What a fabulous weekend we have in store! Whatever the weather, we shall be partying! Tomorrow (Saturday) we have a fantastic Festival on the Playing Fields, starting at 11am, with craft stalls full of beautiful things to buy for yourself or to stock up for presents. There will be some good food – barbecue, flapjacks, sweet pancakes, cakes and, of course, beer on sale in Northiam once again!! Six breweries, ten ales, two ciders, lager and wine will probably be more popular than the tea tent, but that will also be fully stocked.

Registration for the Dog Show is from 11am, and there are 10 classes: Cutest puppy under 12 months, Prettiest bitch, Most handsome dog, Best veteran, Best child handler – child under 16, Best Irish brace, Best Rescue, Best condition, Best trick and Best in Show. There’s something there for everyone (except me, of course, as I haven’t got a dog!). Judging will start at midday.

Two specialist plant nurseries will be there – our good friends Rotherview and Oak Tree – and ferrets, model aircraft (not the teeny weeny stuff!), rides, games and live music. In fact, if you fancy a turn at the microphone yourself, there’s an Open Mic running in the afternoon.

On Sunday, we have the unbelievable good fortune to have Milton Jones performing for the benefit of St Mary’s Church Restoration Fund, alongside the Victoria Howarth Quintet and Rye’s Wall of Sound Choir. Ticket-holders are invited to party in the park from 4pm, where there will be a tea tent, barbeque and licensed bar. Just a reminder – no glasses on the field, and you will want to bring a camping chair or rug to sit on.

If you haven’t got your ticket yet, please contact 01797 253118 – without delay!

If, for some unfathomable reason, you aren’t going to be on the Playing Fields this weekend, it’s the last couple of days of South East Open Studios, where local artists invite you to see them at work, and have the opportunity to buy. Christine King will be open at Northiam Station 11am-5pm.

Dawn Tutton has just been accepted by Echo in Africa to be part of a 15 strong team who will spend 2 weeks in South Africa this summer providing ultrasound of the heart (echocardiography) to give early detection of rheumatic heart disease. There are 15.6 million people worldwide living with the consequences of this disease, most of whom live in areas with severe social and economic challenges.

Rheumatic heart disease can cause premature death, disability from heart failure and maternal and infant mortality. The tragedy is that with early detection and proper treatment many of these devastating complications can be prevented. More details are on the Echo in Africa website, and Dawn would be grateful for your sponsorship through the site, or to her.

Northiam Primary School is holding Bikeability Cycling Training next week after school, so we should see some more confident cyclists about the village.

The Budgerigar Society meets on Monday in the Jenkins Room at 7pm.

Coffee Stop offers a friendly chat over the cup that cheers every Wednesday in the Church Centre 10-12 – all very welcome.

In case you missed the defibrillator training in Northiam, Rother Responders are holding another session, in Brede Village hall, on Wednesday June 25th. There will be two sessions – at 7pm and 8pm – training in the use of defibrillators such as the one outside the Spar.

Services (22nd): 8am Holy Communion, 10.30am Morning Praise

Karen Ayling

The White House, Dixter Road