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Church matters: This Sunday, December 13, there will be a service of Holy Communion at St Peter’s, commencing at 8 am and led by the Rev Kay Burnett. An informal Family Celebration service follows at St Andrew’s at 10.30 am. This service, with Carols, is for those who like to worship in the morning as usual or who cannot manage Carols by Candlelight. Families will be particularly welcome and the Junior Church will take part. At 4 pm, there will be Carols by Candlelight at St Andrew’s, and refreshments will be available after this service.

There is a further Carols by Candlelight service for those eager to enjoy a surfeit of carols (much better for you than a surfeit of lampreys – just ask Henry!), and this will be at St Laurence, Guestling, starting at 6 pm.

MOPPs: Today, Friday, December 11, there’s a Christmas Table Sale to enjoy, and Carols with MOPPs Chairman Jim Saphin. There’s free toe-nail cutting, too, but I don’t suppose that counts as entertainment. Lunch today is cottage pie with meringue, fruit and cream for afters. Next week, the entertainment at MOPPs Christmas Party is by organist Brian Howard, and there’ll be free hearing aid maintenance available, too. The lunch will be a traditional Christmas Dinner, with all the trimmings.

Activate Youth Club: The Club has had an exciting few weeks since they resumed after the summer holiday. Tuesday nights have included glow tag rugby, a mad quiz, physical challenges, a night walk through the woods, cooking and more. Thursday nights are more relaxed, full of music, chat and friends. Meanwhile, Busyart have been pleased to have Anne and Julie come along to help on Mondays, and have had great fun making plaster hangers, beautiful leaf pictures and a great Guy Fawkes collage among other things. They loved making giant snowmen, which provided a wintry scene for Father Christmas at the Village Hall Fair last Saturday. Busyart will be breaking up next Monday, December 13, but will be starting again on Monday, January 15.

The Village Choir: The Choir held a concert at Pett Parish Church recently, in aid of St Michael’s Hospice. All enjoyed a great evening with extra help from Andy Knight on drums and Ken Hatch on guitar along with Roland Friday, the choir’s excellent accompanist, who also contributed some keyboard solos.

They will be helping at a Christmas concert for the Dementia Society on Sunday, December 12 at Blacklands, which will include various choirs from around the town as well as some soloists. If you fancy a musical night out this would fit the bill. The Choir set the Christmas scene at POPPs, and will also be at Pett Church Christmas Fair earlier on December 12. It’ll be a busy day!

Wendy and all present members would love to see any of you who fancy a good sing – it’s good for Mondays, 7-30pm at Pett Methodist Church. We will be having a rest for the rest of December and January, but will restart in February.

Fairlight Gardening Club: had their final meeting of the year last Monday, welcoming local historian and author Haydon Luke who gave a very entertaining and informative talk on ‘High Days and Holidays in Fairlight’. Haydon took club members on an interesting trip through the history of recreation in Fairlight, beginning by describing the attraction of the landscape to the townsfolk of the 18th Century right through to the middle of the 1960s when people enjoyed the beaches at the foot of the cliffs. Haydon’s talk encouraged many of those present to reminisce about their early days in Fairlight and lots of enthusiastic chatter ensued!

2015 has been another successful year for the Gardening Club with their well-attended Summer Show and the ‘Brightening up the Village’ project which has been very well received. The pots around the village are now full of spring bulbs and the Circle planting is complete, so we all look forward to watching the plants grow and blossom!

UK Power Networks: Those responsible for delivering our electricity have been publicising their Priority Services Register, which can provide extra support to those who register for such support.

Who can register to receive this extra support?

The elderly, those dependent on medical equipment or who have a disability or young children. There is a more complete definition on the supplier’s website. And

what sort of help could you expect to get during a power cut if you were registered?

A priority number that you can call 24 hours a day if you suffer a power cut; regular text messages or phone updates during a power cut;

extra support from the Network’s partners, such as the British Red Cross, to visit your home during an emergency (but they’ll check this is OK with you first)

You can register by email to PSR@ukpowernetworks.co.uk or call them on 0800 169 9970

The Village Hall Winter Fair: Last Saturday’s Winter Fair raised, on first count, something over £1,500, and this excellent figure could well rise even higher when various donations are added in. An enjoyable event, with a number of new style stalls to catch the eye and the pounds, was well patronised throughout the three hour opening span.

The RSPCA Christmas Fayre: Just over a week away is the RSPCA’s Fayre, coming up on Saturday, December 19 from 10 am to 1 pm. The admission charge of 50p will secure you a cuppa, be it tea or coffee, and biscuits. Among the attractions will be Christmas gifts, china and glass collectables, toys and games, dress jewellery, Father Christmas and a clairvoyant, raffles and much more. Anything you spend at the Fayre will be supporting the Sussex East and Hastings branch of the RSPCA (Dogs and Cats), and you’d be surprised how many local residents are extra happy to have a re-homed dog or cat as part of their family. This is charity we remember and love from days gone by, fully functioning at grass-roots level.

Tuesday Ladies Club: Next Tuesday, the Club’s December meeting will be their Christmas Tea, with carols supplied by favourite Jim Saphin. The fun starts at 2.15 pm, and is a members only event.

Pre-Christmas at the Cove: On Wednesday, December 23, just two days before the Big Day, there’s a special quiz at the Cove, starting at 7.30 pm. While Christmas day is always busy, busy, busy, and Christmas Eve is just as busy, seeing the lady of the house finalising a myriad of preparations while the man starts his Christmas shopping, the day before is more relaxed. Get in the mood with this entertaining quiz!

On the telly news: Monday’s teatime news included an excellent report from the village, with Preservation Trust Chairman Paul Capps to the fore. Rother Council Cabinet had agreed to discuss the ‘Stage 3’ proposals in full council, which will be on Monday next, December 14. In short, this is a life and death moment – for the village, with the proposed third berm sealing the gap between the existing granite and limestone berms at Sea Road and Rockmead Road. The Trust, along with the fulsome support of the Parish Council, have committed to a combined contribution of £150,000. Even with Stage 3 in place and completed, the village is likely to lose 22 housing units in the next 100 years. However, without it the loss would be of the order of 183 losses. Individual support has bee very good, but there is still time to chip in whatever you can manage. Contact the Preservation Trust Treasurer, Nick Booker, Highfield, Hill Road, Fairlight, or give him a call on 812929. Please.

The Neighbourhood Plan: Survey forms that enable residents to record what priorities they would like to see in the village have been delivered to each property in Fairlight. The forms were also available at the Village Hall Christmas Fair last Saturday, together with Councillor presence to give guidance on their completion. There are three voucher prizes on offer, for £25, £15 and £10, which will be awarded to three lucky recipients at random. Despite this incentive, Cllr Stephen Leadbetter feels that more completed forms should be attainable from the usually highly committed residents – and hence this reminder. You have until Friday, December 18, a week today, to submit your form. If you’ve lost or can’t find yours, please contact Stephen either by phone to 812890, or by email to stephen.leadbetter@hotmail.co.uk, or, for the tech. savvy, by completing the pdf version available on the Council’s website, within fairlight.org.uk

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