The Old School, Church St, Cuckfield, Haywards Heath, West Sussex RH17 5JZ
A PROVISIONAL committee met in January 1953 to discuss setting up a local art club with a prospective 30 members. The club was established the following month when a general meeting was held at the County Modern Secondary School at Scrase Bridge.
The first club chairman, Miss Julia Traill, described in an early 'Middy' report as "vivacious" was most energetic in getting the club off to a flying start. Her enthusiasm was matched by our first secretary, Frank James, who held the post for 21 years.
Among our other founder members was the Reverend H. F. C. Kempe MC, vicar of Cuckfield, described by the 'Middy' as "The well known parson - painter". James Forsyth was another early member.The club was soon in full swing with weekly Thursday meetings, outdoor sketching trips, and social participation in local events. In 1954 the club held its first Annual Summer Exhibition at King Edward Hall, Lindfield and continues to do so.
Since then it has always participated in the Mid Sussex Arts Festival with a display at Clair Hall, also putting on displays there in alternate months. Some members have also taken part in the Burgess Hill Open Studios - opening their homes and studios to the public. In 1991 the club started its popular pre-Christmas sale at King Edward Hall.
Frank James presented the club with a trophy in 1998, to be presented annually for the best painting in the Summer Exhibition. This is voted by visiting members of the public.
In 1999 the Thursday evening meetings moved to The Old School, Cuckfield.
If there is anything artistic going on in Mid Sussex you can usually find Adventurers about, acting in the spirit of its founding members
In 1999 the Thursday evening meetings moved to The Old School, Cuckfield. The club currently has circa 120 members and is able to welcome and accommodate many more members.