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1881: Miraculous Escape at The King's Head Hotel

Mid Sussex Times - Wednesday 19 October 1881

Miraculous Escape.

—Shortly after ten o’clock on Friday night a serious accident happened in this town. Lady Cumming (who is staying with Major Sergison, and her daughter, Mrs. Sergison, at Cuckfield Park) was returning, accompanied by Mrs. Montagu Turner, from a visit to Woodcroft (Mr. C. L. Peel’s) in a fly procured from the King's Head Stables. The fly was in charge of Mr. Marshall, of the King’s Head Tap, and Mrs. Turner's footman rode on the box with him. When opposite Mr. Blaber’s it is said the breeching broke, which caused the horse (an old animal) to commence kicking and plunging, and becoming unmanageable; it started off at a furious rate down the hill. In turning the sharp comer it collided with the portal entrance to the King’s Head Hotel.

Kings Mews(formerly The Kings Head) c2015

One of the supports was cracked in the centre, the animal fell on the pavement close to the front door, and the trap was overturned and smashed to pieces. On assistance arriving it was discovered that the driver was lying underneath the horse, apparently dead; he was removed to his home, where it was found he had been badly injured, and had sustained a severe cut on his left arm, and is still confined to his bed.

Lady Cumming was found almost unconscious, and was assisted into the hotel, where, beyond a severe shaking and an abrasion on the face, it was discovered her injuries were trifling. Providentially, Mrs. Turner was unhurt. The footman was more frightened than hurt.


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