GREETINGS: Back on the island again after a very nice, warm holiday overseas. Hope you enjoyed your pancakes. Where I was, Tenerife, they have the biggest processions for Mardi Gras outside Rio de Janeiro. And we missed it because we returned on the Tuesday before the processions, held on the Saturday. I think plans are afoot to time it better next year.

CHURCH NEWS: The service at 9.30 am will be Parish Eucharist led by the Rev. Canon Robin Whitehead. This is the second Sunday of Lent. Traditionally some people give up something for Lent, but I prefer the idea of Taking up something new and relevant. I don’t eat enough chocolate or drink enough wine for it to be significant and therefore a hardship and character forming. When the service time changed, the bells were rung to remind people. But I haven’t heard them since then. Could we have them each week please?

LENT LUNCHES: The first of these this year takes place in the Memorial Hall today, Friday 19th, from 12.30 to 2 pm. It will be cheeses and so on, and donations are for a different charity each week. The next is on Friday 26th.

LENT STUDY GROUP: The first one took place in Five Villages House last Tuesday at 7 pm. Each is following the York Course and is studying the Psalms. Everybody is welcome to come when they can. You do not have to commit to all the sessions. The next is on Tuesday 23rd.

EASTER LILIES: As Easter approaches we are once again inviting you to donate a lily in memory of a loved one. The lilies, along with a list of those remembered, will be used to decorate the church at this special time. The lilies, as last year, will be £2 for each individual remembered. Should you wish to donate a lily, Janet Pegg on 01424 814 735 and Christine Overy will be available to take details at the Lent Lunches or Sunday services. There are also envelopes in the Village Shop.

PARISH COUNCIL: Please take note of the following date and mark it in your diary. It is very important that as many New Pavilion supporters as possible attend the Annual Parish Council meeting on Wednesday 30th March at 7pm in the New Hall, Winchelsea. If we don’t get the Footprint agreement to our liking, all the fundraising which we have done over the past four years will have been in vain. We ask for no money at this time, just your presence and voice. Please spread the word and make every effort to attend. The following paragraph was on the Parish Council’s February agenda. Icklesham Sports Pavilion. The group recommend that Option 3a, moved slightly to align the front of the proposed building with the southern fence of the children’s playground, is approved and put on the agenda for the Annual Parish Meeting in March, so that the public can be fully consulted. A decision will be made. The Clerk recommends that authority be given.

NEW PAVILION DRAW: Mrs. Sue D’Arcy made the February New pavilion Draw. The winners were :1st, £50, Alison Baines; 2nd, £25, Jo Mayne; 3rd, £15, Sean Baker; 4th, £10, Pat Baker; 5th, £5, Ladies’ Darts team; 6th, £5, Sharon Sellens. The lottery is open to all and costs £1 per month. new members are all welcome. Thanks to everyone for their continued support.

WEATHER: It was a bit of a shock when we landed at Gatwick to find the temperature 4 degrees centigrade. When we left Tenerife, it was 22 and wall-to-wall sunshine. Since then there has not been much of an improvement. The day when we had a lot of sunshine - O yes we did - there was a hail storm at the top of Rye Hill and there was still ice and snow up there the day after. The Big Wind removed a roof ridge tile from my home, but I can see no other signs of damage around the village. Hope everyone was secure. It is noticeable now that the hours of daylight are getting longer. It wasn’t properly dark at 5.30pm today.

HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY: The schedules are now available from Judy at the Post Office at Winchelsea Beach or 22, High Fords. They cost £1 each which also includes membership. The society would like to thank Simon for setting out the schedule and the school for the use of their photocopier. The first show of the year is on Saturday 2nd April. Profits from all three shows will be donated to the New Pavilion Fund. Help at any of these shows will be much appreciated.

THANKS: Ernie Wilson and family would like to thank everyone for the messages, cards and donations in memory of Katie, who we sadly lost on19th January. Your thoughts mean such a lot to all of us at this sad time.

QUEEN’S HEAD: The live music this coming Sunday will be played by the Dave Paull Trio, playing acoustic covers.

ROBIN HOOD BONFIRE SOCIETY: The annual presentation evening was held on Tuesday 2nd February, when cheques were presented to : New Pavilion Fund, £100; Guestwell Scouts, £100; Icklesham School, £100; Icklesham Youth Club, £100; Armed Forces Bikers, £300; Pett Level Rescue, £300. Two donations were made to the Bonfire Society from Armed Forces Bikers of £150 and Icklesham Youth Club of £100 towards next years’ fund raising. Obviously we did not give out as much as we would have like this year due to the atrocious weather on Bonfire Night which reduced attendance. We would like to thank everyone who supported us this year and hope that you will continue. Look out for February events : Tuesday 23rd February - Quiz Night at the Robin Hood - monthly; and Saturday 27th February, a Table Top Sale in Icklesham Village Hall, from 10 am until 2 pm. Please see our facebook page or Icklesham Village Voice for updates.

PANTOMIME: We had a wonderful time -- O yes we did.! Dick Wittington and his Cat had all the true elements of a traditional pantomime. We hissed and boo-ed the rats; we cheered the hero; we shouted and sang and generally had a good time. Everyone was so good . I’m going to complement the Shoreditch Belles. They were everything we needed in a chorus group - loud, colourful, plenty of puns, and appearing at every turn. And the principal Boy, Dick was amazing. ‘Her’ legs were shown to great advantage in those high heeled boots and fishnets !!! And her singing was beautiful, and especially in the lorelei song. What to say about the cat. I’m a bit stuck for superlatives. This young lady should go far on the stage. She showed great confidence, sang up well and moved about the stage in a commanding manner.. Now I’ve started, let’s go on. Well done Sarah the Cook - what a splendid buxom Dame! And Idle Jack was a clever foil to her overblown beauty !! Alice Fitzwarren was lovely and played her part really well. It is difficult to be the really feminine element in a rumbustious performance. The sailors were suitably salty and yo-ho ho-ish and it was good to have children involved. Sultana Scones was supremely sultry and gorgeous and the multi talented PC Bobby Dazzler, Stageman, Watchman and Popcorn Vendor were very busy, all played by one character. The whistle was deafening. I could have done with seeing a bit more of Elvis, he flashed by rather quickly! Mr. Handy and Mr. Dandy were there when they were needed. Everything was held together by the Narrator, who filled in connecting bits of the story with ‘poems’ telling what would happen next. It was such FUN!. Everyone of the Icklesham Players and Acting up in Rye is to be congratulated on their performances. And please come again next year. The scenery and set build was excellent and the changes were efficiently executed. It was well lit and the costumes were super. And thank you to the Director. If you did not have a programme, you won’t know who played what. So be intrigued and come next year. Or even take part !!!!!

RACE NIGHT: Acting up in Rye are holding a Race Night in Tilling Green Community Centre on Saturday 20th February at 7.30 pm. Doors open at 7 pm. Bring your own food and drink. There will be a prize for the best Ascot Hat. For more information call 07766 211 220.

CONTACT: Please let me know if there is anything which you would like to advertise, or any news you would like to share. Phone on 01424 815 247, pop round or use the email.

AND FINALLY: Have a good week. You never know, the rain might ease up or even stop for a while. And it is getting lighter early morning and evening. Remember to toddle round to the shop. It needs you and we need it.

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