East Grinstead is a small market town in West Sussex with more of its fair share of medieval buildings. In fact, it is said to have the longest continuous stretch of timber-framed buildings in England. It is also known as ‘The town that does not stare’! The reason for this is that pioneering plastic surgeon Sir Archibald McIndoe was based here during World War 2 and was instrumental in developing surgery techniques for soldiers who were badly burnt – he also encouraged the townspeople to interact with these wounded men until seeing the was so commonplace that no one stared. The Waterstones here is in a modern building – London Road was badly bombed during a raid in 1943 and the current buildings were put up as replacements so I think it probably dates from the late 1940s or 1950s.
East Grinstead is the home of Sackville College, which is an Almshouse founded in 1609 by Robert Sackville for the poor. It is still a charitable institution today, providing affordable sheltered accommodation for senior citizens. Outside it stands a statue to Archibald McIndoe.
The inscription at the foot of the statue reads:
Currently reading: A Sky Painted Gold by Laura Wood and listening to The Hanging Garden (Inspector Rebus #9) by Ian Rankin