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  • Acclaimed trail returns for the sixth year with over 800 glowing lanterns
  • More than 10 artists are creating magical installations for the trail
  • For the first time a unique atmospheric soundscape will take visitors on a journey through the winter landscape 
  • Wakehurst is home to the UK’s tallest living Christmas tree, decorated with 1,800 lights

As the winter evenings draw in, Glow Wild returns, with hundreds of glowing lanterns, fire torches, soundscapes and projections covering Wakehurst’s unique and picturesque landscape. The must-see winter event is set to be a showstopper with the UK’s tallest Christmas tree at the heart of the trail and an 8ft moon lantern towering above the Black Pond surrounded by a galaxy of stars.

More than 10 artists have created installations that can be found along the magical trail, including willow tunnels with dancing shadows by renowned sculptor Tom Hare. New this year, a bespoke atmospheric soundscape, created by Brighton based artists Ithaca, will guide visitors along their journey through the wintry landscape.

This year’s trail has been inspired by over 500 acres of botanic collections and explores the resilience of trees. Visitors can wind their way through a newly designed winter treescape, spot seed-shaped lanterns and marvel at the mesmerising projection on the Mansion created by artist and producer Jony Easterby.

Glow Wild’s creative lead, Iain Parkinson says: “Glow Wild is now a must-see event in the region, and the Wakehurst team have been busy behind the scenes to make it more exciting than ever – it takes over 600 hours of staff and volunteer time to make over 800 lanterns by hand, and we also invite local schools to get involved. I hope in its sixth year, Glow Wild will continue to delight visitors with new artists, a festive atmosphere and the beauty of Wakehurst after dark.”

Ticket information:

Booking is essential

  • Adult: £15
  • Child (Ages 4-16): £9
  • Kew and Wakehurst Member Adult: £13
  • Kew and Wakehurst Member Family: £42
  • Free for under 4s and carers
  • Carparking is included in the price

More information:

Pupils and staff at Handcross Park are celebrating after winning the PREP SCHOOL OF THE YEAR Award at a glittering awards ceremony in central London last night. Praised by judges for their all-round offering and focus on the child, including their excellent leadership training for all pupils.

Handcross Park beat stiff competition from entrants from across the UK.

Richard Brown Headmaster of Handcross Park said

“Today I feel an incredibly proud Headmaster. We are thrilled to have received this award and we are delighted with the glowing feedback we received from the judges. This accolade reflects the hard work and dedication of both our brilliant staff and our fabulous pupils. We are delighted that our continual commitment to ensure we provide the very best educational experience there is to offer has been recognised. We look forward now to sharing this success with the whole school community”

The awards ask to see evidence of success stories that feature both individuals and innovative practice, for a judging panel that is made up of heads, governors, parents and representatives of membership associations from across the Independent sector.

David Moncrieff, who runs the awards said

“Following the huge success of the inaugural competition last year, which saw more than 250 school nominations entered, we are thrilled to have surpassed that figure for Independent Schools of the Year 2019. The awards were once again designed with the pupil experience at their heart and to provide schools with a platform to showcase their stories of innovation and success. The judges had a tough job on their hands picking the winners from the shortlisted entries, but the schools we have seen tonight (7th Oct) were hugely deserving.”

If you’d like to come and discover for yourself why we were named PREP SCHOOL OF THE YEAR, please contact Lisa Taylor on 01444 400 526 or [email protected]

Cornerways Fostering has come up with some answers to dispel common myths!

Fostering Myth 1: I’d love to foster but I can’t afford to
You do not have to be well off to foster children. Fostering is an amazing thing to do for young people, but it is not charity. As an approved foster carer you will be paid a fostering allowance, which covers the extra household and general costs of having a young person living with you, any special expenses involved in their care and rewards your work as a professional foster carer.

Fostering Myth 2: I’d love to foster but I’m too old (or too young)
If you’ve got enough energy to foster lively children, then you are not too old to foster! Legally there are no upper age limits on fostering, and many people come to fostering a little later in life, after their children have left home for example. On the other hand, if you’re under 30 but can demonstrate you have the experience, commitment and dedication to foster young people then you’re not too young to foster!

Fostering Myth 3: I’d love to foster but I don’t own my own home
Foster carers do not need to own their own home. Whether you have a mortgage, or are a private or council tenant makes no difference to your ability to give a young person a safe, secure and loving place to call home.

Fostering Myth 4: I’d love to foster but I’m single or gay or male
You don’t have to be married to foster. You don’t even have to be part of a couple! You may be male or female, gay, heterosexual, bisexual or asexual. It’s not your couple status, gender or sexuality that is important but your ability to meet a young person’s needs.

Fostering Myth 5: I’d love to foster but I’m not a parent
You don’t need to have had your own children to foster. You may have gained experience through caring for your own children, through caring for young people in your extended family or friend’s network, or through working with young people as part of your job.

