Local actress Sarah Gordy stars in a film where the county town also plays a major role.
Time Slip is a period drama that was shot on location in Lewes.
It’s the brainchild of The Oyster Project, the Lewes charity founded and run by creative people with disabilities. The ethos is about taking part and working together, developing skills to make things happen.
It certainly made things happen for Sarah in this first film produced by the charity.
Time Slip tells the poignant story of a girl with Down’s syndrome in the 1920s – when the expectations of someone with the condition were harshly in contrast with what would be expected today.
The movie was given a special screening at The Pelham House Hotel where the Mayor of Lewes, Cllr Ruth O’Keeffe, described it as “very moving”.
Sarah, 36, has Down’s syndrome herself. She is best known for her portrayal of Lady Pamela Holland in the 2010 BBC TV series of Upstairs Downstairs. Her character’s reunion with her beloved brother, Sir Hallam, formed the heart-rending finale to the first series and provided a stark reminder of the way things were done ‘back then’.
Hidden away in a mental asylum because her Down’s syndrome would bring shame on the family, Lady Pamela lived a solitary half-life with only her cherished photographs for company.
Her performance as Lady Pamela was a milestone and won her widespread acclaim. The nation was gripped as her character returned to her rightful home at 165 Eaton Place.
Sarah’s love of acting began when she was a student at Sussex Downs College in Lewes, and her big break came when she landed a role in the ITV series Peak Practice.
She subsequently landed other one-off TV roles. In 2006 she played the leading role in a touring theatre production, Seize the Day, with the Hijinx Theatre.
Her co-star in Time Slip is another local actress with Down’s syndrome, Lucy Hendey Graham, who also attended the screening.
Elsewhere, Sarah has a leading role in The Gift of Light, a crowd-funded movie in which she plays the sympathetic role of a cheerful hippy who helps a troubled dancer get her life back on the rails.
Her mother, Jane Gordy, acts as her personal assistant, travelling with her and helping her with her lines.
She has said: “The interesting thing about Sarah is she doesn’t really act. She feels very emotional on set. She can’t fake emotion, so instead she believes everything about her character.”