Chanctonbury Probus Club
Chanctonbury Probus Club

2019/20 JOURNAL compiled by Ian Gibson

We are trying something different this year. In the past, the journal was written and edited in a rush at the end of the Probus year. Much of the information was many months old. This year, we have decided that we would build up the journal during the course of the year and update it progressively on the website. We will assess it at the end of the year and, depending on views from members, will continue with the new format or revert to doing it as we did in the past.


Regular reports will continue to be produced at the year end, namely:

            Lunch meeting speakers

            Coffee Mornings

            Walks and pub lunches

            Golf (except the report on John Howard’s golfing success which is reported here).

This initial report for 2019/20 covers the period 1st May through to the end of September 2019. Later months will be added during the course of the year.


he 24th AGM of the Chanctonbury Probus Club was held at Bramber on Thursday 2nd May 2019. Simon Powlson formally handed over his Chain of Office to Graham Moss and in doing so, expressed thanks and appreciation for the support he had received from the Management Committee. He then went on to summarise the highlights of his year in office. With the increasing number of Associate Members in the Club, Simon asked that increasing engagement with associates is an area to focus on in the future.

Officers elected for the forthcoming year were as follows: Clive Jones (Vice Chairman), John Keayes (Secretary), John Gilbert (Treasurer) and Ted Hooker (Social Committee Chairman).


It was announced that the Club will be contributing £1,000 towards the 25th Anniversary Dinner in 2020. The cost to members will be the same but the additional sum will be used towards special extras. The Club joining fee and annual subscriptions will remain unchanged.

John Keayes reported that the Club had 40 members, 21 Associates and one Honorary Member, Norman Humble. During the course of 2019 three members, Norman Cooper, Eric Eubank and David Cowley have passed away and their contribution to the affairs of the Club over many years has been very much appreciated.


One new member, Bruce Tompson (shown below) was welcomed into the Club in .


hanctonbury Probus golfers celebrated a double win at the annual inter-Probus clubs’ golf tournament held at the Ifield golf course on Monday 20th May. Originally held just as an individual friendly competition amongst members of Chanctonbury and South Downs Probus groups, this has expanded in the last few years to include a team competition open to all local Probus groups for men and women, including partners. This year 4 teams and a total of 24 individuals competed. Chanctonbury Probus pipped the other teams to regain the team trophy in fine style. The individual trophy was lifted by John Howard (not for the first time). Simon Powlson and Mike Brett made up the winning team. Alan Jeffs supported the team from the rear. Numbers were down this year due to holidays so consideration is being given to moving next year’s event to August when golf courses are quieter and most senior citizens avoid the holiday rush.


n May, 25 Members and Associate members joined Clive Jones on the coach bound for Brighton for the 'Brighton Old, Brighton New' visit to the Royal Pavilion and the British Airways i360 Observation Tower. The Royal Pavilion has a colourful history stretching back over 200 years and was built as the seaside pleasure palace for King George IV. Since then it has served as a civic building, First World War hospital and is now a true icon of Brighton. The exterior of the unusual Indian styled architecture gave way to the even more amazing decor and architecture of the rooms inside which combines Regency grandeur with the visual style of India and China. We then had free time to explore Brighton and/or have a bite to eat before arriving at the i360 for our 'flight' in the afternoon.

This tower, which opened in 2006, is a 162 m tall needle structure with an ascending and descending circular viewing platform and is Britain's tallest moving observation tower. Fortunately, despite a forecast of some rain, the weather was kind to us and remained dry, giving everyone the opportunity to study Brighton in a very different way, although on this occasion we were unable to see the Isle of Wight as it was just too misty. Judging by the feedback, an interesting and friendly day was enjoyed by all. 



n Monday 3rd June, Laki Marangos had arranged for club members to participate in an Inter-Probus Croquet Day at the Sussex County Croquet Club in Southwick which is home to the Croquet Academy, the sport’s leading coaching facility and was the host club for the World Golf Croquet championships. The event catered for those wishing to play in a fun competition or receive a free group coaching session followed by fun games. Refreshments were available all day enabling it to be a good day out for all those attending.



n Monday 24th June, 35 members of the Chanctonbury Probus Club, travelled to Portsmouth and boarded the Brittany Ferries vessel, Bretagne, to experience a gourmet evening dinner. After an overnight channel crossing, with onboard entertainment, including a cinema, the vessel berthed by the historic walled city of St Malo, Brittany, France.


Initially, a little cloudy, the afternoon was glorious sunshine. At midday everybody was treated to an excellent 3 course lunch in either, the restaurant Cafe de L’Ouest or Le Lion d’Or.  After a day exploring the city and old town, everybody returned to the Bretagne where we were treated to a pleasant musical evening as we made the return Channel crossing to Portsmouth. A great couple of days was had by all.



hursday 11th July saw 35 wives, partners and associates gather at Tottington Manor near Henfield for a Ladies Lunch organised by Gwen Moss, wife of our Chairman. The far-reaching views, excellent weather and menu choices proved very agreeable enabling everybody to have a very pleasant and enjoyable time.




n 23rd July, 24 members and guests travelled by coach in superb weather to Greenwich to visit the major sites, mainly the Royal Observatory and Cutty Sark. On arrival in Greenwich most people had a comfort stop and coffee break and having been given their Explorer ticket went off independently in every direction to spend the day visiting everything Greenwich has to offer. Having been dropped off by the coach near the Royal Observatory, most people started in that area before walking downhill to Cutty Sark and neighbouring museums. Some members commented, that although they had been to Greenwich before, there were many new things to see which did not take anything away from the day’s enjoyment.


One of the group, Barbara Yarrow was photographed at the wheel of Cutty Sark and commented that she last stood here when she was 7 years old. We won’t say how many years ago that was!


The coach met us near Cutty Sark at the end of a very enjoyable and interesting day saving everybody the long climb back up the hill.



n Tuesday 27th August, some  intrepid members spent the day taking a winch launch in a glider to experience the pleasure of unpowered flight. Under a cloudless sky with the temperature peaking in the low 30’s C, about 30 intrepid aviators took to the skies in 2 seater gliders at Southdown Gliding Club. The day started, after a delay caused by changing wind directions, at about 11am and finished about 6.30pm with a break for a ploughman’s lunch (with strawberries and cream) enjoyed by the 45 Probus members and guests that gathered for either participating in the flying or just watch and chat.

The aviators enjoyed the thrill of a flight in either a modern K21 glider or the traditional T21 with its open cockpit and side by side seating arrangements. Despite further interruptions caused by the heat and changing wind directions some of the flights lasted well beyond the budgeted time (much to the organisers chagrin as his timetable went into a slow meltdown) but much to the pleasure of the pilots who experienced soaring flight. Thanks to all the members of SGC who made this memorable day possible.



 n Tuesday 24th September, four members joine d Rick Borrett at the Gally Hill Shooting Club for a live Shooting Event. Everybody had a great day, only having to dodge the rain. They had a range of guns to fire:-

.22” semi automatic scoped rifle,

.38” special lever action open sighted rifle,

.44” muzzle loading Remington revolver,

The illusion of cowboys shooting holes in silver dollars and Indians on horseback at 50 yards was blown away faster than the bullets out of the guns.



uring the summer, several members took up the invitation from Paul Chislett-Trim to participate in an “Introduction to Short Mat Bowls free taster day”.

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© John Keayes