Northiam village voice

What a wonderful weekend! The Horticultural Society’s Spring Show was a joyful sight, with so many daffodils and narcissi gladdening the eye, as well as some fantastic arrangements. Looking around the garden to select my entries, it was a wonderful lesson in botany – how often do we actually look closely at the structure of a flower? I was particularly jealous of some of the beautifully coloured and patterned hellebores and, as always, of the artistic talents shown by so many of you.

On Sunday afternoon we had the unusual feeling that St Mary’s was too small, when we held the first Messy Church for all the family. Everyone joined in with enthusiasm, and some quite impressive Easter gardens have been taken home to grow and form a focal point for families’ Easter celebrations. The next one will be on May 6th.

Easter celebrations at St Mary’s start with An Hour at the Cross today (Good Friday) at 2pm, a time of quiet reflection. Holy Communion will be at 8.30am and 10.30pm on Easter Day.

I note from Peter Hayman’s Country Call that Good Friday is the day to plant your potatoes (whoops, already done!) but I hope that we shall have some warm soil for sowing crops. However, as only those which can thrive without much water will have a chance we may have an interesting harvest!

Fortunately, the drought didn’t appear to affect the entries at the Spring Show, and 42 exhibitors submitted 294 entries. Well done, Northiam!

Trophy winners were:

The Lt. Col. Bagnall Perpetual Challenge Cup: Joy Taylor

The Norman Lamford Perpetual Challenge Cup: Len Chapman

Frewen Perpetual Challenge Bowl: Joy Taylor

The Society’s Perpetual Challenge Bowl: Joy Taylor

The Margaret Williams Memorial Salver: Karen Ayling

The Elsie Prior Perpetual Challenge Cup: Sheila Marshall

First Prizewinners:

Vegetable Section: Geoff Brown (2), Karen Ayling

Flower Section: Len Chapman, Mr & Mrs Michael Belton (2), Joan Davis (2), Alan Worley, Joy Taylor (5), Geoff Brown (2), Florence Noble (2), Val Michaux, Carole Rhodes, Lesley Kennedy (3), John Noble, John Challenor, Linda Whiting

Floral Art Section: Joy Taylor, Jean Brown, Joan Davis

Domestic Section: Linda Belton (2), Sue Gunther, Jean Brown, Jim Collins, Karen Ayling

Handicraft Section: Alison Kirk, Sheila Marshall, Sue Gunther, John Noble

Photographic Section: John Davis (2), Michael Belton, Len Chapman, Linda Belton

Children’s Section: Kiera Marie, Willow Rose, Emma, George.

I hope Joy Taylor’s silver polishing skills match her horticultural achievements – most impressive!

Most clubs will be taking an Easter break, but Coffee Stop will welcome all-comers on Wednesday morning in the Church Centre.

The Annual General Meeting of the Pretious Sports Hall Management Group will be held on Wednesday 11th April at 7pm in Northiam School and will include progress reports of what’s been achieved since the last meeting, future plans and the annual accounts. The meeting will also elect two local community / hall user representatives to serve on the Management Group, so do come!

The sports hall at Northiam School is open for everyone to use outside of school hours. It was built especially for shared school and local community use and the community use of the hall is run by a Management Group made up of representatives from the School, East Sussex County Council, the Parish Council and with space for two representatives drawn from hall users and/or the local community. Staff are employed to open and clean the the hall etc on a daily basis but all management decisions are made by the Management Group. Running and equipment costs are shared with the School but community use must not be subsidised by the School – community use must be self financing. Use of the hall has been built up really well since it opened in 2007 and is now running with a very high level of occupancy and on a sound financial footing. All sorts of fitness and sporting activities are available and taking place in the hall in your village that you could join – see the website for full details – or you could start-up your own?!

Some dates coming up: St Mary’s Annual Parochial Church Meeting will be held on Monday 16th April at 7.30pm in the Church Centre.

The Annual Village Meeting will be held in the Village Hall on Tuesday 17th April at 7.30pm – a much more informal time this year, and residents will be able to stroll around various stands of village organisations to see what is going on, whilst enjoying a glass of wine. Parish, District and County Councillors will be available to discuss any matter you wish to raise with them.

The Annual General Meeting for the Village Hall will be on April 24th at 7.30pm.But before all that, I hope you have a very Happy Easter.

Services for Easter: Good Friday, An Hour at the Cross 2pm, Easter Day 8am Holy Communion, 10.30am Family Communion

Karen Ayling, The White House, Dixter Road