Thanks to Ann who has written most of this week's column:

Friday, 16th March 2018, 6:00 am

WI: The WI meeting last week featured the St Laurence Quartet, namely James and Linda Ireson and Mike and Rosemary Cooper. It was a pleasure to listen to their lovely voices harmonising perfectly with no musical accompaniment. We wanted a reflection of the type of entertainment enjoyed by the village throughout our 100 years and their careful programme was just right. We had pieces from our own West Gallery, songs by Bob Copper and other country songs from Sussex and beyond interspersed with anecdotes and information on country life. It was a real treat and the enthusiastic rendition of Sussex by the Sea a wonderful finale. Beryl’s challenge to decorate an Easter Bonnet resulted in a table full of the most wondrous creations, knitted animals, chicks and flowers. The winner was Denise Piguet with her fabulous tiny fluffy rabbit coming out of the hat like a magician’s trick.

Plans were announced for the WI’s 100 year celebrations, keep a look out for details of the free exhibition on 7th April and quiz on 14 April, tickets for which are selling well. Perhaps it would be a good idea to get yours now from Ann Davey or Beryl Bodey.

The WI Jumble Sale proved to be very busy and financially successful. There were bags and boxes all over the Hall floor, hastily unpacked and laid on tables. Refreshments of some beautiful home-made cakes seemed to be continuously busy as were the stalls, but then suddenly it was all over, the buyers dispersed, money counted, the many helpers tired but happy and the grand sum of £332 made. Thanks to everyone who brought their goods to the sale and to the many WI members who turned up to work and of course the many purchasers, not those who got rid of out of date currency, which seems extremely mean.

Mothering Sunday: (Thanks to Mike for this report)

Last Sunday St Laurence Church was full of happy chattering people of all ages, well before the appointed start of the Mothering Sunday Service. Amongst the 150 or so there were members of Ninfield Beavers, Cubs, Scouts and Explorers together with their leaders and parents and extra chairs had to be brought in. The service started with the singing of the hymn ‘Morning has Broken’ accompanied well by our organ scholar Ethan.

Father Michael then went on to tell a story about two buckets owned by a water carrier. One was perfect the other a little leaky. The leaky one was sad as it couldn’t deliver very much water to irrigate the crops. The water carrier tried to cheer it up by saying the spilt water was also being a benefit to the plants and animals along the path. However, the leaky bucket was not entirely convinced by this until after a few weeks it noticed how bright and colourful the plants were on its side of the path and so realised that whilst like most of us, it was not perfect and it could be useful in its own way.

The children were invited to offer up their silent prayers by coming forward to remove a thorn from Jesus’s Crown of thorns and replacing it with a flower. It was then the turn of the half-a-dozen members of the Junior Choir, led by Lucy Ashton, to give an excellent rendition of ‘Give me oil in my lamp keep me burning’.

The offertory having been taken, Father Michael invited all the children to help distribute posies of flowers to the ladies in the congregation. The flags were returned to the colour parties of the Ninfield Scouts and the service was over. Refreshments were served and the church remained quite a busy place for some time thereafter with many groups of happy chatting people.

A Date for your Diary: Catsfield History Group are staging a free exhibition on Thomas Brassey, Railway Engineer to be held in Catsfield Village Hall (which was built by the Brassey family) on Saturday 5th May. Doors open from 11am to 4pm. Thomas Brassey worked alongside Brunell, Stevenson and others in the construction of railways all over the world.

Sport: It’s a funny old game so they say. Only to lose 9 -1 doesn’t seem very funny. Icklesham, our opponents in the semi-final of the Wisdens Cup are a very good side and higher in the league than Catsfield. The match was unable to be played at home because the ground is saturated, Icklesham Parish Council have banned football on their ground until April to allow the field to recover, so it was moved to Tilekiln in Hastings where it was equally wet. However, we live to fight another day, at home tomorrow versus Hawkhurst. What a season this has been been?