West Sussex Unwrapped

A close up image of a woman serving cups of tea at a refreshments stall during a large W.I gathering, in a garden.
Image from Horsted Keynes Women’s Institute, (1954)

Welcome to West Sussex  Unwrapped – the ten-part series that takes you deep into the collections of Screen Archive South East and the West Sussex Record Office

This week we accompany ladies from the Horsted Keynes chapter of the Women’s Institute on their outing to Treemans, a large country house dating back to the Elizabethan era. Here they swing by the ‘My Favourite Jug’ stall and mingle amongst the roses before settling down for an outdoor lecture on Sussex Castles. Then it’s time for tea, sandwiches and cake before joining a stampede for the bustling preserves stall. While future members of the Women’s Institute play on a swing seat, the indomitable ladies shop for all sorts of goodies set out on tables in Treemans’ graceful gardens.

CLICK HERE TO WATCH NO.3 Women’s Institute

The maker of this film, David Mitchell-Gogay, was a long-time member of the Haywards Heath Film Society, and throughout the 1950s and 1960s he made several films featuring events in and around Horsted Keynes. If you would like to watch the rest of this colourful and nostalgic 1954 film about the Women’s Institute visit to Treemans click HERE

Our partner, the West Sussex Record Office has prepared a fascinating package of W.I. related items for you to enjoy. There are scrapbooks from Lavant, Selsey and Petworth WIs – chock full of photographs of baking, jam-making and pancake racing as well as newspaper cuttings. You can see wartime notices on how to preserve fruit and a gardening handbook from Camelsdale WI called Operation Produce. There are also Certificates of Merit awarded to WI members along with the menu for a Silver Jubilee dinner. To see these items click HERE