We are extremely lucky that East Sussex has such a rich history and boasts many great heritage sites. The jewel in the crown of Wealden’s medieval heritage is Michelham Priory, located in the beautiful countryside of Upper Dicker.
It dates back to 13th century, has a historic watermill and forge on-site, and boasts the longest continual medieval water-filled moat in Britain.
However, the lack of maintenance of two water control structures which manage the water supply to the moat has led to gradual silt deposition, increasing growth of invasive aquatic plants, and made the historic watermill inoperable. The moat has to be de-silted and water has to be returned to it immediately, or it will be lost forever.
I raised the issue at an urgent debate in Parliament and demanded immediate interventions to ensure the future viability of this critical local gem. As a result, I have met with our area representatives from the EA to find a workable solution.
I am pleased that they have committed to urgently review the issue, and I look forward to working with the EA and meeting regularly to discuss the progress of this case.To let such a unique and culturally signif- icant site disappear would be a devastating historical, social and economic loss for East Sussex. I am not going to let this happen on my watch.
Covid-19 is the most profound societal, economic and public health challenge since the Second World War. It has taken a great toll on our everyday way of life their local communities have been astonishing.
In July, I launched the “Wealden Hero Award” to extend my gratitude to Wealden residents for their extraordinary efforts and to celebrate their unyielding determination to support the community throughout the crisis. From the overwhelming number of nominations I received, I know that so many people across Wealden have made personal sacrifices and put their own lives at risk to help others. I had the privilege to meet some of them throughout the summer.
Despite the difficulties that local businesses have faced, our village stores in Upper Dicker, Laughton, Maresfield, Five Ash Down and Hartfield have remained opened and worked tirelessly to provide essentials to the community. Our small family businesses,such as the Perryhill Farm and Davies butchers in Horam have gone above and beyond to supply local produce and provide deliveries to vulnerable customers.
The wonderful English Soap Company has donated thousands of their products to foodbanks, hospitals, care homes and those in need.
Our pubs, such as the Buxted Inn and Hailsham’s King’s Head Cacklebury, have served as hubs for volunteers to operate from and offer lifeline services to those shielding. Our community radio stations Uckfield FM and Hailsham FM have been instrumental in sharing
Latest information and guidance.
I have been truly heartened to see so many acts of kindness throughout this unprecedented time and I cannot thank all these wonderful individuals enough for ensuring that our vulnerable neighbours had familiar faces to turn to for support and for going above and beyond throughout the crisis. The responsibility to keep each other safe has become a defining feature of our lives and I am so proud that Wealden has set a fine example.
The pandemic has changed how we work and I am no longer able hold public surgeries. However, I continue to hold virtual meetings and casework is undertaken daily.
If you are a Wealden resident and require my assistance, please email: nusrat.ghani.mp@parliament. uk.