Notorious highwayman rides again

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A notorious highwayman - rumoured to have given his name to the town of Haywards Heath - is once more making his presence felt.

Jack Hayward terrorised the community as he rode the original Heath, connected to Clair Park off Perrymount Road, Haywards Heath.

The legend of his audacious raids have been carried down the centuries by locals.

And now an original signpost depicting Jack has been salvaged and restored to its former glory.

The original was sadly removed in the early fifties but Jack now once more stands proudly in Heath Road where he would, according to legend, have rode the original heath.

The restoration project was launched by Haywards Heath town councillors who were keen to bring the local folklore legend back to life for residents and visitors to the town.

The restoration work itself was undertaken by local blacksmith RJW Bradshaw who was set the task of capturing the silhouette of the highwayman Jack.

Councillor Sandy Ellis said: “Whether Jack Hayward is a myth, folklore or legend we must try and preserve our local history for future generations.

“The project also raises the important message of recycling materials and objects, including historical artefacts such as this, to keep the theme of our street scenes alive.