Keith Pollard

Brookfield, Broadway

Whoops! Some of you may have read last week’s Voice and felt it had a familiar ring to it. And you would have been quite right, for a technical glitch at our Headquarters led the Observer to run our Voice from June 21 for a second time. Many will have experienced a very strong sense of déjà vu. Those expecting a round-up of their efforts in the previous week, or a note about happenings over the past seven days, will have been disappointed. Apologies all round. And no, you can’t have a refund…!

Don’t keep putting it off… with good things coming in threes, it’s the last time I can remind you that we’ve had a top pianist at Fairlight Hall, a top harpist at the Tuesday Ladies Club, and we’ve still got the very exciting visit of renowned international pianist Valerie Tryon to come – and it’s tomorrow. Yes, Valerie will be at St Andrew’s Church on Saturday, July 6 at 7.00 pm, an opportunity you really should not miss.

Valerie will be in this country to record the Rachmaninov No1 Piano concerto with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, and she has kindly agreed to play for us in Fairlight. Any and all profits raised will go to support the fabric of the Church, which is in serious need of help. Valerie’s Fairlight programme will include works by Chopin, Scarlatti, Chaminade, Liszt and Chabrier. You might care to visit YouTube to sample the beauty of her playing. So, put off no longer the purchase of your tickets, which are £16 each, a price that includes a glass of wine, coffee, tea, or juice, together with a free programme. Amazingly, I believe some tickets are still available at Fairlight Post Office, or from Geoff Wyatt, 33 Waites Lane.

The Royal British Legion Summer BBQ… at Pett Level Rescue Boat House, Pett Level

Tomorrow, Saturday, July 6 from 12 noon to 3 pm. The tickets are only a fiver, and the event is open to all, with wine and Pimm’s being served (or you could take your own!) Call Margaret Pulfer on 814866 if you need more details.

In our churches this Sunday, July 7… there will be an All Age service at St Andrew’s at 10.30 am, and an Informal Communion service at St Peter’s at 6pm. And don’t forget that on Sunday we are just a week away from Sea Sunday on July 14, when there will be no service at St Andrew’s, but rather a United service with St Mary & St Peter Pett at the Pett Rescue Boathouse - or on the beach!

Last month’s Parish Council meeting… was particularly interesting (as always, of course!) on a number of fronts. Firstly, the recent resignation of long-serving Vice Chairman Alan Grant has left the Council with a vacancy, and as the time span for an election for Alan’s replacement has passed, the vacancy will be filled by co-option. If you could be interested and willing to serve on the Council, please contact the Clerk to the Council, John Edmunds, 285 Elphinstone Road, Hastings TN34 2AX, or call him on 722226, or even email him at clerk@fairlightparishcouncil.co.uk Secondly, there will in future be regular public planning meetings in the Committee Room of the village hall. These will be on the first and third Tuesday of each month, chaired by Planning Officer Cllr Stephen Leadbetter. Do check on Fairlight.org.uk as there will not always be a meeting because there may, on occasion, be no applications relevant to Fairlight

Thirdly, would you like to volunteer to man a speed gun in the village, and detect and deter those who exceed the speed limit? Training for this useful activity will be available on July 16, so if you are prepared to have a go, let Cllr Linda Eades know, and she will be able to get you trained. There may well be other dates in the future, too. Her direct email is lindaeades@btinternet.com

And finally, the subject of using the Police non-emergency phone number 101 was raised. This 101 number is to be used by the public if your car has been stolen; your property has been damaged; you suspect drug use or dealing in your neighbourhood; to report a minor traffic collision; to give the police information about crime in your area or to speak to the police about a general enquiry. Each call costs 15p. There was a concern that this number was being used to “downgrade” local crime and a number of people present had experienced difficulties when using it. One example was of a villager waiting 20 minutes for a response. It was agreed that the Parish Council could make a representation to the Police, however it was felt it would be useful to canvas opinion from Fairlight residents before doing so. Therefore, Cllr Linda Eades, our Parish Councillor responsible for Police Liaison and Neighbourhood Watch, would be grateful to hear of your experiences, and views on the use of the 101 number. Linda’s email address is at the end of the preceding paragraph.

Hope you enjoyed Monday last, July 1… when Alan Parker, a Gardening Club member who has previously given one of the club’s monthly talks, was at the village hall for ‘What’s On Your Doorstep? – Wildlife in Fairlight.’

Of more immediate interest for the near future is the fact that the Annual Show is now only a fortnight away (tomorrow). There’s a box at the Post Office for entries, or drop them through the Carol Ardley’s letterbox at Mistral, on the Circle. By entries, of course, I mean the forms and bits of paper, not yer actual flowers and veggies…! More about this forthcoming event next week.

They’ve got their collective breaths back… after their Car Boot sale, and now the Fairfest team are girding their loins in readiness for their forthcoming Summer Bash, which will be on Saturday, July 28. It will all be happening on Wood Field Rec. from 4 until 10 pm, and the whole ‘do’ is free. There will be a reasonably priced barbecue and bar open through the afternoon and evening, with games such as cricket, boules, mini golf and Splat the Rat, plus a bouncing castle, will be up and running from 4pm. However, if you would like to get there early and have a picnic and enjoy the new Children’s Playgound, you’re welcome to do so. The very popular local group, the Kytes, will be playing from 7 pm so you’ll be able to enjoy their music and dance the night away. The Parish Council has kindly given permission for parking on the Wood Field, and teas and cold drinks will be available in the Activate Headquarters. Fairfest is grateful to the Residents’ Association for their sponsorship of this event. Put it in your diary so you won’t forget to go along and have some fun.

