St. John the Baptist Church Netherfield: We are holding our annual Spring Fair on Saturday, 21st April in the church from 10-12am. To delight everybody that arrives at the church there will be a 'Lucky dip', a Bric-a-brac stall, a chance to win a smashing prize on the tombola and of course a raffle. As usual there will also be homemade produce, books, games, crafts, plants, refreshments and lots more! Come along and join the fun. Thank you. Gillian.

Friday, 13th April 2018, 7:00 am

Netherfield Village Hall Monday Bingo Night: To make the deadline for the paper we are unable to give details of the night’s ups and downs, who missed a line by a single number and who won a full house. However, next week I will make sure that a blow-by-blow account of the winners and losers arrives on your doorstep in time for your full English.

Netherfield Village Hall Jumble Sale: Easter is a time it seems, that a lot of people take advantage of the holiday to take a short break with the children. Whilst it is a great idea, it has an impact on the numbers who are available to sort through the clothes and 2nd hand items that are for sale. It was a little underwhelming given that we had a half-size violin in its case, cuddly toys, lots of interesting games, gardening items and host of other bits and pieces, all at really fantastic prices, which would not have stretched anyone’s limited resources.

So, although it did not reach the dizzy heights of our previous sales, we still made a healthy £112.39. This did include a couple of donations from well-wishers who were unable to make the sale and these funds will help the Hall to put on those activities which engage the local community in other pursuits for having a good time. Please join us next time.

Battle Neighbourhood Plan: The new call for sites has been loaded on the website and will be seen in this, the local paper, for those who may have a site that they are thinking of including in the development options for the Parish This has a proposed new closure date of 14 April 2018. Details are available on the website.

Claverham Monday Badminton Club. The car park was dark, windy and eerie, as I opened the door of my rain-covered blue car and looked with apprehension at the emptiness which pervaded the black, wet, forbidding tarmac, that stood between me and the safety of my destination. Was there anything out there? At times like this, the mind plays games with your common sense and visions and thoughts raced through my head making my nervousness seem a sensible response to the distance that needed to be crossed before sanctuary became apparent. As I slowly climbed out of my seat, grasping the top of the door to steady my shaking torso, my head was constantly moving from one side to another.

Shadows seemed to dance and snake tendrils to within a hairs breadth of my head as my body shook with fright. I quickly gathered my gear and hastily closed the car’s door as I raced across the car park in the hope of evading Armageddon, my features constantly moving from side-to-side expecting the worse. I finally reached sanctuary as I opened the large heavy door into the Centre and my heart began to return to normality. I turned my head to the right and said; “Hi Andy, anybody else here yet?” “No mate, you are the first!”

More next week.

Reflections on a garden: With trees in the garden, there are seasons of activity relating to their well-being, which do not correspond to Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter in the true sense of those ideals. Trees grow their leaves and shed them, which is a given for deciduous varieties and the others sort of drop bits throughout the year. So, once they are shed, the leaves that is, there is then the annual harvest to rake, bag and compost. As I have explained before, cold-composting takes time to be effective but is no less of a triumph at the end. The leaves become loamy and make the soil, on which the compost is scattered very easy to work with, once it is fully mixed and integrated.

As the trees start to reach their zenith another part of the process is to harvest the dead wood, especially from the willows, which is broken and thrown to the ground in high winds or just because it is too brittle to sustain attachment to its host. This can happen at anytime throughout the year, so again is not dependent on seasonal activity. However, once gathered and dried, becomes marvelous kindling. This then raises its own dilemmas. Storage! This has to be treated as a priority to enable one to become self-sufficient, but only if you are lucky enough to have a plot which incorporates all these diverse areas.

Then of course, there is the two or three yearly pollarding cycle to contend with. This is required for ash, perhaps more regularly than for the other trees we have. These trees are prolific rejuventors once they have been subjected to their first haircut. Whilst I have executed the work myself from time to time over the years I am getting to the stage when shinning up a ladder is murder on my instep. Therefore, I leave the hard part to a younger team but still utilise the resultant harvest for feeding our log burner. Re-cycling just as it should be.

More next week..

Netherfield Mobile Library Service: This is my second post on this item as I think we are losing a wonderful service. East Sussex County Council are just one more stop away from finishing their visits at Netherfield for the Mobile Library Service. The final time is on 1 May 2018. So what will happen then? The people who rely on its service will have to find another outlet to exchange their current book for another. I think Battle will still be open but for how long? Do you think the Village Hall could fill the gap? We get provided with a lot of books for our jumble sales so maybe we could start a library. What do you think? Your thoughts would be appreciated. As we don’t have much time, if you contact me below, I will see what I can do. Maybe the Council will let us have their stamps and things for the signing in and out of the books? Please please let us know.

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 email at [email protected]