1885: Balcombe villagers desperately try to grow their church spire as high as that of Cuckfield!

According to the 1885 ‘Sussex Place Rhymes and Local Proverbs’, by Frederick Ernest Sawyer, there was an old Sussex proverb:


The people of Balcombe put manure around their church spire to make it grow as high as Cuckfield spire.


As you will see from the photograph they didn’t have much success with this - and I am not sure that it either qualifies either as a rhyme or a proverb’ either!



Caption: St. Mary's church, Balcombe, West Sussex, seen from the south east and taken in 2016. [Public domain WikiMedia Commons]


Source: Sussex place rhymes and local proverbs, by Frederick Ernest Sawyer, 1885


Contributed by Malcolm Davison.