Winchelsea & Winchelsea Beach news
Winchelsea & Winchelsea Beach news

Week of Prayer: The Anglican and Methodist joint gathering for the Christian unity Week of Prayer takes place next Sunday January 22nd at 3pm. Each year the service alternates between the two Winchelsea churches and this year will be hosted in St Thomas’ Church with light refreshments to follow. As the Rector Robin Whitehead is soon to retire he will be conducting his final service at Icklesham Parish Church and will not be attending the service. Instead Canon Richard Orchard will lead the time of worship and the Reverend Ian Pruden from the Methodist circuit will preach. This is always a cheerful occasion to start the year and everybody is welcome to join in this special service.

Evening with Charman: The Literary Society is holding its first meeting of the year on Friday January 20th at the usual time of 7 for 7.30pm in the Court Hall. It promises to be a fascinating evening with the screenwriter Matt Charman. Matt was nominated for an Oscar for ‘Bridge of Spies’ which was directed by Steven Spielberg and co-written with Joel and Ethan Coen. This 2015 film is based on the 1960 U-2 spy plane incident during the Cold War and the building of the Berlin Wall in 1961. Non-members pay a donation and there will be light refreshments on arrival.

Garden talk: Edward Flint Head Gardener at Tidebrook Manor will be giving a talk for the Garden Society’s Winter Lecture series, on Saturday January 21st at 2.30pm in the New Hall. The cost is £5 admission (£4 members) and is payable at the door. Tidebrook Manor in Wadhurst has a four-acre garden with remarkable views over the countryside and features courtyards, meadows, a hydrangea walk, kitchen garden and wild woodland. The garden is also open to visitors during the summer as part of the National Gardens Scheme.

Archaeology Playground: Over the last three years Icklesham Parish Council has been upgrading the children’s play areas in the Parish. Works done by the Council on the Jubilee Playground were modest compared to Icklesham and Rye Harbour, with the main item being the replacement of the swings. However, the fitting of these swings proved less than straightforward due to the site being part of Scheduled Ancient Monument 355 (SAM). The site is also in the Archaeologically Sensitive Area which covers all of the medieval and post medieval town of Winchelsea as well as being within the Conservation Area. Archaeological evidence includes details of a garden in a plot north of the site. In addition, an excavation in 1974 revealed part of a house built during the foundation of the town between the 13th and 16th century. As a result of these hitches, the Council had to seek SAM consent from Heritage England to dig new holes for the swing supports. To avoid mishaps this task was only permitted with archaeologists present which has added a great deal to the cost of the work. So despite the initial exertion the Council is now pleased to report that the SAM consent has been granted and the work to replace the swings is scheduled to begin this month.

Winchelsea Beach

IPC pc: Icklesham Parish Council has currently updated all on the plight of the local public convenience (pc). Recently IPC took on the lease of the Rye Harbour Car Park and public convenience. Since then Rother District Council has asked IPC if they would also like to lease both the Winchelsea and Winchelsea Beach public conveniences along with the accompanying car park. In response IPC has set up a Working Group to consider this issue and report back to the Council. At present the cost for every £1000 the Council spends amounts to less than two pence per week for a Band D property and less than four pence per week for a Band H property, based on last year’s precept. However, if the Council decides not to take on the responsibility for these facilities it is likely they will be closed. If this happens not only will there be concern over alternative use of the buildings but also problems that makeshift sites might be used as public conveniences. Clearly it is important that these conveniently located pcs are kept open and properly maintained. If you would like to express your view on this matter please email or write to the Clerk to the Council.

Don’t miss out on all the latest breaking news where you live.

Here are four ways you can be sure you’ll be amongst the first to know what’s going on.

1) Make our website your homepage at

2) Like our Facebook page at

3) Follow us on Twitter @RyeObs

4) Register with us by clicking on ‘sign in’ (top right corner). You can then receive our daily newsletter AND add your point of view to stories that you read here.

And do share with your family and friends - so they don’t miss out!

The Rye and Battle Observer - always the first with your local news.

Be part of it.