It’s messy time!

A Guest Blog by Discover & Be.


Looking for a fun, interactive event for you and your children at this year’s festival?

Join the Discover & Be team for a jam-packed session of multisensory messy play, music and more! There will be a host of activities all based around the fantastic – and highly topical! – theme of trains and transport.

The session will be full of engaging and entertaining activities suitable for children from 6 months – 4 years old (although older siblings are more than welcome!):

  • Get busy in our small world cereal construction site with railway track
  • Do some super messy painting using the wheels of a car
  • Build your own train track
  • Clamber across our stepping stones, and take a crawl through the tunnel
  • Take a selfie in our Thomas the Tank Engine photobooth
  • Learn your shapes and colours as you create your own colourful train
  • Sing some terrific transport tunes
  • Hear the story of The Runaway Train by Benedict Blathwayt

All Discover & Be sessions (held weekly in Cuckfield, Scaynes Hill, Newick and Portslade) are packed with creative, hands-on learning experiences, music and movement, imaginative play and expressive messy play. Come along and join in the fun!

In the meantime, why not try out some of these fun transport-related activities at home?

If you’ve got a bit of space inside, or the weather is still being kind, grab some bubble wrap and make a fab bubble wrap runway, ideal for zooming cars, trains, any other wheeled toy you might have or, indeed, feet! Of course, the bubbles make a great noise as they’re burst all in all making it super sensory fun. Check out the instructions courtesy of Hands On As We Grow.

How about something more creative? Clare’s Little Tots website suggest attaching your pens (or crayons) to your toy cars and using them to make colourful pictures. Here’s how they do it.

If your children are into imaginative role playing an activity like this one will keep them happy: this is an airplane sensory bin (although you can adapt it to whatever toys you have at home).

Check out the instructions on the link above or just get creative with whatever is lying around at home. As you can see, this sensory pit has coloured rice and cotton wool clouds, but there are other ways of creating an activity like this:

  • How about a water based one complete with boats?
  • Or maybe a construction site equipped with diggers?
  • Here’s another example of a sensory construction site and shows how you can use bits and bobs from around the house (namely a tray from the shed and some pasta in this case!).

Finally, back to some more art and craft ideas, all based around trains:

Hopefully these ideas have inspired you to have a go at home but do come down and join in the session on the 17th September from 4-5pm. We look forward to meeting you!


Discover & Be run multisensory messy play sessions every week in Scaynes Hill (Monday), Newick (Tuesday), Cuckfield (Friday) and Portslade (Friday). Discover & Be, through their team of experienced primary school teachers and a music specialist, also offer private academic and music tuition, and organise themed parties for children. Find them online:







Art at the Festival

A guest blog by one of our featured artists, Elizabeth Worrall Bailey.

ART and SOULExpect to see ‘all things bright and beautiful’ and ‘the unexpected’ in the King Edward Hall, 17th September. Sussex artist Elizabeth Worrall Bailey will be supporting the festivities by showcasing her intriguing, popular artwork.

Proud Cockerel' Series 1 © Elizabeth Worrall Bailey
Proud Cockerel’ Series 1 © Elizabeth Worrall Bailey
Much of Elizabeth’s artwork is lovingly created mainly using just her hands and fingers, taking ‘finger painting’ to a new meaning and level! And providing ‘Art with a Difference’ as each piece created by Elizabeth is individually unique. You are warmly invited to browse, purchase, and be inspired by Elizabeth’s artwork at the 2016 Lindfield Arts Festival. From popular ‘firm favourite’ works of art, in rich, bold colours, painted using acrylic paints, to some new designs created specially for visitors to the festival, using delicate, colourful, flowing watercolour paints, there’s sure to be something for everyone to enjoy.

Elizabeth has studied art at college, and has taught in local schools, and firmly believes, like all good things, art, and our natural gifts and talents, should be shared, celebrated and accessible for all to learn and benefit from, but most of all enjoyed.

Bluebird Trio' Series 1© Elizabeth Worrall Bailey
Bluebird Trio’ Series 1© Elizabeth Worrall Bailey

Enhancing the happy, vibrant atmosphere of the Lindfield Arts Festival this year, framed prints, cards and coasters of Elizabeth’s work will be available to purchase. Enquiries and commissions can be placed via:

Elizabeth looks forward to meeting and sharing her work with you!

