Number 1. 1982
The seed from which this journal sprang was planted 18 months ago when we decided to try to run a local history evening class in Ringmer. Having advertised our intent and received a number of expressions of interest, we waited in some trepidation to see how many people could come to the first class (and return to the second). We were gratified to discover that Ringmer was full of people interested in local history – so many turned up that over twenty had to be apologetically turned away for lack of space. Happily, most of those disappointed the first time round returned for the autumn repeat of the classes.
It was due to the enthusiasm of those who attended the classes that the Ringmer History Study Group was born – and now has over a hundred members. The aims of this journal reflect those of the Study Group – to entertain, to collect and record information about all aspects of the history of our area, and to stimulate those interested to undertake research projects of their own (and publish their findings).We hope that almost everyone will find something of interest in the topics covered in this, our first issue. They span nearly a millennium, and include subjects as diverse as hedgerow dating, medieval potters and Edwardian postcards.
A slight handicap to this endeavour is that our enthusiasm far exceeds our experience. Neither of the editors has previously been involved in an undertaking of this nature, and the majority of our authors have not previously ventured into print. Nevertherless, we hope the outcome demonstrates that in most respects enthusiasm is the crucial quality required. In the one area where experience is undoubtedly essential we have been extremely fortunate. The entire issue has been typed by Sally Salisbury and the production undertaken by Jean Davonport and her colleagues at the Sussex Federation of Local History Societies. We are greatly indebted to both of them – without their efforts it would never have happened.
John Kay John Bleach