Karen Ayling, The White House, Dixter Road

We start with the bad news – that the Horticultural Society has made the difficult decision to cancel the Spring Show this year. It will be just our luck for the weather to change and everything to burst into life by Saturday, but judges have to be booked and preparations made. Please do make sure that you share this with anyone you know who might be planning to enter, as we don’t want anyone getting up at the crack of dawn to raid their garden and then be disappointed. I know the Committee are very disappointed, but I’m sure they have made the right, brave decision. Roll on the Summer Show – we must redouble our efforts!!

The Blue Cross are holding a Fun Dog Walk in Sunday, taking in the lovely countryside around us in Northiam. The walk may include field walking and stiles, so suitable footwear and clothing is recommended. The walk is between 10am and 1pm, with hot refreshments at the end. Minimum donation £5 per dog.

As well as continuing the celebration of Easter, it’s Messy Church’s first birthday on Sunday, and there will be a birthday tea after some great crafts – finger puppets, a new frontal for the Lord’s table and, rather mysteriously, some preparations for the Flower Festival this summer. Everyone, of any age, is very welcome but you have to like a bit of noise and mess! Messy Church starts at 4pm in St Mary’s Church.

I know there is a lot of interest in the village for the work being done with Chitiwiri School through Starfish Malawi, thanks to Sally Bickersteth’s enthusiastic involvement. On Monday, there is a chance to help with a current project – making school bags for the children. If you would like to help with sewing – hand or machine – please join members of Willing Fingers and others in the Church Centre on Monday 8th April from 10am. Bring your sewing machine if possible, otherwise please come and help with some hand finishing. Jean Brown can give further information (252332).

At 2.30 pm Sally will be giving an illustrated talk about her work with the school at Chitiwiri in Malawi, and everyone (sewer or not) is very welcome to hear about everything which is being achieved and hoped for. If you are planning to stay for the whole day, bring a packed lunch, and there will be tea and coffee available.

Please come and support this worthwhile cause.

Also on Monday, there is Bridge Club and Short Mat Bowls in the Village Hall at 2pm, and Pilates at 6.30pm. Badminton is in the Pretious Sports Hall at 5.45pm, and Zumba Fitness at 8.15pm.

Our Bowls Club have enthusiastic men’s and ladies’ teams who would welcome new players. If you would like to find out more about the game, there is a club night, just for practise, every Monday 5.30-7pm with expert tuition. Please call Ken Bowers (252086) or Anne Pryke (01424 882041) to find out more – you might just find it’s what you’ve been looking for!

Northiam Bonfire Society is signing up new members – why not be a part of this historic moment? Come along to the Muddy Duck on the second Monday of each month (8th in April) from 7.30pm and join in the plans for our very own Bonfire and procession. If you haven’t seen a Sussex Bonfire, it’s great fun and so much more than a standard Guy Fawkes celebration. Various fundraising events have been planned throughout the year, so we hope to explode onto the Sussex Bonfire scene with a big bang!!

The Rye and District Association of the National Trust have a walk on Tuesday, starting at 10.30am, centred on Rolvenden Church. 5 miles in the morning to the Ewe and Lamb, Rolvenden Layne and a further 2½ miles after lunch. Please contact Phil Maynard on 01797 260637 for more details and to register your interest in this walk.

The Footpath Group tackle a 7 mile walk on Wednesday, leaving the surgery car park at 9.40am to start in Brede High Woods at 10am. Woodman’s Wonder will include a break for a pub lunch. Meanwhile Coffee Stop will be brewing in the Church Centre between 10am and noon.

Rianne will be showing Thursday Seniors how to make a small flower arrangement – more volunteers for the Flower Festival, perhaps? This week, both the chiropodist and the Citizens Advice Bureau will be available.

Next Friday, 12th April, we can cheer ourselves up with a Cream Tea! Hurrah! A touch of indulgence is on offer in the Church Centre from 2pm to 4pm to raise funds towards the Flower Festival Fund.

The Village Hall Trust are holding a Jumble Sale next Saturday (13th) at 2.30pm. Jumble can be taken to the Hall between 10am and noon.

The Annual Village Meeting will be held in the Village Hall on Tuesday 16th April from 7pm. It’s well worth popping in on your way back from work to find out what is going on in Northiam – more than you would think! Every Society takes a table to tell you about themselves, and you might find just what you’ve been looking for.

Northiam Bonfire Society will be holding a Craft Fair in the Village Hall on Saturday 20th April. If anyone would like a stall, please contact

Also on 20th, we are thrilled to have David Ruddock return with a concert entitled Piano Plus – a history of the keyboard, which will see him change from harpsichord to organ to piano with a variety of musical styles. Tickets are on sale at Will’s Bakery £10 - £8 concessions. The Conservation Society’s Pimms and Puccini have nearly sold out – don’t miss out on this one!

Showtimers present a Show featuring the best of the 50s and 60s on April 27th and May 3rd and 4th for a fun evening of family entertainment. Tickets will be on sale at the Village Meeting.

Services: 8am Holy Communion, 10.30am Holy Communion, 4pm Messy Church