Just the one service … in our churches this Sunday, June 29, and it’s Holy Communion at St Andrew’s at 10.30 am.

The Informal Service, at St Peter’s on Sunday for the second time of asking, was successful yet again. The informality is a bit surprising for some to start with – people are not sure what to expect – but the occasion soon wins everyone over. These services are aimed at all Christians from anywhere. It is not for Fairlight residents only, and it is non-denominational. Why not give the next one a try? But if you do, please make sure you don’t park within three car lengths of the corner of Waites Lane and Broadway on both roads, as this is far more dangerous than people seem to realise. There are signs…

Tea for two… or more, at three. Yes, 3 pm on Saturday, June 28 in the village hall is the start time for the keenly anticipated ‘Putting on the Ritz’, the special tea master-minded by Fairlight Floral Club, with your thin cut, crustless cucumber sandwiches (I assume) accompanied by the music of Iain Kerr. You may still be able to get a ticket, for £8, from Fairlight Post Office if you’re quick, for sooner now rather than later, they’ll be planning how many sarnies to prepare for your delight, as well as all those cakes. Hope to see you there then…?

Midsummer Open Gardens… was last weekend, in glorious weather, when clusters of orange balloons signalled each of the fourteen gardens inviting all-comers (with a programme entrance ticket) to have a good look round, and to sample whatever was on offer in the way of food and drinks, bric-a-brac, books and so on. A feature of the two day opening period was the variety of garden styles on view for enthusiasts to admire, from large to small, formal to casual, from those with wide ranging views to the sea or the downs to those enclosed by trees and shrubs. Each garden estimated something over a hundred visitors on each of the two days, and the total collected amounts to an amazing £3,200 plus, and it continues to rise, all of it going to support Fairlight First Responders, the currently four-strong force for real good in our village community. A pound or two from everybody can, and will, make a life-saving difference to some unfortunate soul who draws a short straw in the health lottery, and needs very urgent assistance. The First Responders say a very big thank you, not only to all those who worked so hard on their gardens and on the open days, but also to the many people who made the effort to visit and show so much interest in the venues on offer. On the two very warmish days they discovered that Fairlight is probably further flung and a lot less flat than they had imagined.

The Tuesday Ladies Club’s May meeting… featured Eleanor and David Robins, cheese experts from Ringmer. They used to run a cheese shop in Lewes, but now just supply cheeses for various markets – the nearest to us being the one in Battle every Friday, except the third Friday of the month, when it’s the following day, on the Saturday. (I hope you’re following this!) Eleanor and David instructed the members on the proper way to taste cheese by assessing its texture, smell and, of course, its taste. Six very different cheeses were featured and all had to guess what they were. Overall, the results were pretty good, even with some such as Cheddar and Stilton, which are easier to recognise although they may have been made in a very different way. The meeting would like to pass on a recommendation to any cheese lovers reading this to try to sample cheeses such as the Sussex Charmer, voted Britain’s Best Modern Cheese in 2012. The meeting was a fascinating and interesting afternoon.

The club’s next meeting, on July 15, will feature the excellent, well-known and highly popular speaker, Heather Woodward, who will tell all about the famous Mrs Greville and Polesden Lacey. Men are very welcome to come to the meetings, which start at 2.15 pm in the village hall. Refreshments are served.

MOPPs this week and next… Today, Friday, June 27, the entertainment confirmed for your delectation is singer Carol George, and then there’s quiche and cheesy mash, and fruit crumble for afters. Next Friday is the Fourth of July, and Annie Cryer will be along with some Tai Chi exercises, with the menu showing roast lamb followed by cheesecake. Isn’t it time you took the plunge and joined MOPPs for the excellent entertainment and good food for your weekly highly sociable morning out? Do give group coordinator Robert Pasterfield a call on 07860 414277, and he’ll give you all the details of cost, transport and anything else you’d like to know.

Pett Level Rescue Boat… is often in our Voice news. Now there’s a note from their Chairman, Steve Hill, to say a sincere ‘thank you’ to the Fairlight Residents Association for their recent £200 donation to the fund for the redevelopment of the old Boat House. This requires total funds of £25,000 and they are very nearly there! But don’t think you’re generosity would be too late, as they don’t need money simply for this major capital project – day to day running expenses are always in need of covering funds. The boat is not in Fairlight, ‘tis true, but a Pett Level equivalent in our village would demand a fifty foot tide to get itself launched. Rest assured that, if you find yourself cut off by the incoming tide at the foot of Fairlight cliffs, it’s likely to be the Pett Level boat that nips along the coast to rescue you!

The East Sussex Hearing Resource Centre… visited Icklesham yesterday, so you’re a bit late for that, but the good news is that they will be in Pett, at the Village Hall Car Park on the Pett Road from 1.30 to 3.30 pm on Monday next, June 30. Your hearing problems could all be solved with a quick trip to our neighbouring village.

The Fishy Band were in Concert… last Saturday at the Hastings Centre, and a goodly, and possibly godly, crowd ensured that, after all expenses had been paid, the two charities being supported - Christians against Poverty and The Food Bank – each benefitted with a three figure sum. The evening was a noteworthy success musically, too!

The Wine and Social Club… must be wondering what the Cheese and Wine Club, which had a long note last week, is all about. Well, it was hot and I was hungry as well as thirsty when writing last week’s voice, as my mind reminded my fingers. Sorry to all, but the facts remain. They’re having their WW1 commemoration evening on Monday, July 14, and it would be handy if you could let them know, quickly now, if you’ll be there, as they need a head count for the fish and chip supper, with the whole evening costing £8 each. Please let Jill Lewing or Frank James know, on 812340 or 813756 respectively.

And on Thursday, October 23 they are going on a trip (or should that be a tryp?) to Ypres and if you’d like to be on it, the contact details are the same as for the WW1 commemoration evening above. Anyone who would like to go and savour this moving experience will be welcome – you don’t have to be a member of the Wine and Social Club. But it’s a great club of which to be a member anyway.

The Players AGM… left a question mark over who would fill the Secretary’s position, vacant as Mary Stewart, who had bravely stepped in only on a temporary basis when Carol Ardley was unwell in April. Having recovered well, Carol had been nominated for the Committee and, before the AGM but not early enough to stand at the meeting itself, indicated she would resume as Secretary but with sensibly reduced duties. So, at the first meeting of the new committee, she was elected as Secretary, while Keith Miller was elected Vice Chairman, and Aisling Tigwell was elected Membership Secretary. A full set!

Fairfest is coming… after tomorrow’s Floral Club Ritzy tea, the Festival will be the biggest event on our horizon. Keep repeating the mantra ‘See Fairfest three for free’, and you’ll not forget Sunday, July 27, just four weeks away come Sunday. In the next month, if you’re stopped by the police and asked to ‘blow into this bag’, don’t be surprised if it’s brightly coloured – they’re helping the committee with the balloons…

Keith Pollard

Brookfield, Broadway