COMMUNITY NEWS & REVIEWS: PUBLIC INFORMATION NOTICE (PIN) - Now that the ' E.U. Withdrawal Agreement' has been published, our local MP. Huw Merriman has arranged to hold a further 2 '˜open sessions' to talk to constituents about this matter, before Parliament votes on it. He will discuss' the progress so far, the presentation on Draft Agreement on the withdrawal of the U.K. of Great Britain & Northern Ireland from the European Union'. His aim is to present the background, the detail, the options and the timetable. Huw states he is there to explain the points, to hear the people's views, but NOT to argue !. The dates, times and venues are as follows: Thursday December 6th 7 - 9pm at the Heathfield Community Centre, Sheepsetting Lane, Heathfield TN21 0XG and the following day Friday December 7th 7-9pm at the Battle Memorial Hall, High Street, Battle, TN33 0AQ.

Friday, 30th November 2018, 6:00 am
Updated Wednesday, 9th January 2019, 2:50 am

STAPLECROSS BONFIRE SOCIETY: CAROL SERVICE Just a last and gentle reminder that the members of this much loved local Bonfire Society, would like to invite any resident of the parish ( & possibly beyond) to come along on Saturday December 1st - that’s TOMORROW - and join them for their annual Christmas Carol Service. This is always a wonderful evening which begins when we all meet up at the War Memorial in Staplecross, - (opposite the Cross Inn !) at 6.15pm. Many of the member’s will be dressed in the society’s well known ‘uniform’ and with the added excitement, nostalgia and wonder by way of dozens of flaming torches, lighting our way, will accompany the group on the very short distance along Northiam Road, to St. Mark’s church for the Carol Service. How many people can say they have experienced that , I wonder ? Following the beautiful service, the society will then present their donations to the local organisations and good causes that they have elected to support this year. This is as a result of all the events that the society have organised and hosted throughout the year, and which no doubt, many of you will have contributed and supported along the way. Why not pop along and see what all their hard work, and your support has achieved. This is such a lovely evening, guaranteed to bring a ‘feel-good’ feeling to all who attend, and with mulled wine, mince pies and other festive nibbles in abundance, you really will remember the true story of Christmas. Everyone is welcome, - of all ages, so please come and join us.

ROTHER RAMBLERS: Once more two walks are offered to us - both of equal delight. Walk No:1 is arranged for Sunday December 2nd and will be a 9.5 mile circular meander from Singleton Lake to Shadoxhurst. The meeting place will be at Singleton Lake car park. OS.EXP137. TQ990422. (satnav TN23 4ER) at the normal time of 10.00am As usual a picnic lunch is suggested. Rita and Lionel are to be your ‘walk leaders’ and you may contact them on: 01424~752452 for all further details. Walk No:2 is planned for Wednesday December 5th and will be an 8.5 mile circular stroll from Hawkhurst to Hurst Green. The meeting point will be at The Moor, Hawkhurst. OS.EXP136. TQ756296. (satnav TN18 4NX) again at the usual time of 10.00am. On this occasion Martin will be your ‘walk leader’ and you may contact him on:01424~752793 for more information.

STAPLECROSS & EWHURST GREEN WOMEN’S INSTITUTE: CHRISTMAS CELEBRATIONS. Instead of the normal monthly meeting, and to allow all members to ‘take a rest’ so to speak, this year instead of all the hard work, planning and organising of the Christmas Party, - and all that goes with it, the members will be enjoying their celebrations at the local pub !. The local W.I. group are going to enjoy their monthly meeting and combine it with a Christmas celebratory meal, - with all the trimmings - at the Cross Inn. So everyone gets to enjoy the beginning of the festive season, without any of the strain and stress that can accompany it. Winners all round !. New members will always be given a warm welcome - and of course, of ALL age groups as this is definitely not only for the ‘Jam & Jerusalem’ followers - and for more information of what to enjoy within this lively, friendly and vibrant W.I. group please contact Ann on 01580~831944 who will gladly tell you what is on our Calendar of Events and what to look forward to throughout 2019.

