SHE DID IT!: Having never cycled more than forty miles on the flat in good conditions, Martha Hollamby (14) signed up to attempt a charity ride round the Sussex countryside of a mere seventy miles. And she did it! Proud Mum Caroline writes that Martha cycled the 108.1 kilometre course in 5 hours 48 minutes and crossed the finish line with a smile on her face. She was back home by 4 pm in time for Caroline’s birthday party and up for school next day.

This extraordinary achievement was all in aid of Action Medical Research. The spark for this was the experience of her auntie whose little girl, Zara, was born prematurely — November instead of March. The full story is here If you haven’t done so already, you can still say well done to Martha, and to her little cousin Zara who is now a thriving three year old, by sponsoring the achievement on the same page.

AND CAROLINE: We should not forget Mum in all this. Seventy miles is an achievement in anyone’s book so well done Caroline; we hope you didn’t slow Martha down too much. It should also be remarked that it’s quite a coincidence that the ride fell on Caroline’s birthday — particularly as she only has birthdays every two years these days.

WOODLAND CONSERVATION WALK: Mainly due to reasons of access (there is no handy parking at the Dallington end), one of the great unsung local wonders is Dallington Forest with its streams and ghylls, old forgotten roads and, above all, an amazing collection of ancient trees and hedgerow trees. The tree warden for Dallington, Doug Edworthy, is offering a guided walk in Forge Wood, near Glaziers Forge on Saturday 7th July. There is no charge to join in as Doug is keen to show off all the conservation work that has been going on and he hopes that as many people as possible will take his offer up. The plan is to meet at 9.30 at the triangle at The Mount where you can park, and then walk down to the Observatory, opposite which is the entrance to the woods. The walk should take about one and a half hours and is, apparently, suitable for any capable walker. It would be helpful to get some idea of numbers so if you intend to join in, drop an email to the Village Voice (address at the end) and we’ll pass the numbers on.

SOUTHERN WATER NEWS: It has been a while since news on the SW scheme has bee this far down the pecking order in this column. That is because there was a big meeting scheduled to thrash everything out. We will report on that next week.

CAMP BED: Does anyone have a reasonably comfortable and respectable camp bed or lounger they could lend us for use in Butters Cottage, our holiday cottage, for a couple of weeks in July?

CONTACT: We can always be contacted on 880614 (if no reply, just leave us your details on the answerphone) or via We always welcome contributions and feedback.