Peter and Valerie Miles,

We start with Mountfield and Whatlington School. The consultation on the proposed closure of the school runs from September 13 to October 25, 2013. Anyone can make representations and there are full details on the parish website at If you do not have access to the website or cannot download the documents, either notify us (your Village Voices, at the number given at the end of this column), one of the parish councillors or Irene Marchant, the Clerk, and the Parish Council will arrange for the information to be dropped round to you. Above all, as part of the consultation, there is to be a public meeting at 6.00pm at the school on Tuesday, 24th September. This is your chance to have your say.

So, whether you are are a parent, a grandparent, a former pupil (of whatever vintage), someone who believes the school is part of our identity and heritage, an ex-governor — whatever, remember this: a poor turnout just strengthens their argument, weakens our arguments, and weakens every C of E (and other) village school in Sussex. So, if you don’t go, you risk not just the future of Mountfield kids, but kids across the county. Please pass the word on to young and old alike. See you there!

A final reminder that tomorrow (Saturday, September 21) is the Mountfield Charity Ride and Walk: the perfect Heineken chance to reach parts of the local estate that the public footpaths cannot reach. Riders £20.00 on the day (£15.00 for under-16s) and £5.00 walkers (dogs on leads please).

This weekend also sees the inaugural steam train rides on the Rother Valley Railway. There will be stalls and other jollities at the station and it should be a fun piece of history for the grandchildren. Just think: from Robertsbridge Station to Northbridge Street and back in less time than it used to take Concorde to reach New York. Plus the smell of smoke and smuts that some of us grew up with but which those grandchildren have never smelt.

The Mountfield Club hosted its own charity darts night last Saturday in aid Help for Heroes. The evening was very well attended with plenty of new faces and plenty of money was raised for charity. On the night, the men’s team was too strong for the women’s team and won, and the men’s captain, Alex Gray, was presented with a trophy by club member and the events organiser Sally Hayler. The Club also laid on a BBQ and would like to thank Mountfield’s own master chef, Jack Hayler, for cooking all evening and making sure every one had enough burgers and hot dogs.

The Family Quiz night will now be hosted on Saturday 19th October and not 28th September as previously advertised. The winter snooker league starts this week and Mountfield play host to Division 3 new team, Hawkhurst. If any one is interested in playing for the snooker team, please call captain Steve Smith on 07720 298971

Early days, but a quick early warning… Mountfield Bonfire: Friday, November 1st. More details nearer the time but for now, squiggle it on the kitchen calendar or stick it in the diary, and start planning an evening with friends, some family, some beers or some burgers. Traditionally, one of the most family-friendly of all the local bonfire bashes. So, stick it in your diaries now. Go on!

Pete took the dogs up the lane this week and…

“…and I met two fellers dressed in orange day-glo walking one of those measuring wheels on a stick. I pointed at it and said I was sorry about their bicycle and asked what they were up to. They were surveying Kent Lane (Church/Mountfield Lane). When I asked, they admitted they were quite impressed (“It’s quite bad, isn’t it!”). In addition to the potholes (sorry, “assets”) they had noted the extensive erosion of the edges of the lane. All of which should, apparently, send us soaring up the chart from our current position of 494th on the list. It will of course all depend on funding but next time you see an “asset”, make the most of it — it might not be there much longer.”

We have had an email from Vicky Staley who lives at the Old Vicarage and volunteers at Musical Ducklings which does sound a lot of fun. She writes: “Musical Ducklings is a singing, music and movement group for pre-schoolers age 0-5 years. There are lots of fun instruments to play and it is run by a professional music teacher. It is held every Tuesday from 10am at Netherfield Village Hall during school term time and costs £2 per child, £1 each additional child. Snacks and drinks for the children and tea/coffee for the mums (or dads) are included. It was set up over 7 years ago by a local mum and originally received a grant from Action in Rural Sussex and is non profit making. I live in Mountfield and it was a a great way of meeting other mums and I wondered whether there were any other Mountfield mums that would like to come along. First session is free!”

As ever, you know where we are: or 880614 (evenings).