Felpham

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Felpham
FelphamA259.jpg
The A259/B2132 junction
Felpham is located in West Sussex
Felpham
Felpham
 Felpham shown within West Sussex
Area  4.26 km2 (1.64 sq mi) [1]
Population 9,611 [1] 2001 Census
   – density  2,255/km2 (5,840/sq mi)
OS grid reference SZ949998
   – London  54 miles (87 km) NNE 
Civil parish Felpham
District Arun
Shire county West Sussex
Region South East
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town BOGNOR REGIS
Postcode district PO22
Dialling code 01243
Police Sussex
Fire West Sussex
Ambulance South East Coast
EU Parliament South East England
UK Parliament Bognor Regis and Littlehampton
Website http://www.felphampc.gov.uk/
List of places
UK
England
West Sussex

Coordinates: 50°47′26″N 0°39′14″W / 50.79046°N 0.65394°W / 50.79046; -0.65394

Felpham (sometimes pronounced locally as Felf-fm) is a village and civil parish in the Arun District of West Sussex, England. Although sometimes considered part of the greater Bognor Regis habitation it is a village and civil parish in its own right, having an area of 4.26 km² with a population of 9611 people and still growing (2001 census).

The A259 coastal road passes through the village, this road runs along the south coast from Havant in Hampshire to Folkestone in Kent.

The 12th-century Anglican parish church is dedicated to the Virgin Mary.[2] There is also a Methodist church close to the three-way junction of Felpham Way, Flansham Lane and Middleton Road to the east of the village.

History[edit]

Felpham was in existence long before Bognor Regis, having been mentioned in the Domesday Book of the 11th Century.

William Blake, introduced to the village by his friend William Hayley, lived in Felpham for three years, writing his epic poem Milton in Felpham. The poem contains his famous words about "England's green and pleasant land", today known as the anthem "Jerusalem", which were inspired by Blake's "evident pleasure" in the Felpham countryside.[3] The cottage where he lived is depicted in the illustrations for the poem. It lies within the original village, close to "The Fox" public house. Of the village he wrote;

Away to sweet Felpham for heaven is there:
The Ladder of Angels descends through the air
On the turrett its spiral does softly descend
Through the village it winds, at my cot it does end.

The "turrett" in the verse is Hayley's house, east of the church, which he built around 1800. It was in Felpham that Blake had his altercation with the drunken soldier John Scofield, who was trespassing in his garden.[2] This led to Blake's trial for sedition because of Scofield's allegation that he had cursed the king. Blake has a road named after him, Blakes Road, the road on which his former residence is sited, and a memorial window dedicated to him in St Mary's Church.

Blake had been invited to Felpham by local resident William Hayley, also a noted writer. Hayley was so famous in his day that he was offered the position of poet laureate in 1790, but turned it down.

A 1947 Ordnance Survey map, showing Bognor Regis with Felpham to the right

The village has both a village hall, called the Memorial Hall, built in remembrance to the fallen from World War I and a church community hall called St Mary's Centre.

Great expansion of the village took place between 1930 and 1960 when three (nominally) gated housing estates were developed and again in the 1970s when two (public) housing developments took place on farmland between Felpham and its neighbouring village of Middleton-on-Sea. In December 2006 planning permission was granted for further development, this time on farmland to the north.[4]

Local facilities[edit]

Felpham has three primary schools, Bishop Tufnell CE Infant and Bishop Tufnell CE Junior Schools (both Church of England Aided Schools) and Downview Primary (Infant and Junior) School. A third Infant and Junior school is planned to be added as part of the current housing plans.

Felpham Community College, the main school in the area, operates its own youth wing. It is situated next door to the Arun Leisure Centre which has extensive playing fields.

Felpham has King George's Field in memorial to King George V.

Sport and leisure[edit]

The cottage in Felpham where William Blake lived from 1800 till 1803.

Felpham Colts Football Club (including mixed teams, boys teams and girls teams) is the largest youth football club in West Sussex. The club is completely independent and not attached to any of the large local senior football teams. It has 26 teams competing in local football leagues and has been in existence since 1973. The club's teams can be found training at King George V Field on Saturday mornings and playing at Shrubbs Field in nearby Middleton-on-Sea and King George V Field on Sundays.

Predators Youth and Blue FC. Predators started in 1994 with only a few players and has grown to 14 youth teams a women's team and a successful adults team. Predators is one largest youth and adults football clubs in west sussex and they play and train within the Bognor Regis area.

The Felpham & Middleton Country Dance Club is one of the oldest extant English Country Dance clubs in England.

Felpham Church hall was also the starting point for the 2008 Scout Overland Hike.

Arun Gymnastics Club which caters for all ages and abilities. Gymnasts have competed and had success at local, regional and national level that's to its highly trained coaches.

Predators Youth Green FC is a small youth football club whose aim to offer football for everyone, regardless of ability. Based in Felpham, they train at Larks field, the Arun Leisure Centre or Bishop Tufnell school, and play their matches at King Georges or Larksfield.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "2001 Census: West Sussex – Population by Parish". West Sussex County Council. Retrieved 26 March 2009. 
  2. ^ a b Nairn, Ian; Pevsner, Nikolaus (1965). The Buildings of England: Sussex. Harmondsworth: Penguin Books. p. 219. ISBN 0-14-071028-0. 
  3. ^ Amanda Gilroy , Green and Pleasant Land: English Culture and the Romantic Countryside, Peeters Publishers, 2004, p.66
  4. ^ Felpham (2006) Development plans

External links[edit]