Flowers and crafts to be enjoyed at festival

St Mary's Church, Sullington
St Mary's Church, Sullington

All are welcome to St Mary’s Church in the hamlet of Sullington near Storrington for this year’s Sullington Flower and Craft Festival.

You will find so much to enjoy at this really busy, happy, community event set to take place from Friday June 24 to Sunday June 26 between 10am and 6pm daily.

So many hours of baking cakes, nurturing seeds, arranging displays, sweeping floors and pouring tea must be a sign of a treat in store.

Refreshments are served all day in the ancient tithe barn where there are plenty of interesting rural craft stalls including plants, pottery, furniture, homemade cakes and conservation.

On Friday June 24, National Cream Tea Day will be celebrated in the beautiful 600 year old tithe barn, reputedly the ‘finest’ timber framed barn in Sussex.

There’s so much going on this year – the church are working in collaboration with Splash! to provide activities for children.

There will be a ‘Play Zone’ for small children with cars, wendy house, giant Jenga and other games and, on Saturday between 12 noon and 4pm, there will be a Lego car race for the older ones.

A huge Lego pit will provide all that is needed for children to build their own Lego racing car. Cars can be timed as they hurtle down the race slope and times recorded in ‘Top Gear’ style.

Naturally, cars can then be modified for improved times and there will be a prize for the winning time of the weekend!

South Downs ewes and lambs will be on show – these native downland, teddy bear-like sheep will be around all weekend with special halter/handling sessions between 1pm and 4pm daily.

There will be daily tours of the church and farmstead at 2pm including a chance to see the progress of repairs to the second barn and the first part of the permanent exhibition on the development of Sullington Manor Farm, nestled in to the north scarp of the South Downs, over the last millennium.

Tickets are now on sale for ‘Songs, Poems and Pints’ at 7.30pm on Saturday evening – folk singing involves the songs that people used to sing and we hope that everyone will really enjoy this informal evening when audience participation is encouraged.

Tickets £10 to include drink and nibbles. Just ring 01903 745754 to reserve your place.

Derek Spencer, Rector, says: “Flowers are some of God’s most beautiful creations and the Bible tells us that ‘Through Him all things were made; not one thing in all creation was made without Him.’ John 1 vs 3.

“Everyone is welcome to this beautiful church, nestled under the South Downs, to experience for yourself the creative skills of a community and amazing colours of the ‘Lord’s language of flowers’.

“It’s a reminder of the colour, vibrancy and life we can all bring to the world through having been created in the image of God,” he added.

“The scope and lovely atmosphere of the event is a testament to the friendliness of the people of Sullington church and what can be achieved when united in a cause.

“The flower festival is the single most important fundraiser in the life of this church which has to give over £30,000 pa to the Diocese. All are very welcome to this happy weekend.”

The whole weekend will be rounded off with Evensong in the church at 6.30pm on Sunday.