Church Matters: On Sunday, there’s a service of Holy Communion at St Andrew’s at 10.30 am, with a 6 pm service of Evening Prayer at St Peter’s.

There’s life in the old church yet: – that’s St Peter’s – and so there is to be a chance for everybody to discuss their answer to the question ‘What would you do with St Peter’s if you had £35,000 to spend?’ That chance will be upon us on Saturday, August 30, from 10.30 am to 12 noon. Coffee, Cake and Confabulation will be te order of the day. Make a note to go along and have your say.

An Auction of Promises: From 7 pm in the village hall on Saturday, September 6 there will be an Auction of Promises, with all proceeds going to St Andrew’s. A note in your diary now will ensure you don’t miss it when it gets here. If you know there are those who will not be able to make it on the day, you can use your mobile phone to keep in touch and they can place their absent bids with your help. If you’d like further details, why not give Pete Jennings a call on 752838?

Don’t forget those Churchyard Benches: At St Andrew’s there are three such benches in need of replacement. You could purchase one in memory of a loved one, or as a celebration of their life. Have a word with Kath Barron on 812799 either for further information or to book your seat!

Read all about it: Monday next, August 18 is the date for the Players to read through ‘Separate Tables’ by Terence Rattigan starting at 7.30 pm in the village hall. Why not turn up and find out what it’s all about, or just remind yourself, if you know the play really but have forgotten it. And then, on Thursday, August 21, it’s time for the auditions and casting, same time and place as the read through. The Players hope to see actors and actresses in large numbers from which to make their selection, but if you are interested but unable to make that important Thursday, please let Secretary carol Ardley know on 814178 and an alternative time and date could be arranged for you. Rehearsals will be on Mondays and Thursdays until the play runs in November, from Thursday 6 to Saturday 8. Those going for parts will be expected to let the committee know in advance of any dates for which they will be unavailable.

The Man with the Big Cigar: The Wine and Social Club’s meeting on Monday featured the incomparable Heather Woodward, who was on top form in her talk about Winston Churchill, the man as well as the career. Some 60 people enjoyed the evening before the rains, thunder and lightning arrived. If you’re not a member, perhaps you should join now to take advantage of their full and varied programme.

MOPP’s this week and next: Today you’ll be able to enjoy a Sing-a-long with Jim, followed by either Chicken Curry or Chicken Supreme, according to your taste, and Banoffee Pie for pud, while next Friday, August 22, it’s Andy Dinsdale who will be entertaining you, with a roast beef lunch to follow, plus fruit and jelly for afters. If you don’t go to MOPP’s excellent weekly set-up each Friday but are beginning to think you’d like to, give Co-ordinator Robert Pasterfield a ring on 07860 414277.

Remembering the start of the Great War: St Andrew’s Church was full last Saturday evening for a mixture of readings and hymns and song. There was an excellent soprano with her daughter, a largish choir and a display of WW1 memorabilia with medals, an army hat, letters, photos and memorial certificates from Buckingham Palace, plus a DVD showing of a WW1 newsreel of footage from the front. The service was led by Richard Barron and Frank Rowson, the Royal British Legion chaplain. The evening had just the right balance of reverence and nostalgia, and ended with coffee and biscuits. but no raffle! It was really nice all round evening with the right mix.

It’ll get you fit: Perhaps you didn’t know, or if you did know, you’ve forgotten, but the Table Tennis Club meets in the village hall each Tuesday at 7.30 pm, and all comers are welcome, be they young or older, beginners or experts, ladies or gentlemen. If your bat is lost in the attic, they’ll lend you one. No league matches are involved and the games are strictly for fun, though it’s nice to be a winner. Up to four tables can be utilised, with doubles being the most used format. Give them a look and start to feel better!

That is the question: There’s a quiz at the Cove on Wednesday next, August 30. Go along and air your knowledge. It starts at 8 pm.

The Friends of Hastings Country Park: The Friends will be hosting an Exploration of Ecclesbourne Glen on Saturday, August 16, from10.30 am to 12.30 pm. If you’d like to go along, the group will be meeting up at Barley Lane car park, which you might have to trace on Google Maps. This will be the third walk in a series led by experts from the Friends’ committee, and it is intended to explore both the history and natural history of this fascinating corner of the Country Park Nature Reserve.

Art Aid for Pett Level Rescue Boat: Last Saturday’s Art Exhibition raised over £130 for the Rescue Boat despite there being rather fewer visitors than on previous occasions. This was probably due to the wind. Outside, of course. In addition to the art itself and a raffle, there was an art quiz, which invited participants to identify the artists responsible for 18 pictures. With the setter saying he would have scored about 12, one contestant, Andrea, got the lot correct. A lecturer in the History of Art, perhaps?!

An Open Day on the Open Sea?: Hard on the heels of last week’s Art Exhibition comes the Pett Level Rescue Boat Open Day, which takes place a week on Sunday, which is August 24. There will be a sea display, a dog show, various stalls and a barbeque, in fact something for everyone. As the Rescues boat’s appeal for the refurbishment of their old Boathouse still has a bit of a way to go, every pound helps. So go along, have some fun, a bun and a burger, and thus make your contribution.

Starting today!: There’s the well-loved annual Guestling Flower Festival at St Laurence Church, Guestling. Open from 10 am to 5.30 pm on each of three days, today and Saturday and Sunday, August 15, 16 and 17, as well as the flower displays, you will find stalls, refreshments and tombola. The basic theme of the Festival is ‘Another look at Ladybird Books’. All proceeds from the event go to the St Laurence Church Restoration Fund.

The Hanging Gardens of Martineau Lane: Not far down Martineau Lane, going from Fairlight Road, there is a substantial branch which has been twisted and now hangs until it is about four feet from the road. The tree to which the branch belongs is on the east side of the road, which makes it more of a hazard to those coming towards Fairlight. Seeing it at the last moment causes cars to swerve evasively and instinctively, which could prove nasty if someone is coming the other way. Those more likely to be at risk would be helmeted but goggle-less motorcyclists, who might easily lose an eye. The branch is at one of narrowest points of this narrow road, and is big enough not to pulled and manipulated until it falls off. It is also in a place that is difficult to park and walk back to. It probably needs dealing with professionally, but who will do it?

Keith Pollard

Brookfield, Broadway