Winchelsea

Church Market: This month’s Church Market takes place tomorrow May 5th at 10.30am to noon in St Thomas’ Church and all are invited to come and participate in the cheerful ambience of the occasion. The money raised goes towards church funds and the total for April’s Market came to the useful sum of £260. As usual there will be home-made produce, books and plants on sale plus coffee, tea, tasty snacks and good company.

Coastal wildlife: Colin Page took his camera and went in search of coastal and island wildlife around the UK, going from Rye Harbour to the Shetlands. On Wednesday May 9th Colin will be talking on the subject of ‘Coasts and Islands’ at the Second Wednesday’s meeting starting at 2.30pm in the New Hall and all who are interested in seabird colonies and wildlife habitats will enjoy listening to Colin. The cost for non-members is £4 which includes the talk and delicious home-made tea to follow.

Ceilidh Dance: Next Saturday May 12th the fundraising Ceilidh Dance in aid of Cancer Research UK & Parkinson’s UK takes place in the New Hall at 7pm. All are very welcome to attend but tickets must be bought in advance from the Farm Kitchen or by ringing 01797 225114. The cost for Adults is £12 and for Children £5. It will be an energetic fun evening, dancing to the live band Muscadin and Friends and a dance caller will be at hand to keep everybody in step. Also there will be a bar, canapes, songs and pipes for your entertainment.

FOAM Cellars: Winchelsea’s Medieval Cellars are open to visitors for guided tours through the month of May on Saturday and Sunday 12th and 13th and Sunday 27th. For bookings please email cellars@winchelsea.com or phone 07596 182874 and the cost is £6 per person with all proceeds in aid of the charity FOAM (Friends of the Ancient Monuments & Museum) You will need to meet at the Town Well in Castle Street at 10.50am for an 11am start and as some cellars have difficult access you are advised to wear sensible footwear and carry a torch. During the tour members of FOAM will be giving visitors detailed knowledge of the history and purpose of the cellars.

Oberon’s Cure: Coming soon the popular Rude Mechanical Theatre Company will be returning to St Thomas’ Primary School field to perform a new play called ‘Oberon’s Cure’. The performance will be on Sunday June 24th at 7.30pm but gates will be open at 6pm for your picnics and you will need to bring your own low backed chairs and warm clothes. Tickets are available online at www.therudemechanicaltheatre.co.uk or please phone 07923 451431. ‘Oberon’s Cure’ is based on Titania’s claim, in Shakespeare’s play ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ that her husband Oberon has had an affair with ‘this bouncing Amazon’, Hippolyta. The upshot is a fantastic spinoff of Shakespeare’s fantasy creation.

Methodist Heritage: The Methodist Church has meticulous instructions in its Constitutional Practice & Discipline on the records and artefacts it should keep and how to manage them. As new objects are acquired, when its churches and colleges close, preserving them and understanding their social history, their function and God’s involvement in them is the work of the Methodist Artefacts Committee (MAC) Last Saturday morning Alison Butler from the MAC gave a talk in the Wesley Chapel about the interesting and varied duties of her role. The work involves travelling across Britain to some of the 120 historic places concerned with Methodism and one of her visits was to a bunker under an airport runway which was used as storage for a fascinating range of artefacts. The New Room in Bristol, one of Alison’s places of interest, was built in 1739 by John Wesley. It is the oldest Methodist chapel in the world and the foundation of the early Methodist movement and was used by John and Charles Wesley as a place for preaching salvation and educating the poor. Upstairs, there is a museum which tells the story of John and Charles Wesley and their work in Bristol. The early Methodists were often attacked by mobs and so the lack of windows on the ground floor acted as a safety measure against these attacks. The building was also designed with limited access upstairs to defend the preacher if any mob broke in. Alison is placing the stored artefacts in suitable locations around Britain and during the talk she presented Revd Ian Pruden with a tamper which is a twin of the ornament already displayed in the chapel. It appears there are many of these same artefacts in various parts of the country, made from the original ash tree in Winchelsea when branches were removed and turned into souvenir objects. The tamper which is a heavy tool used for compressing earth would have been used to prepare the mortar when laying foundation stones in chapel buildings. Consequently, it would also have symbolic meaning to the growth of Methodism through God’s instrument John Wesley. His powerful sermons concerning the end of the age and the building of God’s Kingdom are, like the tamper, capable of leaving an impression on the listener.

Winchelsea Beach

Pub 31: This Sunday May 6th the 2018 musical entertainment continues with the live band Sarah G & the Other 3. The venue is Pub 31 on Sea Road at 1.30pm when Sarah will be singing from a repertoire of popular songs dressed in eye-catching costumes, colourful and glittering, so ‘Tina Turner eat your heart out, Sarah G is in town!’

Fellowship Lunch: The next Fellowship Lunch will be held on Friday May 25th in the Community Hall at 12 for 12.30pm. Please contact 01797 227168 to reserve your place as the caterers need to know how many people to allow for. The Lunches are always well-attended and there is a superb range of dishes to enjoy and funds raised from your donations go towards specific charities.