EWHURST, STAPLECROSS & BODIAM GARDEN SOCIETY: AGM & CHRISTMAS PARTY. The horticultural shows are all over for another year, - the accounts have been balanced, our gardens are being put to bed for a few months in preparation for another full and busy year so what’s left to tell you about ?......Oh yes - the last meeting of the year is as always, our Christmas ‘Do’. This year, the format has been changed to include the A.G.M. prior to our Christmas Celebrations. The date is = Thursday December 6th. 7.30pm at Staplecross Village Hall. Please don’t let the initials A.G.M. put you off and prevent you from coming along and having a fun filled evening with lots of festive food, cheer and entertainment along the way. The mundane AGM bit will be dealt with swiftly and surely enabling one & all to then enjoy all the fun that will follow. Please contact Gill on 01580~830551 or Pam on 01580~881839 for more information of the evenings activities or just come along on the night, members are free, but guests can still be a welcome addition via a miserly £3:00 entrance contribution at the door. So please come along and join in the festive fun. We all look forward to welcoming you.

OUT & ABOUT; Lots of Christmas events are being held throughout our region, so you’ll certainly be spoilt for choice - two of particular interest for your consideration and enjoyment are as follows:

1) ST. MICHAEL’S HOSPICE. For the second year running and hoping to out-do the success of last year’s ‘On the Coast’ event, Santa’s helpers will be returning to Hastings ‘Old Town on Saturday December 8th - between 11.00am and 4.00pm for some more festive fun for all the family - whilst helping such an amazing good cause, - that of St. Michael’s Hospice. Come along to The Stade Hall and take part in lots of free activities that will fill you with the spirit of Christmas !. Come along and meet Santa together with his trusty elves and receive a free gift. Why not take part in some Christmas crafts, start or add to your Christmas shopping, or just come and have a great few hours just having fun. Entry is free, but donations are always very welcome - just like you will be !.

2) RYE CHRISTMAS FESTIVAL: This will be the fourth year that this little quaint and historic town has played host to this festive event. Every year it gets better & better and this year it looks as though the trend is set to continue. - in their own words “ it’s set to be more “bonkers” than ever !” Throughout the whole area of the town beginning at 10.30am until dark and late, there will be an amazing number of events to enjoy, with an extra spectacular twist ! All the regular festive sights and sounds will be there; Santa and his Grotto; with Mother Christmas; Reindeer, the Christmas procession, the Carol Concert at St. Mary’s church. There will be Fair rides; Pantomimes; various performances and much, much more. Be at the Strand Quay at 10.30am and witness Father Christmas arrive by boat. enjoy a variety of street food via one of the specially picked street vendors. Drop in to a panto show, watch and/or listen to the fabulous street buskers and performers around the town. Visit Santa in his Grotto or try out one -or more- of the many workshops.Tickets for these events are now on sale at and check on Facebook for more detailed event timings and further information. It promises to be a truly family, fun filled day out, so please come and join in !.

CHURCH SERVICES: DON’T FORGET the Bonfire Society Carol Service on Saturday. December 1st. All welcome and to meet at the Staplecross War Memorial at 6.00pm ready to follow the Torchlight Procession to St. Mark’s church, Staplecross for short service, carols, refreshments; donations to the society’s chosen charities & local organisations that they support.

Church services for the parish of Ewhurst, will commence at St. James the Great, Ewhurst Green on Sunday December 2nd. Advent 1. at 9.30am. This service will include Holy Communion. (CW) A Family Service at St. Giles church, Bodiam will follow directly after at 11.15 am. and this service will also include Holy Communion.. There will be NO SERVICE TODAY at St. Mark’s church, Northiam Road, Staplecross. If there is any church matter on which you feel you may need further assistance, especially Baptisms, Weddings and sadly, Funerals, then do please get in touch with the Priest - in - Charge - Canon Christopher Irvine on 01580~830925. Help in some way is always at hand and always so generously given, so do please contact him.

ANY NEWS FOR THIS COLUMN - PLEASE CONTACT ME: Although news of ‘events and happenings’ taking place throughout our community is rather sparse at present, this does not reflect on our life in general within our parish, With the schoolchildren now firmly looking forward to the End of Term Christmas break and the activities that abound throughout the school at present, - life may seem rather quiet. But fear not are being planned for our enjoyment I’m sure and very soon this column will be buzzing with news of them all.! So if you have an event planned in the foreseeable future - whatever the nature of the event - indoor or out, large or small and you’d like some extra free coverage of it, - courtesy of the Observer Newspaper then please get in touch.- it’s of interest to you --- then it’s of interest to us. It’s NEVER TOO EARLY to send in any of the information and details regarding the event you are planning and scarily, - Christmas IS just around the corner !- so please do contact me as I’d love to hear from you and to help ‘spread the word’ on your behalf......Thank You