Village Voices: January 21, 2011


We have a new daytime venue for meetings just outside Camber at the Salts Farm Shop, East Guldeford. The new farm shop has a small cafe within it, which is available to any small local groups wanting a place to hold meetings. There is no charge. Car parking space is available too.

The cafe is comfortable and quite, no piped music! It can hold up to 10 - 12 people comfortably. Maybe you would like to try holding your meeting in this pleasant relaxed atmosphere.

Coffee, tea, hot chocolate or soft drinks are on hand and if you want to really spoil yourselves, simple snacks can be organised.

This space is not a private space as it is part of the farm shop, but it is certainly suitable for informal groups.

There is also a notice board where community flyer’s can be posted if you want to advertise an event or service. Just take your flyer in.

If you want to book yourselves in, contact Judith or Peter Anthony, 01797 226 540 to discuss your needs. They are committed to serving the local community by making this space available.

There is a Fun Pub Quiz at the Green Owl on Friday 21st January at 8.30pm. You will need a maximum of 4 players per team and it costs £5 pounds to enter your team. All the entry fees go towards the prizes.

Rob Cass our Coastal Officer has raised a somewhat sensitive issue! At the present our beautiful award winning beach is available for dog walking. It is a delight to see these canines frolicking together and bounding around in the vast space which is Camber Sands.

Unfortunately there are just a few owners who are not doing the right thing by us all and leaving their dogs ‘doings,’ on the beach.

Rob has asked me to bring this to your attention. I suspect that we are all truly proud of wild beach on our doorstep, its worth respecting.

Rob would be pleased if there were refuse bins specially provided to help dog owners in this respect, but unfortunately it cannot be. (Anyway, we all know what happens to everything anywhere near the beach...... sands buries it.) As there is no cleaning of the beach during winter months so the, ‘doings,’ aren’t dealt with that way.

As Camber Sands is designated a Special Site of Scientific Interest it cannot be mechanically cleaned either. Rob was very keen to make it clear that most people are considerate in taking ‘doings,’ with them, it’s just the odd one here and there, but it quickly mounts up.

He pointed out that there are 8 or 9 bins in the car park any of which can be used to put the bagged offerings into.

There is a Quiz Night on January 29 at 7.30pm in the Thomas Longley Hall, adjacent to the Church. Are you one of those amazing people who have astonishing bits of information stored in your brain for reasons completely inexplicable?

Do you like the idea of getting out on a Saturday night just for once? Maybe you are new to the village and need to meet a few of the locals. The Quiz Night is for you.

Enjoy an evening being sociable, meeting old friends, or making new friends, relaxing, enjoying good company and good food. A ploughman’s supper will be served, gorgeous fresh bread, cheese and may be a beer. You’d have to bring that yourself, (or what ever alcoholic drinks you enjoy.)

Tea, coffee and cordial are part of the deal. There will of course be a raffle! The idea is that teams of six are in competition. You could gather together a team of your own, maybe a Nifty Fifties Team, or a family team. If you come along on your own, you can just see which table takes your fancy and bless them with your company!

It is all very informal and friendly. Come along and join the fun. It costs £3 each and half price for the under twelves, paid at the door. Monies raised will go towards church funds.

The weekly events include, the Extend Exercise Club on Wednesday at 12.30pm for an hour. £3 to maintain your flexibility and fitness. Gentle but surprisingly effective. You need to be 50 plus. Vanessa Bowler can give you details, 01797 229 568

The Nifty Fifties on Thursday at 2pm, £1 entrance, a cuppa always served. A social group with all sorts of activities for ladies and gents. Again Vanessa will give you further information, 01797 229 568 or you can contact Betty Twin, 01797 225 551.

Like Pool? It’s free each Tuesday evening at the Camber Castle.

There is the Monday After School Club in the Village Hall at 3.45pm for primary school age children.It costs £2 per child and £1 each sibling. Sam Birke can tell you more, 07749 857 060

Pop- In offers the opportunity for a cuppa and a chat each Friday at 3.30pm for an hour, in the Thomas Longley Hall, behind the church. Do you know anyone who can’t get out easily who would like a change of scenery for a while? Transport can be arranged if needed, contact me in my Parish Nurse role, Larri Hayhurst 07858 449 360.