The experiences that inspire me

A Guest Blog by Eve Ainsworth.

I never planned to write for young adults. I just knew I wanted to write SOMETHING. Writing seems to run through my blood, it feeds me and keeps me warm – and for a long, long time I just wrote the odd ideas that popped into my head – often underdeveloped and not really thought through in detail. But they were ok and they fed my addiction.

Things changed when I started working in a local secondary school. Again, this was not on my list of plans. In fact, when I left the same school at eighteen, I swore that I would never EVER return. But after years of unfulfilling and uninspiring work, I needed something different – so I decided to take the leap and work with teens – and thank goodness I did.

My new job meant that I was working directly with young people and also witnessing some of the real issues they were facing. It was a job I absolutely loved. It soon became clear to me that I could utilise my work in my writing and create stories that represented some of the very real and very concerning problems that face teenagers today. And so 7 Days, a book about the realities of bullying, was written, shortly followed by Crush, a book about toxic and controlling relationships.

I am a true believer that life takes you down a particular path for a reason. Years ago, I would have never expected to be writing books for teens, but now it seems a very natural and enjoyable route for me. This is not to say that I think you should only write what you know – but having experience in certain areas can feed your passion and make the writing so much more authentic.

Above all you need to enjoy what you do. Always.


Eve has written two Young Adult novels – Seven Days and Crush – both published by Scholastic. Seven Days was nominated for the CILIP Carnegie Medal.

Eve is giving an author talk at Lindfield Arts Festival on Saturday 17th, 1.30-2.30pm in the URC. Register now to save your seat! Suitable for ages 11+

Fable 44

A Guest Blog by Sharon Wright, Fable 44.

I love writing music and I love to perform. I think I always have. OK, maybe not so much when I was in my early teens and had to perform a classical grade 7 piece in front of an audience with my proud parents watching expectantly and me hoping the earth would just open up and swallow me. Maybe not then, as I found the whole classical training very embarrassing in an era of Mods, Ska and Doc Martins. But…in the end it was all leading to something worthwhile even if I didn’t recognise it at the time.

It all began walking along the beaches of Isla Cristina in the South West corner of Spain, composing songs in my head which I later wrote down in the evenings with the help of my husband and lifelong rhythmic partner. I began to create a repertoire of songs that we would later record in 1992 for A Cultural Project at that time in Madrid. As funds didn’t run into any promotion at all, not much happened and I’m not adding anything new to the usual story of excited young musicians who have their hopes and dreams dashed, sometimes several times. However, as is the way with all of life’s disappointments, we picked ourselves up, brushed down our jeans and carried on with a little less ego, a little less expectation and a lot more songs.

So from these beginnings I played with many musicians and bands juggling the music with family life and teaching. I met marvellous musicians who always played my songs with love and grace giving them the quality and life that I never dreamed they would have. Now most of the songs I write would be described as Jazzy/folky pop that is more in line with my own current musical tastes.

So why Fable 44? Each of our lives is like a story and the songs I write mainly express my feelings at certain times of my life so I could say that the songs are born, raised and then express themselves just like me. 44 is a number that for some reason I usually see more frequently than any other for example when I look at the clock and it’s always something: 44 or the registration of the car in front has 44 in it, that kind of thing. I’m open minded regarding the mysteries of the universe and I tend to notice things like that. I think that it adds a bit of mystery and another layer of possibilities to our lives.

I’m looking forward to playing at the Lindfield Arts Festival again this year at Paulino’s Restaurant. I have a nice mix of original and well known songs to entertain and hope that people will enjoy an intimate and soulful evening of music. Hope to see you there!

P.S I will have some copies of my latest album with me and you can buy a copy for £7.00 if you enjoy the music.

Meet Becky Stevens from Dance2Tone!

A Guest Blog by Becky Stevens, Dance2Tone.

