Five Ashes

The pub here is The Five Ashes (what else) and for more than 60 years it was very much a family concern. The old building was once a farmhouse and the great-grandson of the owner, Alfred Berwick, held the licence with his wife from 1914 until retirement in 1959 when their daughter Rosie took over. She became Mrs Cloke on her marriage and the long family association ended in 1977 when she and her husband retired to Crowborough.

The Eastwood family have been key figures in giving Five Ashes its communal buildings. Boaz Eastwood helped to erect an old army hut from Eastbourne which served as the village church, and his son Roy was a leading light in the fundraising campaign which built the village hall in 1976. ‘Twitts Ghyll’ was once the home of Sir Austen Chamberlain, son of the great Joseph, who was Chancellor of the Exchequer in 1903 and Foreign Secretary in the 1920s. He came here to escape the cares of Parliament and expand his collection of rock plants, which came from all over the world. He had green fingers but lazy feet. Only once did anyone in the village see him walk the half-mile to Five Ashes and back.