Rachel Feeley

17 Smith Close, Ninfield

A notice from Ashburnham Village Hall Committee: In the last couple of years the number of clubs and societies in the village has mushroomed. This explosion in social activity culminated in the Diamond Jubilee celebrations in June and has given the village the strongest sense of community seen for years.

It has also highlighted the need for somewhere to meet and put the spotlight on the Village Hall which is facing some big challenges. Maintenance needs are becoming increasingly radical and the full scale of the remedial work needed was revealed by a structural survey earlier this year.

On the other hand income is declining and will take a bigger drop still after 2012 as the organisers of the Ashburnham Ride & Walk are taking a well-earned retirement. For the past few years they have diverted at least £1,000 annually to the maintenance of the hall.

The time has come to think about what the village really needs. We need to ask questions about what other uses a meeting place could have. Could it have day time use as well as evenings? Could it attract event organisers to use it as a venue for everything from weddings to farmers markets? The Lottery Fund do have money to grant towards community facilities in villages, but they need to be convinced of need and they want to see evidence. Therefore, the Village Hall Management Committee has commissioned a survey of all residents from the age of 16 upwards and a team of volunteers will ensure that every household will get a personal call. In order to carry weight with the Lottery Fund we need a very high turnout. We have already been put on notice that large sums of money shared between a small number of people (such as Ashburnham and Penhurst) needs a very strong justification. We are therefore asking you to make every effort to have everyone in your household complete the survey which will take place in the second two weeks of November. The survey will not only form the basis of defining what the village needs now by way of shared space, but will also be useful in supporting bids for a range of rural support from bus services to rural broadband. In mid November someone will contact you to see how many questionnaires your household needs and will contact you again a couple of weeks later to collect them. The results of the survey will be collated and made available to everyone at a public meeting open to all, and these will help us formulate a clear objective as we complete our application for funding.

Pub Quiz Tuesday November 6. Maximum team size 6, entry £1.00 per person. 7.45pm for 8pm. Let the Ash know A.S.A.P. if you have a team, Food on the night £5 per head. Tel. 892104.

The county council mobile library service is in Ashburnham (by the chapel) on November 8 & 22, 9.50am-10.10am.

Ashburnham Bonfire is on November 9, at Ashburnham Sports Field, 7pm. Adults £4, children £2 (to include hot refreshments).

On November 11 – Remembrance Sunday – there is a special service at 2.30pm at the Ashburnham Memorial by the Sports Pavilion, followed by a service at the Chapel.

2m@1 (2nd Monday of the month @ 1 O’clock), are meeting on November 12 at Ashburnham Church hall. This month will be a talk from Rhod Jones who will be speaking about Capability Brown and the Ashburnham Landscape.

Film Club is on November 2 (Not November 14 as previously advertised as it has moved to Fridays!), showing ‘The French Lieutenant’s Woman’. Doors open at 7.45pm and the programme will start at 8.15pm. Seating is limited so it is essential to reserve your place in advance by contacting Brian Holdstock (email or phone or text 07836 716723). The film club’s licence means it will operate as a members only closed club so at the first screening you come to you will need to decide to either pay for the one screening as a ‘taster’ or to subscribe for the whole season of five films. The ticket prices are £6. The price does include a glass of wine at every screening! Future films for the remainder of the season are: December 14, ‘Tea with Mussolini’, January 11 2013, ‘The Usual Suspects, February 8 ‘Days of Heaven’ and March 13 ‘The Big Sleep’.

The next Coffee Morning is on Monday November 19 in the Church Hall, Ashburnham Place 10:30am - 12pm. You are welcome to go along for a good friendly chat. For further information, please contact Tina on 01424 843728.

Ashburnham & Penhurst WI are next meeting on Monday November 19. Juliette and Louise will once again be sharing their crafty ideas to help them prepare for the festive season. They meet in the Village Hall at 7.30pm – with plenty of time for coffee, cake and chat. They look forward to seeing you!

The Village Lunch is on November 21, 12.30pm at the Village Hall - contact Janet Peters on 892311.

Penhurst and Ashburnham New Theatrical Society (P.A.N.T.S) presents Robin Hood in Ashburnham Village Hall on November 22 & 23 at 7.30pm and November 24 at 2.30pm and 7.30pm. Tickets are £6/adult and £3/child (including programme and refreshments). Call Tina French 01424 892580 or email: Tickets are also for sale each Saturday, 2pm-3pm in the Village Hall.

Ashburnham & Penhurst Book Group meets on November 23, 2pm - call Nicky on 01424 892474.

Don’t forget that you can look to see what is going on in Ashburnham and Penhurst on the community website:

Church services for St Peter’s, Ashburnham: November 4, 10.30am Family Service; November 11, 10.30am Morning Praise with Children’s Activities

Church services for St Michael the Archangel, Penhurst: November 4, 10.30am Holy Communion; November 11, 10.30am Morning Prayer - Remembrance Sunday

Services for Ashburnham Chapel: November 4, 3.15pm Afternoon Service; November 11, 3.15pm Afternoon Service

Prayer and Bible reading meetings on Tuesday at 2.30pm at the Chapel. Contact Fay Ramsden on 07860 113413 for further information.