Christopher Lloyd Lecture

Great Dixter, Northiam, Rye

Saturday June 9, 6pm

Lecture £60/dinner £50

The speaker for the 2018 Christopher Lloyd lecture are Keith Wiley, head gardener for more than 25 years at The Garden House in Devon, where since 2004 Keith and his wife Ros have created a dazzling new garden from a bare field: “The perfect showcase for his radical and exciting ideas on planting” called Wildside. The evening is hosted by Great Dixter’s head gardener Fergus Garrett.

Phone 01797 254048 or visit

Shooting Music

Ropetackle Arts Centre, Little High Street, Shoreham-by-Sea

Saturday June 16, 12noon

Tickets £10

Michael Putland took his first pictures at the age of nine before leaving school to work as an assistant to photographers including Time-Life photographer Walter Curtain and legendary motor racing photographer Louis Klemantaski. In 1967, Putland set up his own studio and over the course of his career he has captured some of music’s most iconic performers. In this two-hour session, he will cover composition techniques, and working in the live environment, plus the challenges facing today’s aspiring music photographers.

Phone 01273 464440 or visit

An Audience with Eddie Hall

Pavilion Theatre, Marine Parade, Worthing

Saturday June 16, 7.15pm

Tickets Gold £20 and Platinum £50

Professional strongman Eddie Hall, currently the World’s Strongest Man, is the only man to deadlift 500kg under strongman rules. Tonight, Eddie tells his life story and takes part in a Q&A with the audience. The evening also includes a comedian, an auction, a raffle and a magic act. There’s a chance to have a picture taken with him with a Platinum ticket.

Phone 01903 206206 or visit

Pechakucha Night 20x20

De La Warr Pavilion, Marina, Bexhill-on-Sea

Thursday June 21, 7pm

Tickets £3, £5 and £6

This is an informal evening of presentations responding to the enquiry ‘What is possible?’. It is curated by Always Possible.

Phone 01424 229111 or visit

Melvin Smith Rural Gardening Tools Display

Great Dixter, Northiam, Rye

Saturday and Sunday June 23 and 24, 11.45am-12.15pm and 2.30pm-3pm

Free, donations welcome

Melvin Smith displays his collection of old gardening tools in the Great Barn and gives a talk on Yesterday’s Gardener, exploring the hierarchy, skills and myths of the Victorian gardener.

Phone 01797 254048 or visit

Melvin Smith Rural Gardening Tools Display

Great Dixter, Northiam, Rye

Saturday and Sunday July 14 and 15, 11.45am-12.15pm and 2.30pm-3pm

Free, donations welcome

Melvin Smith displays his collection of old gardening tools in the Great Barn and gives a talk on Wimbles and Swaps, which looks at the techniques in using some of the wide range of Victorian tools for gardeners, ranging from the useful to the absurd.

Phone 01797 254048 or visit

Festival of the Garden: The Culture of Place

Charleston, Firle

Friday and Saturday July 28 and 29

Tickets £12 per event/concs £10

What is it about a place that makes us like it? This question is addressed in a series of talks at Charleston, the home of the artistic Bloomsbury Group. It’s curated by landscape gardener Tom Stuart-Smith, an eight times Chelsea Gold medallist who is known for his work expressing cerebral conception through supremely beautiful execution. Over the two days, there will be eight talks by leading gardeners, designers, ecologists, campaigners and writers who will explore themes of what makes a place interesting and engaging, can the garden, whether ancient or modern, tell a story, and if so what can this narrative mean for us, and how do we go about expressing ourselves through our gardens and outdoor spaces? On the programme is Wild Lands with Charlie Burrell, Landscape and Emotion with architect Kim Wilkie, John Watkins talking on Reviving the Past and Gardens as Living History, The Culture of Gardening with Tom Stuart-Smith, Faded Glories with photographer Rachel Warne, The Magic of Dixter with Fergus Garrett, Gravetye Manor: The Development of an Historic Garden with Tom Coward. Hidden Nature with Alys Fowler, The Garden at Charleston with Peter Owen-Jones, Dr Darren Clarke and Mark Divall, and Poetry in the Walled Garden with Andrew Wincott and Emerald O’Hanrahan. There will also be a plant stall by Pelham Plants in association with The Garden House, cream teas and free demonstrations by local craftspeople on the skills and traditional practices of hedge-laying, bee-keeping and green timber.

Phone 01323 811626 or visit

Dahlia Day

Great Dixter, House & Gardens, Northiam, Rye, and Perch Hill Farm, Willingford Lane, Burwash, Robertsbridge

Wednesday September 12


This is a two-garden dahlia celebration event, joining gardening guru Sarah Raven and the Great Dixter gardeners for a private garden tour and talk in both these late season gardens. Great Dixter and Perch Hill are both gardens full of dahlias, which flower for months and keep going late in the year and yet need minimal TLC. This is a chance to learn how to choose the most beautiful, floweriest, most productive and longest lasting of these spectacular plants in September, when they’re looking their best.

Phone 0345 092 0283 or visit

Bernstein, Hussey and the Chichester Psalms

West Sussex Record Office, 3 Orchard Street, Chichester

Tuesday September 18, 7pm-9pm

Tickets £8, must be booked in advance

As part of the Bernstein In Chichester Festival marking the centenary of the birth of the West Side Story composer Leonard Bernstein, author and critic Nigel Simeone explores the lively exchange of letters between Dean Walter Hussey (pictured above, right) of Chichester Cathedral and Bernstein (pictured above, left) concerning the commission that led to the Chichester Psalms. The editor of The Leonard Bernstein Letters tells the story behind the choral work written for the 1965 Southern Cathedrals Festival and its surprising origins in the music for a Broadway show. Simeone is the author of Leonard Bernstein, West Side Story, which examined the creative process behind the show and its lasting impact and reputation, as well as acclaimed studies of Messiaen and Janacek. The talk will be accompanied by a display of rare and original documents relating to the Chichester Psalms from the West Sussex Record Office’s archive.

Read our feature on the Bernstein In Chichester Festival.

Phone 01243 753602 or visit

A Taste of Autumn with Juliet Sargeant and Sam Matthews

Sussex Prairie Garden, Morlands Farm, Wheatsheaf Road, near Henfield

Thursday October 4, 10.30am-12noon

£29.50/RHS members £23.60, includes talk, drink and garden tasters

Chelsea Gold Medal-winning garden designer Juliet Sargeant (pictured), a TV presenter and judge of Channel 4’s Village of the Year, delivers an easy way to learn more about your garden. She has teamed up with Sam Matthews, former chef to Pavarotti & The Three Tenors, to create a surprising taster menu and talk. Juliet will introduce you to common garden plants that you can eat , while Sam serves up delicious tasters to whet your appetite.

Phone 01273 495902 or visit

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