Laurie Bowman, Magpies, Oast House Field

Sunday 21 April. Canon Hugh Moseley and the whole congregation warmly welcomed Mrs Joan Marsh (nee Packman),her son Trevor Marsh,her daughter Mrs Hilary Bourne-Jones and their well-behaved dog with the fine biblical name of Talitha. They were here paying their respects to Robert Packman who is on our War Memorial and was Joan Marsh’s brother.He was 18 when he was killed in February 1944 in central Italy. His unit the 5th battalion the Hampshire Regiment lost over 200 men in 8 days of fierce fighting with the German army.Robert rests with his comrades in a Commonwealth War Graves Commission Cemetery near where they fell. However his name lives on as Trevor’ son is named Robert after his Great Uncle. It was delightful for Mrs Marsh to talk to Mrs Margaret Chawner one of the congregation who as a child - Margaret Cooke then - knew Robert in war time Icklesham. Mrs Marsh and her family worship regularly in another medieval Church, St Mary the Virgin Lower Willingdon.

Saturday 20 April The Church Market raised over £330 and it’s good to know that these markets have now paid half the loan which was taken out to pay for the cost of new heating boilers etc. Half was donated by the Friends of the Church.

Sunday 21 The Parish Church continues with the two serving Churchwardens, Janet Pegg and Christine Wheeler. The Parochial Church Council ( P.C.C.)assists Canon Hugh Moseley in running the parish consists of - Marilyn Shone, Treasurer, Yvonne Bellhouse, Organist and Choir mistress, Judith Marks, Secretary, and Brian Pitt,Margaret Chawner, Sylvia Archer, Frances Read, Kathleen Barnes, Terry Gilbert,and Andrew Pegg.

Wednesday 17 April. The Funeral of Margaret Thatcher. I searched the media but nowhere did Sussex get credit. Mrs Thatcher had chosen 3 hymns.’’ To Be a Pilgrim’’ has words adapted from John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress. The tune Monks Gate is arranged by Ralph Vaughan Williams. It was just after 1900 that the famous collector of English Folk Songs visited the small hamlet of Monks Gate near Horsham. He met Mrs Harriet Verrall and her husband. They knew all the Sussex folk songs and it was to melody of a rousing song ‘’The Valiant Sailor’’ that Bunyan’s words were set. The hymn has been popular ever since. ‘’On Christmas Night All Christians Sing’’ was another from the Verralls. Vaughan Williams called his arrangement The Sussex Carol. There were many other Sussex Folk Songs recorded on these visits. The words of some were a bit too rude for those post Victorian times especially one describing the talents of a Sussex Ploughman. Despite her famous legacy Harriet’s death aged 63 in 1918 went unnoticed and she was buried in an unmarked grave.

Icklesham Players latest show ‘’The Canterville Ghost’’ was excellent.It was an enjoyable relaxing performance which I saw on Thursday. All the cast were splendid and used the clever set and well known music with skill and intelligent interpretation.Janet Kates who wrote and directed this musical based on an Oscar Wilde short story is to be congratulated for the quality of the production.

The next production is a professional one man play.Martin Wimbush is ‘’Wellington’’ with music by Benedict Cruft. It is set at Walmer Castle ,Kent, where the Duke was Warden of the Cinque Ports. The Duke was also M.P. for Rye. He is the only local M.P.to be Prime Minister. There is one performance on Sunday 28 July at 4PM. In October there will be an evening of two one act plays. -’Café Society’’ and ‘’ Last Tango in Little Grimley’’.

Saturday 4 May Memorial Hall 10am - 2pm

The Horticultural Society is holding its annual plant and bring and buy sale. This is an opportunity to swap or sell plants,bulbs or seeds. There will be a tombola and some tables selling craft items. Refreshments wil be available and for those who do not know Ickleshamthereis plenty of free parking . Any queries? please call Sandra Stunt 01424 814401.

June 22 and 23.In the Church. Another event combining local skills. A Festival of Flowers and Art. If you ‘d like to be involved in flowers contact Christine 01424 814927.

Sunday 28 April 4-6 The Queen’s Head live music with Shauna Parker Band who do C&W Swing.

Saturday 27 Tomorrow. The Robin Hood Bonfire Society and Boot Sales have their Over 60s Party in the Memorial Hall. If you need to know more phone Sue 01424 814277.