In various local churches this Sunday… There’s an 8 am Communion service at St Peter’s. Then there will be a Benefice Service at Pett Level Rescue Boat Centre at 10.30 am. The offering will be for the Mission to Seafarers, formerly known as Missions to Seamen.

And at 6 pm, at Westfield Parish Church, there’s a special service for Rye Churches Together, to be led by Bishop Richard Jackson.

Fairfest news… every week there’s another titbit from the organisers of our third village festival. This week comes the news that the King and Queen of Fairlight will be Keith Jellicoe and Linda Savarese. In their special transport, they will lead the clowns and marching band on the opening procession, starting at 11.45 am from the Circle in Shepherds Way ready to declare the Fest duly open on Wood Field Recreation Ground at 12 noon. Keith is well known for his occasional appearances for the Players, and for his more frequent supply of their sound effects while Linda has appeared in a number of the Panto Group’s pantos – and last winter played the Queen! Children wishing to take part in the fancy dress parade should be ready at the Circle prior to the set-off time. The very first event after the opening will be the judging of the fancy dress. It’s all happening on Sunday, July 27.

On Monday next, June 14… is the Wine and Social Club’s special World War 1 commemoration evening. Members should, strictly speaking, have already registered their intention of going along, but if you forgot to let them know, get on your knees and phone either Jill Lewing, 812340, or Frank James, 813756, without delay. A bit of gentle pleading might get you in, and it would be well worth your trouble. It’s only £8 a ticket, a sum that also covers a fish and chip supper

The Tuesday Ladies Club … meets next week at 2.15 pm in the village hall, when the speaker will be the accomplished, polished Heather Woodward, highly popular and respected in Fairlight after visits to several of our organisations and covering a wide range of subjects. This time, her talk is ‘Mrs Greville and Polesden Lacey’, the story of one of the Edwardian era’s greatest society hostesses, famous for her lavish parties and her outstanding collections of fine furniture, porcelain, silver and art. Polesden Lacey was her home, which she bequeathed to the National Trust. (The name always sounds to me like the hero of a Mills and Boon romance, a very fancy and obviously made-up name, rather like Grant Bovey) For a small fee, all are welcome at this meeting, including the menfolk. Every talk Heather Woodward delivers is an enjoyable, interesting and entertaining event.

Woof, woof… Sally Watson, who organised the Hearing Dogs Doggy Afternoon Tea Party on Sunday, thanks the dogs for taking their owners along for what was a wonderful time, even enjoyed by the humans, too. She extends her thanks to all the helpers and, especially, to Lynn and Andy Tofte for their time and the use of their beautiful garden. An excellent £276.40 was raised for Hearing Dogs for Deaf People.

Where did you get that hat…? Quite possibly at Margaret Pulfer’s Top Hat Hit Parade in the village hall on Wednesday next, July 16 from 11.30 am to 1 pm. Not that there will be any top hats, of course, but all the hats on show will be the tops. And they’re all for hire, from a modest £10 and more, with the proceeds going to Hearing Dogs for Deaf People. The show will give you a chance to see the range of hats on offer, and maybe try some on for yourself, though there will be five well-known local ladies modelling the hats. This note is principally aimed at the ladies, but in this day and age this is not exclusive.

Have a break… There’s a Knit and Natter Meeting at Betty Snow’s house, Kingsdown, Channel Way on Wednesday next, July 16 from 10.30 am and 12.30 pm. and this is their last meeting before they have a break through August. They resume operations on September 3 with some changes to their venue arrangements, which will be notified in Village Voice later in August, so you won’t have time to forget what they are. Meanwhile, if you’re tempted to join on the resumption, call either Lynette on 813417 or Betty on 812694

‘Fairlight - A Sussex Village by the Sea’… the new book by Haydon Luke is, as promised recently, now available, at a cost of £19.99. There are copies in the Post Office, and a high quality volume it is, too, profusely illustrated in colour with many photos and maps. Alternatively, you could contact the author direct, either by phoning 814748, or by emailing him at mail@eandhluke.plus.com. Payment can be by cash or cheque, and local delivery is free. This substantial book is more than an update of ‘Echoes of the Past’, the Xeroxed booklet popular some years ago, and produced with what was then state-of-the-art copying, which was unkind to photos, while the new book is an informative and illuminating read for those who live in, work in, or visit Fairlight – or just plain love the place.

More cut-backs… and nothing to do with George Osborne this time! Further to last week’s note about the footpath from the top of Sea Road towards Pett Level, a ranger has reported that the new stiles are temporary until later in the year whilst the farm grazing payments are being sorted out, as the livestock need to have access to this part of the meadow. These stiles, along with both the old and the temporary fencing will eventually be removed. In the time being, a team has been up and cut back all intrusive vegetation from the path side and, on a programme that only repeats every five to eight years, there will be a major cut back taking place in the autumn of this year. The ranger has notified East Sussex County Council of the concern regarding the steps.

However, the next section of path, going east, from where it leaves the National Trust land and towards Cliff End, is very overgrown and in parts unstable.

And talking of overgrown footpaths… those in the Parish Council-owned parts of Knowle Wood have been the cause for some concern, but thanks to the valiant efforts of Cllr Dave Thatcher and Paul Reid some really excellent progress has been made. But there are many subsidiary footpaths needing attention, and they go off in all directions. The top entrance to the wood, by the corner of the play area, that led down to the wonderful display of bluebells earlier this year, has been cut back to about halfway down the track, and this work should have been completed by the time this item appears in print. The clearance, especially on the lower growth, is hard work, and any additional offers of help would be much appreciated. Just give Dave Thatcher a call on 814969.

Putting on a Show… Garden Club Summer Show will be along on Saturday, July 19 in the village hall, with access for public viewing from 2 to 3.30 pm. This year our MP, Amber Rudd, has kindly agreed to present the prizes, cups and certificates at the end of the proceedings. However perfect they may be, I can’t see any single red rose winning much this year… Your entry forms should be in (the box in the Post Office) by Friday, July 18, so check your garden for items that you’d like to enter, check the vast array of classes in your schedule, and go for it. After all, it is the entries that make the show.

There are the usual classes for flowers, fruit and veg, plus classes for flower arranging, cooking (a special class for the men), pot plants and a class for children (for them to enter, that is - not to exhibit them!)

Keith Pollard

Brookfield, Broadway