College moves into solar age - Friday June 4 2004 - Sussex Express


Ringmer Community College is set for a greener future and cheaper electricity bills, thanks to the installation of solar panels on its roof.  The 25 meter long PV panels were made possible by a grant from the DTI and Seeboard.  They were opened last week by Lewes MP Norman Baker.



The college is a centre of excellence for sustainable future technology and, under part-time environmentla administrator Stephen Green, has its own Eco CLub with 70 members.

The panels convert UV light into electricity which can be inverted into the National Grid when not being used by the school. They generate something like seven kilowatts an hour.


When the school, for instance, is on holiday, the panels continue to function and the school receives credits on its account for power went into the Grid.  It expects to save at least !,000 a year in this way in energy costs and the panels last indefinitely. (Please note this is not quite correct - expect 20 years lifespan)


The school is also using the panels as a teaching aid.  it receives a constant digital power read out in the science laboratory and the pupils can use this information in their lessons about weather patterns.  The panels will theoretically go into profit after 40 years, but, says Stephen, it could be sooner as fossil fuels get more expensive and the weather c0ontinues to warm up.




Lewes MP Norman Baker at Ringmer College



Principals Message - The College & Ethos


My vision for Ringmer is to lead a College with an ethos, which demonstrates that:

  • All students are unique and valuable.

  • All students are valued for their individual skills and abilities.

  • All students are allowed to achieve their potential.

  • All success are celebrated and rewarded.

  • A high priority is placed upon the development of values, whilst at the same time we encourage students to develop their own beliefs.

  • We prepare our students for an uncertain future so that they are confident of their ability to contribute to society.

  • All members of the community work together to achieve high standards in all aspects of College life.

Ms Kathy Stonier  - Principal: Ringmer Community College


Contact Details


Ringmer Community College
Lewes Road


East Sussex


Telephone: 01273 812220

Fax No:       01273 813961

E-mail:         reception@ringmer.e-sussex.sch.uk



TYPE: Community, comprehensive, boys and girls, technology

AGES: 11-16

6.8% authorised (6.5% locally, 7% nationally)
0.2% unauthorised (1.4% locally, 1.2% nationally)






About Ringmer and the Local Area





Located in East Sussex which is part of South-East England, UK.  Ringmer is positioned approximately 10 miles north of Brighton and 50 miles south of London. Its exact location is 3 miles outside Lewes on the road to Heathfield (B2192) and the village can be described as a ribbon development along this road. Positioned on the northern slopes of the South Downs, the area is visited by many walkers and holiday-makers. The downs lie both in easterly and westerly directions whilst to the north, the plain of the Sussex Weald stretches away.



Village Description


Ringmer can be described as an over-grown village which has a population of over 5,000.  Although in some areas a community of this size would be designated a small town, Ringmer has maintained a unique 'village' atmosphere. Central to community life is the Parish Church which has a strong following. Additionally, many clubs, societies and other organisations are available for residents to join. Country pursuits such as farming are carried out in the surrounding area which is one of outstanding natural beauty.


The centre of Ringmer is its green on which many sports such as cricket and stool ball are played and village fetes are held. From the green, a pathway leads to the Church of St Mary-the-Virgin, which is set in an attractive churchyard. Also surrounding the green is the Village Hall, Post Office and Anchor Public House. The shopping centre lies just across the busy main road and provides a good selection of retailers. Old Ringmer from which the modern village has been developed, consists of a small number of houses and cottages located along the main road, around the green and around the Church. To this small group of dwellings has been added large estates on both sides of the green. Of modern design, these homes are generally well maintained and their gardens manicured by very enthusiastic residents.



History of the Ringmer Community College


Ringmer village gained its new secondary school in 1958 with a catchment area of not only Ringmer, but also the rural villages towards the South Downs town of Lewes, the county town of East Sussex, villages to the east into the Weald and the Malling residential area of Lewes itself.  The first Headteacher, John Clarke combined images of the communities in the school badge.  The buckle of the Pelham family surrounds and holds together a beacon representing the beacon on the downs at Firle, a tortoise, namely Tommy, who belonged to the naturalist and diarist Gilbert White who lived for a time in Ringmer and a lyre signifying the proximity of the internationally renown opera house at Glyndebourne, nestling in the countryside behind the school.