Fostering Myth 6: I’d love to foster but I don’t want to give up work
Depending on your circumstances you can sometimes foster and continue to work. Many people manage to successfully combine a job with their responsibilities as a foster carer, and if this is what you want to do you should not let it prevent you from applying to foster.

Fostering Myth 7: I would love to foster but I can’t do it all the time
Fostering can be respite care for children, either to cover a holiday period for the main carer or regular weekend/overnight respite. You can also help a vulnerable parent to learn to parent their young baby (parent and baby placed together in the foster home) and these are usually short placements for assessment of the parenting skills.

For more detailed information, click here or call 01293 826830.

Burgess Hill Girls hosted a seminar by leading education expert Mungo Dunnett on the skills that will best prepare teenagers to be successful in the future workplace. Top of his list was the ability to solve complex problems.

Parent seminars are a regular event at Burgess Hill Girls, providing the means to keep parents, staff and pupils informed of the latest developments in education and society.

The first seminar of the year, ‘Employability, Success and Happiness: the characteristics of success for 22 – 24 year olds in the workplace’, was presented by education expert Mungo Dunnett at Burgess Hill Girls on Thursday 12th September.

During the seminar Mungo revealed the job market is becoming increasingly fluid and employers are changing their recruitment criteria. Academic results still have enormous value, but of greater importance are graduates with excellent people skills, creativity and the ability to solve complex problems. These were three of the top ten skills Mungo advised teenagers to focus on at school to secure a top graduate position.

In order of priority the top ten skills were:

  1. Complex Problem Solving
  2. Critical Thinking
  3. Creativity
  4. People Management
  5. Coordinating with Others
  6. Emotional Intelligence
  7. Judgement and Decision Making
  8. Service Orientation
  9. Negotiation
  10. Cognitive Flexibility

Head Liz Laybourn commented:

“We fully support Mungo’s emphasis on cognitive and people skills. We must provide our students with all the skills they need to succeed in the world of work beyond university. Our innovative BOLD programme in the Sixth Form is a perfect example of how we achieve this. We also believe in starting early, providing a strong foundation from the age of five in our Junior School, so that pupils are well on their way to mastering these skills by the time they leave us at eighteen.”

Photo reproduced with full permission

Photo: Standing: Nickey Price – Operations Manager JSE, Carolyn Steer – Business Development Manager JSE

On bench: Hannah Romaine, Christopher Moore – Head of Freemasons in Sussex, Molly Humphreys

Children who have lost a parent or loved one will receive help and support, thanks to a £15,000 grant from Sussex Freemasons to Jigsaw (South East). The funding – paid over three years – will help the charity continue its work supporting the one in 20 bereaved children and young people in the county, who by the age of 16 will have experienced the death of one or both of their parents.

More than 40,000 children across the UK lose a parent each year, which works out at 112 every single day. In West Sussex alone, an estimated 450 children a year have at least one of their parents die. The East Grinstead-based charity, Jigsaw (South East), which operates across Surrey and parts of West Sussex, offers a bereavement support service. Their Grief Project, delivers a six-week support group for families. Their Preparing for Loss Project provides one-to-one support for children and young people when a loved one is terminally ill, at the time of the bereavement and in the days and months following the death.

The grant from Sussex Freemasons comes through the Masonic Charitable Foundation, which is funded by Freemasons, their families and friends from across England and Wales.

Carolyn Steer, Business Development Manager at Jigsaw (South East) said:

“We’re most grateful to Sussex Freemasons for their generous grant. We’re a small charity and are reliant on fundraising, donations and grants. These ensure we continue to deliver vital services to help children and young people during a devastating and vulnerable period in their lives.”

Christopher Moore, Head of Freemasons in Sussex said:

“An important part of what we do as Sussex Freemasons is supporting our Sussex communities. We’re very pleased to be able to help Jigsaw (South East), who do such an outstanding job supporting some of the youngest and most vulnerable members of our community when they need it most. Losing a parent is a deeply traumatic experience for a child and Jigsaw is there to help them cope.”

We often have a problem, a problem with head lice, so when I was offered a new anti head louse serum to try out I was very keen. I have tried most of the other ones which you can buy in chemists and I thought I knew which one was the best, but then it failed to kill all the live lice, twice in a row, even though I left it on for longer than the suggested time and really smothered it on too, which left  me really frustrated, and someone else still a bit itchy.

It didn’t take long for an opportunity to try out the serum to crop up. NitNOT has a precision nozzle so you can direct it onto the scalp nice and easily and it is quite liquid so you can just squirt a load on and then smooth it all out. It isn’t even that drippy to use, although you do need to put a towel around the person’s shoulders. It doesn’t smell of anything which makes a nice change, and as it is pure mineral oil I wasn’t worried about it stinging the scalp. You leave it on for a couple of hours (put a movie on) and then use washing up liquid first to work up a good lather, rinse well and then use lots of shampoo to get the rest of it out. Best of all I didn’t find live lice still wandering about as soon as I had shampooed it out and had a look – hurrah!

