GREETINGS: What a colourful morning today. Here we are in sunshine while to the north there are very dark stormy clouds over the Downs. My little sort-of cherry tree has turned crimson almost over night. The dark grey background, crimson foliage , the pink Michaelmas daisies and blue sky gave me great pleasure.
CHURCH NEWS: The 9.30am service for the last Sunday after Trinity will be Parish Eucharist led by Rev. Canon Robin Whitehead, returned from his trip. During the week we shall remember Alfred the Great, King of the West Saxons and Scholar 899. Next Friday we have Simon the Zealot and Jude who were with Jesus from the beginning of his ministry. They are associated with the proclamation of the gospel in many countries. It is believed that they were martyred in Beirut in AD 65.
WEATHER: Warm in the sunshine, cool in the wind and very much colder at night now. But the alternating sun and showers are a bit like April weather. Still warm enough for coffee out of doors if you can find a sheltered spot.
BUTTERFLIES: I have been given this lovely review of the state of our local population, by our previous correspondent, Laurie Bowman, who writes :”When I was generously given book tokens by both the Parish Council and the church when I came to the end of my stint as Village Voice, I said I intended to use them to purchase the Atlas of Sussex Butterflies. This I can now do as the book, produced by the local branch of the national charity Butterfield Conservation will be published in the spring of 2017. Sussex has recorded 53 species of butterflies -- and there are only 58 or possibly 59 ever found in Britain. Our county has a lot because of the variety of habitats. We have chalk downland, grass pastures, deciduous woodlands plus the closeness to the continent so we have frequent migrant species.
This year has been a very poor one and a disappointment for a butterfly watcher and recorder like me. Only the red Admirals coming in across the Channel in the warm days of September were abundant. Common species in other years like Peacocks, Small Tortoiseshells and Gate Keepers were scarce. However, I did see a Pale Clouded Yellow on the Recreation Ground. There are 3 distinct species of Clouded Yellow and the Pale is rare. Then in June, on a purple Hebe flower I saw Britain’s smallest butterfly, the Small Blue. Its wingspan is about 20 millimetres - less than one inch.
It’s not all depressing news about butterflies. As the climate warms, more are coming to us from Europe. The continental type of Swallowtail has been getting here, as have the little Long Tailed Blues.Its larvae have been identified feeding on the buds of wild sweet peas and a few have been found in packets of imported mangetout peas. In fact, my passion for butterflies started because of a butterfly migrant. In 1943 my Mum managed to get me a copy of a Puffin book on butterflies. In wartime, books and toys for children were rare and usually second hand. So when I identified a Clouded Yellow on a bomb site buddleia, I was thrilled. This lovely creature had flown from German occupied France to very drab Cheshire. When the ‘Butterflies of Sussex ‘ is published I hope to check all the Icklesham possibilities and then write a summary for the village Voice and / or the Parish Magazine. A pre-publication offer of the book can be ordered from Pisces Publications, 36, Kingfisher Court, Hambridge Road, Newbury, RG 14 5 ST, special price £20 plus £4 postage and packing. “
COFFEE MORNING: Thank you to everyone who supported the Macmillan craft fair and coffee morning last week. It was lovely to see so many visitors in the hall. Grateful thanks to Lin and Sara for serving the refreshments and to all the ladies who baked the cakes for us to sell. I have sent £170 to Macmillan. The next craft fair will be on Saturday 19th November and a donation from this event will go towards the Rye and District Memorial Hospital. We welcome your support. Thank you Sandra.
BONFIRE AND FIREWORKS: As is traditional, the Robin Hood Bonfire Society will be holding their super splendid evening on 5th November. Gates open at 6.30 pm. Entry is £3 over 12, and £2 under. There will be a licensed bar, hot food and ice cream. I do not know who will light the bonfire. You’ll have to come along and find out. I am hoping that the drummers will be there, blacked faces and all.
QUEEN’S HEAD: The live music this week will be played by Loose Change playing Covers. Come and listen between 4 & 6 pm.
From your Icklesham Ward councillors, Corinne Merricks, Jane Austen, Jim Horsman and Nick Warren.
The Parish Council: meeting was held at the Rye Harbour Village Hall on Monday 10th October.
Allotments - Members voted to form a separate Allotment Committee which will be made up of councillors and allotment tenants. Work will now start to form the group and define the Terms of Reference. Allotments are a large part of the Council’s work and a lot is being done to improve the sites across the Parish. If you have one of our allotments and you would like to be involved in the committee please contact one of your councillors or the clerk.
Play Areas - It was agreed to undertake some improvement work at the play area at Icklesham; our contractor will be enhancing the base at the side of the play tunnel following suggestions made by residents. And rubber matting will be installed by the side of the zip wire to make it easier for parents to walk alongside it when helping younger children; again this was following suggestions by local residents. Work is also progressing at installing the new equipment in Winchelsea and the installations at Winchelsea Beach and Rye Harbour are now complete.
Budget for 2017/18 - This month we will start work on the Parish Council budget for the next financial year. As part of this process we will be considering new projects. If you have any views on what improvements could be made across the Parish please contact your local councillor or the Clerk as soon as possible.
Sports Clubs - We are pleased to welcome Beckley Rangers Football Club to our Pound Field recreation ground at Rye Harbour following their successful application. The Open Spaces Working Group is consulting clubs who use our open spaces, for their views on charging for using the facilities.
Other news - is that Rother Ramblers will be using the recreation ground in Icklesham for the start of their walk on Sunday 6th November.
Devolution of assets from Rother District Council - As you know the Parish Council took over the management of the toilets and car park at Rye Harbour in July and we have now been offered the toilets at Winchelsea and Winchelsea Beach plus the turning circle at Rye Harbour. A Working Group will be meeting in the next few weeks to investigate the proposal; please contact the Clerk or your councillors as part of the consultation process on whether the Parish should take on these facilities.
Planting of daffodils for Her Majesty the Queen’s 90th birthday - The Parish Council is planting daffodil bulbs around the parish as part of the Queen’s birthday celebrations. Councillor Nick Warren is looking for volunteers to help with the planting in Icklesham; please contact Nick if you can help.
Grants - A grant award of £1725 was paid to the Rye Harbour Village Hall at this month’s meeting. Grants have now been paid to all of the village halls within the parish. Grants are considered by the Council twice a year; more information on how to apply is on the Parish website.
Your councillors are here to represent you and welcome your views on any matter. Please do talk to them or send your reviews/requests to the Parish Clerk at email@example.com or write c/o Wildgoose Cottage, Gorsethorn Way, Fairlight, East Sussex TN35 4BQ.
CONTACT: Thank you so much for all information Keep it coming please.
AND FINALLY: It is only a week now to Hallowe’en and the American habit of “trick or treating.” The children round here have always been polite to me, so I hope that will be so again. And the very same week end sees the end of British Summer Time. Then we really will notice the dark evenings. It is time to get the batteries for those torches.
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