About the Queen Elizabeth II Sports Field
Fairwarp Queen Elizabeth II Field is the most attractive village recreational facility in the whole of Sussex, possibly in the whole of England, being surrounded by forest, fields and nature.
When the QEII field has not been booked it is available to villagers all year round for personal use, be it a picnic or a game of stoolball.
The QEII Field is available for hire for private recreational and sporting activities. For example, children’s parties (including a nature walk through the forest), fundraising events by local charities, family camping, as well as more structured groups eg Tai Chi, yoga etc. The village sports teams, Fairwarp under 8s football and Fairwarp Stoolball Club use the QEII Field as their home ground.
To hire the field contact Russell on 01825 713531 for more information.
In July 1908, Mr Ventura Paul Misa, the then owner of the Oldlands Estate, of which the Sports field was once part, offered the field to Fairwarp Cricket Club to play cricket on. It was also used by the Oldlands Rifle Club. The estate was subsequently sold to Sir Frederick Eckstein in 1920 and on his death in 1930, Sir Bernard Eckstein became the owner.
Misa and then Eckstein were responsible for supporting the then Ashdown Forest Temperance Band which became the kernel of the Fairwarp Brass Band and subsequently became known as the Fairwarp Silver Band. This band was in existence until 1978 when it was wound up.
The village’s original cricket pitch was on the forest at Duddleswell and transferred to the current Sports Field prior to 1952. Their cricket pavilion, which had been obtained second hand for the site in Duddleswell, was moved piece by piece to its current location, a sign in the pavilion states it was erected by the villagers of Fairwarp to celebrate the Queen’s coronation. The cricket team was lost to the village before the turn of the century. Happily there seems to be a ground swell of support for a reforming of a team, if facilities as required by legislation are available for a team, to once more play at the Sports Field.
There is evidence of Fairwarp School having a girls’ stoolball team as early as 1910 and Fairwarp fielded a stoolball team, ladies and mixed, until well into the late 20th century. Interest is being shown by a number of parties in supporting the revival of a stoolball team, again if facilities which meet current legislative requirements can be provided.
Fairwarp FC was founded in 1923 and has survived through to the current day. The club is in breach of FA rules in so far as the facilities available. They may be forced to leave Fairwarp if they cannot comply with requirements. With over 50% of the teams still able to boast of a close link with the village it would be a sad end to yet another village activity.
The Sports Field changed hands after Sir Bernard Eckstein’s death, first to William Hull and then to Ruth George, Mrs R A Horn or Harn.
Fairwarp bought the field in 1978 and it is managed by Trustees on behalf of the village. In 2012, Fairwarp Sports Field became a Queen Elizabeth II Field in celebration of the Queen’s Jubilee.
Fairwarp Sports Field - a potted history
FAIRWARP QUEEN ELIZABETH II SPORTS FIELD
Registered charity No 1140561
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