Dance2 tone logo

I’ve been dancing since I was just five-years-old and, as a professional dancer and choreographer, I have worked throughout Europe and the United Kingdom. For many years I performed with dance troupes across Tenerife until I formed, choreographed and managed my own troupe, Dancesation. We enjoyed dancing all over the island until we moved back home and now perform around the UK and abroad.

I have also had the fantastic opportunity to collaborate and dance with tribute acts, dance at Disneyland, Paris, and choreograph and perform in many shows for holiday parks across the country. I am a qualified and experienced Zumba, Zumba Kids and Fitsteps Instructor, holding classes throughout Sussex.

My recent venture has been to design my new dance fitness classes for children called Popsteps. Popsteps is a fantastic dance programme where the children get to dance to their favourite songs, freestyle, learn routines and be creative and choreograph their own routines. There is a huge sense of fulfilment teaching the children and seeing them succeed while having great fun! Ballet2tone for adults is also something I have developed using all my training, knowledge and experience. This is a great fitness class designed to tone and sculpt the body using ballet technique.

FitSteps is the result of a collaboration between ‘Strictly Come Dancing’s’ professional dancers Natalie Lowe and Ian Waite and Britain’s most successful swimmer Mark Foster. It is a mix of the graceful steps of Ballroom and the up tempo steps of the Latin dances to create a really fun, energetic and effective way to stay fit. It is the first time that classic Latin and Ballroom dances have been brought together with proven fitness techniques and principles to create not only a programme that can have extraordinarily wide appeal but one that also has the potential to make a real and lasting impact on the health of the nation. We’re proud to say that we have had people from the age of 9 to 74 participating, all of whom loved the experience!

I love being an instructor and enjoy seeing the smiles on everyone’s faces as they participate in my classes. It is amazing to see how much their confidence rises every week as they dance, have fun and keep fit to the beats. You can see a demonstration of the classes I run at the Lindfield Arts Festival on the High Street, on Saturday 17th September and join in the workshops in the URC Church too! Bring your dancing shoes!

For more information about Dance2Tone and all the dance classes contact Becky on or 07892884944. You can also find out more at

An Introduction to Turning Pointe School of Dance

A Guest Blog by Assistant Principal Lianne Carter (LISTD)

At Turning Pointe School of Dance we offer professional Dance training in Ballet, Tap, Modern and Jazz for children aged 18 months all the way up to Advanced Level, including adult classes. We are a well-established school with a 50 year history in the area, and now offer classes in Haywards Heath, Lindfield, Plumpton, Barcombe and Lewes.

We value every pupil as an individual, and whilst many of our students are offered places at prestigious conservatoires and universities (including The Royal Ballet School, London Studio Centre, The BRIT School, London Contemporary School of Dance, Trinity Laban, and Northern School of Contemporary Dance) others attend lessons purely as a hobby and a form of exercise, but the escapism and enjoyment they gain from the classes is just as important.

Our pupils have the opportunity to take exams in RAD Ballet and ISTD Modern and Tap if they wish to do so, and every two years we put on a large production in a professional theatre. We also enjoy performing at community events like Lindfield Arts Festival, and hope that you will enjoy watching our dancers!

We have recently launched Melody Bear Pre-School Dance classes and adult Ballet-Fit classes on Friday mornings at Clair Hall. If you would like further information on any of our classes please email Please also take a look at our website-

Inkpots Writing Workshops

A Guest Blog by Gill Pawley, Founder of Inkpots.

Every week during term time, I run seven after school Inkpots workshops inkpots019at schools in Burgess Hill and Haywards Heath. I always try to get set up and have just a few minutes in hand so that I am able to give the children my full attention as they arrive from class. Because at every school, every time – without fail – children tumble through the doors, full of news and stories. And it’s one of the best bits about running Inkpots.

Children are natural story tellers and even the mundane events become epic adventures in their minds. Some children may find it difficult to get their words down on paper and others might like to draw their stories, but they are story tellers just the same.
At Inkpots, we believe that:

  • Everyone can write something;
  • Writing muscles need to be stretched and toned;
  • Writing should be enjoyable and exciting;
  • Collaboration – not competition – is important.