The Wine and Social Club’s recent Pétanque evening… held, as usual, at the welcoming Fairlight Lodge Hotel, took place on the most pleasant evening of the so-called summer so far. A very good time was had by all, and it was the team of Bernard and Ann Cruttenden plus Doris Fenner and Bill Sapsford which ran away with the Champs title at the end of the evening.

Inconsiderate? Plain selfish...? Whichever you think, a fellow resident (thank you, Christine!) has mentioned the way in which many people have been taking delight in trimming and cutting, often quite heavily, their hedges, although most stop short of laying or coppicing them. Under the Wildlife & Countryside Act 1981 (as amended), it is an offence to do several things, including the intentional or reckless disturbance of certain wild birds or their dependent young while they are nesting (including disturbance of those nesting young). Within the Act no dates are legally stated between which hedges cannot be trimmed, cut, laid or coppiced, but the main bird breeding season is recognised as being between March 1 and July 31. Therefore the risk of committing any offence is increased between these dates. It is recommended that if you undertake any hedging work within these dates you should check the hedge for any signs of breeding activity first. Does your average hedge-butcher actually check for wildlife? What do you think? And it should not be forgotten that a number of birds and other animals will make their homes at the base of the hedge, at ground level. For goodness sake, leave them be, preferably until well into August.

Water’s in the news again… Southern Water have confirmed that because of engineering works in Broadway, some will find they are experiencing low pressure in various parts of the village. Which is nice to know, but not quite as helpful as it might have been.

Fairlight’s own Tuesday Ladies Club… thanks all those who came to hear harpist Fiona Hosford, at their special meeting. Her recital was enjoyed unreservedly by everybody who attended, and for many the highlight was George Gershwin’s ‘Summertime’, which really suited the lovely summer afternoon. The next meeting of TLC will feature a beauty therapist, Susannah Harvey, surely a bit of a coals-to-Newcastle job for Fairlight? Anyway, the date for this meeting is July 16 and it will start at 2.15pm in the Village Hall. Visitors are very welcome at £2 each, a fee which includes tea and cakes.

We missed letting you know in advance about The Bowls Club’s Open Day last Sunday, which is always a most successful highlight in a busy club season. There will be many present from the home club and several others in the district, with this year’s proceeds going to the Prostate Cancer charity. We all hope they have a wonderful day, as usual!

Playing away… there were two very successful visits a couple of weeks ago, the first of which saw the Bowls Club going to the Silver Ring at Ascot on a day entirely suitable to such pursuits, and the second seeing another group finding out how the Houses of Parliament work.

At MOPPs today, July 5… you can partake of ham, egg & chips, followed by sticky toffee pudding and join in, gently, with Celia King and some chair-based exercises. Forewarning you for next Friday, July 12, the lunch will be roast lamb, followed by Angel Delight and fruit. It will be a Hobbies day.

There is one more Knit and Natter morning… before they take their summer break, and this will be on Wednesday, July 17. The group has been delighted to welcome some new faces joining their friendly informal group recently and would like to welcome more. For your diary, after the summer break they resume meetings at Kingsdown, Channel Way, between 10.30 am and 12.30 pm, on Wednesday, September 18.

Put this in your diary… The Fairlight Players will shortly be auditioning for ‘Prescription For Murder’, a Norman Robbins thriller, with their now customary by read-through coming up on Monday, August 19, and the auditions three days later on Thursday, August 22, both evenings in the village hall commencing at 7.30 pm. The show will run from Thursday November 7 to Saturday November 9, and will be directed by Roland Garrad. Now could be the time to revive your theatrical career, possibly dormant since your triumph in that school play. Last year’s two productions introduced four newcomers out of 24 people on stage, the sort of proportion the Players like to encourage. If you’re tempted, but still a little daunted by the thought of line learning, they are also presenting a Murder Mystery Supper Evening in October, where the demands on the cast are somewhat lower. Go along in August and have a chat about joining – and performing! And even if you don’t fancy acting, that Murder Mystery Supper is likely to be a sell-out, judging by past experiences.

A notice has been placed… on the twitten from Knowle Road to Knowle Wood, stating that the twitten will be closed from July 31, and that walkers should use the entrance from Woodland Way.

A number of people have been in touch with the Parish Council, who are well aware of the situation and are making enquiries. Footpaths, generally, are the responsibility of East Sussex County Council. However, Fairlight Parish Council has appointed Cllr David Thatcher as Footpaths Liaison Officer and he will be making contact with the County Council.

Hard hats off to the pothole repairers… the powers that be have made some excellent repairs to the holes at the bottom of Broadway, and also along the Fairlight Road. In both cases they have done eighty per cent of the necessary, and left one major reminder of what the road is really like. The Fairlight Road hole, on the south side just past Martineau Lane towards Ore, could yet be the ruination of your suspension …

There have been several high profile recent events, like the Bowls Club’s Open Day, the Cove’s Fancy Dress evening, the Mandy Pulsford demonstration for the Floral Club and the British Legion cream tea, which last week’s printing glitch seem to have bypassed, so if you would like to let me have follow-ups that have been missed, these sins of omission can be rectified - do please email me!