Unlike most other headlouse treatments, NitNOT doesn’t come with a plastic comb, as the creator of NitNOT is aware of just how many plastic nit combs must be manufactured, transported, packaged and then just thrown straight in the bin as nobody needs a new comb every time they need to use the treatment. The plan is for NitNOT to include a compostable or recyclable comb, so that it is there if it is needed, but will not go straight into landfill if it is not required. There are also plans to ensure that the bottle itself and any other packaging will equally be compostable or fully recyclable and in the future all components will continue to be manufactured in the UK.

The blurb from the lovely makers:

The contents of the bottle (the mineral oil) are environmentally friendly, and we are in the process of making an environmentally friendly comb and bottle which can all be recycled or put in the compost heap. We are using a British company for the manufacture of these items to keep our carbon footprint low too. Eileen is very keen to make NitNOT the only lice treatment that is kind to our environment and your scalp. As studies have shown, we do not need to be using harsh toxic treatments which aren’t even as effective

NitNOT Anti Head Lice Serum, was borne out of a mum’s frustrations with the range of chemical-based and potentially harmful nit treatments available. NitNOT’s serum is the only non-toxic, hypoallergenic, pure mineral oil solution to head lice, created after years of study and consultation with leading specialists. It works by coating the lice and eggs stopping them from releasing gasses they need to expel. As a result, it kills both the eggs and lice. Scientifically proven not to be absorbed by the skin, it also has the added benefit of being hypoallergenic. As such, the serum can be used safely on even your babies scalp.

NitNOT can be purchased from Amazon or the NitNOT website with free delivery. One bottle has enough solution to treat a family of four, and can be applied with ease to curly or afro hair too.

Put your nerves to the test and get ready to come face to face with g-g-g-ghosts and ghouls at Drusillas Park! Prepare yourself for a whole host of spine-tingling surprises and eerie entertainment. The award-winning zoo in East Sussex has plenty of fun events planned to keep your little horrors half term happy between Saturday 26th and Sunday 3rd November.

Venture through the creepy cobwebbed corridors of Haunted Heights into the terror-tory of sin sisters, Hocus & Pocus, as they play hide and shriek with the unsuspecting public! Step carefully as you pass this derelict castle, which towers high above the skyline of Drusillas, because deep inside lies a ghostly secret… knock on the trap door and discover the spook-tacular surprise within…if you dare…

Or take your chances in Mungo’s Adventure Maze; missing from the ancient tomb, a Mummy has been seen wandering through the shadowy pathways of the twisted maze…

Plus, don’t miss The Gruffalo (Wednesday 30th October) or the Creepy Crawly encounters in the Discovery Centre throughout the week.

Located just off the A27 in Alfriston, Drusillas Park is open daily from 10am. For more information, please telephone 01323 874100 or visit

The Sussex Family Grapevines have a great competition; for your chance of winning a free family ticket during half term week, just tell us who will be visiting Drusillas on Wednesday 30th October 2019?

Visit the competition entry page by Friday 11th October 2019, to enter for free.

T&Cs: One winner selected at random from the Sussex editions of the Family Grapevine magazine will win a family ticket (2 adults & 2 children) for entry into Drusillas, for one day between Saturday 26th and Sunday 3rd November. No cash alternative.

Burgess Hill Girls has delivered another fantastic year of GCSE results, improving its position in the National league tables to 59th. They were one of only two Sussex schools in the Top 100.

In the Daily Telegraph rankings of independent school 2019 GCSE results, Burgess Hill Girls was ranked as the top school in West Sussex and the top girls’ school across East and West Sussex. In 59th place it is one of only two Sussex schools to make the top 100. An impressive performance given Burgess Hill Girls admits pupils with academic profiles of National Average and above and supports them in selecting GCSE and A Level subjects of their choice. These results confirm a 2019 review by the Good Schools Guide which found: “The school is almost non-selective and yet achieves better results than many more competitive schools.”

A record 76% of exams were graded 9 – 7 and well over half were graded 9 and 8. There was particular success in modern languages, with 80% of entries graded 9 to 7, and also in the creative subjects, where an incredible 100% of all entries were graded 9 to 7.

Head Liz Laybourn said “We are proud to see our students’ success rewarded in the league tables as it demonstrates our ability to add value to each and every girl’s academic performance. We are even prouder of the girls’ wider achievements this year. From Glyndebourne performers to champion linguists, national athletes to outward bound adventurers, and technical theatre specialists to dedicated volunteers. A Burgess Hill Girls education encourages every girl to actively challenge herself in new directions, developing all the self-belief, determination and life skills they need to fulfil their ambitions.”