Map of Ringmer Community College


 How to find Ringmer Community College



Ringmer Secondary School thrived and soon gained recognition for its links with the community, including evening classes, high expectations for its pupils and the excellence of its brass band, which not only made records but still meets at reunions, under its original conductor Michael Fairhurst.  Cyril Rimmer became the Headteacher in 1977 on the retirement of John Clarke, and he steered the school, now known as Ringmer School, into a successful comprehensive school with an imaginative forward-looking curriculum.  John Wakely became the Headteacher in 1983 and in 1988 his commitment to the community college ethos resulted in the designation of the school as Ringmer Community College, with the expansion of adult education and community links.  The former Prime Minister, Lord Callaghan, who lives in the catchment area, formally opened the Community College and continued his long association with the school.  One of the first Ofsted inspections in 1999 commented on the quality of the strong pastoral and community dimensions of the College, which continues today.  The College motto is simply:  Achieving, Caring , Contributing.


The original school building received a Civic Trust Award for its design, which has been developed to meet changing needs ever since.  The raising of the school leaving age to 16 in 1973 resulted in the building of the Library block, and as numbers increased from the original 300 to the present 920 major construction has taken place.  This includes the Clarke Block housing the Drama Studio, English and Technology Departments.  The construction of the Ringmer community swimming pool on the site in 1981 and its conversion to a covered indoor pool in 1985 is a major asset for the College and its community.  The continued growth of the Music Department led to the expansion of the Music Department, housing a studio and practice rooms.  A major building phase in 1998 resulted in improved Humanities and Science facilities within the main two storey building, which were further enhanced as part of the Specialist Technology College status achieved in 2000.


Steven Johnson, the fourth Principal from January 2000 to December 2002 moved the College into the Specialist College era, with environmental sustainability as a key theme of the development plans in Maths, Science, ICT and Technology.  The Gold Artsmark achieved in 2001 indicates the continued breadth of the curriculum.  Since 2003 under the current Principal Kathryn Stonier, the College moves forward in meeting the needs of all students from its very wide geographic catchment area.  This is reflected in the construction of the new Modern Foreign Languages teaching block and the increasing range of vocational courses from NVQ Level 1 to Btec First Diplomas and Applied GCSEs.  Accelerated courses and the opportunity to take AS levels in certain subjects have been established and new flexibility is at the core of the curriculum and future College developments.


Ringmer is one of only two secondary schools in the County to be awarded the designation of Eco Schools in 2002.





A solid education is a positive advantage and essential if you are thinking of specialising in medicine, engineering, research, etc.  The future of mankind depends on the quality of our scientists and professionals.  Fortunately, Schools, Colleges and Universities in the United Kingdom offer a wide range of courses to help you develop your future potential.


Nelson Kruschandl - Learn while ye may!



Nelson only partly completed his higher education.  He regrets not pursuing a formal education.  The problem for most students setting out in life is choosing what they want to do.  Nelson simply wished to build the creations he frequently penned.  This required several skills, such as welding and drawing, which came naturally.  


His advice to anyone unsure of the direction to develop, is to "follow your heart."  Most people follow the money.  However, we all need money and without the creation of wealth to pay for the exotic, man's achievements would be that much reduced.








Other educational institutions




Name of Group




Acorns - Ringmer Baptist Church Youth Service

Rev Duncan MacLean



01273 813245


Meets alternate Mondays 6.00 to 7.30 pm at Ringmer Youth Centre (Years 4, 5 & 6)

Age Concern

Valerie King

01273 812240

Organise occasional events for older people in Ringmer

Barn Dancing Society

Jean Craig

01273 812760

Meets 2nd Friday of each month at 7.45pm in the Caburn Pavilion

Caburn Pre-School Playgroup

Mrs Lin Griffith

01273 814220

Weekdays 9.00 to 12.00 noon at Goldsborough Hall, Lewes Road, Ringmer. OFSTED Registered. For report of Caburn (formerly Ringmer) Pre-School Playgroup at OFSTED click here

Come and Read a Book

Diane Meadows

01273 812025

Meets monthly to discuss selected books. Please phone for details.