And not forgetting the young people. St Thomas Youth Club meets Tuesdays, 7 - 9pm and Sundays 4 - 6pm at the Thomas Longley Hall for the 11 - 16 year olds. It cost £1.50 membership and £1 a visit. The leaders are CRB checked. John and Judith Lomath 01797 226 217

There is Parish Communion at St Thomas Parish Church at 10.30am on Sunday morning. From 10.15 to 11.45am on Sunday morning to coincide with the service, Sunday Club runs in the Thomas Longley Hall behind the church.

This club with a Christian focus is for children between 5 and 11 years old. The under fives are welcome with mum, dad or carer to keep an eye on them. Activities include, stories, music, craft, games and other activities.

The leaders are CRB checked, so let the children enjoy themselves in this safe and caring environment while you join in the service. Adults and children can get together following the club and service for a cuppa and chat. More information from Sam Birke 01797 229 615, or Julie Lomath, 01797 226 217

How are your computer skills? Is it still a big mystery, or does the idea frighten the wits out of you? Maybe you think they may have a use or be interesting but you don’t know where to start? Could you be someone who has the basics but knows there must be an easier way to do it than yours. What about the internet and email?

Maybe you could go along to Camber Castle Car Park between 11am -2pm on a Friday where you will find the Council mobile office. There are computors available for you to use if you want to, and some free instruction.

It’s all very gentle and pressure free. Go along and try it. It’s always useful to learn new skills and we sure are living in a computer age.

If you want information included please send it to 18b Denham Way, Camber

Please send me information about events that you would like, 18b Denham Way

Larri Hayhurst, 18b Denham way


There will be a meeting of The Village Hall Committee this Monday 24th January, when the new Treasurer will be elected. This will be Mike from The Royal Oak. The Village Hall Committee would like to thank Valerie, who retired from the position of Treasurer at the end of last year ,for all her hard work over many years, managing the finances of the Village Hall.

The Good Companions enjoyed a belated Christmas lunch at The Wheatsheaf, Little Common last Wednesday. A raffle was held and plans for future meetings were discussed.

To keep you up to date with current news about the church I thought you may like to read what our Surveyor and Structural Engineer wrote about the roof.

The Surveyor wrote....

“It is apparent that the existing roof under the Victorian boarding is a Medieval roof of 15th C date at the latest. Old features include carpenters’ marks, the pegging of the joints, the absence of a ridge, the double wall plate construction. The intention should therefore be to repair if possible, and only to consider renewal if the timbers have been so far fire damaged as to render that impossible. An initial inspection suggested that the roof over the gallery - which is later anyway - will need complete renewal, but the roof over the rest of the nave should be repairable in?a manner that will look satisfactory. The chancel roof is less accessible but should be repairable as well.

Repairs of this sort require a specialist carpenter”.

The Church’s Structural Engineer writes....

“I have not seen the fire investigation report but from the pattern of charring, it appears that the fire was in the organ loft (forming the westernmost bay) and that it spread through the nave, towards the chancel, through the triangular void above the collared nave ceiling.

The church has clearly undergone some significant alterations during the 19th

Century including the insertion of diagonal boarding to the roof structure and corbels with mock arch braces sitting on them. Whether removal of the tie beams across the nave was undertaken at this time is not known.

The fire has destroyed the majority of the roof structure to the west (organ loft) bay and in my view, there is nothing that could be salvaged within this area. It is worthy of note that the roof to this bay appears to have been reconstructed as part of the 19th Century refurbishment referred to above.. The remaining two bays of the roof to the nave are a different matter. Even before the fire debris was removed, I advised that parts of the underlying structure appeared to be of medieval origin. With the structure now exposed, there is no doubt of the historic nature of the construction, which below collar level remains remarkably intact.

In essence, the construction is of heavy scantling oak paired rafters, with soulace braces between the rafters and collars. There are no principal rafters or trusses and each rafter pair forms its own “truss”. The rafters are bridle jointed at the ridge and sprocketed at the eaves.

