clarity of order when emailed through and confirmation of order emailed straight back to you, the customer Anything else we need to know? When you order your takeaway, you have the option to tick the ‘donate £1 to charity’ button. All the money donated goes to the ‘everyone can eatnow’ outreach support work. We meet every Thursday night at the Hove Peace Statue and provide hot food, tea and coffee, sandwiches & soup along with warm clothes & sleeping bags to help homeless people in Brighton & Hove. facebook: ‘prestonvillefriend’

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Prestonville Friend  
Prestonville Friend  

Community magazine from the Prestonville area of Brighton, East Sussex.