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‘Escape to the Country’ films stoolball

Saturday 20 August 2011, 8.00am

When ‘Countryfile’ featured stoolball at Northchapel in West Sussex in May 2011, a lot of people wanted to find out more about the sport. Now BBC2 is building stoolball into ‘Escape to the Country’, which meets a married couple from Surrey looking to start a new life somewhere in East Sussex.

At fairly short notice we were required to produce a mixed team to perform in front of the cameras in the beautiful setting of East Dean and Friston Cricket Club which is situated on the road leading down to Birling Gap and Beachy Head. This is an area renowned for its beauty, its sheep centre and from the cricket club ground there is an outstanding view of the Belle Tout lighthouse.

This was a glorious summer’s evening where a well turned out Trojans mixed team from the Eastbourne Red Triangle League entertained us and provided the opportunity for the husband and wife team to find out about the game of stoolball. The wife, who was left handed, was a self-confessed “non-sporty” person while the husband was involved with his local cricket club in Surrey. You will be able to see how they coped with the challenge of playing stoolball when the programme is shown later this year.

On completion of the filming everyone, including the Trojans team and the BBC filming crew, retired to the local pub for a well deserved drink. Even here the game had attracted the interest of a couple visiting England from Europe who had passed the ground while the game was being played and wanted to know all about stoolball.

Our thanks go to Trina Perry and all the members of the Trojans team, Dave Windsor and the East Dean & Friston Cricket Team who loaned us their ground for the evening, the BBC crew who made everything happen, the married couple from Surrey who were such good sports and everyone else who made this a memorable evening.

Tags: eastbourne, media