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That Sussex avalanche of 1836

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Until we were 'rudely interrupted' there was a thread on the SCGB site concerning the extraordinary 1836 avalanche in Lewes, Sussex, which killed 8 people and demolished their houses.

To remind you it all happened after a huge snowstorm over the Christmas holiday in that year which drifted a massive cornice at the top of a hill above those houses. A pub called the Snowdrop Inn now stands there, and a local contributor Michelle Huggins was just getting into her stride doing some local research.

I wonder if we can track down Michelle, as this is turning into a really intriguing story. Is anyone else down that way?
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
I know this pub. Its just beside the big hill that overlooks Lewes. If you know the area it is just beside the tunnel with the sculpture of the snail like thing at its entrance.

Put it this way, if it was a ski run it would be a black !!
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Visited the pub last week - unfortunatley lunch time, so didn't have the pleasure of sampling any of their brews, but did get some photos [anyone: are we able to add them to the thread Question ] there is also a wonderful 'leaflet' in there that was written by someone on the scene - facinating to read. The eldest killed was 84. The youngest 11. Although facinating, it was long. If anyones interested, I'm prepared to make a copy? Apparantly, 24hrs before the avalanche someone went up onto the cliffe to view. A large crack was found and the warning was made. No-one was prepared to believe that anything would happen. It snowed again overnight...
The pub has fairly recently changed hands, but the previous owner now has an Antique shop next door - aptly named 'Snowdrop Antiques'!! The building he is in, is set back further into the cliffe face. This survived the avalance, flowing right over the top. Apparantly the original rafters from the 1700's have just been replaced.
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Michelle. I'm planning to head down to see the pub and hill at half-term with my wife and one daughter. I'll try and post a day and time and if anyone wants to meet up, that would be great !
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Michelle, if you register at our photogallery http://www.skicardiff.com/photos/ here you can upload pictures and then link to them from this forum. If you're not sure how to do it drop me an email and I'll explain.

David - you could almost tempt me to drive from Cardiff for a drink NehNeh
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David, would be great to meet! Give me as much warning as possible - I'll move my lessons to accommodate! Wink The only times that are totally imossible, are Monday & Wednesday mornings, as I have tests booked.
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Could this be the makings of a snowheads official meet-up?
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After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Michelle - I have replied to your message but my "Sentbox" doesn't show it. If you don't receive it let me know. Cool
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Thanks Alan - 2nd msg received!
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Alan, surely if you're driving from Cardiff, you'll have David in ther car with, being that you're his chauffer !!!
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David, If you fancy a get together in The Snowdrop - good for Harveys, just down the road from their Lewes Brewery, there's several of us who live/work close to Lewes who'd be up for it.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Yes, for sure. I'll bring along my book 'The Avalanche Enigma' which originally alerted me to this disaster back in the 1960s when I was a kid. It'll be really interesting to see the site. Maybe next Wednesday lunchtime?
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
Great! Could get there for 1:30 earliest
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
If it's a snowheads meet-up I could make it from Southampton quite easily...
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
We'll be on a daytrip from London, probably doing Brighton too, so it would be fun to meet for a pub lunch and a hike up that fearsome hill.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
David, good to track you down, could well be up for a trip to Lewes mid Feb. My first post good luck to the site and all who post.
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Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
In the great 'Micheal Fish - this is not a hurricane' of 1986 (?) 99% of the trees on this steep slope were flattened. Wear a helmet when you visit ! Dodgy place,
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Next Wednesday lunchtime sounds great David, myself and 2 others will see you there. What time are you planning on arriving?
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1.30 pm seems to suit Michelle. That should be fine with us. See you there !
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
There's a review of the Snowdrop Inn on this page: http://www.nigelberman.co.uk/eatingout_nov2001.htm
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I'm one of the "2 others"....how will we recognise you? Will you be wearing a red carnation or carrying a ski pole?
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
I've just spoken to them and reserved a table for 3, since the menu's right up our street as a near-totally veggie family. They have plenty of space if anyone else wants to eat, so I suggest making a reservation in your own name. We can team up to share tables later on, which would be fun.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
homphomp. Will be carrying a copy of 'The Avalanche Enigma'.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Look forward to meeting you all! Very Happy
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Have just booked table for three....will be there from 13:15.

