Crumbling Churches, 2nd Preview

Richard Vobes, the Bald Explorer, is setting off to investigate the fate of our parish churches. He is in the south of England finding out about the history and uses of the old religious buildings. He also wanted to find out how money is being raise to prevent them from crumbling away and what happens when the buildings are disposed of.

This is a preview of some of the scenes shot so far and some of the fascinating contributors that will be appearing in the episode, hopefully broadcasting on the Community Channel later in 2013.

Julian Humphrys is part of the Battlefields Trust that looks after and promotes the battlefields in Britain.

Farther Godfrey is the reverend at Plumpton Green in East Sussex and a professional brewer, supply his church ales to the area.

Scott Ralph is an historic buildings specialist and advises the church how to dispose of unwanted religious houses.

You can find out more about the Community Channel, run by the Media Trust, at www.CommunityChannel.org.

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Episode Five: A Rural Town

Richard Vobes is the Bald Explorer, dashing about Britain discovering the history of its towns and villages. In this episode he is off to Petworth in the heart of West Sussex, close to Chichester and not too far from London. It is a very rural town renown for the beautiful mansion-house, upon land that once belonged to the Roger de Montgomery and later the de Percy family.

It was the third Earl of Egremont who had a vested interested in the town of Petworth. He supplied the money to build the boys school, which was later destroyed by a stray German bomber during the second World War. It was the Earl who brought water from the near by Rover Rother into the town centre and whose land it was the grim House of Correction was built on for convicted offenders from all over Sussex.

One of the prettiest streets in Sussex can be found in Petworth, complete with old shop fronts and cobbles on the ground and the Bald Explorer reveals that he once lived there.

Back in the 19th century, many of the poor were assisted out of poverty and given the chance of a new life in Canada thanks to the local rector. Also, many do not realise that a special kind of stone, Petworth Marble was mined from this area and made into all sorts of wonderful objects.

Of course, most visitors , if not travelling to see Petworth House, go to hunt around the abundance of antique shops that flank the roads or take refreshment inside the independent tea rooms. And lets not forget the beautifully restored old railway station that is now a fabulous bed and breakfast establishment with genuine Pullman Carriages to stay the night in.