District 1250

The Website for Rotary Clubs in West Sussex and Parts of Surrey & East Sussex

Welcome to the website of Rotary International District 1250

You will find a wealth of information in our website pages about Rotary in many parts of Surrey and Sussex, starting with latest club news in the slide show below.  To read more of these stories, simply click on the Title or the Read More link. 

Below that are a number of Rotary videos.  Click on any of the thumbnails to select a video and then on the Play symbol to watch the video

The highlight of our month was the visit to the club by Cllr Bob Smytherman as our Speaker.  He was Worthing Mayor last year (2013-2014) and was probably one of the most outstanding Mayors who have held the post.   There is little doubt about his enthusiasm, his energy and his love of Worthing and it’s affairs.    Bob has become known as #coolmayor as his use of social media has catapulted the mayoral role into the 21st Century and enthused a new and younger demographic.

He shared the many highlights of his year as Mayor with a record of over 700 engagements that he attended in his year and the various activities he supported to raise funds for his chosen mayoral charities.  These were the Alzheimer's Society, Guild Care and Worthing & Arun Mind, selected because they are causes close to his heart in championing mental health issues.     Over has been raised £20,000 in his year for these charities.

Bob also mentioned the way in which his mayoral consort, Cllr Norah Fisher had supported him in so many of the above engagements and fundraising activities in spite of her disabilities.     Bob said “Really there were three of us in this relationship if we include  – Norah’s support dog, Herbie who took most of the glory!”

But Bob has now moved seamlessly into another fantastic role – and that is Worthing Town Crier, a role re-introduced by the Worthing Town Centre Initiative in 2014 to help to promote the Town and its events and activities.

The last Town Crier, Philip Holliday, hung up his bell in the mid 1990’s and for 20 years Worthing has not had a Town Crier.  It is another terrific initiative by the Town Centre Initiative that includes the Birdman of Worthing, the Summer Beach in the South Street Square and the Winter Ice Skating rink.

Originally a Town Crier, or Bellman, was an officer of the court who made public pronouncements as required by the court. The role developed to include making public announcements in the streets with the Criers dressing in elaborately decorated robes, white breeches, black boots and a tricorn hat. Town Criers carry a handbell to attract people's attention, as they shout the words "Oyez, Oyez, Oyez!" before making their announcements. The word "Oyez" means "hear ye," which is a call for silence and attention. Oyez derives from the Anglo-Norman word for listen.

David Chapman, President of Worthing Steyne Rotary Club said “There is little doubt that Bob will add colour and personality to Worthing and Worthing Civic life.    Resplendent in his full regalia, I am sure that he can provide that something different and special to a wide range of Civil. Charity and Community Events.”

Bob offers his time free of charge to registered charities in the Borough of Worthing; however he likes to raise funds for his chosen charity, Guild Care through his work.   You can book him for your event through the Website:  http://www.worthingtowncrier.co.uk

Worthing Steyne Rotary Members had an opportunity to learn more about Shoreham Fort on a recent visit.  It is probably one of the least known and yet unique historic treasures of our area that would have continued it’s steady decay if not for the work of the Friends of Shoreham Fort led by Gary Baines.  It is a place of local and national historical importance, bursting with a wealth of military history that the Friends are gradually revealing.   

Commissioned by Lord Palmerston, the Prime Minister at the time of the Napoleonic Wars, Shoreham Fort was one of many fortifications and gun batteries built along the coast of Southern England.  It was completed in 1857 to counter a threatened invasion by the French.

In 1994 four keen runners and the wife of one of them decided to organise a 10K race along the sea front. The first one attracted 340 runners. Little did they know that their baby was to grow into a giant. Twenty years on, this is still going strong and has long been the biggest annual sporting event in Bognor Regis. Rotarians Ken Dean and Terry and Eileen Farndell are still involved heavily in the organisation. No sooner has one event finished than work starts on running the next one. It needs over 80 volunteer marshals to man the route, to keep runners safe from passing cars. Numerous battles with bureaucracy have been overcome, sponsors have come and gone – but the event is always a huge community service venture, benefiting the general public as spectators and the runners who come from far and wide to take part.