The roof is supported on double wall plates, typical of this form of construction, with the rafters landing on the outer plate and large section ashlar timbers, tenoned into the rafters and onto the inner plate.

Quite often, in this form of assembly, the inner and outer plates are joined with short timbers between them so that the plates combine to act as a horizontally spanning “beams” to resist thrust from the roof. In this case, it appears that resistance to thrust was originally provided by two internal tie beams, dividing the three bays, which have subsequently been removed.

I have not yet assessed the full implications that tie beam removal may have had, or indeed, any contributing adverse affect that the fire may have had upon the structure’s resistance to lateral thrust from the roof at eaves level.

From my preliminary inspection of the roof structure, I consider it to be of historical importance and from what I could see, I believe that much of the remaining structure over the eastern two bays of the nave could be saved (certainly below collar level).

There will undoubtedly need to be extensive repair works by skilled craftsmen to achieve the ultimate end result but from my experience with repairs of the kind required, the effort will be worthwhile.”

This is really exciting news about the roof , as nobody knew that underneath the cladding there was a medieval roof and we are all looking forward to reading the history of it and of course seeing this roof exposed.

A survey of the roof has now taken place by Archaeology South-East and we are now awaiting the results. I understand that the plans for a new roof should be completed by March, This will enable the P.C.C. to put their application for a new roof before the March meeting of the DAC (Diocesan Advisory Committee ( the church body who grant planning applications and are probably more stringent than normal planning officers.)

Here is an update from the Royal Oak

‘Our first pub quiz of the year was very popular with 7 teams competing. A close competition resulted in the “Very Trying” team winning the jackpot - well done to them!

Our next traditional Irish music session is on Friday 28th January, musicians begin playing at 8.30pm. This is our regular live music event that takes place on the last Friday of every month. It’s always a really good night, and very popular, so if you would like to book a table please call us on 01424 870492.

This Sunday there will be a family service at the Village Hall led by Jacqueline Kemp starting at 10.30am. Light refreshments will be served after the service; a time for fellowship.

Hilda Aplin, Lismoyne Oakhurst Road


Happy Valentine…Tickets are now on sale for the Valentine’s Dance at Fairlight Village Hall on Saturday 12th February priced at £7.50.

They can be purchased from Fairlight Post Office, or, indeed, from Jennifer Annetts on 812476, Norman Dengate on 813833, Wendy Hatch on 812297 or Margaret Pulfer on 814866.

During the evening there will be a buffet, bar and raffle, and the dancing itself will be to the ever-popular music of the Kytes.

This event is being brought to you by the team that brought you last year’s amazingly successful inaugural Fairfest, but it is not intended to be a fund-raising event.

However, should there be a profit, donations will be made to St. Andrews Roof Fund, Activate Youth Club and the Hospice.

So, go on, get tickets for yourself, your husband, wife, lover, boyfriend and girlfriend – or even for all of them!

Floral Club…The Floral Club’s Annual General Meeting is being held on March 24th 2011 at 2.30 pm, and not as printed in the members’ programme.

This change of the AGM date was agreed at the Extraordinary Meeting held before the Practice Meeting on the 29th March 2010.

It was felt that more time was necessary in order to enable the books to be finalised and audited.

Therefore at the meeting on January 27th there will be a demonstration to be given by the Club’s very own Stella McGowan, entitled Magic Moments.

Obviously, the club is very pleased that Stella is able to give this demonstration, and they very much appreciate her offer to do so.

The February meeting will be as planned and printed in the programme – Practice arrangements on the theme of the Chinese New Year.

Home straight… Almost there for the Pantomime group’s 2011 offering, which is to be Puss in Boots.

It will run at the Village Hall next Thursday, Friday and Saturday, 27th, 28th and 29th January at 7.30 pm each evening, and with a matinée on the Saturday at 2.30 pm. All Saturday evening tickets are £6, while for the other three shows they are £6 for adults and £3 for children.

Each year, rehearsals for the annual panto are quite intense – there’s just December and January to put the whole thing together, and this year has been unusually hard hit by the lousy weather as well as the normal high levels of cast sickness, but the show is looking in good shape for the off.

