Winchelsea

Art Exhibition: I expect you have already recorded it in your diary that the Annual Art Exhibition is open for viewing on Saturday and Sunday August 23rd to 24th from 10am to 6pm and on Monday 25th at 10am to 3.45pm, in the Lower Court Hall. Admission is free and there will be a raffle with great prizes. Included in the exhibition are paintings, photographs and pottery by local well-known artists, to view and buy, with many being quickly snapped up. The proceeds from the sale of the art work will go towards the maintenance of Winchelsea’s Millennium Artefacts.

Cellar Tours: An Under Winchelsea Cellar Tour has been arranged by Winchelsea Archaeological Society for Sunday August 24th at 2pm, meeting in Castle Street. The cost of £5 pp includes a guide book. Please ensure you are wearing sensible shoes. If you would like to take part the contact number to speak to a member of WAS is 01797 224446.

Garden Society: On Wednesday August 27th the Garden Society has arranged an afternoon guided visit to The Walled Nursery in Water Lane, Hawkhurst. To book your place you will need to contact Howard Norton (chairman) on 01797 226524 or email: howard@ryeview.net. In the setting of a walled garden with 13 Victorian glass houses this walled nursery contains many new species as well as traditional and staple plants. Over 90 per cent are grown from seed by specialist horticulturalists and they are available to give any gardening advice.

Garden Society talks: Chris Mears will be giving the next talk in the series of Summer Talks and this will be on Thursday August 28th at 3pm. The theme is ‘Making the most of an allotment’ at Back Lane Allotments.

Westside Story: Winchelsea Archeological Society will be leading its Westside Story walk of two miles next Sunday August 31st. This is a rare chance to trace the lost western defences and quarters of medieval Winchelsea in a walk lasting two hours across countryside normally closed to the public. The cost is £5 pp with proceeds to WAS and if you would like to come along the meeting place is German Street at 2pm.

Improvements to the New Inn: Greene King the brewery has put in a second application to repair the stable block in the courtyard of the New Inn. When this is completed the new tenants of the pub are intending to make full use of the rebuilt stables as part of changes which already include a new pub sign, an ice cream counter in the rear bar and refurbishment of the garden. It should be good!

Wreath laying: Churchwarden John Rodley has recently taken over from John Freeman as the local organiser for the poppy appeal. This means that John now organises the door-to-door collections, procures supplies and forwards accounts on completion but he made clear that he is not the representative of the British Legion. The first task is ordering the wreaths for laying at the War Memorial on Remembrance Sunday November 9th. John wishes to place the order in early September and last year’s orders came from the Parish Council, Mayor and Corporation, representatives of the Royal Navy and Royal Artillery, also the Church, School and Rotary, with personal wreaths for Richard Comotto and Peter Turner. The minimum donation level is set by the poppy appeal at approximately £17 to £18.50 which covers the cost of production only. Any additional donations would be greatly appreciated and payment will be requested on delivery of the wreath. However anyone can lay a wreath and obtain it from where they will without going through the current system. Moreover if anyone knows of a suitable RAF connection so that all three services could be included please let John Rodley know.

Winchelsea Summer Fete: The main event of the Winchelsea social calendar took place at the Cricket Ground on Saturday August 9th. The sun shone brightly and over 900 residents, visitors and friends turned up. The highlight was the Fun Dog Show where over 100 entrants queued for classes which included prettiest bitch, waggiest tail and best veteran, with Town Mayor Stephen Turner choosing the best in the show from the winners of all the classes. As in previous years, the event was supported by the music of the Battle Town Band and the National Trust with birds of prey had their stand which featured the work of the local rangers. The Pett Level rescue boat and Rye Sea Cadets both had stands, as did the town’s local plumbing engineer Plumbline who provided gas for the BBQ. A good mix of craft, gift and other stalls ensured the chance of finding that special item and the fun games and coconut shy kept everyone entertained for the afternoon. The teas were as always a great success, as was the BBQ with delicious burgers and sausages from Winchelsea Farm Kitchen. The Pimms Bar run by the Cricket Club was busy all afternoon as was the Tombola, Bottle Stall and Raffle with superb prizes donated by local businesses. Greatly appreciated were the efforts of the volunteers from the town who gave so generously of their time to support this event, together with the stallholders and visitors who made the event such a memorable occasion. Their efforts this year resulted in takings of just under £4,000, so after expenses of £1,200, the remaining balance of £2,800 will be distributed to local charities and good causes which will include The Pipewell Gate Appeal, The Friends of Winchelsea Church, The New Hall Maintenance Fund, The Pett Level Rescue Boat and the Rye Sea Cadets. A big thank you from the Organising Committee to everyone involved in helping, making and contributing cakes and tombola prizes which made the fete once again a big success.

Winchelsea Beach Table Sale: For the Bank Holiday weekend there will be a Table Sale on Saturday August 23rd at 11am in the Community Hall. Tables are £6 each. To book a table to sell your items you will need to ring 01797 224820. The proceeds from the event will go towards the Winchelsea Beach Community Association. My apologies for saying in last week’s Village Voice that this one was the last in the season. There is another Table Sale next week, Saturday August 30th, at the later time of 2pm. As usual it is in the Community Hall. Entrance cost to both Table Sales is 40p which includes tea and biscuits.

Cash Bingo: On Wednesday August 27th there will be an evening of Cash Bingo in the Community Hall. Friends and families are always welcome and the doors are open at 7pm for eyes down at 7.30pm.

Birds, Bugs and Bats: An evening stroll around Rye Harbour Nature Reserve is an exciting opportunity to take a closer look at some of the many nocturnal creatures in the area. The stroll is approximately two miles at dusk, meeting at 6.30pm on Wednesday August 27th in Rye Harbour car park. There is no need to book and as usual donations towards the Reserve would be appreciated.

Cindi Cogswell

31 Highfords, Icklesham