About the Project

Belloc, Broadwood and Beyond is a Heritage Lottery Fund project run through Rusper Parochial Church Council. The project researched the life and times of Lucy Broadwood (1858 – 1929), the folk song collector, who is buried in Rusper; and the writer and poet, Hilaire Belloc (1870 – 1953), who lived for most of his life at Kingsland in Shipley.

In 2013 during his sabbatical, the Reverend Nick Flint fulfilled a long cherished ambition to saunter across Sussex, inspired by the walk which inspired Belloc’s The Four Men. Nick wrote “Cautionary Pilgrim” based on his own walk and it was through the interest this generated that he got to know local historian Chris Hare and his wife Ann Feloy who has written a play based on The Four Men which was revived in 2018. Meanwhile family history research established that Nick and Charlotte Broadwood share common ancestry. Charlotte was the wife of the Reverend John Broadwood, the Godfather of the Folk Song Revival whose niece Lucy Broadwood continued his pioneering work into the audio recording age. It was through this shared love of Sussex tradition and of Belloc in particular that Chris and Nick conceived the project, Belloc, Broadwood and Beyond.

Belloc, wrote ‘Sussex songs’ in the folk style. During this project we ran workshops, teaching some of these songs and also some of the songs that Lucy collected on the Sussex/ Hampshire border.

 

Lucy Broadwood

 

Hillaire Belloc

The Four Men

 

 

Lucy Broadwood celebration


To celebrate her life and to mark 91 years since her passing.

On Saturday 22nd August 2020 we gathered together in the grounds of St. Mary Magdalene’s Church at Rusper Church to celebrate Lucy Broadwood and to delight in picnicking together and revelling in some lovely singing and music.

We also unveiled the new information sign about Lucy as we did for Belloc at Shipley.

You can view some photos of the event here

Hilaire Belloc 150th Anniversary Event

Monday 27th July 2020 marked the 150th anniversary of the birth of Hilaire Belloc. No one has written with greater love for the county of Sussex than he and it was right and proper we should celebrate the great man's centenary and a half! An all-weather information sign was 'unveiled' at Shipley .

 

News

‘Beachcomber,’ Ferring’s resident joker

The Man who immortalised Hilaire Belloc. Picture the scene: an English town centre sometime in about 1930. It is a bright summer’s day and there are many people walking in all directions. Suddenly a man in early middle age stops abruptly by a pillar box, causing those behind him to halt in surprise. Greater still is their wonderment when the …
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Belloc, Chesterton and the USA

Boris Jonhson has declared July 4th “our independence day”, when people can return to pubs and restaurants. Leaving aside the advisability of the policy or indeed the character of the prime minister, his his light-hearted catchphrase does remind us how our fortunes are connected, root and branch with those of the USA, and have been so for at least one …
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Belloc the Ribald Believer

As mentioned in my last post, many of Hilaire Belloc’s intellectual left-wing friends could never understand how such an educated man as Belloc could believe in the teachings of the Catholic church, and moreover, believe in them in such a naive and childlike way. On one occasion an exasperated acquatenance demanded of Belloc, “How can you possibly believe the Jesuits …
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Belloc and the debate about empire, racism and inequality

What follows is controversial. I do not say it is true, only that it might be true; and true or not, it might be worth pondering on. The doings of recent weeks, both here and in the US, made me wonder what Belloc’s response might have been to the whole debate about empire, racism and inequality. He is not here …
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How was it for you?

We asked people who joined the project what they enjoyed most, what they learned and what they would like to see us do next – here are some of the thoughts and comments we received (thanks to John Bull for being our interviewer) Video produced by Chris Evans …
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George Dusart, John Broadwood and the Worthing connection.

Not many of the houses that stood in Worthing High Street in the 1840’s still stand today, indeed not many of the houses that stood there in the 1940’s survive until our own times. All the more remarkable then that the home of George Dusart ‘professor of music’ and organist at the Chapel of Ease (later St. Paul’s) is one …
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Bob Copper’s Sussex

Bob Copper was a lovely man and would freely give of his time and knowledge. I had many happy afternoons talking to him in his cottage at Peacehaven in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s. Since the coronavirus lockdown we have all been experiencing a quieter and less hectic way of life. Where once we heard traffic and planes overhead, …
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The Coronavirus and Belloc & Broadwood

These are worrying times for us all, although it is good to remember that the risk of this virus to most people (even older people) is comparatively small, however, there are other, less reported consequences. Global greenhouse gas emissions are falling dramatically and the economic system, that only a few weeks ago was looking impregnable, now seems very fragile. So …
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A strange Belloc experience

In 1985 A.N.Wilson published his biography of Hilaire Belloc. As part of his research he visited Julian Jebb (Belloc’s grandson) who was then living at Belloc’s old home, Kingsland. Wilson arrived with a BBC camera crew. Jebb allowed them full access to the house, including Belloc’s private chapel: The camera crew came into the house. I felt awkward about their …
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Elections in Belloc’s time

Many commentators thought our recent, 2019, general election was one of the most aggressive and intolerant ever. Our first stop is 1910 and the January election of that year. Belloc’s biographer, Robert Spaight takes up the story:- ” Belloc and his wife drove around in an open carriage. Some threw mud at them and others cheered. Even the children of …
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