CRASH NEAR BATTLE: Motorcyclist dies in crash near Battle.

Police are seeking witnesses to a crash on the B2096 between Netherfield and Battle on Sunday (15 November 15) in which a motorcyclist sadly died. It happened minutes before midday some 200 metres south of Netherfield as the motorcyclist, one of four, was riding south towards Battle. A 53-year-old man from Ashford, Kent, he was riding a black Kawasaki ZX-6R which was in collision with a white Seat Ibiza travelling north. He sustained fatal injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the Seat, a 30-year-old woman from Sedlescombe, was unhurt. It is believed the motorcyclist may have been attempting to overtake a Ford Transit van, driven by a 28-year-old man from St Leonards-on-Sea.He, too, was unhurt. The road was closed for four hours while the scene was investigated.

Anyone who saw what happened or who has other information is asked to or phone 101, quoting Operation Shaldon.

ST NICHOLAS FAIR: We will be holding our St Nicholas Fair on Saturday December 5, 10am to noon. This is a family event with lots for the children to enjoy. Santa will be in his grotto to meet the children, there will be a lucky dip, raffle, plenty of stalls and a giant singing polar bear. Tickets are £2.50 per person and include a visit to Santa for under 12’s and your choice of bacon roll, pain aux chocolate and tea/coffee/fruit juice. Tickets can be purchased from the school office at Netherfield CEP School or on the door on the day. Come along and enjoy some festive cheer and relax with your friends and family over a hot drink. Emma Kersey.

CELEBRITIES IN NETHERFIELD: We all enjoy looking out on the world through glass that is bright and sparkly. Up and down the country men and women provide the essential service that underpins that requirement. In the village of Netherfield and the local area, 70 of its residents ask 47 year old Kevin Spillett to maintain that tradition on their behalf. He is a well known face in the community even though he was born and raised in Chatham, Kent, the home of the dockyard, and did not move to East Sussex until 5 years ago. Whilst he actually lives in Pevensey Bay, he feels like a resident of Netherfield as in one way or another he spends a fair amount of time in our village. KRS Cleaning Services is the enterprise Kevin set up a relatively short time ago, not only to provide a proper service with regard to windows but also to manage the more industrial aspects of Fascia and Guttering cleaning, which from my own perspective, he does cost effectively and efficiently. As his Business Card indicates he has had over 25 years experience in this line of work (although more than 20 years with a Kent based Industrial Cleaning Company), so knows a thing or two about the correct way to keep his customers happy.

Kevin and his partner Tracy have a daughter and they all seem to share a passion for the game of Petanque, a form of boules. This, as many will know, is a national pastime of the French where it originated. Hollow steel bowls are rolled or hurled towards a wooden marker ball, known as a cochonnet (literally piglet) or jack, on either a hard sandy or gravel/pebbly court. The current form of the game originated in 1907 or 1910 in La Ciotat, in Provence, France. The French name pétanque (borrowed into English) comes from petanca in the Provençal dialect of the Occitan language, deriving from the expression pès tancats (ˈpɛs taŋˈkats), meaning feet fixed or feet planted (on the ground) in a circle.

Kevin was introduced to the game whilst at school in Chatham. A teacher managed to put it on the curriculum, not only at Kevin’s school but at four others in the local area, so there was no shortage of competition. He has been playing it at senior level for the last 30years and is currently a member of the English Petanque Association which he joined when the British Petanque Association was dissolved. In this country there are 25,000 regular players stretching from one end of the country to the other, with fair sized contingents in Brighton, Battle and Crowborough. Kevin plays for two local teams; The Meadow Petanque Club and our own White Hart Club. He has qualified to represent the UK in the last 6 out of 7 years. In European Competitions he has visited Rome, Monaco, Luxembourg, Belgium, France, Bulgaria and Gran Canaria to name a few. He has a cabinet full of the metalware which attests to his achievements. Whilst he has also qualified for the World Championships in Tahiti this year, this is not a heavily sponsored sport and the costs of attending, which have to be met by the contestants, are a little out of his reach. However, it shows how the game has improved in this country over the last decade or so. It also indicates how good Kevin is. He is also a man who likes to turn his hand to larger scale projects indoors, so DIY and building, provide him with that on-going leisure time incentive to turn his home into a palace for his family.

Given his achievements, I think you will agree that he fits the bill as a Netherfield Celebrity.


‘I sat on the chair to ponder what had happened. Of themselves the incidents in the store and here in the public house could be explained by tricks of the light, my brain telling me one thing whilst my eyes indicate another, but together they lead to a different outcome entirely. A force of nature? Something out of this world? A trick caused by another dimension other than ours?

I took a sip of my beer. It tasted sour and all of a sudden this corner of the bar lounge area went very cold. It seemed I was being driven, by forces outside my control, from where I was finding comfort to a destination as yet undisclosed. People in the bar seemed not to have noticed my discomfort.

I arose from my chair, pulled my coat around me and headed for the door. I hesitated as I neared the exit, remembering my entrance a little while before. No reaction. With trepidation I reached for the handle, as though I would receive an electric shock. It is funny how quickly the mind changes our behavior to reflect the incidents which alter our thinking of what is the norm. Snap out of it I said to myself, it is a door. Like everything else in this establishment it was shiny, clean and old. Comforting.

With the door open, the chill factor seemed to use its tentacles to surround my being with cold trepidation. I turned right. My first thought was to find a taxi. A quick look showed how difficult that would be. Other would be travelers in this form of transport were already crowding the street, with arms raised in the usual manner of ‘hailing’. What next? A bus? The stop was a few yards away but the queue seemed to curl like a snake across the pavement. Was walking my only option at this point? Could I brave the elements to get home without catching double-pneumonia or some such strength-sapping condition?

As I looked up and down the length of the street I saw a familiar car. A red Ford with my friend at the wheel, or so I thought. The dark, the chill, the people milling around, I could have been mistaken. I waved as though my life depended on it. The car veered in my direction. Was it speeding up? No, he was just trying to avoid the throng. I moved into the road waving as I went. A smile was on my face bought on by relief. It was in a direct line to my position. Silly, but I could have sworn it seemed to be going faster. Ridiculous; I had known him for years; he would not take chances.

I was transfixed. It was like a bullet, aiming directly for me. I was paralysed with fear. Mouth open, throat dry, eyes wide open. I wanted to scream, but no sound was in my voice. My arm was still raised in the gesture of a wave. It was ten feet from my body. Nine. Five. As it hit I felt no pain, no shouts from the crown, nothing. It had passed through me without a scratch. I staggered.............’

To be continued....................

BUDDING AUTHORS: Remember any budding authors in the village or surrounding areas, you can still write a chapter in serial form leading up to Christmas. You can add to the storyline for next week, with the editor of this column (Maurice Holmes) selecting one from all the entries sent to the email address that follows. The number of words can range between 150 to 200 or more. Remember it is an on-going story and should last about three to four weeks and to do that each week must have a cliff-hanger of an ending. Just a bit of fun leading up to Christmas. So get your grey cells working and think of the next chapter. The Battle Observer comes out on Friday so entries must be received by the Monday morning to be sure of being printed the following week. Age is not a barrier as is open to all.

CONTACT: If you have any stories or articles of interest that will give our readership a reason to buy the paper please contact me on 07471000385 or via email at

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