Annual General Meeting & Debate – 5.30pm Thursday 29th October 2015 – Lewes Town Hall

Theme: Generation R?

Guest speakers:

  • Sue Chalkley, Chief Executive of Hastoe Housing Association, one of the foremost providers of affordable homes in rural England
  • Mike Hopkins, Principal of Sussex Downs College in Lewes and Eastbourne

Who are Generation R? Young adults born in the 1990s. Generation Rent?  Generation Recession?  Burdened with rural bus fares, re-payable tuition fees, rising rents and unpaid work experience.  Generation Rural!

But, Generation R can also be realistic and enterprising. They are connected, energetic and driving an economic recovery with a new kind of sharing, Kickstarter fuelled, entrepreneurship.  Or, perhaps they are Generation Renaissance, re-discovering wider ethical values; maybe even rejecting the personal self-absorption and consumerism of the decade before they were born?  Generation Ready, ready to create something better.

They are also the people who will have to generate the wealth needed to meet the nation’s pension and care obligations for the longest living and most demanding generations in history: their parents and grandparents!  And how does it feel to be their parents?  Have Generation R become the: ‘Return-home’ Generation, as house prices in the South East get further and further out of reach?

Who, then, are the 16 to 26 year olds of today in rural Sussex, what kind of County have they inherited and what kind of County will they create?  What space have their parents’ generation left for them? 

Are there careers and housing available for them in rural Sussex?  Indeed, can they afford to live in rural Sussex at all?

This is the theme for Action in rural Sussex’s Annual General meeting.  We will present evidence drawn from our work with rural families and from the Neighbourhood Planning projects that we have supported across Sussex.  We will be assisted in the debate by two speakers with strong views and very different perspectives about the pressures and opportunities facing those who were born in the 1990s:

We want to re-define how we understand this generation and, for those trying to make a life in our rural villages, think through how they can be better supported.  Can we provide better and more relevant careers advice, affordable access to housing, opportunities for work and communities of which they want to remain a part.  Or perhaps older generations are more comfortable with younger people drifting away and only coming back when they can afford the entry fee?

Please note formal AGM papers will be sent out to members separately.

To book a place at this event please complete the Attendance Form and return it to:

Claire Reynolds
Tel: (01273) 407305 E-mail:

Venue Details: Lewes Town Hall, High Street, Lewes, East Sussex, BN7 2Q5

Lewes Town Hall Location Map:

“Supporting rural communities in Sussex to be vibrant and diverse places in which to live and work.”