When I started Inkpots nearly four years ago, one of my core aims was to develop groups which were warm, welcoming and secure. With the help of all the children, Inkpots has been able to achieve that – all of our groups are really fun places to be and the children really do look out for each other.

“Inkpots feels like home – we’re all part of one big family” Sophie, age 10

The welcoming atmosphere extends to our Holiday Clubs as well. It’s always particularly lovely when Inkpots children bring friends along and children who can’t manage to get to after school clubs, come to see us in the holidays again and again.

I am delighted to be running some workshops at the Lindfield Arts Festival for the first time. I hope to be able to give the children a flavour of what we do at Inkpots, as well as having a really great time. At the chocolate-themed workshops, there’ll be a range of activities for children – no matter what their stage of storytelling. So, we’ll have some word puzzles and games to get those writing muscles going, we’ll have a chat about the books everyone enjoys and we’ll even design our own chocolate bars.  There will also be a chance to write some chocolate stories or map out some ideas that can later be developed. I’ll be on hand to talk to encourage the young writers with tips and ideas. More than anything, it’s a chance for children who really enjoy reading, writing and drawing to spend some time together sharing ideas, being creative and having lots of fun.

“Inkpots helps your imagination grow” George, age 11

I am really looking forward to these workshops at Lindfield Arts Festival and just can’t wait to meet all the children and their families.

If you would like to have a chat beforehand, please don’t hesitate to contact me on 07771 231563 or email There is also more information on our website

West African drumming comes to Lindfield!

A Guest Blog from thedrumcoach!

What happens when you mix traditional West African drum rhythms with mostly local people keen on finding their inner drummer? The Lindfield Drummers!

Formed over 4 years ago from earlier LAFs and subsequent local drum workshops, the workshop group numbers have risen to 8 and are led by percussionist, workshop leader and personal development coach, Peter Welch, who lives nearby in East Sussex.

Lindfield Fest Drum Community, 2015
Lindfield Fest Drum Community, 2015

The members rehearse regularly at Lindfield Primary Academy and have built up a set of funky rhythms originating in Guinea, Senegal, Ivory Coast, and The Gambia. Besides playing and running open workshops at several LAFs, the drummers recently performed at the Fletching Festival.

drumming group

So what’s the attraction when there are other leisure pursuits available? Local guy, Tim Richardson, says that “African drumming is a great way of engaging with rhythm and music in a fun group situation. You can improve at your own pace, meet people from different walks of life and learn a little of African culture along the way. For me it’s a good way to unwind and a great joy!” Tim also mixes his love of growing award-winning flowers and veg with his passion for music, his ageing VW camper van and travel. A true Lindfield polymath!

Workshop leader Peter combines his passion for world music and percussion with his work as a coach, helping people to perform better and to their full potential – hence, thedrumcoach. Formed back in 2007, thedrumcoach concept is to make authentic West African drum rhythms accessible and fun to learn. It’s a not-for-profit organisation with donations going to a West African music school and needy causes. There are currently four workshops running in Sevenoaks, Westerham, Hadlow, and Lindfield.

In the past, Peter has performed, toured and recorded with several percussion-based bands including Glastonbury regulars Carnival Peter at Tunbridge Wells MelaCollective – a 30 piece samba band, Yiri Ba and Kakandé – both West African drum and dance bands. He now enjoys encouraging others to play and to prepare for short performances, such as LAF.

Peter often travels to West Africa to refresh his drum roots and to learn from master drummers, then brings new rhythms and their roots and meaning back to share with the workshop drummers. The group play wooden djembés with their hands, strung with goatskin to create different tones and volume. Three bass drums, called dun-duns, underpin the rhythms and are played with sticks.

Holding open workshops gives adults and older teens a chance to sample the sounds and drum patterns, and to continue learning in beginners’ workshops that run in Lindfield regularly. This year’s public workshop is on Saturday, 17th September from 3-4pm upstairs at The Bent Arms (booking essential), so why not give it a try and find your inner drummer?

Catch the Lindfield Drummers playing by The Bent Arms and Paolinos Restaurant on Saturday, 17th September!

For more details contact:
Peter – thedrumcoach
t: 01892 853300
m: 0797 333 0698