Christian Ecology Group

Geoffrey & Mary Cleave

Meetings First Thursday of the month in St Mary's Church Room. Contact by e-mail geoffrey.cleave@btinternet.com

Duke of Edinburgh's Award - Ringmer Youth 

Allan Strong

01273 812873

Meets Wednesdays 7.00 to 8.30 pm at Ringmer Youth Centre (Year 9+)

Exercise classes

Abbe Denness-Hunt

01273 812548

For details of classes, please click here

Gliding Club,
East Sussex

J.S.Forster, Secretary

01825 840764

Britain's friendliest Gliding Club at Kitson Field, The Broyle, Ringmer, BN8 5AP. Details on the website or click here for e-mail contact.

1st Ringmer



Meets at the Goldsborough Hall (Scout Hut) on Wednesdays during termtime, 7.00 - 8.45pm. The group is for girls aged 10-14 years who are members of Girlguiding UK.

Horticultural & Home Produce Society (RBL)

Albert Knight

01273 813322

Spring, summer & autumn shows each year. Two other meeting with guest speaker. Members receive discounts locally on all garden requisites. Membership fee 2.00

Junior Club (Ringmer & District Youth Service)

Danielle Price

01273 812873

Meets Fridays 7.30 to 9.30 pm at Ringmer Youth Centre


01273 814661

Village Hall Tues: 3-6pm; Wed: 9-12noon; Thur: 1.30-4.30pm

Mothers' Union

Shirley Squires

01273 812417

Meets on 3rd Tuesday of the month at 7.30 pm in St Mary's Church Room

Neighbourhood Watch

Ken Batchelor


For up-to-date information, visit the Neighbourhood Watch website


Tony Parker

01273 813750

protectringmer is a group of villagers with a genuine commitment to the protection of the village. It is completely free of political affiliations. Click here for more details.

RADAR (Ringmer Against Drivers Acting Recklessly)

Trevor Denney

01273 814884

RADAR is an Action Group, set up to tackle Ringmer's rapidly worsening traffic problems.

RASCALS (Ringmer After School Care And Leisure Scheme)

Lin Griffith

07765 857252

After school care for primary aged children. Mon - Thurs 3.00 p.m. until 6.00 p.m. at Ringmer Primary School.


Sarah Boot-Handford

01273 813342

Rainbows is the youngest section of Girlguiding UK for girls aged 5 - 7. We meet on Tuesday afternoons at the Goldsborough Hall (Scout Hut) during termtime.

Reading Group

See CARAB above

Ringmer & District Youth Service

See individual entry for each group

Ringmer Badminton Club

Sam Holder

01273 812906

Club evenings - Wednesday 7-10pm at Ringmer Community College. Home league matches - Thursday at the Village Hall

Ringmer Bowls Club

Mrs Pauline Lloyd

01273 812470

Outdoor season 1 May to 30 September, occasional winter social activities.
Junior Section (9-18) meets Fridays 6.15 - 8.30pm. Phone Richard Berry 01273 813330 for details

Ringmer Bridge Club

Mrs Flor Grindley

01270 812933

Meets most Wednesdays 7.30 - 10.30pm in St Mary's Room, Village Hall

Ringmer Community Pool

Anthony Leung

01273 813533

For more information and pool opening times click here. Private hire available

Ringmer Cricket Club

Hazel Haywood (Secretary)

01273 813492
07770764844 (mobile)

The club fields 3 league teams, a Sunday team and 3 Colts teams (under 12's, under 14's, under 16's) E-mail hazel.haywood@tiscali.co.uk

Ringmer Dramatic Society

Martin Whitlock

01273 812060

Two productions per year plus social events. New members, in any capacity, always welcome.

Ringmer Evening W I

Anne Stamper

01273 812316

Meets first Tuesday in the month at 7.30 in the Village Hall

Ringmer Flower Club

Mrs Marion Jordan (Chairman)

01825 764987

Meetings held on the first Wednesday of each month at 2pm in Ringmer Village Hall

Ringmer Football Club

Lynn Lambert

01273 813190

Function hall and licensed bar available for hire. Contact 01273 812738 (evenings)

Malcolm Crouch (Webmaster)


Ringmer History Study Group

John Kay (Chairman)

01273 813388

Regular Friday evening meetings in Ringmer Village Hall plus programme of other events and activities. e-mail j.e.kay@sussex.ac.uk

Christine Thomas (Secretary)

01825 890809

Ringmer Link Good Neighbour Scheme

Mrs Flor Grindley

01273 812933

The Ringmer Link Scheme aims to provide a chain of people linked to a point of central information for the receiving and giving of time and talents when needed.