The past three years have seen the show sold out, so get along to the Post Office for your tickets sharpish if you don’t want to miss the fun! Debutant Director this year is Ben Burford, assisted by Aisling Tigwell, while choreographer Sophie Williams is also making her debut for the group.

Miserable January days…? If you need to be occupied these damp, dull days, why not go along to the Literary Society in the Village Hall on Wednesday, 26th January at 2.30 pm, when Hugh Miller will be presenting ‘Kipling’s Boy Jack.’

Many will remember the drama on ITV on Remembrance Day 2007, written by and starring David Haig as Kipling, Kim Cattrall as his wife, Carey Mulligan as his daughter, and an extremely impressive Daniel Radcliffe as his short-sighted, almost 18 years old son John - ‘Jack.’

It should be most rewarding to hear the real life story at first hand. Visitors pay only £1, and should you require more information, please call 814037.

The Players cast their net… Fairlight Players have already cast their April production, Not Now Darling, the classic Ray Cooney / John Chapman farce.

The group is delighted to welcome Andy Godfrey to the company, and he will be playing the role of Gilbert Bodley.

He is joined in an accomplished cast by Keith Miller as Arnold Crouch, Kate Blake as Miss Tipdale, Tom Miller as Harry McMichael, Aisling Tigwell as Janie McMichael, Carol Ardley as Maude Bodley, Charlotte Eastes as Sue Lawson, Jennifer Annetts as Mrs Frencham, Roland Garrad as Commander Frencham, Aidan Tigwell as Charlie Lawson and Rose White as Miss Whittington.

It is several years since Jennifer last appeared for the Players, while Charlotte played a short while ago after a lengthy gap, and Rose makes her second appearance.

The play, which runs a little earlier than usual this year to avoid clashing with Easter, takes to the stage from 14th – 16th April.

It will be the fourth consecutive April production to be directed by Keith Pollard, who loves to put his stamp on a good comedy and this, he says, is one of the very best. Diaries out, then!

This is the final production in the Players’ 60th Anniversary Year, and by the time we get to April , we shall all need a ruddy good laugh!

Early Warning… The Fairlight Players have invited Heather Woodward, one of most accomplished, entertaining and informative speakers on the local circuit, to give her ‘theatrical’ talk on Ellen Terry, Henry Irving and Smallhythe Place, Tenterden and this will take place in the Village Hall on Wednesday, 2nd March at 7.00 for 7.30 pm.

Cheese and nibbles will be provided, plus a glass of wine to start you off. There will be a bar, too.

Tickets are priced t £6 for members and £7 for non-members, and are available from Carol Ardley, either on 814178, or at Mistral, on the Circle.

Many local residents will have heard Heather speak on both Admiral Lord Nelson, and on the Sussex Air Ambulance, at talks she has given to the Wine and Social Club.

Order, order…! Don’t forget that the Parish Council meets in the Village Hall on Tuesday, 25th January at 7.00 pm. Members of the public are welcome to attend and it is, indeed, fascinating to watch, listen and learn how your First Tier local council operates.

Keith Pollard, Brookfield, Broadway


Last year Village Voice reported on a distressing incident in Guestling Wood where a dog and its owner were attacked by two Rottweilers.

This was linked to an earlier incident and the person in charge of the Rottweilers, was charged with three offences under the Dangerous Dogs Act and one of assault.

In November last year, this person pleaded guilty to two of the charges under the Dangerous Dogs Act and not guilty to the remaining two.

At the subsequent trial held on 13 January, she pleaded guilty to the third charge under the Dangerous Dogs Act and was found guilty of the Assault charge.

As a result she was given a Community Service Order of 100 hours to be completed within 12 months and she has to pay prosecution costs of £100.

The dogs must be walked separately, on a lead and muzzled and she must not be in charge of a dog that she cannot control.

Finally, she has been banned from walking dogs in Guestling Wood.

Don’t forget the Pett W.I. Meeting on Friday January 21 in Pett Village Hall. Please note that this meeting will start at 3pm.

