Fairlight village voice

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In church this Sunday, July 1 – at St Andrew’s at 10.30am, there will be an All Age Service, which will be led by Sheila Hornsby.

Exciting news from the Church in Fairlight… It has just been announced that a new Rector has been appointed to the Fairlight and Pett Benefice. He is the Reverend Richard Barron, and he and his wife Kath have two grown up children (one of them married) and one grandchild. Richard’s leisure interests are horticulture and he is a very keen gardener, (so he should appreciate the special Fairlight micro-climate,) and Kath teaches the piano. They come to us from Greenhythe in Kent where they have lived and worked in the local parish church for the past 22 years. They will be moving into the Rectory on Battery Hill in early October, with a special licensing service to come towards the end of that month. There will, no doubt, be much more news to come on this pleasing appointment.

Bowls Club Tournament… the renowned Open Tournament which the Bowls Club holds each year will be taking place on Sunday July 1, starting at 9.30 am. The event always attracts many teams from the local area and, apart from a good day’s bowling, it is arranged principally as a fund raiser. This year, as last, the beneficiaries will be ‘Help the Heroes’ and the Club would dearly like to beat the exceptional £1,500 which was raised last summer. Why not pop along to the Bowling Green on Sunday, have a cup of tea, watch some bowling and perhaps buy a raffle ticket to support this very worthwhile cause. You have all the time between 9.30 am and the finish at about 5.30 pm. The Brickwall Hotel in Sedlescombe is once again the event’s generous sponsor.

Gardening Club talk… Get ready for an interesting talk from Roger Hambrook at 2.30 pm in the village hall on Monday next, July 2, on the subject of ‘The Secrets and Practice of Friary Gardeners’. You’re sure to be able to spare one afternoon away from preparing your exhibits for the Summer Show on Saturday, July 14. A box will be placed in the Post Office shortly for your entries. Not the flowers, fruit and veg. themselves, but the slips of paper showing the classes you are going for!

Let’s see a show… Christine Jones’ ‘Fairlight Outings’ is arranging a trip to see a 2.30 pm matinée performance of the show ‘Top Hat’ at the London’s Aldwych Theatre, on Tuesday, October 30. Tickets are £35.00 plus price of coach, etc. with the final price yet be calculated. The coach will leave Fairlight about 10.45 am with other pick-ups to be arranged. There will be time for a meal after the show and the coach will leave London for home at 8 pm.

And while we’re on the subject of shows, there are just two tickets left for the Classical Spectacular at the Royal Albert Hall on Sunday, November 25 at 3 pm. The price is £54.00 for each ticket, all inclusive. Boxes at the Royal Albert Hall have been booked and it is a grand patriotic affair. Coach leaves Fairlight 10.45 am with other pick-ups to be arranged. As for Top Hat, you’ll have time to eat after the show before the coach leaves London at 8 pm. For either or both trips, give Christine a call on 813538.

Cutting up rough…Parish Councillor Richard Pollard, along with other residents of the village residents and our County Councillor have all been busy trying to remedy the problem of the long grass on verges and the weeds in gutters. Now Cllr Pollard has had an email East Sussex County Council which promises that action is to be taken this week, weather permitting, of course. It states that a contractor has been appointed to pull persistent weeds in Bramble Way, Heather Way, Smugglers Way, and Shepherds Way and he will also be undertaking a full herbicide weed application in Fairlight in advance of our county wide application due to start in July. Grass cutting is also due to start some time this week (again depending on the weather). You probably know already that the County Council is responsible for adopted highways, including verges. However, the Parish Council cuts the Circle and the verge opposite the Post Office under licence from County)

Planning ahead… Rother Council’s Head of Planning has sent a letter to the Clark to the Parish Council, reminding us that the new charges for information (£12 per enquiry per site) and Permitted Development enquiries (£35 for domestic and £48 for any other) came into effect from 1 May. They are now in a position to activate charges for pre-application advice commencing on July 1, and as it is both comprehensive and complex, you could do yourself a planning favour by reading their new booklet, Planning Pre-Application Advice Guidance Note. For most domestic applications the price is not exactly cheap, but the guidance that you would receive could prevent an outright rejection, and could ensure that any hurdles you might encounter are minimised. It really could pay to be fore-warned! First contact should be via www.rother.gov.uk

The Players’ AGM… When we moved into Fairlight’s Broadway some eight years ago, there came a Saturday evening when there were more parked cars in the road was than we had seen thus far. Asking afterwards what had been going on, we were told it was the Players’ AGM. Which seemed unusual at first sight, but we have since learned that members are traditionally encouraged to attend by means of free entertainment and food. And this year that custom continued with the ‘End of the Pier Show’, a polished hark back to the days of songs, comic songs and black-out sketches, most of them descendants of Max Miller’s Blue Book material, saucy but not offensive, and still milder and far more amusing than much of what passes for comedy on TV today. The show was followed by an ‘End of the Pier’ supper, with burgers and hot dogs, fried onions, cockles, whelks and jellied eels, fresh donuts and candy floss. All of which was highly nostalgic for all, but especially those who had spent some part of their earlier lives north of the Thames and east of the Tower of London. There were some 70 people present.

Woke up, it was a Fairlight morning… and this was Sunday, when the grey, overcast sky with a persistent thin mist was the last thing the organisers of the Midsummer Open Gardens wanted to see. But things improved gradually and steadily until, from late morning onwards, it was a really pleasant day. And countless people were soon to be seen driving or strolling between the ten village gardens open in aid of Fairlight First Responders, marvelling at the variety of horticultural displays on offer, and buying cream teas, books, trying air-dried sculpture and much else. Brian Gutsell with his tractor and trailer eased the strain of walking for several weary legs, (reportedly 90 of them – that’s 45 people) Dot James and Liz Brooker must be delighted with the first reports of the outcome, or rather income, which is put at £1,800. When the final tally is made, the figure may be higher. Thanks are due to all those whose gardens were open, and those who catered for the floating population’s needs on their rounds – and the Responders finished with no less than they deserved.

Keith Pollard, Brookfield, Broadway