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This page is an ongoing 'Work in Progress'.  As documents, news items and anecdotes, containing anything of interest regarding the history of Hadlow Down, are found, they will be added.  If you know of anything that may be of historical interest to other members of our community please let us know so that we can add it to the page.

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Click on the picture to read or download Chris's amusing anecdote

Published: 10/01/2011

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A strange place to find an unusual business, especially one that got the royal seal of approval. The Keston Foreign Bird Farm, proclaimed in 1927 as ‘the only farm of its kind in the world’, was appointed agriculturalists to King George V and the Duke of Bedford. The exotic birds of the world flourished in this corner of Sussex and the business with them: as Southern Aviaries it was put on the market as a going concern in 1985. ln the middle of the 19th century Hadlow Down got its school, presided over by a one-legged schoolmaster indelicately known as Cripple Wood by his pupils. It also got its church. It was here that a farmer called Bridger wanted to have his son christened Beelzebub. The parson refused and Mr Bridger settled for Augustus. The Spotted Cow and The Stonemason’s Arms, together with a little ale house in Tinker’s Lane famous for its home brew, have long gone. But The New lnn survives as the village’s hostelry it replaced the old pub on the site which was burned down. some said deliberately in the 18805 when the bailiffs were about to move in and take away belongings. Passing through the village on the main road it does not seem to be a place of much antiquity It is the older houses to the north and south of the village ridge which bear testament to a prosperous community during the days of the Sussex iron industry Something even earlier is the acre of land near Shepherds Hill surrounded by a 20ft wide pentagonal moat, now much silted up. It was not the site of a castle or fort: the theory is that it was once a secure place for the women and stock against attacks from wolves when the menfolk were away hunting. Its age is indeterminate. but The Moat was scheduled as an ancient monument in 1968.

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Historical Events
Date of Event Event  
c.250 Romano British iron working bloomeries appear in Hadlow Down

Hadlow Down known as Hadleg. Probably from 'woodland clearing where heather grows'. OE hǣth + lēah.

1535 Hadlow Down Estate of 3,700 acres established.  Subject of a family settlement (Lord Abergavenny)
1543 The first cannon in Sussex was cast at Hugget's Farm Furnace
c. 1600 Stocklands Farmhouse built
1819 Dissenters House registered for worship
1823 Calvanist Baptist Chapel registered for worship
1824 First Providence Chapel built on present site by Henry Smith, a builder and Wesleyan who owned 'Hyders', it was the only place of worship in Hadlow Down prior to the consecration of the first St Mark's in 1836. 
1835  St. Mark's Church built
1836 Consecration of the first St. Mark's church.
1837 21st. June An Order in Council provided for a consolidated chapelry, taken from the parishes of Mayfield and Buxted, to be assigned to St. Mark's Chapel.  There was no organ in the original St. Mark's and the musical accompaniment at services was provided by a Mr Jack Wren of Blackboys on a bass viol, his son played the bassoon and a Mr. Walter Bean the clarionet.
1838 St. Mark's School opened
1849 Larger non-conformist Providence Chapel built on present site.
1870 Mark Antony Lower MA, includes a description of Hadlow Down in A Compendious History of Sussex.
See extract
1882 Entry for Hadlow Down in Kelly's Directory of Sussex
See extract
1890 December
Original New Inn burnt down.  it was believed to be arson as the Bailiffs were in at the time.  Allegedly, the Bailiff said that it was the first time that he had been burnt out of a place, only having previously being chased out by dogs, geese, a bull and a swarm of bees.
29th. September
The first ever meeting of the Hadlow Down Parish Council took place on this day
3rd. October
The first Clerk to Hadlow Down Parish Council was appointed.  Mr. A E Smith served until the 2nd. April 1946
25th. October 1913 The present St Mark's church consecreted. The Architect was George Fellowes-Prynne.  The 'Sentence of Consecration' stated that the rebuilding was "at the entire expense in all things of Charles Lang Huggins, Esquire, of Hadlow Grange". 
1923 The Pied Pipers of Hadlow Down formed "to entertain and interest the village." and "to obtain money for objects to be decided upon from time to time."
1927 Entry regarding Hadlow Down in The Sussex Highlands published by the Homeland Association Ltd
See extract
6th. September
Spitfire of Pilot Officer William 'Scotty' Gordon shot down over Hadlow Down
See article from British Archaeology, Issue 75, March 2004
1947 Hadlow Down Estate of 3,700 acres sold as one piece by the Marquess of Abergavenny (Lord Nevill of Eridge Park)
'Hadlow Down Estate' broken up and sold off in 52 lots at auction
1966 The first Tinkers Park Traction Engine Rally
1971 Great Bush Railway founded

Scullwood landfill site starts accepting waste.
See full timeline

1982 Hadlow Down Variety Club started
1990 Scullwood finally stops accepting all waste.
See full timeline
2008 Hadlow Down Cricket Club merged with Moulsecoomb Wanderers
2009 St. Mark's School extended & receives outstanding insspection report from OFSTED
2009 Hadlow Down Short Mat Bowls Club re-formed
2014 Playing Field Committee receive a grant of £34,000 to improve the land


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