Don’t forget that Pett Level Naturalist Society will meet on Friday 21st January in Pett Village Hall at 7:30pm.

Church Services on Sunday 23rd January – Parish Communion, St Mary & St Peter, Pett at 9:30am; Sunday Service at the Methodist Chapel at 11:00am.

The Mobile Library will be in Pett and Pett Level on Wednesday 19th January. It will start at the Church at 10.20am, moving on to Chick Hill at 11.10am and finishing at The Smuggler at 11.45am.

Mary Saint, Pett Road


On Wednesday 26th January the Mobile Library will be in Sea Road at the usual time of 11.55 to 12.30 pm.

St Richard’s Fellowship Lunch is just a week away on Friday 28th January at 12 for 12.30 pm.

Funds raised are in aid of Rye Memorial Hospital and to make a booking please contact Joan Phillips on 01797 227394.

Are you interested in learning to play the guitar?

If so lessons are on offer by an experienced tutor to help you learn various styles such as classical, folk, blues, jazz and electric.

The first lesson is free and the cost is £15 per lesson at Winchelsea Beach or £20 in your own home. (Enhanced CRB checked)

To find out more about this opportunity tel. 01797 225542 (leave message) or email

Cindi Cogswell, 31, High Fords,Icklesham


From Westfield Parish Church of St. John the Baptist. Saturday 22nd 7.30 pm Barn Dance in the Parish Hall. Sunday 23 January (Epiphany III), 8.00 am Holy Communion (1662), 10.30 am Family Service.

On Wednesday 9.30 am Holy Communion, Saturday 29th10.00 am Friends Coffee Morning in the Parish Hall. For further information contact Rev. Evan France, The Vicarage, Vicarage Lane, Westfield, Hastings, TN35 4SD, telephone 01424 751029.

Barn Dance. Tickets are available for the Barn Dance with The Reel Thing in the Parish Hall on Saturday 22 January, starting at 7.30 pm. Cost is £7.50 for adults and £4.50 for children, including a ploughman’s supper. Bring your own drinks. Tickets from church or Archers.

Coffee Morning. The Friends of the Church are holding a Coffee Morning on Saturday 29 January from 10.00 to 12.00 in the Parish Hall.

This is the replacement for the Christmas Fayre which was cancelled in December due to bad weather. Any additional contributions would be very welcome. Contact Joan Downing (752463).

The Murder Mystery Evening last Saturday (January 15) was a great success. A crowded hall enjoyed both the fun of the play, performed by The Rye Players and a very enjoyable supper.

The organisers thanked the audience and everyone involved especially Janice Bolton for all her organisation. The “winners” were a team called “Murder Most Fowl”, consisting of Kay, Steve, Karen, Barry, Tessa & yours truly. Information on monies raised in support of the village scouts will be known later.

The first Community Lunch of 2011 is today Friday, January 21. Telephone Joan (01424 752463) or Barbara (754618) to book or for more information.

Westfield Parish Church is running a Barn Dance on Saturday, January 22 at 7.30pm in the Parish Hall, with local band ‘The Reel Thing’ making sure you enjoy yourself.

Everyone is welcome – this is for novices and experts alike, and suitable for all ages. Tickets are on sale now from Church, Archers Butchers, or ring 01424 753684. Admission is £7.50 (children £4.50) including a ploughman’s supper, but please bring your own drink.

The Friends of Westfield Church are holding a Coffee Morning on Saturday, January 29 from 10am to 12 noon in the Parish Hall. This replaces the cancelled Christmas Fayre. Admission is 50p, which includes tea or coffee, and children are free.

There will be lots of stalls, including a tombola, raffles, crafts, plants, cakes and nearly new.

F3 (Friends, Fun and Fellowship). All women are welcome at the F3 meetings in the Parish Hall on the last Thursday of the month.

Please join us in the Parish Hall at 7.30 pm. £2 admission. The next F3 meeting is next Thursday, all women are invited to the Scottish evening on January 27.

The Hub continues at ‘The Old Courthouse’ on Fridays from 10am-12 noon, please call in, email, or visit the website, or ring 07531 766830.

