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Sue Chipperfield, Singer: Five things I LOVE about Jersey

Sue Chipperfield, Singer: Five things I LOVE about Jersey

Friday 17 April 2020

Sue Chipperfield, Singer: Five things I LOVE about Jersey


Having worked as a teacher for more years than she cares to say, Sue Chipperfield is now enjoying retirement and, before lockdown, was busy as ever. But staying at home hasn’t stopped her making the most of every day.

“I sing with a local choir, The Holmchase Singers, but whilst we have been unable to meet other than by Zoom, I am also enjoying singing with the local online choir Aureole. I have just submitted my contribution to the first two songs, which are going to be released soon.

"I am currently the Club Correspondent for the Inner Wheel Club, which is associated with the Rotary Club. I usually produce a monthly bulletin for members, but have increased this to fortnightly whilst we are unable to meet."

Whilst at home, she's also decided to upgrade her 30-year-old kitchen, so her husband, Cliff, has been busy painting. Here, Sue takes a break from their lockdown DIY project to share her thoughts on Jersey...

1. The coastline 

Our coastline is so varied with the cliff paths to the North and endless rocky vistas of the South East at low tide, but my favourite bit has got to be the five mile stretch of St Ouen's Bay.

The view coming down the hill from either L'Etacq or La Pulente is one I could look at every day.

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Pictured: St Ouen's Bay is Sue's favourite stretch of Jersey's coastline. 

I also love the view of Havre des Pas as you come down from Mount Bingham and the walk or cycle from St Aubin to St Helier.

Add to that the changes that occur over the seasons and you have a never-ending choice.

2. The Jersey accent 

When I first went to London to study for my degree, the taxi driver taking me from Victoria to my halls of residence could not work out my accent. He guessed at Australian and South African but was amazed when I said I was from Jersey – he hadn't heard of it!

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Pictured: The Jersey accent has previously been likened to that of South Africa. 

Fast forward a few years and everyone's response on hearing I was from Jersey was 'Ah Bergerac'!

I can accentuate my accent but have lost it a bit now, but if I'm out and about in St Ouen, I catch snippets of the real accent and also some Jèrriaise. I always meant to learn but never have!

3. The honorary system 

I know it comes in for a lot of ribbing but it is such a unique and special thing about Jersey that I would hate for it to disappear. I love that the Connétable is considered the 'father or mother' of the Parish and that people are willing to give up their time to serve their Parish and the wider community.

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Pictured: Two honoraries in a recent recruitment campaign for the Honorary Police  

I love the local 'branchage' inspections and the fact that you can get fined for having an overhanging tree! It really transports me back to a gentler time, when people were more community focused and looked out for their neighbours.

I think over the past few weeks some of that spirit is coming back into our community – let's hope we can keep it.

4. Close but far 

On an island roughly 9 miles by 5 miles, you would think that having lived here for over 50 years, I would know it like the back of my hand. Confession - the last time I was ‘out East’ was last summer after a rib trip with visiting friends, when we stopped off on the way home (to the West) for something to eat - great view of Mont Orgueil – see point 1.

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Pictured: Despite its small size, Sue can still get lost in Jersey's green lanes. 

‘Lost in St Lawrence’ is another favourite game that I sometimes play when I decide not to follow the main roads but to cut across ‘the middle’ –­ I admit my sense of direction is not great. And here’s another admission – I get lost in St Ouen as well!

5. Punching above our weight 

When my sons were growing up, one was into drama and the other into sport. The opportunities afforded to both of them were amazing, allowing one to participate in some brilliant productions with the Youtheatre, and ultimately study for an acting degree, and the other to represent his school, island and county in numerous sports.

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Pictured: The Jersey Arts Centre and Opera House showcase a variety of local talent. 

 The tireless efforts of teachers and coaches in Jersey means that we have a fantastic standard in both the arts and sporting activities. Whilst most of the work done is voluntary, I believe that it is essential for these to be supported and funded by the Government of Jersey.

If you don’t agree, go to a local production at the Arts Centre or Opera House or attend a sporting event once they start up again.

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