Sunday, April 28, 2013

"I'll be glad to reply to or dodge your questions" — George H. W. Bush

Downlands Park Nursing Home, once Wick & Parkfield School

Wow!  It certainly has been a long time since I started cleaning out the George Mills reply boxes.  Here are some posted replies to articles on this website that you may or may not have seen and may wish to explore…

   Stentor has left a new comment on your post "Finding Parkfield...":

Thank you, 'Anonymous', for your refreshing frankness. I was at Parkfield from 1957 to 1961 and it was every bit as awful as you say. The headmaster was a brutal drunk who terrorised his charges. Here is not the place to detail what went on but I agree that today it would be a police matter. As for 'Giles', I can only say that I am glad that Brambletye was different. For a long time I imagined that most prep schools were as terrible as mine.

If 'Anonymous' or anyone else from Parkfield wants to continue this thread, I invite to say so in this forum and we'll work out how to get in touch.
November 15, 2011 7:02 PM
This unhappy post is part of a thread of varied comments that may be of interest to many readers…

  javalava has left a new comment on your post "New Information: Lady Frances Ryder, Jack Mitchell...":

Thank you very much for working on this excellent family history. It comes across as professional and well researched as well as compassionate and insightful.

I was just looking for the year when Barton R. V. Mills passed away. Some time later I found myself still reading about these fascinating lives. Thanks again.
February 7, 2012 10:28 AM
I appreciate the kudos, and I hope you don't mind if I plug your blog, Avoiding Bethel, at

  Kristeen Simpkin has left a new comment on your post "Word from a Relative of George Mills...":

Rev Barton Mills married Elizabeth Edith Ramsay, not Edith Judith Ramsay. According to the probate information for Sir George Dalhousie Ramsay, 22565 pounds was left to Rev Mills and his wife Elizabeth Edith.
March 21, 2012 8:16 AM
Thanks for sharing, Ms. Simpkin!  Are you a relative of George Mills?  If so, please let us know!

  Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Finding Parkfield...":

I was at Parkfield from around 1948 to 1954 - I was extremely happy there - it was owned and run by Mr and Mrs Richard Lowe, who were very kind to me and everyone in their charge - it was then a very happy school. Their daughter taught me to read - she spent extra time with me and I will always be grateful - I think she married one of the teachers, A Mr Sharpe if I remember correctly. Mr and Mrs Lowe, I seem to remember (it is well over half a century ago!) sold the school to a Mr Halstead in my last term - I then went to Eastbourne College which I hated - However I will always have fond memories of Parkfield.
June 20, 2012 4:08 PM
Parkfield certainly seems to evoke quite a variety of emotions from its alumni.  I would love to know a bit more of its back story!
The Quathlamba of Auckland, on which Theodore Goodland served in 1903.

•  Tammy Gordon has left a new comment on your post "Theodore Thomas Goodland, Master Mariner":

This is my great grandfather. Im very interested in hearing more about this and why your writhing about my family and would love to know more. Please contact me
September 12, 2012 8:29 PM
I did, indeed, contact Miss Gordon, explained the purpose of my research, and asked her if there were any family stories about her great grandfather and his adventures that she'd be willing to share.  Unfortunately, I never received a reply…

'Coniscliffe', once Eric Streatfeild's home, after a 1943 air raid.
•  Roger Sharland has left a new comment on your post "Visualizing Warren Hill School and Some Possible M...":

William Champion Streatfeild was not Eric Streatfeild's father but rather uncle. William Champion was the father of Noel Streatfeild, but his brother Alexander Edward Champion Streatfeild was Eric's father.
October 6, 2012 12:11 PM
Duly noted, and thank you, Mr. Sharland!

•  Joe Kirk has left a new comment on your post "Finding Parkfield...":

Hullo there

After Wick & Parkfield School closed, the site became Downlands College, a school for children with dyslexia and other learning-difficulty conditions, which had moved from Saltdean to expand. It in turn closed when numbers fell due to the 1978 Warnock Report and subsequent special education reforms, which reduced local authority support for such education.

This was presumably the origin of the present name Downlands Park. The Downlands name also lives on as Downlands Educational Trust, a grant making charity. There is a bit more history on our site

Good luck

Joe Kirk, Secretary, Downlands Educational Trust
December 24, 2012 10:25 AM
Betsy, between me (left) and my brother, Mike, circa 1965.
I'm grateful for the information, Mr. Kirk!  The Downlands Educational Trust website mentioned above includes a link to the current use of the old Parkfield School as a nursing home.  There is a small 'slide show' of the current exterior and interior of the building that may be of interest.  You can find it at:

•  Anonymous has left a new comment on your post ""Ain't It Funny How Time Slips Away" — Willie Nels...":

Sorry to hear that news, Mate. Will do, m'friend, say prayers for your DS Betsy, so I will. And for you.

March 31, 2013 at 6:55 PM
Thank you, Z., more than I can tell you.  I'm encouraged by the fact that Betsy has gained about 4 pounds recently, and while that may not sound like much, it really is a blessing, giving her strength to carry on the fight…

Next time we'll check the Who Is George Mills? mailbag and examine some e-mails from readers from around the world!

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