East Grinstead Society


Video – East Grinstead High Street Jubilee Fountain Opening Ceremony

Interview with Robin Whalley – opening of the High Street water fountain

Click Play below to listen to the interview

Letter to the MSDC CEO on parking charges

Read the letter here Dear Ms Hall, I hope you are very much aware of the uproar that the proposed new parking charges and extension to paid parking hours has caused the citizens of East Grinstead. The East Grinstead Society is a charity which aims to “Highlight issues affecting the ambience of the Town Conservation […]

Special Meeting on Development

Mid Sussex District Council has recently drafted a revised Mid Sussex District Plan and sought comments from residents by 19th December. The Society has decided to hold an additional Special Meeting on 9th December to discuss matters of concern to residents and to give members a chance to comment by the deadline. The discussion will […]


LOCAL AUTHOR BOOK SIGNING, TALK & SONG RECITAL The Funniest Man in London! The Bookshop, 22 High Street East Grinstead on Saturday 24th September from 10am until 5pm. The book signing will be followed by a talk and a rare recital of some songs by H. G. Pélissier in The Bookshop café at 6.30pm.

September 14 meeting change!

Unfortunately our booked speaker, Andy Thomas, can’t make it do we are changing the topic. Instead we will have a fascinating, and insider’s, account of the development of Hong Kong’s airport from Vic Chair Robin Whalley.

July 13 meeting and summer drinks

Fountain cleaned up!

The East Grinstead Society, with the assistance of East Grinstead Meridian Rotary, By the Fountain Restaurant, Arthur Crawfurd (great grandson of the original benefactor), East Grinstead Lions and Portland Vets, has been spearheading the renovation of the Jubilee Fountain in the High Street. Today the first stage, partial cleaning with a specialist super-heated, low-pressure steam […]

A History of the British Seaside in 100 Objects


Hopefully another step forward in the East Grinstead Society’s Jubilee project to restore the High Street drinking fountain! Last night the Town Council’s Amenities and Tourism Committee agreed to move forward in principle with the Society on the project, including taking ownership from the District Council of the fountain. A final decision awaits a Town […]

Wakehurst, Kew and the National Trust – A Talk by Paul Reader

Town Council to Discuss Fountain!

Society members will know that we are working hard on the restoration of the High Street drinking fountain as our key project to mark the Platinum Jubilee for the Town as a whole. This is fitting as the foundation was given to the Town in 1887 to mark the Jubilee of Queen Victoria. We are […]

District Plan Consultation: Our view is ‘Extreme Disappointment’!

We have commented on both the original Draft Plan in November 2019 and subsequent variances the ensuing period to July 2020. Our overall position is one of extreme disappointment at the lack of recognition of the points made in both our submissions. We note that this reflects the Town Council’s position on its comments. We […]

Next Meeting – February 16th

The “Ups and Downs” of being a local representative – A Talk by Councillor Rex Whittaker

2021/22 Meetings Programme

We show below our meetings schedule for the next year. Meetings are FREE to members and £5 for visitors – who are always warmly welcomed. Visitors joining the Society on the night are of course refunded their £5: membership costs £15 a year. We serve coffee and biscuits too which makes our meetings both entertaining […]


The East Grinstead Society had a fantastic return to normal business with its AGM last Thursday with its first face to face meeting since February 2020. The Society met at the Jubilee Centre, which will be its new home from now on for meetings: with a full programme now announced into 2022. Chairman James Baldwin […]

AGM and New Meetings Schedule!

Members are being informed of details of our AGM which will now be on October 14 at the Jubilee Centre. The AGM will also launch our new meetings programme . More details to follow next week!

Pictures of the Plaque!

A Permanent Memorial to Michael Leppard

On September 13 a large group of Society members gathered, with the Town Mayor, for the unveiling a plaque to honour Michael Leppard in the High Street. Our President, Margaret Collins DL, performed the task and a reception was held afterwards to mark the occasion. All agreed it was fitting tribute to a great servant of […]

First Award of Michael Leppard Prize

On Friday East Grinstead Society Chairman James Baldwin was thrilled to present the first awards of the Michael Leppard Prize at Sackville. The Prize was established by the Society as a memorial to Michael as one of its founders and a former Sackville teacher to encourage the study of local history. Sackville really came up […]

The Bulletin Returns

Last year we put the entire stock of the Society Bulletins onto the website – all 122 editions. The Bulletin was the creation of Michael Leppard: he was its editor for all these editions. With his death in 2018, we were afraid the Bulletin would cease and the Town would lose the future treasure trove […]


There has been significant debate on Facebook regarding the temporary structures around the Tasting Rooms and By the Fountain to encourage al fresco dining. The East Grinstead Society is passionate about protecting our beautiful High Street but equally recognises it needs to be a living space! So, on balance we are supportive about the initiative […]

February Update

It’s been a long time since we posted, reflecting the continuing Lockdown. Rest assured: the Society Committee is active on a number of fronts. We are continuing to provide regular comments to the Town Council on planning applications and we have some exciting heritage projects lined up for when more normal life resumes. Sadly, we […]

AGM Report: Into 2021

We had a virtual AGM in October due to Covid. James Baldwin was re-elected as Chairman. This is a summarised version of his Chairman’s report. So, what a year! We made a great start with an increased emphasis on social media and publicising the Society, resulting in increased numbers at our first two meetings. And […]

East Grinstead Society Update

Although we are still unable to offer our usual programme of exciting meetings, we have been working hard in our other role as guardians of the Town’s heritage. This has comprised regular comments to planning applications going to the Town Council and submissions to the District Council on major strategic planning issues. Our most recent […]

Site Allocations and Development Plan Document (DPD) – July 2020 Response by The East Grinstead Society

We commented on the Draft of this plan in November 2019 and regret that so little has been varied in the ensuing period to July 2020. As before our comments relate to both the general context of East Grinstead and three specific sites in the DPD, SA18, SA19, and SA20. We end with some general […]

Michael Leppard MA – A Tribute

A Tribute to the Town’s premier Historian and Founder Member of the East Grinstead Society by James Baldwin – Chairman of The East Grinstead Society Michael Leppard, who passed away on September 10th 2019, was without doubt the foremost and most respected authority of his time on the history of East Grinstead and the surrounding […]

Draft Site Allocations Development Plan Document (DPD) – September 2019

This is the Society submission to MSDC. The DPD is of fundamental importance to the Town’s future and we will want to continue to have a big say! The next consultation is expected in the summer. Response by The East Grinstead Society Our reply relates to both the general situation in East Grinstead  and the […]

East Grinstead Society comments on the draft EG Neighbourhood Plan

The East Grinstead Society responded in the following in letters dated 25 September 2013.

Neighbourhood Plan

In autumn 2011 the town council began consulting residents on what they felt were priorities for the development of a Neighbourhood Plan for East Grinstead. The society’s response was to the effect that the town council’s aim for East Grinstead should be to keep its market town ‘feel’ as a place where people like to […]