Fairlight

Pews News: This Sunday, December 28, there is to be a Benefice Holy Communion service at St Mary’s and St Peter’s, Pett from 10.30 am to 12 noon. The service will also be celebrating the 150 years since the dedication of St Mary & St Peter’s Church, and will include a presentation on the history of Pett Church. Sunday is also the fourth one in the month, when enthusiasts would have expected the monthly Sunday Live experience at St Peter’s at 6.30 pm. Unfortunately, it will not be taking place this month, and you’ll have to wait until January 25!

An everyday story of Fairlight folk: Last Tuesday week, December 16, was piercingly bright and clear, though not quite cloudless. And there was just enough wind to disperse the morning bonfire all over the village. How fortuitous for the bonfire owner – his efforts were shared and not wasted.

East Field Fairlight Action Group: The Group, popularly known by its acronym, EFFAG, has updated its web pages this month. Their view of much of the latest understandable pressure for many more new homes by all main political parties is that the policy unnecessarily puts pressure on prime agricultural and open land as a quick fix, rather than developing pre-used derelict brownfield sites. Rother District Council, our Planning Authority, have already identified East Field (part of a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty) as a possible area for new house builds and next year a likely decision will probably be put forward. EFFAG’s revised Web Site examines this with sections on introduction, background, the current position in Fairlight, including the Market Garden site, a summary and a video. Do give it a look when you find there’s nowt but repeats on telly!

Be of stout heart: Have you noticed, already, that the days are drawing out? Why, the Garden Club hut has already passed the mid-point of its three month closure and seven Saturdays from today will see it re-open. There is, I’m afraid, no guarantee that this will herald the emergence of spring. If you’re planning on doing some gardening in the meantime, just remember that this is the four-week close season for brown bin collections, until Wednesday, January 21, 2015. As for recycling, I put out a defunct iron, in a clearly marked carrier bag, next to my green bin, all in accordance with the instruction booklet of six months ago. I had read it correctly, but I don’t think Kier had read it at all. I’ve still got the iron. Of course, the change from Summer Time to Greenwich Mean Time is well behind us now, but it always fascinates me that, when the clocks go back, it gets dark much quicker than just an hour earlier than it did the day before.

Ladies who lunch: How was your Christmas? Apart from everything else, did you eat too much again? Never mind. Eventually the hunger pangs will be back to prompt you to snack or even gorge once more. For the ladies, though, there could be a pleasant answer. Why not give a try-out to the Battle District Ladies Luncheon Club? The club meets at 12.30 for 1.00 pm at the Bannatyne Hotel on the Battle Road, enabling you to enjoy the company of the other lady members, excellent food provided in a delightful setting, and a guest speaker each month. The next luncheon, and the first of 2015, will be on January 14, when Diana Patten, wife of the popular District Councillor Robin Patten and a pilot for more than fifty years, will be talking about her life and times. Though the year other speakers will cover such subjects as ‘Through the Rockies to Alaska’, ‘The History of Hastings Pier’, ‘Sussex Ambulance’ and many more. The three course lunch, including the speaker’s fees, is under £20. If, after a trial lunch or two, you decide to join the club, the Annual Membership is £15.00. You may also bring a guest if you wish. If all this has whetted your appetite, why not talk about the possibilities with Margaret Pulfer, either on 814866 or by email to margaret.pulfer@btinternet.com

Let down your hair: Yes, Rapunzel is coming, courtesy of the Pantomime Group. The show will run at the village hall on Thursday 22, Friday 23 and Saturday 24 January nightly at 7.30 pm plus a 2.30 pm Saturday matinée. Tickets, if they haven’t all gone already, are on sale at the Post Office

Nice work: That little stretch of road that time, and maintenance, forgot, on Fairlight Road just before the bend at the entrance to the picnic area, has been beautifully re-surfaced. Cyclists and motor cyclists may comment that there is a bit of a dodgy ridge. Motorists will not even notice this, as they are used to the longer and even more dodgy Ridge that takes them, eventually, across the top of Hastings. Meanwhile, the killer pothole of Martineau Lane gets, if not wider, certainly deeper. Help!

What did you get for Christmas?: A diary? That’s handy. You can make an entry as soon as you’ve put in Aunt Flossie’s birthday, to the effect that the Community Planning for the Post Office and General Stores will be holding their second such event on Saturday, January 31 from 10 am to 12 noon in the village hall. The Planning Group will be showing the prospective plans, which include the points raised by the public at their first open event, and they would like to encourage all those interested in supporting and using the shop, volunteering and financially supporting the shop to attend. The next step is to set up an Industrial and Provident Society as the preferred legal structure, and they will then commence fund raising, using familiar approaches. It has been proposed to the Parish Council that they contribute a Public Works Loan. This will discussed at the January’s PC meeting. Of course, the PC has already stated that they would be supporting financially the completion of the berm and the fact that government funding could well be available (in the coming election year!) would not obviate the need for grass-roots matched funding. They will be launching a Community Investment Share round, where members of the community can donate from £10 upwards to become a member of the community enterprise. Such membership will give everyone an opportunity to vote, attend special events throughout the year, and receive a monthly newsletter. In case you didn’t get a diary, a memory-jogging nudge for this event will appear in the New Year.

2015: I’d just like to close by wishing you all a Very Merry New Year, and Health, Wealth and Happiness in the twelve months that are waiting in the wings to make their entrance - and to sweep past in double-quick time, as they all seem to do these days.

Keith Pollard

Brookfield, Broadway