Framfield

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Coordinates: 50°58′N 0°08′E / 50.96°N 0.13°E / 50.96; 0.13

Framfield
St Thomas a Becket's Church, Framfield.JPG
St Thomas a Becket's Church
Framfield is located in East Sussex
Framfield
Framfield
 Framfield shown within East Sussex
Area  19.8 km2 (7.6 sq mi) [1]
Population 1,855 (2007) [1]
    - Density  243 /sq mi (94 /km2)
OS grid reference TQ494203
    - London  39 miles (63 km) NNW 
District Wealden
Shire county East Sussex
Region South East
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town UCKFIELD
Postcode district TN22
Dialling code 01825
Police Sussex
Fire East Sussex
Ambulance South East Coast
EU Parliament South East England
UK Parliament Wealden
List of places
UK
England
East Sussex

Framfield is a village and civil parish in the Wealden District of East Sussex, England. The village is located two miles (3 km) east of Uckfield; the settlements of Blackboys, Palehouse and Halland form part of the parish area of 6,700 acres (2,706 ha).

History[edit]

It is likely that Framfield came into existence in the 9th century. Saxon invaders established many settlements along the Weald: the final -field in its name means a clearing in the forest to build such a place. The village is mentioned in the Domesday Book (Framelle); part of the church has Norman stonework.

John Levett died holding the manor of Framfield in 1552.[2] He was succeeded by his son Laurence. By 1590 the manor of Framfield, which had been in the Levett family for centuries, came to Bromley and Branthwaite by letters patent in the reign of Queen Elizabeth I. Within several years it was in the hands of Thomas Sackville, Lord Buckhurst and through marriage ultimately came to John Tufton, 2nd Earl of Thanet. Richard Sackville, 5th Earl of Dorset subsequently purchased the manor of Framfield from the Earls Thanet.[3]

Geography[edit]

Framfield parish lies on the southern part of the Weald. An ancient trackway, probably used by the Saxons during their invasions, passes to the north of the village. Like many other such places, it was involved in the Wealden iron industry: there are many small streams (including Framfield Stream) which are tributaries of the River Ouse (Sussex) on which the mills stood.

The Framfield Show[edit]

Each year in the village, a fête is held involving shows such as dog, vegetable and photography competitions. It is a big event for Framfield. 2009 saw the addition of Terrier racing, which proved a success. Previous years have included other events and attractions, such as a 'Mouse Town'. The Framfield Show is usually held on the second Saturday of August. While overseen by the Framfield and Blackboys Horticultural Society, the Summer Show organisation has now passed to the local Show Committee.

Blackboys[edit]

Blackboys is a local village within the same parish as Framfield. The name is related to the soot deposited in the area by local charcoal burning.

The Blackboys Inn was founded in the 14th century as a coaching establishment. It is possible that the inn was also founded as an overnight lodge for the drivers transporting charcoal from the local woods to Lewes and other towns.

Located near Blackboys is Tickerage Mill, which was once the home of Vivien Leigh. After her death, her ashes were scattered on the mill pond.

Religion[edit]

There is a 13th-century church, dedicated to Thomas Becket,[4] although it probably superseded a wooden Saxon one. In the 9th century it passed from the crown to the Archbishop of Canterbury, assuming its nomination as a peculiar. In 1509 a fire burned all the wooden parts of the church and the tower collapsed in the 17th century. In 1891 the church, including the tower, was restored and the bells were rehung.[5]

There is also a Baptist chapel, and there was a Methodist church at Blackboys. However, this has now been converted into houses.

Education[edit]

Education is provided by two Church of England primary schools: Framfield;[6] and Blackboys.[7]

Leisure and sport[edit]

There are two inns in the parish: the Hare and Hounds in Framfield and the Blackboys Inn in Blackboys.

Blackboys Cricket Club is based at the Blackboys Recreation Ground.

Framfield and Blackboys Football Club is based at Framfield Recreation Ground.

AFC Uckfield's Youth Team is based at Framfield Recreation Ground.

Economy[edit]

The main charcoal business of the parish stopped in the early 19th century when the iron industry moved north to the Midlands with their large deposits of coal.

Today the village has its own Natural Mineral Water business called Pear Tree Well which provides much needed local employment. The water is incredibly pure and contains 17 trace minerals which have known curative properties. The water is drawn from below a thick layer of bedrock deep within the ground.[8]

References[edit]