Fairlight

Pews News: This Sunday, July 15, there will be Holy Communion at St Andrew’s at 10.30 am. Back to normal after Sea Sunday, there will be both crèche and Junior Church at this service. The service for Pett Methodists will be led by Mrs Christine Thacker at 10.45 am. Before that, the Pett edition of the popular Messy Church will be happening tomorrow, Saturday, July 14 at 11 am.

Sky rockets in flight?: The visit next Tuesday, July 17, of the Sevenoaks Four to St Andrew’s sees their entertainment, entitled ‘Musical Delight’, starting at 2.30 pm. It could, therefore, just as easily be called Afternoon Delight, for that is what it will no doubt be. The musical content of the afternoon will be derived from light opera and musicals, plus other well-known numbers. The interval will give you the chance of tea and scones. Tickets are a fiver each, and they are awaiting you at the Post Office or the Rectory. Be quick, for time is getting short.

A towering duty: Volunteers are invited to join the roster of those acting as stewards during the public opening of St Andrew’s church tower, with its unrivalled far-reaching views. Even if some are not so good at climbing stairs, they can do the ‘ground work’ such as talking to people, giving out leaflets, explaining things and, the church hopes, taking donations! It’s thoughtfulness, not discrimination, to have the able-bodied on the climbing jobs!

A grave question: There’s a specially produced leaflet highlighting interesting gravestones in the churchyard at St Andrews, called ‘What connects President Franklin D Roosevelt, Cecil Rhodes, T.S. Eliot, Richard d’Oyly Carte and William the Conqueror?’ to which the answer is, as you may have guessed, the churchyard at St Andrew’s. Each of these famous people has a grave, or a relative’s or ancestor’s grave there. Visitors can find these particular graves using a map and looking for numbered poles in the churchyard. Well worth a look if you are interested in history...

MOPPs today and next Friday: Today, Friday, July 13, the members will be able to join in Celia King’s chair-based exercises. Then, for lunch, there’s lasagne, with cherry clafoutis to follow. Sounds like a perfect meal to follow the exercises! Next Friday, July 20, will have Sally Watson along to give the members a talk. Lunch will be chicken and leek pie, followed by ice cream – and very necessary it is likely to be, too.

Open Gardens continue: Following the outstanding success of this year’s Open Gardens weekend, there’s news of another location and time in the village, and this is aid of St Michael’s Hospice. This will be at Fairlight Hall on Saturday, July 28, 10.30 am until 4 pm. This wonderful garden with superb views to Rye and beyond is a ‘must visit’ opportunity, where the main feature is the stunning walled garden and delightfully planted borders. Entry will cost you £5, and refreshments are available. For more information about this year’s Hospice Open Gardens, visit their website.

That drumming project: The second of the two workshops with drums and drumming experts is today, Friday, July 13, at Pett village hall, from 7.30 to 9.15 pm. Those taking part should be aged 9 or older, and the fee of £2 includes refreshments. If your youngster missed last week’s session in Fairlight, and would like to go this evening, please just turn up!

Cruising Cornwall’s roads: A local couple have returned from their holiday, which included a fair amount of driving in the deep south-west. They report with pleasure that vast majority of the roads, with many country lanes, were smooth and well maintained and, of all the miles they covered, undoubtedly the worst stretch of all was… Battery Hill. This is no forgotten cul-de-sac, but a main through road double decker bus route which is of barely adequate width for the traffic using it. The condition of the road adds insult to many potential injuries. The possibility of a further 175 dwellings in the village may have councillors salivating at the thought of all the additional Council Tax, but Battery Hill and Fairlight Road, deserve to get any plans rejected before they even move out of the blocks.

Fairfest: Now only two weeks to the fifth Fairfest, with us from 12 noon on Sunday, July 29. Programmes that let you know what will be happening and when are on sale at the Post Office at 50p a time, and they could help you spot your own particular favourites and highlight when during the day they will be occurring. Many attractions like the bar, the food, the stalls, the art show and so on are on offer throughout most of the day. The organisers are rather like swimming swans, calm and collected on the surface, while busy, busy, underneath it, sorting out and checking the myriad of details that make such a major event a success.

‘Songs for a Summer Evening’: Music is in our news elsewhere this week, but don’t forget another event just round the corner (literally!) This is this year’s musical evening ‘Songs for a Summer Evening’ will be at St Laurence Church in Guestling on Saturday, July 21 at 7 pm. Molly Townson is presenting the occasion, which features the Cantabile Ladies Choir, soprano Kate Rogers, pianist Richard Eldridge, and the St Laurence Church Choir. During the interval, there will be wine and strawberries and cream. Tickets are only £10 each, and they will be available on the door. All profits will be going to Guestling church.

The saga of a rail journey: Graeme and Leonie Gambrell returned from their deserved holiday in Turkey to an undeserved trauma on Southern Rail. A string of improbable errors – though not impossible at the hands of Southern – has led to letters of complaint going to the rail company and to concerned MPs. The Gambrells travelled the 1735 miles from Dalaman to Gatwick in 3 hours 25 minutes. The onward 31 miles to Hastings took 3 hours 40 minutes. Hence the Saga – Southern Are Grossly Abysmal.

Under a cloud darkly: At teatime on Monday, and then again on Tuesday morning, the sky turned a promising fairly dark grey, with a slight dip in the temperature and the apparent prospect of precipitation after so long. The skies flattered to deceive, and we soon returned to the familiar heat rash. It won’t take long to return lawns to a green state, rather than the bone dry, pale, inert and wholly inanimate tufts of straw we are presently shuffling over.