Winchelsea village voice

Doodlebugs and Rockets is the subject of the Second Wednesday Society’s coming meeting on Wednesday 14th March. Bob Ogley will be giving the talk on the Battle of the Flying Bombs which will be at 2.30 pm in the New Hall.

When the lent Discussion Group next meets on Wednesday 14th March it will be in St Thomas’s Church rather than 2 High Street (as previously advertised). This is due to larger numbers attending the group. The sessions which are chaired by David Page start from 7 to 8.30 pm and this week’s theme is entitled A Beleaguered Church? Contemporary issues such as ‘lack of faith’ schools and young people growing up in a less than Christian society were discussed along with concerns surrounding assisted suicide. The Christian perspective in these issues is that we serve a living God who will help those that call upon him.

Rye, Winchelsea and District Association of the National Trust is holding a Talk on Thursday 15th March at 2.30 pm in Beckley Village Hall. The Talk this month is ‘My Childhood in Holland under German Occupation’ and is presented by Bill van Draat. There is an entrance fee of £2 (members) and £3 (non-members) which includes refreshments after the talk.

Don’t forget that the weekly Quiz Evening at the New Inn takes place on Thursday 15th March at 8.30 pm. Entry cost is £1 and the prize is a £25 bar tab.

Winchelsea Literary Society will be meeting on Friday 16th March at 7 for 7.30 in the Court Hall. John Smith will be giving a talk and poetry reading on ‘Blue Remembered Hills’. This title is taken from A.E. Housman’s 1896 poem: “Into my heart an air that kills; From yon far country blows; What are those blue remembered hills...” Now living in Iden, John Smith is a linguist who has been a lecturer in German and a translator from that and other modern languages.  After retirement, he worked as a Registrar, conducting weddings at Rye Town Hall and elsewhere locally.  When he gave this talk in Iden last year it was received with great acclaim and the Literary Society are very grateful to him for agreeing to repeat it in Winchelsea. The evening will include the Literary Society Annual General Meeting with brief reports on the past year, a financial report and the election of officers and a committee for the coming year.

On Saturday 17th March Winchelsea Methodist Chapel will be celebrating St Patrick’s Day with a visit from the Revd Roger Leslie, a former minister in the circuit. It was suggested that you don’t have to wear green but be there at 10 am for coffee as the talk will begin at 10.30 am. Winchelsea Archaeological Society is meeting in the Court Hall on Saturday 17th March at 3 pm and all are welcome to come along. There will be a talk by Dr Gill Draper (British Association of Local History) on, ‘Early Towns in Kent & Sussex: The Place of the Cinque Ports’.

The Bowls Club are holding a Quiz in the New Hall on Saturday 17th March beginning at 7.30 pm. Tables of six should be booked in advance as soon as possible (contact 01797 224339). The entry fee is £8 per person and this includes two courses of refreshments.

Malcolm Pratt’s new book, Winchelsea Poor Law Records 1790-1841 is to be published by the Sussex Record Society, probably next autumn but possibly in early 2013. The book includes transcripts of many documents from the archives of St Thomas’s Church, of Winchelsea Corporation and of the Rye Poor Law Union of which Winchelsea became part after 1834. The documents selected for inclusion focus upon and reveal much about the lives of almost a hundred poor people who lived in Winchelsea at that time and many of the leading residents as well. It also gives details of the principle features of the finance and administration needed to support the poor and the way in which Winchelsea struggled to provide those needs through the levying of the poor rate on local residents and landowners. The introduction includes much in more general terms about life in the town in those days. If you would like to reserve a copy of this book please contact Malcolm in writing with your name, postal address and contact number, if possible by 21st April for the print run. Your letter should be sent to Malcolm’s address: 16 Downlands Avenue, Bexhill-on-Sea, East Sussex TN39 3PL or can be put through the door of 1 Alards Plat, High Street (Winchelsea) where Malcolm will collect. The cost of the volume is likely to be between £20 and £25 which does not need to be paid until your book is delivered.

Cindi Cogswell, 31 Highfords, Icklesham