Rotary Youth Speaks – Downlands Community School  – Thursday 8th February 2018

The area semi-final of “Youth Speaks” was held at Downlands Community School on Thursday 8th February. Schools from Midhurst, Worthing, Lewes, Burgess Hill and Hassocks contested intermediate and senior sections. All the teams were supported by their local Rotary Clubs with Sussex Vale on hand to support the Downlands Community School entries ( an intermediate and a senior team ).

An audience of over 80 in the school’s theatre watched seven teams contest the two sections and they were treated to some well–presented and thoughtful speeches.

The quality of the speeches made the task of the three judges very demanding and when they came to announce the winners they made it clear that they had been hugely impressed by all the entrants. In the end the intermediate section was won by Midhurst Rother College with “ Men should be men.” and the senior section by Downlands Community School with “The trials and tribulations of social media.”  In addition, the prize for the ‘best speaker’ went to Downlands.

The two schools concerned now move on to the Rotary District Final on Saturday 10th March at St Teresa’s School in Dorking.

If you would like to know more about Rotary and how you can help or join us, please get in touch with


International Golf Day – Friday 19th May 2017


This year’s Sussex Vale Rotary International Charity Golf Day came to Mid Sussex Golf Club. There was a large entry with 64 golfers from the UK and Europe taking part in a team competition, with the aim of having a fun day whilst raising funds for IMPACT and other local charities.

The event was a prelude to our Triple Weekend with Sussex Vale hosting Rotarians from Oss, Maasland in The Netherlands and Kluisbergen in Belgium. The day went with a swing(!) and the heavy rain during the last two holes did nothing to dampen anyone’s spirits. A buffet lunch and prize giving rounded off events, with the winning team coming from local golfers, Chris Gray; John Middleton; Ken Maxwell & Mike Mahon.

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As ever these events rely upon the generous sponsorship offered by local, national and international businesses, together with a number of individuals. The friendly support given by all the staff at Mid Sussex Golf Club also contributed to the success of the event, with over £3,000 raised for charity on the day. The Sussex Vale Rotary club would like to thank all the participants and sponsors for helping to make this annual event such a success.

Rotary uses the money raised for both local and international causes, so if you are interested in learning more about Rotary International and how you can help or join us, please contact our club secretary on, he will be pleased to hear from you. You can also check our Facebook page for more information.


Thursday 9th February


Winning Team with Duncan & Sarah      Winning Team with Rotary District Governor

A team from Hurstpierpoint College won through to the Rotary District 1145 Finals of the Rotary Youth Speaks Competition by winning the Northern Senior Semi Finals, held at Bushy Hill School, Guildford on Thursday 9th February.  The team of 3 students, coached by the college Head of English, Sarah Watson-Saunders, and sponsored by The Rotary Club of the Sussex Vale, had to fend off stiff competition from four  Surrey schools. Their subject “Are we moving towards a Big Brother Society” was thought provoking and worrying in equal measures.  The three experienced adjudicators felt the teams overall presentation and attention to detail was first class.

The team now goes through to the District Finals to be held at St Teresa’s School, Effingham on the 18th March and could, if successful, progress to the Regional and eventually the National Finals.

Said Rotary Club President, Duncan Honeyman, “We are so pleased that a team from our area have got this far and the whole club are behind them”  Sarah Watson-Saunders, Head of English at the college said ” I’m so proud of them. They have set a great example to the rest of the students and I’m sure many more will want to take part next year”.


Monday 23rd January 2017



Rotarians and WI members meet to celebrate Burns Night The Sussex Vale Rotary Club held a successful evening celebrating the life and works of Robert Burns at the Mid Sussex Golf Club. Rotarians from the Cuckfield & Lindfield and Burgess Hill Clubs attended the event as guests, together with ladies from Hassocks WI. The evening opened with the traditional Selkirk Grace and followed the usual sequence for a Burns Supper. Despite being stranded at Barcelona Airport earlier in the day, Rod Scott was able to pipe in the haggis, and his excellent piping was supported by Robert Maxwell who delivered the Address to the Haggis. Speeches were given by Chris Gray who did the ‘Immortal Memory’, whilst Bernard O’Rourke delivered the ‘Toast to the Lassies’ and Georgina Pacelli (President of Hassocks WI), responded on the lassies’ behalf.

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Friday 28th October 2016



Our Race and Quiz Night, publicised here last month was a tremendous success. Taking place in the increasingly popular Adastra Hall on the Friday evening, over 80 people attended to enjoy a little flutter, whilst also exercising their brains, and enjoying the fellowship for which Rotary is so famous.

Everyone enjoyed themselves, with lots of excitement during the races and much scratching of heads during the quiz rounds. Thanks are due to all those who sponsored the event and to the super supporters, who between them raised the magnificent sum of over £2200 for charity.

Our Club draws its members from Burgess Hill, Hassocks, Hurstpierpoint and surrounding areas. Rotary uses the money raised for both national and international causes, e.g. giving people access to health and education services, helping in poverty stricken areas and giving support to community groups. If you are reading this, and are interested in learning more about Rotary International and how you can help, please contact our Club Secretary on – he will be pleased to hear from you.