Keith Pollard, Brookfield, Broadway

Coming to a church near you… this Sunday, September 29, there will be a Benefice Service at St Mary and St Peter, Pett at 10.30 am. The speaker will be Claire Hartley from Compassion International. This is an organisation which helps change the lives and futures of millions of children worldwide by linking them to a sponsor whose support enables them and their family to escape poverty, and provides education, healthcare, Christian teaching and support. Children are the most vulnerable people in any society. 22,000 children die each day of curable diseases; most of these are vulnerable because of poverty. Everyone is welcome to come and hear Claire speak - irrespective of whether you take communion or normally attend church.

While many may say Dover for the Continent, Pett Church is not for the Incontinent, as there is no loo there. So, if you are going to go, you would be well advised to go before you go. (Some 25 years ago, Cosalt, makers of static caravans, made an upmarket series they called the Impressionist Range. Among the models was the Lautrec (I know - he was a Post-Impressionist), and I always thought they had called it that because it was the first holiday home to have two loos… Geddit?!)

Bishop’s move… on Thursday, October 3, there is an opportunity to meet the Bishop of Chichester, Bishop Martin, as he will be spending the morning in Fairlight, starting with an 8.30 am Morning Prayer Service in St Andrews. This will finish around 9 am, and all will be welcome at the service. He will then take a tour of the area in the morning and if anyone would like to speak to him, please let the Rector, Rev Richard Barron, know on 812799, and he will see what he can arrange.

Don’t forget… next Sunday, October 6 is Harvest Festival at St Andrews, at 10.30 am.

Rev Barron will be leading an All Age Celebration. Gifts of fruit, vegetables and flowers are welcome, and these will be distributed locally after the service. There will be all those traditional harvest songs – at the service, not the produce distribution. The service will be followed by a faith lunch, and more details about the lunch can be obtained from Kath Barron on 812799.

Later on, at 6 pm at St Peter’s, there is to be an Informal Communion, which will be led by the Rector.

Rev Kay Burnett’s House Group starts on Wednesday October 2. It will be held fortnightly at 2.30 pm and the theme will be the patron Saints of our benefice, starting with St Mary. Anyone from the Benefice of Fairlight and Pett will be welcome. If you require further details, please call Kay on 814637.

Last chance to see… France from St Andrew’s Tower. Tomorrow, Saturday, and Sunday are the final Tower Open days of the year. For a suggested donation of £2 per adult (though adult-accompanied children are free) you can make the multi-stepped climb to enjoy the fantastic views.

Fairlight’s Macmillan Coffee Morning… They’re still counting as the money keeps coming in, and the figure so far stands at £1,100. Organisers Sue Clarke and Betty Snow give many, many thanks to all who donated gifts for the raffle, stalls, refreshments, or just plain got stuck in and helped, as well as those who donated cash. The two ladies are ‘absolutely thrilled with the result. The people of Fairlight have really come up trumps.’

They have been asked if they would do another next year, so it appears that a brand new tradition has been created with what could be set to become an annual Fairlight event.

A piece of Macmillan cake… Sue and Betty are desperately seeking ‘Pam’ – the Pam who guessed the weight of the cake to be 4lb 10ozs, you have won half the cake! (Yes, someone else got it spot on!) So if you are that Pam could you please get in touch with Sue Clarke on 813006 and arrange to collect your half of the cake. But as I write, it appears they may have found their ‘Pam’ but perhaps still need the other contestant who guessed correctly. Meanwhile, the cake itself hopes this news item is not going to turn stale…

Playgroup… All this talk of the Macmillan morning could make us forget the previous week when Fairlight people didn’t come up trumps. That was at the Playgroup Coffee Morning, when there was an array of luscious cakes and goodies rather like the Macmillan spread – and only something like 12 to 15 people to partake of them. Nobody would deny the immense value of the Macmillan operation and the wonderful help and support they are able to give to cancer sufferers and their families, but what our Village Playgroup and Nursery does for youngsters, on a much smaller scale, of course, should not be underestimated. The group’s jumble sale is one of the best attended money-spinners in the village hall’s calendar – so, what was wrong with their cakes and coffee? You may recall that we did the same to an event run by some good souls from Pett a little while back, and this is equally shame-making.

October’s Gardening Club talk… is ten days away on Monday, October 7, when Wendy Bates of Rotherview Nursery will be demonstrating Hanging Baskets and Planters for winter. Wendy will have plants for sale. She has been to the club before and is a very interesting and informative speaker.

Players please…? Who killed the Hotel Manager? is the title of this year’s Players’ Murder Mystery evening, coming up on Saturday, October 12 at 7 for 7.30 pm in the village hall. Tickets are £9 each, a price that includes a fish and chip supper plus pud, to be consumed while you work out whodunit, and try to win a prize. There is a licensed bar to help your thought processes, too. The Post Office has the tickets, or Secretary Carol Ardley can take phone bookings. She is, as ever, on 814178. Last year, this event was over-subscribed, so stake your claim early.

It’s nearly behind you… the auditions for the Panto Group’s production of Sleeping Beauty are taking place in the village hall this evening – at 7 pm for children and 7.30 for adults. Rehearsals do not begin until November. Jennifer Annetts will be directing, and if you’d like to be involved but are otherwise engaged this evening, give her a call on 812476

Flicks in the Village… the Pett group will be screening Lincoln, starring Daniel Day-Lewis, the only actor ever to win the Best Male Actor Oscar three times. Door open at 7 for 7.30 pm, and if you’ve never been, this could be an ideal film to start with.

Pianist par excellence… Valerie Tryon was such an outstanding success when she played in St Andrew’s Church earlier in the year that Geoff Wyatt, meticulous organiser of Valerie’s July recital, is planning a visit to the Fairfield Halls in Croydon on Wednesday, November 7, when Valerie will be playing the Grieg Piano Concerto, at 7.30 pm. The coach will be about £18, and best seats for the concert £25 for a total of approx. £43. Last orders for a place on the trip cannot be accepted after Tuesday next, October 1, so if you’ve finally made up your mind that you’d like to go, please call Geoff on 813300 very soon.

The Workers Educational Association… is embarking on a new series of adult learning courses in Rye and Udimore, commencing shortly. Information on what the courses are, and when they will run, can be had by calling Andrew Stuart on 01797 223831 or Gill Bartholomew on 01580 764465, though you might find it easier in the first instance to have a look at www.southern.wea.org.uk. Concessions are available for any of the courses.

Let there be light… it’s reassuring to see that the campaign that has been running here in the Voice urging the use of car headlights, in daytime, on Battery Hill has been commended by an endorsement from the Chairman of the Parish Council, Cllr Andrew Mier, who finishes by saying ‘cars going down the hill cannot be seen by others approaching the tunnel, even during the day, due to the high contrast.’ What the Chairman is too polite to point out is that, all too often a ‘no lights’ policy seems to be adopted by selfish drivers of the darker coloured models of a few specific marques, clearly with the attitude that it is the duty of the rest of us to take steps to avoid them.

Nicely dressed… Fairlight Road has been very smartly top-dressed, though the end of the new bit does come on you a bit abruptly. Let’s hope the surface stays full of grip and devoid of holes until the winter is a distant memory. I shall not be holding my breath, however.