Fairlight village voice

The second Sunday in the month… is always the busiest in Fairlight’s two churches, and Sunday, June 10 is no exception.

Rev Kay Burnett will be leading Holy Communion at St Peter’s at 8 am, followed by Morning Praise at St Andrew’s Church at 10.30 am. this is to be led by Canon Richard Orchard. Then, as is the custom, it’s back to St Peter’s at 6 pm for Evening Prayer, led by Richard Baines.

A mixed showing… On Jubilee Saturday, the East Sussex Fire and rescue Service turned out on a peaceful mission in the village hall car park, with a highly impressive Aerial Ladder Platform from the Bohemia Road Fire Station, along with a Pump Ladder unit from the Ridge Fire Station. The first thing to catch the eye was the fact that the Aerial Ladder was apparently suspended in mid-air, but in fact on four stilts to render it level on the sloping car park, and when the hydraulic platform was powered some 50 feet in the air, we had a diminutive fire-fighter snapping away at those on the ground, while we snapped away at her.

I say a mixed showing for the numbers of the public attending were remarkably thin. However, those who made it were totally fascinated, with youngsters, with their mums and dads, keen to examine the contents of the multifarious lockers, and to sit in the cab for a photo opportunity or to try on a full uniform kit, which did not come in their size. The foam hose reel was pulled out to the delight of the kids! In the hall, a couple of tables showed the firs-damaged relics in the Brigade’s Black Museum. What looked like the largest blob of solder ever turned out to be the remains of a saucepan, and various blackened lumps were phones, mobiles, hair dryers, toasters, electric blankets – the ways we can start unwanted fires are legion.

Fairlight owes a great vote of thanks to the both station crews from Green Watch for their patience and cheerful interaction with the public, especially the younger ones. It also owes the Brigade an apology for the thin attendance at what was, nevertheless, a very impressive display.

Help lines… Many residents will have been disappointed, on receiving the latest issue of Fairlight News, to read of the resignation of its Editor, Richard Pollard. Richard had taken over a well-regarded, useful and informative duplicated magazine developed by Ron Childs, and had, in the course of some 19 issues, transformed it into a new format, professionally printed, full colour and highly esteemed volume, appreciated by contributors and advertisers alike. It is probably true to say that, along with Andrew Mier’s instant news flashes through his Residents’ Association email system, Fairlight News is the main contact point for residents with the Association.

For the future, the FRA would like to hear from anyone, whether members or not, who would be interested in being involved in the production of the magazine, which the committee would like to place in the hands (and minds) of a small team. This team would meet soon to discus the format and content of future issues, and consider any changes they feel to be appropriate. If you have talents you would like to use in the continuance of this excellent publication – and working in the safety of a small group of like-minded enthusiasts – please call FRA Secretary Lyn Mosley on 812144, or email her at lyn.mosley@btinternet.com, or drop her a note at 26 Lower Waites Lane. She, her FRA colleagues and the entire village will be most grateful.

Monday dawned wet and unwelcoming… but by the time we all got up, it was drying but very dark grey. As the day limped damply on, it became a lighter grey, but there was never enough blue sky to make a Wren a small handkerchief, let alone the proverbial sailor a proverbial pair of trousers. At 3 pm, Broadway was coned off and tables brought out into the street, but before 3.30 a nasty drizzle was mocking the efforts of those who presumed they could have a street party. Tables were assembled in the hall and soon 120 people were bringing and sharing food, goodies and camaraderie, while a splinter group who remained outside in the rapidly improving conditions were enjoying the event as much as those indoors. Red, white and blue were massively in evidence, and the huddled masses soon became proper partygoers. Wendy Hatch and the Village Choir entertained the throngs towards the end of a super afternoon’s fun.

Flaming Great… is the title of the Barn Dance outfit who swept along some 90 residents, many of them fully participating young people, in a real fun-packed evening of dance and laughter. Under the experienced eye and instructional voice of caller Bryan Henley, and with the superb musicianship of Lucinda on electric violin and Darren on keyboards, the villagers danced till they dropped (some sooner than others!) Refreshed by the ploughman’s supper and a busy bar, the villagers and especially the children – always quicker on the uptake than their elders – soon became adept at the fun dances. If you’re planning a ‘do’, you should give Flaming Great a call on 812649, or have a look at their website at abarndance4u.com: 90 Fairlighters will give them a good reference!

A little blip in the Barn Dance programme… came shortly after 10 pm, when several took a rain check, in the American, not the physical, sense, and got themselves up Battery Hill for the lighting of the beacon. It was chilly and dark, but there must have been 100 people braving the evening air. It was only possibly to estimate numbers by counting the whites of their eyes and dividing by two. With at least three other beacons or fiery displays visible in the distant north, immediate past Parish Council Chairman George Hensher, who had earlier spent a good two hours hauling up the ingredients for a good fire and packing the beacon, set light to the package, providing instant light and even more welcome, instant warmth. Present Parish Council Chairman Andrew Mier led the crowds in a strangely moving a cappella National Anthem, and a myriad of cars scuttled off to the warmth of either a return to the Barn Dance – or straight off home!

It’s tomorrow… the village hall’s Summer Fair, in the hall from Midday to 2 pm. Though it anticipates the astronomical arrival of summer by some 11 days, it can pay to get in early, and it certainly will for those planning a visit, for they’ll have the pick of the jacket potatoes and all the fillings. Don’t miss it!

Not this week… but next, on Tuesday, June 18, the Tuesday Ladies Club will feature Mr G. Albon talking about the Nakasendo Trail. This walk runs from Tokyo to Kyoto and, to me, would be fascinating to hear about, if not to actually experience. The TLC is one of the few organisations who meeting commence at 2.15 pm, and guests are most welcome for the small fee of £2 a head.

Keith Pollard, Brookfield, Broadway