detail from a photograph of Fulking taken by Herbert Felton FRPS prior to 1936
Hillside was originally a timber bungalow with a metal roof tucked away near the foot of the Downs. It was built in the early 1920s. Access was via a bridleway that runs south from the Poynings Road. It was owned by Charles Tamkin who used it as a summer house, where he and his wife stayed with their grandchildren during the holidays. The children would travel over from Brighton on the Dyke Railway and used ropes to pull their suitcases down to the bungalow. One of Charles Tamkin’s granddaughters became a Land Girl during WWII and worked on Perching Manor Farm for the Harris Family.
Charles planted an orchard (which is still in existence) on the adjoining land and a well in the orchard provided a water supply. However, if the well dried up, Charles took a yoke with two pails attached to it, walked into Fulking and obtained water from one of the village pumps in The Street.
Gilbert Rapley (known locally as Gil) and his wife Mary later occupied the property. In the late 1960s, they moved into the family home, Hut Farm, and Hillside was left standing empty and badly vandalised.
A brick bungalow was later built in its place and sold. It had a wonderful view across the Sussex Weald but, as it stood in the shadow of the north side of the Downs, sunshine was in short supply during the winter months.
As of October 2016, the version of Hillside seen in the colour picture above has been completely demolished and replaced by a building site. What emerges from the construction process may eventually look something like this:
[Copyright © 2014, Anthony R. Brooks. Adapted from Anthony R. Brooks (2008) The Changing Times of Fulking & Edburton. Chichester: RPM Print & Design, pages 140-141. Thanks to Gill Milner for access to the photograph by Herbert Felton.]
Updated: January 6th 2017, corrected January 21st 2017.
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