WHISPERING SMITH: ...and Sussex wunt be druv!

Littlehampton might be difficult to find on Sussex Day
Littlehampton might be difficult to find on Sussex Day

Sussex Day is on June 16, and it is getting closer. Already there are plans afoot to cheer, celebrate and entertain us although you would never guess that from the lack of publicity.

Progress, the colourful two-pager so beloved by the town council, loudly publicised events in Wick but not a mention of our fair town.

I am told they got the information too late for print, well, perhaps they should have publicised it themselves or sought out the likely programme of events as did I.

Let me fill in a few blanks for you: Ellie Boiling, landlady of the High Street’s Dolphin public house, seems to have been on the ball and her line-up for the day includes live music, jiving, clog from the Temporary Measures plus live readings of Sussex poet Hilarie Belloc around the pub’s piano.

A usual cheerful performance of sea shanties by the Duck Pond Sailors – I may have got this wrong but I am given to understand that not one of the group is a seasoned mariner unlike other south coast groups hence ‘duck pond’ – but heck what’s in a name?

At ten o’clock, to start the day off with a bang, there will be a reading of the Sussex Charter by Bognor’s town crier beneath our town clock and later The Edwin James Festival Choir will be celebrating Sussex at St. James’ Church. And so, come on folks let’s get that blue martlet-covered flag proudly flying high over our town and support those who have made and are making such a positive effort to bring some colour and cheer to the town centre on Sussex Day.

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Having said all of the above, Littlehampton could be a difficult place for visitors to find on Sussex Day.

Ride to local byways and you will see that many of the signs are unreadable. Green algae are one problem and overhanging branches another.

It wouldn’t be a major job for one man with a van and a pair of sturdy loppers to clear much of the latter away and, as for the algae, why not get some of the local convicted trouble makers to scrub them down with a long broom and a bucket of soapy water rather than slapping them with a fine that will very likely never be paid?

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I was doing a spot of gorilla gardening last week when suddenly there was a huge flash of lightning directly above me followed by a terrifying clap of thunder before the sky opened and flooded our street.

I had been waiting for some comment from a passer-by but certainly not from one above. I like to think it was approval of my actions rather than a ticking off...

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