Boxing Day footie and more from 1981

Boxing Day football in Amberley 1981
Boxing Day football in Amberley 1981

Stuffed full with turkey and other Christmas goodies, Boxing Day, for many, is spent vegging out in front of the TV.

But there was none of that laziness in Amberley in 1981. Instead there was a game of football – 15-a-side, no holds barred, rather muddy football.

Henfield firefighters

Henfield firefighters

The game, which was organised by Sarah Lyne, daughter of Amberley headteacher John Lyne, was held on the school playing field and saw mixed sides of men, women, boys and girls battle it out to a 4-4 draw.

Once the game was over and the Christmas excess had been run off, the players trudged to Holly Tree Cottage, where the head and his wife, Betty, promptly filled them up again with apple pies, mince pies and mulled wine.

Over in Storrington, the Brownies were enjoying a Christmas party.

The picture was taken at the Guide Hall, in Browns Lane, after the girls had completed a rather energetic sprint-and-dress-up relay race.

Storrington Brownies in 1981

Storrington Brownies in 1981

Their mums then showed up laden with food for a Christmas tea before Chris Ticehurst surprised the girls with a disco. Chris was helped by his dad, Brian, who was better known for his leadership of the Storrington Priory Boxing Club.

Does anyone recognise any of the people in these photos?

Before breaking up for the Christmas holidays, children at Henfield School received a special gift from youngsters at Court Meadow Day School, in Cuckfield. The two schools had formed a ‘twinning’ bond in 1981 which saw Henfield pupils send harvest festival gifts, including toys, to Court Meadow.

At Christmas, Court Meadow presented Henfield with a paper art Christmastide angel. The picture shows Henfield pupils Justine Huckle, Jacob Goretzki, Alex Barlow and Lucy Francis with the angel.

Henfield School pupils admire their gift from Court Meadow school

Henfield School pupils admire their gift from Court Meadow school

Christmas 1981 was a tough time for the men of Henfield Fire Station. The station was one of several in West Sussex which faced the axe – but that didn’t stop the crew attending their 100th call-out of the year just after Christmas.

Pictured are station officer Eric Wells, Frank Newman, leading fireman Ray Redman, Sid Frost, leading fireman Colin Burgess and brothers Tom and Gerald Golds.

Between them, the men had 92 years’ firefighting experience – Eric leading the way with 18 years while new recruit Sid had two years under his belt.

Their fears of closure were allayed in 1982 and the station is still open today.

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