A pretty purple tree has been planted at Angmering Village Hall in memory of past, present and future members of Angmering Village WI.
The tree forms part of the new garden, being created following the loss of two large Monterey pines in 2016.
Jacqueline Coe, president of Angmering Village WI, said: “The idea came from a programme on television about planting tees in memory of friends.”
Lesley Baker, a qualified tree surgeon who was giving the talk at today’s meeting, was asked to plant the acer, also known as a Japanese maple.
A plaque was unveiled, which reads ‘2018 Donated by Angmering Village WI, formerly Angmering WI, founded 1930’.
Sheila Thomas, one of the oldest members, said the club was formed in 1930 and was named Angmering WI until the end of last year.
She added: “The named was changed to Angmering Village WI to make it ‘a little bit more distinctive’ and to separate it from Angmering Green WI, which meets in the evening, whereas we meet in the afternoon.”
There were previously two large pines on the south side of the village hall. One came down on May 30, 2016, totally blocking The Thatchway. Luckily, nobody was passing by at the time and it missed the Village Hall and the electricity sub-station next to it.
An assessment of the second pine determined it had become unbalanced and the risk of it falling into Station Road in high winds was too great, so it had to be removed.
Jenny Burke, treasurer and trustee of the village hall, said the trees were 200 years old and had to be replaced due to a preservation order.
She added: “We have had a complete redesign, thanks to a £3,000 grant from the Angmering Heritage Trust. Stepping stones have been made from the trunks of the old trees, a copper beech hedge has been planted and a wild garden is being created. There was nothing here before because nothing would grow under the trees.”
The hard-landscaping funded by the trust has also included new disabled access to the small hall.