Young local sporting talent has once again been recognised by the Caterham Rotary Club. The annual Rotary Sporting Excellence Award ceremony was held recently at the Surrey National Golf Club. Outright winner was 15-year-old Sam Talbot a pupil at Caterham School. He received a certificate and a cheque for £250 from Caterham Rotary President Claude Bertin and is using the money to purchase a new pair of specialist sprint spikes, which will have been in action for the first time last weekend in a national decathlon competition.

Jeremy Flasket of West Worthing club took a brave jump out of a plane last month to raise money for a great cause.

We asked him what inspired him to take the leap that some of us just do not have the courage to do. He was playing darts with the Rotary at The Queen Alexandra Hospital Home, which provides residential and respite care for ex-servicemen and women or require care and rehabilitation, and noticed there was a sponsored skydive on the notice board to raise money for the hospital.

Durrington High SchoolThe Durrington High School Interact club is a Rotary International’s service club for young people ages 12 to 18.

The aim of the club is to provide great opportunities for the development of personal skills, such as decision making, teamwork, and the boosting of self-confidence, whilst at the same time having fun. Interact Clubs are run by their members, who decide what activities they want to be involved with, and how they would like the club to help their communities.

Having weekly meetings every Tuesday, they held their first fund raising event on Saturday 19th July. They organised various stalls at the school’s July Car Boot Sale. Despite the weather, they had still managed to raise £97.87 profit. Not a bad start considering.

They had then organised a cake sale at school raising £164.85 in total. The interact club are donating £100.00 of this money to Winston’s Wish (the charity for bereaved children), so all for a good cause.

To be able to inspire and encourage young people to raise money for charity is a wonderful opportunity. Not only do they raise the money but they are also building up their confidence and relationships with people, helping them to succeed in life later on.

On Sunday 10th August, the fourth Seahaven Para Games were held at the Downs Leisure Centre in Seaford. Twenty eight participants took part in Kurling in the morning then, after lunch, there was a new event, Archery, which was very popular, alongside Table Tennis and Bowls (held in a separate room from the Archery for fairly obvious reasons!).

The afternoon concluded with the now famous Wheelchair Slalom, which was followed by the presentation of certificates and medals to all the participants by our President Ray Hazan, Seaford Mayor Mark Brown, Angus Murray from Sainsbury’s and visiting paralympian, Adam Field.


There are 3.6 million children in the UK living in poverty of whom 1.6 million live in severe poverty!!!! Children in Need is the BBC's Flagship Children's Charity.  Last year, it raised almost £50 million which it gives to charities all over the country who help disadvantaged children who are "in need".  However they are only able to support 1 in 6 applications for funding which, it is estimated, represents 450,000 children.

Rotary's involvement

Each year, more and more Rotarians are getting involved in Children in Need events. In 2013/14 Rotary raised £50,000 for Children in Need and our target is to double this in  2014/15.  Many clubs are already engaged in very successful collections and events. Children in Need  has indicated that there will be lots of merchandise available to Rotary Clubs to support their activities  There are also fundraising packs which will be available in September and will be sent to each Club. A new website is also being prepared.

District 1250 involvement

A number of Rotary Clubs within 1250 have long traditions of supporting Children in Need events each year. However, we need more to become involved. The key date this year is 14th November but that does not mean that you cannot run a CIN event at other times of the year. If you are planning to run a CIN event this year, or if you are at the stage of  thinking about it for the first time, please do get in touch with David Gill who is the District Lead Co-ordinator for Children in Need. He will be pleased to hear from you and will do whatever he can to assist. You can contact David Gill using the link from the Community and Vocational Services Committee Members.