Welcome to the Surrey Weald village of Newdigate. We are located between the towns of Dorking, Reigate and Horsham, the latter being in the county of West Sussex. We are a vibrant rural community of around 1800 inhabitants and although only 24 miles from Central London the village treasures its peaceful rural surroundings and culture. Even today farming is very much in evidence with crops of Barley, Oats and Wheat being grown in the heavy clay soil.
Considerable historic research about Newdigate has been undertaken by our Local History Society, click here to discover more.
Richard Taylor-Jones recently gave an excellent talk ‘Filming the Wild’ to a packed audience in Newdigate Village Hall. Richard, who was introduced at the talk by his aunt, Newdigate resident Sheila Taylor –Jones, is a wild life camera man for the BBC. He is often seen and heard on programmes such as Spring Watch, Country File and the One Show. He was a good friend of the late Johnny Kingdom, from whom Richard learnt much of his wildlife knowledge. He works often with wildlife experts such as Chris Packham, and Lolo Williams and has a book of photographs taken at the Wildfowl and Wetlands Centre at Slimbridge with a forward by Bill Oddie.
Richard has always been passionate about wildlife and had decided by the age of 14 that this was the way his career would go. He studied hard at school before going to Nottingham University and taking a degree in Zoology. He worked for a while as a tea boy with the BBC before managing to get into the camera team.
He showed a short film of Peregrine Falcons in Woking dropping dead prey in order to teach their young to catch prey. There was a film about kingfishers overwintering in Ramsgate harbour, catching fish and crustaceans in the rock pools. He also showed one unsuccessful attempt at filming an owl in flight where he lay down and covered himself with grass with the camera at the end of a walking stick.
Richard brought along the camera he uses, a huge piece of equipment, which he says is very heavy to carry and which will be quite a burden as he gets older. He is diversifying more into still photographs and has his own gallery down at Deal in Kent where he lives.
Richard is very laid back and easy to listen to. He was a big hit with his audience and many commenting that they would very pleased to welcome him back for another talk in the future.
Newdigate Community Centre is continuing to run a café in the Village Hall, RH55DA on the second Tuesday of each month. This is open to all from toddlers to pensioners. The Baby Belles, toddler group, have kindly agreed lend toys to any toddlers who might bring their mums. Come and have a cup of tea or coffee with a biscuit or hot buttered bun. Entrance is free but donations are requested to cover the cost of the refreshments. Any surplus money will go to the maintenance of the Village Hall. The café is open from 10.00am until noon. You will be guaranteed a warm welcome.
Any offers of help or suggestions please phone 01306 631115 or 631391
Interactive Map of Newdigate
Run your mouse pointer over the map until an area highlights in red and then click to view a photo