Michelle....maybe I know you, I live in Seaford! I might at least recognise your face....
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snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
Michelle. If you're by yourself, you're most welcome to join us if you'd like to eat, and I guess we can make up a table for seven (so far). A veritable avalanche of food will then descend (no, that was in 'bad taste')
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
I did think about asking for a table next to yours! But I thought you might like to check us out before sitting together....by all means change the booking to a table for seven....mine's booked in the name of Pace.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
As far as I know at the mo I'll be on my own, but my other half might join us - keep it at 7 for the moment Smile
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
UPDATE TO ALL. Six Snowheads met at the Snowdrop Inn today Wednesday. It was well worth the return trip from London to meet some very friendly faces, and enjoy some great food, with lots of ski and avalanche chat.

Lewes is a fascinating place, with plenty to see. A town that seems to be jinxed by natural disaster - not only that extraordinary avalanche, but serious flooding as recently as the year 2000. The setting of the Snowdrop Inn lives up to all expectations - fearsome cliffs and steep slopes sweep towards it, and it's easy to visualise the scene of devastation after looking at the historic painting of the avalanche which hangs on the wall (elsewhere in the town - at the excellent Anne of Cleves Museum - you can see the original). The framed pamphlet on the wall of the 'Snowdrop' describes the great blizzard of 1836 and the avalanche in detail. The words are those of a turkey trader, returning to Lewes for Christmas from East Anglia by horse and cart. It's quite a story.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
OK David where's the photo????????
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Good question. In the camera.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Haven't you moved to the joys of digital photography yet? Smile
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
I get better photos out of my SLR (except when it went wrong in Australia) and these days you can get the films put on CD when you process them (Snappy Snaps are worth using here). So apart from the time delay, film still rules.
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Yes, I stilll use one digit to operate it.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Snappy Snaps are the best (despite their name!)
Get matt colour photos, with a white border and a cd every time - look fantastic.
(p.s. Alan's photo site http://www.skicardiff.com/photos/ is good to load the piccies so the rest of us can see...)
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Pete Horn, It seems there's a real split in the professional community nowadays. Up until the last year or two, everyone would have said film rules, but with 11+ megapixel SLRs around, the quality is allegedly just as good. Even Bailey uses digital - he said in an interview that the quality is at least as good, the cameras are just as good and ease of use combined with rapid processing just swings it...
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
I acknowledge a good digital SLR is good, but at what price? Unless you are taking a large number of photos (i.e. you're probably a professional) then the price isn't justified. The cheapest digital SLR body is around £800, the film equivalent £200.

Give it another year or so and a good digital SLR will be half the price, then film will be on the way out.

I was really comparing today's typical digital compact with a typical film SLR from a few years ago, roughly equivalent in price, one gives instant pictures (very useful at times) ready to go on email/websites, the other is easier to see what you are going to get and faster responding (no significant delay between pushing the button & shutter operation) which means the picture is framed better, and the quality should be better.

I should have qualified what I said above: "...film still rules for me"
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Going digital made a huge difference to me; the rapid feedback between taking a picture and seeing the result is really helpful if you're not a particularly dedicated photographer...I used to have films in my camera for years before I got around to using them. But as Peter says - its really a personal thing.
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You're quite right Pete - I still have my SLR but recently bought my girlfriend a tiny (Ixus 400) digital compact. Both suit our respective purposes. The reason I haven't switched to digital is purely, as you say, the cost of the bodies. Would love to get a Nikon as well, so I can keep my lenses...
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Likewise the Canon 300D would suit my lenses...

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Hang on, this has gone well off topic! Where's a moderator when you need one!
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