Netherfield Breakaway Club: The November meeting took place on Thursday 15th with an excellent attendance of members and guests. Our guest speaker was Alan Marchant, an expert on pyrotechnics, ballistics and firearms and his subject was ‘Gunpowder, Treason and Plot - the re-enactment of the blowing up of the Houses of Parliament by Guy Fawkes and his associates. Alan told us that the explosion would have been the biggest ever known on mainland England and a secret location was chosen for this event with a 35 mile exclusion zone and an exact replica of the original Houses of Parliament being constructed with all the members seated at a meeting, not knowing of the many barrels of gunpowder placed beneath them! The explosion was filmed and shown in slow motion and was a spectacular sight which amazed even the technicians who had planned this event! It was obvious that Guy Fawkes had over calculated the amount of gunpowder needed or was very determined to carry out his deed! There is also the story of the mystery woman who was Guy Fawkes’ mistress who ended up being bricked up behind a wall in a stately house, reputed to also be the mistress of one of the MPs - did she betray Guy Fawkes, sending him and his supporters to their deaths, only to be betrayed herself.....? Alan, also an inventor and author spoke about the different types of weapons used throughout the ages and had brought a selection of bullets and explained their uses and how firearms actually work. There were many trophies on display showing Alan’s prowess throughout his shooting career including teaching at Public Schools and running his own gun shop for over 30 years and Certificates of his inventions and adverts showing some of his products. He spoke of some amusing incidents including the story of a takings - a vast amount of £4,000 then - inside a decoy duck, as there were no banks open at the time, only to find after leaving his stall for a while that all the ducks had been sold ...! Aftr an appeal many ducks were returned but not the special one which has never been found - have you checked your ducks lately?! Alan was thanked for his enlightening and very interesting talk. Refreshments were enjoyed and the raffle drawn. Our December meeting will be a week early and the final social event of the year - the annual Christmas lunch at The Brickwall Hotel, Sedlescombe on Thursday 13 December, 12.30 pm. Members were informed that the January and February meetings will take place at the earllier time of 2.30pm reverting back to 3 pm in March. A varied and exciting programme is planned for 2019 and all meetings take place at the Emmanuel Centre, Marley Lane, Battle on the the third Thursday of each month unless otherwise notified. New members and guests are always welcome. The committee wishes all members a very happy Christmas and peaceful and healthy New Year and looks forward to seeing everyone in 2019. - Juliette Vane.

Pass & Move Under 13s Next Match: It appears that the match had to be cancelled due to the weather and the effect it had on the pitch. You can’t play in welly boots.

Netherfield Village Hall Christmas Party: The party day is here. Yes, it is on Saturday. Christmas begins at Netherfield Village Hall.. Dancing, cha cha sliding and who knows what will be in evidence as everyone boogies on down to Northern Soul, 80s and 90s Pop, Christmas songs and anything else that can make you want to move it. Food, drink, games and fun are all on the cards too. The party is on 8th December from 7.30 till 11.30. Tickets are only £3.00 per person. However, family tickets are just £10.00. For large families that is a big saving. Tickets available at the Netherfield Village Shop or from Marrissa, Sam or Jo. See you there.

Netherfield Village Hall Library Service: What a success the visit was. The Head of East Sussex Library Service said how impressed she was by the effort made by the Committee and the donors to get this service up and running. Still a long way to go but we have been pledged the shelving to the support to make it a place to visit. Browse and select the book of your choice, a CD to listen to or a DVD to watch. You can stop for a chat, have a cup of tea or coffee and generally pass the time of day with people who have similar outlook on life. So come along and join us. As usual we are open 2-4 pm on Wednesday each week.

Claverham Monday Badminton Club: Part of the appeal of our Monday sojourn is the regular grouping of a number of different people from all walks of life with a common purpose. Their aim, to get or stay fit and more importantly, to play a game that encompasses skill, competition and fun and is not restrictive in its outlook. Skill levels improve exponentially, which can be seen over time, even though we all have our off weeks, but the variety of opponents ensures that you are constantly aware that different strategies are needed, for the next encounter, when you lose a match against that player. There is no shame in that losing outcome either.

What was exceptional this week was the arrival of three of our lady members all at the same time. Sandra, Jo and Lyn came along this week, not knowing the others would be there because commitments allowed. They were obviously thinking this would be a nice pre-Christmas surprise for everyone. As I have indicated in the past, it brings a level of finesse into the game which is perhaps not quite so apparent when it is just the men playing. What it shows is that the club is open to all so why not come along and sample what we have to offer. It is £5 for the session, from 8-10pm on a Monday Night and that includes feathered shuttles throughout the evening. Contact can be made by just turning up and seeing Andy, the Centre Manager in reception or asking for Roy or Maurice. What could be simpler?

More next week........

Reflections on a garden: Wind, rain and weather have restricted both my Good Lady’s and my ability to don our gardening garb and enter the magical world of our plot. Others might think it a mess at this time of year but a blog has to keep the reader’s attention rather than act as a soporific. Our pairs of green and pink wellies – no they are not multi-coloured – have remained static in the porch awaiting a sock-covered foot to be surrounded by their rubber protection. Hmm, reflections this week begins to read like something out of a specialist magazine. It wasn’t meant to! Mind you, perhaps that would increase my readers from two to three?

Anyway, we have both had to stare longingly out of the window (because of the elements), as we see the leaves constantly whipped by the wind – I promise you it is just poetic licence – and forming piles against walls, in corners of our house where they receive protection from the turmoil. Given the amount of clearance forays already actioned by yours truly, it makes me wonder where the leaves all come from. I hope it is not leaf-tipping on a grand scale by other gardeners on their way to the re-cycling centre? Mind you, with the winds we have been getting lately, they have probably blown in from France. Scare bleu!

With Christmas approaching and family expected to take part in the celebrations we want the homestead to look at its best, so these leaves are a priority to be rounded up from all corners of the estate well apart from those around the house. I should also cut the grass, as that took advantage of the extended summer to grow when it should have been asleep. Is this the shape of things to come with global warming?

It is also time to remember that the sloes we picked during the season and pricked prior to mixing with gin and equal amounts of sugar, have now done their job and are ready to be bottled, just in time for the festive season. How would one describe it? A sweet, almost unctuous concoction, with the kick of a mule, seems sensible. I believe it is what is expected for that festive tipple, especially following a Christmas pud. Strained and bottled, it will keep for years if all the family are teetotal. Ish reeeeely (hic) greaaaat iff youuu arrrr nosh if you are not!

More next week.......

Contact: If you have any stories or articles of interest that will give our readership a reason to buy the paper please contact me on email at Call 01424838410 and ask for Maurice or text 07957588172