Stopham Bridge III

In Sussex there’s a bridge
Built in fourteen twenty-two
now closing on six hundred years
since its fine stones were new
It spans the river Arun
near Stopham Village where
it’s provided here a crossing
for local folk to share

And it is I think my favourite place
in Sussex where I live
somewhere I’ll return to and
to it my homage give
For it brings me an exuberance
of pure unbridled joy
I’ve had the pleasure of repeating
ever since I was a boy


Photo – Stopham Bridge, Sussex, UK – Jempics


Special Places


And then there are the special places
Favourites, I guess you’d say
Places where I can find myself
at whatever time of day

I can count them on five fingers
and name them every one
Some work what e’er the weather
but are always best in sun

There’s the beach hut down at Lancing
(that’s got to be the best)
Mainly because it’s by the sea
where I’ll always be at rest

Two are up the river trail
the first at Beeding Gap
Secluded, near the water
and perfect for a nap

The second’s somewhat further
so we’ll usually go by car
But once I walked to Stopham Bridge
(though from home it’s pretty far)

The Ring just has to be there
on top of Chanctonbury Hill
As the view it gives of Sussex Weald
fills me with wonder still

Then last, but certainly not the least
There’s my garden here at home
A favourite when with family
with friends or on my own

We all have special places
where we’ll go from time to time
I’m sure yours are just as wonderful
and are just as good as mine


Photo – the Sussex Weald from Chanctonbury Hill – Jempics

The Gatehouse

Hidden in the woods of Stopham House
The abandoned gatehouse hides
Its ruined gables slowly rot
With its collapsing sides

It’s yellowed stone, forgotten now
The overgrowth has swallowed
And saplings now all round about
Plant roots to quietly follow

Sad testament to Norman days
The Barttelot family lines
At Stopeham once resided
Back in Domesday times


Stopham is a hamlet in the district of Chichester, West Sussex, UK. The Domesday book of 1066 records a manor at Stopham or Stopeham. This has been in the hands of the Barttelot family since the Norman Conquest. They are now Baronets. Little is recorded of when the gatehouse was built or when it fell to ruins.

Stopham Bridge

The White Hart’s closed at Stopham Bridge
And no-one’s serving there
We were looking forward to that pint
And some wholesome country fayre
No matter though, the bridge remains
As always, ‘cross the Arun
A protected ancient monument now
A little sad, bereft and barren
Once a thoroughfare for all
On the Petworth Road Turnpike
Its transepts now reserved for tourists
Taking Selfies and suchlike.


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