Fairlight

Keith Pollard,
Brookfield, Broadway

In church on Sunday… There’s to be a Morning Praise service at St Andrew’s at 10.30 am, with the service being led by Jill Streeter, and with Hilary Malpass as the speaker. Later, at St Peter’s at 6.00 pm, there is an Informal Holy Communion service which be led by either Rev Kay Burnett or Rev Richard Barron. As I write, I’m not yet sure which of them will be officiating!

Don’t forget… that British Summer Time ends in the small hours of Sunday 28 October, when the clocks go back from 2.00 am to 1.00 am. So, if you’re doing something pleasant from 1 until 2, you can do it all again, and it won’t cost you a minute! And then we’re stuck with the darkness of Greenwich Mean Time until March 30 next year.

Got it a bit wrong… Everything that was said last week about the Bowls Club Coffee Morning was right – the home-made cakes, the jewellery, greetings cards and various games of chance including, at around 11 am, the ever-popular couple of rounds of bingo – except for the date. In a risky phraseology, I said it would be ‘tomorrow’ and failed to add ‘week’. So, it is, now, tomorrow, Saturday 27 from 10 am to 12 noon in the village hall. Don’t miss it, now it is here! My apologies to the couple who, in Boxing Day sales style, have been waiting for the hall doors to open since 9.45 am last Saturday!

Can you fit it all in…? Almost concurrent with the coffee morning, there is a special meeting in Pett village hall from 10.30 am to 12.30 pm to give all residents the knowledge of what they can do to stave off the downgrading of the Ridge Fire Station. Those high up the fire service hierarchy ladder seem to know, like Oscar Wilde’s cynic, the price of everything and the value of nothing. An extra five minutes attending to a fire call on or outside the eastern fringes of Hastings could easily cost lives. Why is it, in the 21st century, that it suddenly becomes acceptable to downgrade everything (like A and E, for instance) to levels that are a little third-worldish? (Though with hand-outs, their systems are probably better than ours already… ) If you would like more details of the Pett meeting, ring either Sandie Bell on 07834 997216 or Mark Brown on 07814 492943

The Wednesday Keep Fit Club… is seeking a qualified exercise teacher to take over the leadership of the exercises. The reason for this is that, after many years, their qualified teacher Barbara is retiring at the early age of 81. What an advert! If you know of anyone who fits the bill and would be interested in taking her place, would you please email Jill Lewing at jill.lewing@btinternet.com and she will get back to you. The club meets every Wednesday morning for an hour and a half, and rewards itself with a coffee morning at the end of each month.

Craft Fair, weather poor… the village hall’s Craft Fair suffered badly at the hands of most unpleasant weather, plus the counter-attraction of other events taking place in the village. The stall holders certainly deserved better support, but it was only very late on that the heavens relented, by which time too many people must have decided to give it a miss.

News of Fairlight News… The editorial team are gathering together the latest contributions for the December to February edition of the Fairlight News magazine. Could you please send any item for your group, club or society to the Sub-Editor, Ken Hall, who, not surprisingly, is at ken.hall2@virgin.net. Your copy should reach Ken by the end of October.

The talk on the British Legion… which The Tuesday Ladies Club were expecting to enjoy never happened because their speaker had flu and couldn’t attend. Trevor Lewing gallantly stepped into the breach and told those present about his role as archivist for the Residents’ Association. He is aiming to do a Fairlight scrapbook for the momentous year of 2012 and requested any suitable photographs and information for inclusion. Additionally he is collecting any old photos and documents about Fairlight for the archives. The archive talk was followed by Darren from Wiltshire Farm Foods who told of the history of the firm, whose vans are often to be seen in the village, and all this while the samples were cooking. The company has very comprehensive booklets, and they cater for all dietary requirements. P.S. The samples on offer were absolutely delicious.

Richard’s last round-up… Highways Officer Richard Pollard has submitted his final report before he leaves the village. Among other tings, he comments on the catchment drains, especially on the lower half of Battery Hill, are constantly becoming blocked up with debris coming down the hill with the rain water. These have been reported several times to Highways and although they have been out on each occasion to clear them, the problem still remains, and the powers that be are seeking a permanent solution.

The 40 mph roundel road markings at either end of the Battery Hill speed limitation area were missed off the schedule when the other lines were put down, but the Road Safety Team have determined that these are not necessary and so will not be added to the scheme!

