SOUTHERN WATER NEWS: Mountfield Residents Group (MRG) discovered that all the apparent progress made in talks between Southern Water (SW) and Rother, ESCC and MRG had never made it up the grapevine to their executive and that, assuming the executive agreed to a treatment works being built, the construction of the plant would be added to the end of the current construction schedule taking the whole operation to the three and a half year mark or beyond. MRG therefore escalated the whole campaign by writing to the CEO of SW and then copying that letter to the senior executives of the statutory regulators such as Ofwat (whose most recent fine dished out to SW was for £2m), the Secretary of State for DEFRA, the Head of Environmental Health, and so on. Nearly everyone approached wrote to SW’s CEO with some particularly heavy fire coming from Huw Merriman, our MP, Kathryn Field, our county councillor, and Eleanor Kirby-Green, our district councillor. Although we still await formal confirmation, we have now been assured by Southern Water that they will be building a treatment works — which is a huge shift since the start of the year. That leaves the question of when. That will be addressed at a vital meeting between between MRG and SW on October 1st. As this is our last Village Voice, I should just add that, whatever the outcome of that meeting, the Residents could not have fought a better battle and could not have done any more.
OLD BAKERY OPEN GARDEN: Sylvia writes: “The Open Garden event had the best of weather despite some annoying wasps wanting to join in. We raised £715.50 all due to the support of some of the ‘usual suspects’ who can be relied on to support a charity and Mountfield. Many of you (residents) provided cake and plants with very little left at the end. Nothing went to waste. Barbara was kept busy painting and we held up the raffle whilst she finished painting the singer. There were a number of visitors from further afield including the author of Land Girls ‘The Homecoming’ , Roland Moore, who donated a signed copy of the DVD series and the book. Pashley Manor raffle prizes were well received, two lucky winners are now the proud owners of an annual season ticket to Pashley Manor Gardens as well as prices for creams teas at several garden nursery outlets and lunch with wine for 2 at Pashley Manor Gardens.
The live music was excellent and the cost of the entry ticket alone was worth it to be able to listen to an excellent band fronted by a wonderful voice in the name of Sue. We were lucky to have them.
Thanks to everyone who participated. Without Jackie barring any non paying gatecrashers and Neil ensuring Olympic rules for the games, the front garden could have descended into chaos. Our knitters stall helped man the unmanned plant stall so again thank you. Everyone attending during the extended three hours helped to provide a great atmosphere. My hope next year is that we may get a few more visitors if we can again have the band and they tell their friends and family. New on the horizon is a pond (hopefully).
MOUNTFIELD RIDE: This was hugely successful, raising over £1600. There will be a full report in the next edition of The Messenger. Talking of which…
LOOKING AHEAD: At the time of writing, no-one has stepped forward to take over the Mountfield Village Voice. We hope someone will soon but in the meantime, here are a few ideas. First, everyone should make an effort to remember to keep The Messenger informed of all goings-on. Secondly, if you have an internet connection, sign up for alerts to new posts on the parish website, mountfield.org.uk.
FAREWELL TO ARMS: We have done this column for over five years. That’s 275 columns with news of events to come, reports of events past, notices of neighbours who have passed on, high points and low points of life in Mountfield, a few observations on what each new season has brought and more. Above all we have always tried to write it with a smile on our faces.