New Singers

+ + + +   New singers are always welcome to join us – read more   + + + +


Recording the CD at Burpham, March 2012
The South Downs Folk Singers (SDFS) were formed after taking part in traditional folk singing workshops run by Emily and the Hares (Chris Hare, Ann Feloy and Emily Longhurst / History People UK).  Six workshops in and around the South Downs made up the South Downs Songs Project, which was managed by the South Downs Society with a £50,000 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund.  For more information about the original project, go to the South Downs Society website.

Workshops were held at Chichester and Lewes in autumn 2011 and winter 2012, followed by Petersfield and Brighton during 2012 and finally Billingshurst and Worthing in autumn 2012 and winter 2013.  Around 200 people signed up to learn songs of the rural South Downs and hear Chris Hare recount the memories and experiences of those who lived in the Downs in the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries.  The singers recorded the fruits of their labours at Burpham Village Hall at the end of each set of workshops – these are now available on CD.

Worthing and Billingshurst groups in Burpham, March 2013

The project ended in spring 2013, by which time the fledgling SDFS had sung several times in public – most notably at the Arundel Festival in 2012.  We sang there again in 2013.

We so enjoyed learning traditional songs in the workshops run by the South Downs Songs Project that we decided to carry on singing them.  We sing songs about the South Downs – or that were sung in the South Downs – or written by a resident of the Downs.  We aim to keep local folksong up-to-date and relevant too by writing and singing new songs that are local to the area. Come and join in!

Our monthly singing sessions

The SDFS now meet once a month at each of three locations: Worthing, Chichester and Lewes. On the map further down on this page you can zoom in to see the precise locations.

We welcome new members – there are no auditions and no subscriptions (just a modest voluntary contribution) – please browse around the website for more information.

Contact us at:


Our Wednesday at the Beechwood singing sessions are held at The Beechwood Hall Hotel, Wykeham Road, Worthing, West Sussex, BN11 4JD

First Wednesday of every month, 7.30 till 10.00


Our Chichester Group singing sessions began in Easebourne, but after being held both there and in Selham have now moved to The Chichester Inn, 38 West Street, Chichester, West Sussex, PO19 1RP.

Third Thursday of every month, 7.30 for an 8.00 pm start till when we go home!


Our Lewes Tuesday singing sessions are held in The John Harvey Tavern, Bear Yard, Cliffe High Street, Lewes, East Sussex, BN7 2AN.

Third Tuesday of every month, 7.30 till 10.00

Please do not contact the venues for information: they won't be able to help.  Use the CONTACT US page on this website.

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