The chevron signs warning of a bend in the road at the junction of Warren Road and Battery Hill as the Road Safety Team state that the bend is not severe enough. (Just check with the fellow who drove into the garage on that bend!) However, thanks must go to Cllr Andrew Meir and County Cllr Carl Maynard for having a sign installed on a post prior to the bend indicating ‘Bend’, and Cllr Maynard has also been instrumental in mark ‘Slow’ on the road prior to the bend.

The south side of Fairlight Road is always breaking away and getting pot-holed between the entrance to ‘Hysted’ and Martineau Lane. The County Council have consented to make good the area permanently, but these essential works come at a smallish price. Fairlight Road will have to be closed completely for three nights while the surface is built up and replaced.

This means that no traffic will be allowed on the top road for the duration of the work. Unfortunately, there is no other way around this problem - you either have the road completely closed at night for three nights to make a good job of the repairs, or the road stays as it is and there’s no road closure. It is noticeable that, where sections of this side of Fairlight Road hace Kerbstones, the road surface is much better. The planned closure will not affect buses, and Richard has had the assurance that all emergency services will be able to pass through the works unhindered.

Over the past few years the Parish Council has bought a number salt/grit bins, but it appears that they have been deemed ‘not fit for purpose’. Replacement bins, ready filled, will be delivered before the end of November, and all this free of charge.

Richard’s attention to detail, and his persistence, will be missed!

Closing down sale… The Gardening Club hut is open for the last time tomorrow, but only for the next three months, as they’ll be back in business from the first Saturday in February. To tide you over until then, pop along between 10 am and 12 noon tomorrow for all your Fairlight winter gardening needs – thigh-length waders, sou’ westers, Mae West life jackets, emergency flares and so on.

South of the Gardening Club hut… the unmade road has developed a myriad of lakes, two of them quite large and right across the road. It has been suggested that, at the each end of the water, some five yards apart, someone should erect signs saying ‘Ford.’ This is unlikely to happen because, being Fairlight, extra signs would be needed saying ‘Cars of other makes are also permitted.’ I think this may be maligning our residents unfairly.

Luke back, in anger…? No, not at all. The timid Italian greyhound, Luke, not so much missing as uncatchable round the village for a while recently, was finally entrapped, clearly for his own good, by Jim and Pete. There is a movie record of this uncertain creature coming back to safety, and ready for home comforts. If it becomes available on YouTube, I’ll let you know.

Some welly for the telly… Cllr Rev Val Gibbs has taken up the cudgels on behalf of all those in the village who suffer from the very weak TV signal in Fairlight (as opposed to the weak programmes!) She has been in touch with Digital UK, who agree about the weakness, and also that no amount of new aerials or digi-boxes will improve matters. They also agree that as Digital TV was forced upon us, we can rightly expect a much better signal. The next step they suggest is that we complain, saying that we will have a stronger case if as many folk as possible enter complaints Write snail mail, or e-mail if you prefer. There is an assurance that all letters will be answered. The complaints will then be passed on to OFCOM who will take up the issue. The snail address is Digital UK, P.O. Box 26833, Kirkcaldy, KY2 9AG, and the e-mail is help@digitaluk-contact.co.uk.

Following on, Cllr Val says some people have already contacted Digital UK and have had a far from satisfactory response. They have been told that this is a good reception area or that you need a new aerial etc. This is not at all true! When she checked with Digital UK again, to complain about their response, she was assured that all complaints would be passed on to OFCOM on Monday morning (that’s last Monday.) We shall see! The Parish Council, which met last Tuesday, is fully behind this initiative to secure better TV reception for us all.

Murder Mystery solved… The Players’ latest foray into the world of Murder Mystery had a very pleasant outcome last Saturday, with 107 souls consuming a delicious hot meal while they solved the puzzle of ‘Who Killed the Director’? The cast acquitted themselves admirably though, of course, the guilty were not acquitted at all. It seems several would like this to become an annual affair, and as the event was sold out and had a waiting list running, plus the fact that several faces entirely new to the Am Dram experience in the village came and enjoyed the evening, they could well be right. No doubt the committee will talk it over. Meanwhile, back at the ranch, tickets for their opener for the 2012-13 season – And This Was Odd, from 8 to 10 November – are on sale now at Fairlight Post Office, at £6 a time.