Ringmer Nursery School

Mrs. Corina Gamble

01273 813612

Weekdays (not Wednesdays). 8.30 am to 12 noon at the Community Education Centre, Ringmer Community College.

Ringmer Ramblers

Mark Hunter

01273 814271

Meets on alternate Sunday mornings at 10am for 4-7 mile walks all year in East Sussex. Also meets on 1st Thursday of the month at 10am for local walks. Ring for details and programme.

Ringmer RAMP Group (Ringmer & District Youth Service)

Steve Betts

01273 812873

Meets Thursdays 6.00 to 7.00 pm at Ringmer Youth Centre

Ringmer Rifle Club

Lionel Dorian

01273 812739

All shooting disciplines available. Further details on application to contact person

Ringmer School of Dance

A. Elizabeth Riley BPHIL(HONS), LRAD, AISTD

01323 896315

Ballet and tap dance classes for children aged 3 years and over on Saturday mornings

Ringmer Stoolball Club

Miss Stephanie Page
(Club Secretary)

01273 812295 (Evenings)

Ladies Stoolball played outdoors during the summer months (May - September) and indoors in the winter (October - January). During the summer, the Juniors play their home games on a Wednesday evening and the Seniors on Thursday evenings on the Village Green.

Ringmer Tennis Club

Pete Knight
Tony Guildford

01273 812217
01273 812091

Club evenings at Ringmer Community College every Wednesday evening (7pm till dusk) April to August

Ringmer Tiddlers and Toddlers Group

Natalie Turner


Group for young children, from birth to 4 years of age and their carers; mothers, father, grandmothers, minders, etc. Meet in the Village Hall on Mondays and Thurdays, 9.30 - 11.30am for play, chat and coffee. 

Ringmer Village Hall

Mrs J Leach

01273 812015

2 halls, meeting rooms and kitchen facilities are available for hire at hourly rates

Ringmer Youth Parish Council (Ringmer & District Youth Service)

Mary Masters

01273 812873

Meets monthly on a Thursday at Ringmer Youth Centre
(Year 9+)

Royal British Legion, Ringmer Branch

Peter Jackson

01273 812697

Meets on 4th Monday of most months at 11am in St Mary's Room, Village Hall. Ring contact for details

Royal British Legion, Ringmer Women's Section

Mrs. J Jackson

01273 812697

Meets on 2nd Tuesday in month, Oct - March 2pm; April - Sept 7.30pm. No meetings in Jan or Aug. Enquire from contact name re venues

St. John Ambulance

Mrs J. Soan

01273 812187

Meet on Mondays in the Village Hall. Cadets aged 10-16: 6.30 - 7.45, Adults: 8.00 - 9.30

St. John Ambulance (Badgers)

Mrs Rachel Lillywhite

01825 723357

For children aged 6-10. Meet 6.30 - 7.45 on Mondays in the Village Hall

St. Peter & St. James Hospice Village Support Group

Mrs Barbara Heath

01273 812902

Ad hoc meetings to plan events

Scout Group,
1st Ringmer

John Saunders

01273 812681

Beaver Scouts, Cub Scouts and Scouts meet at the Goldsborough Hall. Please contact John Saunders for current information. For Scout Shop, see businesses page.

Senior Social Club (Ringmer & District Youth Service)

Danielle Price

01273 812873

Meets Mondays 7.30 - 9.30 pm at Ringmer Youth Centre (Year 9+)

Slimming World

Toni King

01435 812114
Email: toni33king@aol.com

Held at Ringmer Football Club, Main Hall, every Wednesday at 7pm. For more information please contact Toni

Tuesday Morning Badminton Club

Sue Hemington

01273 812356

Meets every Tuesday 9.30 - 12.00 noon in the Village Hall

U3A - University of the Third Age

Mrs Avice Harbottle

01273 812643

7 activity groups meet in members' homes on weekday afternoons. Bird watching / Current affairs / Listening to music / Play reading / Poetry circle / Readers' circle / Scrabble

Yoga in Ringmer

Cathy Rollings and Amy Lushington

01273 813541

Meets Tuesday pm and Friday am in Village Hall

Young Farmers (Ringmer & District Youth Service)

Mary Masters

01273 812873

Meets alternate Thursdays 6.00 to 7.30 pm at Ringmer Youth Centre (Years 10-15)




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