Laurie Bowman, magpies, Oast House Field

November 10 The Service of Remembrance in the Parish Church of All Saints with St Nicolas.

The Church was full and the collection for the Royal British Legion raised £122.80. The congregation welcomed our local branch , the Five Villages, of the Legion whose Chaplain the Reverend Frank Rowson led the prayers. In his address Canon Hugh Moseley talked of the effect of the Second World War on the village.Lance Corporal Robert Packman of the Royal Hampshire Regiment was still a teenager when he died of wounds in Italy. His sister Joan was with her family at the service. Bob was a farmworker who lied about his age to join up. Joan remembers his infectious laugh . He looked after his little sister when her parents allowed her to go to a dance. On autumn mornings they picked mushrooms to sell to a Hastings greengrocer.Bob’s parents, Horace and Harriet, first learnt of their loss when a letter came from a comrade of Bob’s telling them of their son’s death. The official letter from the War Office only came later. Mr and Mrs Packman visited the war cemetery in Italy where many men of the 5th Battalion, Royal Hampshire Regiment lie together. They placed gladioli . a favourite flower, by his headstone.

Canon Moseley referred to the school log book. During the Blitz over 100 children from Camberwell were evacuated here, and the old village school could not cope. So Icklesham children went to school in the morning and in the afternoon it was the turn of the evacuees. The Memorial Hall was used for extra classes. Air raids were frequent. In 1942 the headmistress was allowed 3 days off as her husband was on leave. In 1943 an American Flying Fortress bomber crashed avoiding the school and the village but the crew were lost. After V.E.Day the children had a 2 day holiday with parties provided by the Royal British Legion and the Home Guard. Mary O’Neil,aged 7, met her brother for the first time. He had been a prisoner-of-war since 1939.

The last craft fair of 2013 will take place on Saturday 7 December 10.30am until 2,30pm in the Memorial Hall. In addition to the many colourful stalls there will be a Christmas raffle on the hour throughout the fair. Refreshments will be available and there is plenty of free parking next to the Hall.

This will be the last craft fair until Easter 2014 and Sandra Stunt who has organised all the fairs would like to thank everyone who has supported the fairs or helped. It was all very much appreciated. And thank you Sandra for all your hard work for the village community in 2013.

There will be two craft events at Harborough Nurseries on Sunday 8 December and Sunday 15 December between 10am and 3pm. There will be over 20 different stalls to look whilst choosing a Christmas Tree.Festive refreshments will be available. All proceeds from these fairs will be donated to St. Michael’s Hospice.

Sunday November 17 10.30 Parish Eucharist in All Saints.

Saturday 16 tomorrow Quiz Night in the Memorial Hall. The hosts are the Ladies Darts Team who will be donating the proceeds to the New Pavilion Fund and MacMillan Nurses.

Sunday 17 4-6 pm The Queen’s Head country swing with the Shauna Parker Band.

Saturday 23 Five Villages Christmas Sale 10am - 12noon in aid of the Mini Bus Club. Everybody welcome. Refreshments,bric-a-brac,cake stall,Christmas Cards and a raffle.

Saturday 23 November at 7.30 in the Memorial Hall Ricochet , the ‘60s Rock ‘n’ Roll Band. Licensed Bar and Raffle. All proceeds to the New Pavilion Fund. Entry £5.

Monday 25 November Icklesham Trust runs the Memorial Hall and the Pavilion. Every organisation, club and society in the village is represented in the Trust. It’s A.G.M. starts at 7.30 but a 7.00pm there are wine and nibbles. This is an opportunity to meet and chat with committee members and raise any issues which you may have about the Hall and the Pavilion.

Wednesday 27 Help the Heroes quiz night Queen’s Head 8.30.

Saturday 30 November Icklesham Church Christmas Fayre. 10am -1pm The Memorial Hall. Santa Claus will be there plus refreshments, cards, hand crafted jewellery,tombola and raffle.

Friday 6 December (St Nicolas’s Day) a Christmas Concert in All Saints with St.Nicolas Church by The Rye “Wall 0f Sound” Choir. A selection of Christmas Music and Songs. There will be a retiring collection in aid of the Children’s Society.( Name Note. the Saxons dedicated our church All Saints which was the most frequent dedication in that period. When Henry VIII took over the church Icklesham’s dedication was changed to St Nicolas. The village was then coastal and St Nicolas was the patron saint of sailors. A Victorian vicar , keen on history, reverted to All Saints but the Manor Chapel is still dedicated to the Saint. but why do we spell the name as the French do?)

Sunday 8 December “ Say It With Music” 6.30pm St. Thomas’ Winchelsea.

This is a unique presentation of the life and songs of Irving Berlin written and presented by Ann Rachlin. Ann’s story telling is supported by more than 100 images and video clips. Many of the familiar songs are specially arranged by Iain Kerr and will be performed by members of Pegasus, the London choir who have been impressing audiences in Winchelsea over the past three years. I am lucky enough to have seen the show and I was both thoroughly entertained and also became fascinated by Irving Berlin.

Tickets cost £10 and are on sale in Winchelsea Post Office. All proceeds go to St. Thomas’ Church.

Irving Berlin wrote the music and the words for all his songs. Yet he could only play the black notes on a piano and his language developed from a Yiddish Russian background and the slums of New York.