FRED STACE: Although not unexpected, it with great sadness that we must report Fred’s passing. He died peacefully last Saturday (January 10th). We will report details of the funeral nearer the time but is likely to take place in the last week of the month and will be a service and interment at All Saints, Mountfield.

PARISH COUNCIL: Peter writes: Last Tuesday (January 13th) was the Parish Council Meeting. We shall give a fuller report in next week’s Voice. For now, it is appropriate to report part of my opening remarks about Fred Stace whom I described as “a friend to so many in the village but a good neighbour to everybody: the parish owes Fred a debt of gratitude for so many things, great and small, down the years”. In the context of the meeting, I recalled that Fred was chairman of Mountfield Parish Council at the time that Southern Water were applying to raise the level of the Darwell Reservoir to a disastrous new level. That this threat was finally seen off when Southern Water withdrew their application owes much to the local opposition led partly by Fred as chairman of the Council. Given that Fred was a Southern Water employee at the time, that was quite a trick to pull off.

CYRIL SAUNDERS: Just a quick reminder of the arrangements for Cyril. The funeral will take place on Monday (January 19th) at 10.15 at Hastings Crematorium. Afterwards, Graham, Yvonne and Connie warmly invite everyone back to Mountfield Village Hall where, from about 11.30 onwards, there will be refreshments and further reminders of Cyril in old photographs.

JUMBLE SALE: A reminder that tomorrow (Saturday, January 17th) is the first opportunity to drop off contributions to the Grand Spring Jumble Sale on March 21st. The Village Hall will be open for deliveries from 10.00 am to 12.00 noon. You might like to know that anything donated has a double chance of doing some good as it will be offered for sale at the jumble sale but then anything of value will be passed to St Michael’s shop in Battle. There will be two further opportunities to deliver goods for the sale, during the same times, on Saturday February 14th (Roses are red…) from 2.00 to 4.00 pm and March 14th from 10.00 to 12.00 noon.

VILLAGE HALL: And while on the subject of the Hall, a very gentle reminder that the Committee is hoping to cheer up the outside of the Hall this year with pots and plants. January is a difficult month but, thinking ahead, anything you might be able to offer by way of perennials or annuals (or the pots/planters in which to put them) will be much appreciated. If you can help, please contact Chris Holden on 01580 389053.

MOUNTFIELD HISTORY 1: We been sent a couple of fascinating bits of local history recently. The first was discovered by Paul Cawthorne, son of the late Norah Green, who sent it to Jackie Spriggs. It’s an amazing Pathé News newsreel of the 1949 visit of Princess Margaret to Mountfield Court when she was staying as a guest of Commander Egerton (pronounced Egg-erton by the presenter) at the invitation of “Master Tom”, Lucinda’s father. The entire clip is less than a minute but just about the whole village turned out and can be seen in the background. Jackie has already spotted one cousin. If you have an internet connection, the link is If you don’t have a connection, do find a neighbour who does.

MOUNTFIELD HISTORY 2: Then Paul Last sent a photograph of the 1933 Ford T one ton van that Fred Martin used as a mobile grocery shop, calling at Hoath Hill. Apparently this was rescued as a mouldering wreck and restored by John Breach, formerly of this parish, and is now a handsome gleaming exhibit in Beaulieu National Motor Museum. It was originally supplied by Vicary’s of Battle.

MOVING TELEVISION: Did you see the excellent BBC programme on the gardens of Great Dixter in Northiam? As we say, excellent — except that the presenter, right at the beginning, described it as “this West Sussex garden”. Which must make Mountfield nearly Hampshire — or, judging by the torrents of water everywhere last week, perhaps the Isle of Wight.

MOUNTFIELD CLUB: This coming Saturday, January 17th, January the Club will be hosting a Fred Stace charity darts nights. All proceeds from the evening will be going to Fred’s chosen charity, St Michael’s Hospice. Everyone is welcome — members and non-members alike — and for an 8.00 pm start.

CONTACT: Just before we end, we should wish Phil and Lana all the best as they are about to move to Norfolk after many years in 3, Banks Cottages. If you have anything for the Village Voice, we can be contacted on 880614 or via

Peter and Valerie Miles