Church Matters: Quite a few notes about the church this week, starting with the immediacy of this weekend’s services, which will be Holy Communion at St Peter’s at 8 am, followed by the 10.30 am Benefice Sea Sunday Open Air service at Pett Level with Meriel and the Methodists, a juxtaposition that sounds as if they’ve come from Glasto. There are no 10.30 am services at either St Andrews or St Mary & St Peter, Pett this Sunday.

At the service on Sunday next, July 19 at St Andrew’s, the theme will be ‘Why suffering?’ If you know someone who has been asking this question, or going through a rough time, get them to go along in a week’s time.

A note for your church diary. There will be two Songs of Praise services at St Andrew’s next month, both at 10.30 am, the first on August 2nd, and then another the following week on the 9th. Present at the latter service will be Iuli and Ioanna, from Romania, who will share the story of their experiences with faith. If you would like to share something about your faith, or have an appropriate song you’d like to hear sung, please let Richard, Kath or Patrick know in good time.

The new Benefice Worship Programme is available, and is effective until the beginning of October, accounting for all the services to come within the Benefice. If you cannot make a service at one church, why not worship at one of the others?

Worship Baton Starting at 8 am on the Friday, August 7, 60 hours of continuous worship will be taking place in different venues all over Hastings and Rother, culminating in a final act of worship at Holy Trinity Hastings at 8.30 pm on Sunday, August 9. Our benefice will be represented with a one hour service of worship on Saturday, August 8 from 5 – 6 pm at St Andrew’s Fairlight and St Mary and St Peter, Pett. A worship baton will be passed from church to church during this time, coming to us from All Saints and St Nicholas, Icklesham, and going on from us, thanks to Peter and Yvonne Jennings, to St Peter and St Paul’s in Hollington.

MOPPs today and next week: Today, it’s Pipkin Magic to entertain you, and then liver and bacon, and cheesecake for pud, while next Friday, July 17, there’s a talk – ‘100 Years of the Women’s Institute’, and the free toe-nail cutting service will be along as well. Lunch after all this will be roast turkey, followed by Angel Delight and fruit.

Meet the Country Parks Ranger: Tomorrow, Saturday, July 11 at 10.30 am, you should meet at The Milking Parlour, Place Farm, Barley Lane, which is off Fairlight Road, when the Friends of Hastings Country Park Nature Reserve invite you to meet Country Parks Ranger Julie Apps for an informal chat about the management of Hastings Country Park Nature Reserve, and a short walk around the Nature Reserve to look at work in progress. The charge is only £2, and actually free to Friends of HCPNR. If you’d like more information, please call Jan Armour on 715556 or visit the Friends’ website: www.friendsofhastingscountrypark.org Sorry, no dogs allowed at this event, but there is a toilet, if that’s any consolation.

Thais are compulsory: It’s the Wine and Social Club’s Thai Evening on Monday next, July 13, when you will be able to enjoy a Thai experience, with Thai food and wine, and Thai dancing as well. The evening is being presented by Siam 2 in Old Hastings. It’s members only, I’m afraid, and those going should already have signed up and paid up. Now don’t forget to go!

Activate at the trot: Or run, or walk, or… whatever suits you. The Village Walk (or run for the Fit!) is just two weeks away Hopefully the sun will shine, but whether it does or not bring your family and friends and take part in all, or part of the course. Dogs are welcome, provided they persuade their owners to join them! Why not take a picnic with you to enjoy on the way, or wait until you return to the activate HQ, where a BBQ will be waiting for you. There will be check points and drinks en route and Activate’s runner Dean will be checking the course throughout to make sure you are all OK. Participants can start any time from 11 am. Club leaders ....please encourage your members to take part. Registration forms are available from the Post Office. The cost is £10 for adults, £3 for those under 16, and free for those who are five or under. All proceeds go to Stage three of the Cliff Preservation scheme. They need to know who is coming, so you must register by Monday next, July 13.

Set fair for the animals: Last Saturday’s Local RSPCA Summer Fayre saw a goodly, but not excessive, number of folk through the village hall doors to enjoy and purchase some really excellent goodies on offer, or to buy cakes and buns, or have a go on the raffle. The three hours of activity lead to a grand total of £706.65 being raised, a sum that has delighted the organisers. And these organisers extend their grateful thanks to everybody who donated items for sale, or made cakes and so on, to those who worked so hard setting up and selling on the day and, of course, to all the good folk who turned out and supported the ‘do’.

The Winter Fayre will be in the village hall on Saturday, December 19. Could be just the answer to those late-bought Christmas presents! Make a diary note today.

Fairfest Summer Bash: Two weeks to go to the Summer Bash, with us on Wood Field on Sunday, July 26. All the fun and games start at 4 pm, and the live music, with fast rising local stars Dorey the Wise, the Rye Ukulele experiment and the local hot favourites the Kytes beginning at 6 pm. The afternoon and evening are supposed to be a fund raiser for the Main Event, next summer’s Fairfest proper but, in addition to free entry, games and music, there’ll be games, a bouncy castle, tea, a bar and a BBQ, making the whole effort a worthwhile entity in its own right.

Offer to help if you’re fit and would like to be committed, and call Jennifer Annetts on 812476. If you don’t wish to help, just turn up and enjoy yourself, along with your family and friends. Take a rug, chairs and a picnic if you like, it will make sitting and listening far more comfortable!

A note or two for music lovers: Residents who appreciate good music will be pleased to learn of a forthcoming event at Guestling Church. Next Saturday, July 18, at 7pm, Molly Townson will be presenting ‘Cantabile’ in ‘Songs for a Summer Evening’. The concert will feature Alison Turley (soprano), Richard Eldridge (accompanist) and the Guestling Church Choir. Tickets for the event are £12 each, a price which includes refreshments including strawberries and cream. All proceeds from the evening will be going to the St. Laurence Church Guestling Restoration Fund. Tickets can be secured by calling either Gill Perry, on 814578, or Molly Townson, on 812520.

White line painting in the village: Not actually down the middle of the roads, but in outline around the most notorious of our Waites Lane potholes. Is it too much to hope that this is the precursor to finally filling them? Past experience suggests that repair is coming, though in Broadway, the lines had to wear away and be repainted twice before the remedy arrived. If the repairers, when they arrive, would care to drive up to the Circle to turn round, they’ll be able to see just how appalling the whole road surface of Waites Lane really is.

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