It seems a long way ahead, but the first 1066 Relay is planned for 8 May 2011 and planning needs to start early if the race is to go ahead.

The 1066 Relay will follow the 1066 Country Walk route (Stage 4 passes though Westfield) and should attract a huge number of runners. The organisers are asking for the help of volunteers to act as marshals for about half an hour.

Nick Brown would be delighted to hear from anyone who can help. Visit to find out about the race, or contact Nick on 07918 907265.

Westfield WI meets in the Parish Hall on the second Tuesday of the month at 2.15 pm, and new members are always made welcome.

The first meeting of the new year was on January 11, when Ian Millington will be talking about ‘A Policeman’s Lot’, and the competition is an item of police memorabilia.

Members are reminded that plans will be finalised for the ‘Christmas’ lunch at the Brickwall Hotel in February.

Do ring our President Carol on 01424 753757 if you would like more information.

Carol Paige had the pleasure of presenting special birthday bouquets to Bettine van Hattum and Margaret Auckland at the first meeting of 2011 last week. Arrangements were finalised for the ‘Christmas’ lunch at The Brickwall Hotel on 15th February. Offers of demonstrating favourite crafts and suggestions for craft activities were collected from members, with a view to arranging a craft group. Members voted for the resolution to be discussed at the NFWI AGM in June.

Lots of East Sussex activities were on offer, including a mahjong day, craft day, quiz, collecting members’ favourites for an ‘Inspiring Recipes’ cookery book, collecting WW2 sewing memories for Redoubt Fortress, a literary lunch - truly something for everyone! Ian Millington then kept us laughing non-stop as he regaled us with stories about all sorts of escapades during his 30 years as a local police constable.

Westfield WI meets in the Parish Hall on the second Tuesday of the month at 2.15 pm. We look forward to Pamela Vieler telling us about ‘Memories After the War’ at the next meeting on 8th March. New members are warmly welcomed; do ring 01424 753757 for more information.

Westfield Beavers have a few places at present for boys or girls aged 6 plus who are looking for fun and friends. We offer varied activities so come and give it a try. Contact Sue on 01424 425492 or Rose on 01424 754080 for more details.

Westfield Football Club is still looking for helpers on match days and for preparation. For more information please contact the Secretary at or visit The club recently suffered a break in to an out building & an attempted one into the clubhouse. If anyone has any information the police would love to hear it.

The football club would also like to send it’s condolences to the family of John Carmen who passed away recently. John was Vice President of the club for a number of years and was always known as a good supporter, an invaluable helper but more importantly a great person. John will always be remembered at WFC.

Remember that the Westfield Village Community Website carries useful and interesting information on village life, groups and business services. News, photos and other contributions are always welcome.

The Westfield Golf Fellowship’s Christmas event, the annual trip to the Weald of Kent on December 29 was won by Paul Burton in foggy conditions, maybe not being able to see helped his game! The “Race to Headcorn” annual overall golfer of the year was won by Tim Linch, well done to him. New venues are being planned, please watch this space for information.

The European Tour 2011 is now confirmed as Bournemouth from June 12. Please email or telephone Nick on 07939 587796 for further information.

The Rye & District Lions went along yesterday and presented a cheque to the Sussex Air Ambulance at their HQ in Marden. The Sussex Air Ambulance costs £1.7 million per annum, to provide an emergency helicopter to the people of Sussex. With no Government, National Lottery or NHS support, their life saving service is entirely dependant upon the community, particularly the groups, clubs, organisations and individuals who fund-raise on behalf or the Sussex Air Ambulance.

Therefore, Rye and District lions Club decided to make a donation of £250 to assist the Air Ambulance with its life-saving work. Responding swiftly to 999 calls, air ambulances are able to deliver a medical crew to the scene of an accident or medical emergency and to transport patients to the nearest major hospital or specialist unit, in a fraction of the time taken by a land ambulance.

The helicopter, in addition to the pilot, is manned by a fully qualified paramedic and doctor at all times, who can quickly assess the needs of an accident victim and decide which hospital has the equipment and expertise to deal with that patient.

The Sussex Air Ambulance, which is based at Dunsfold Park, flies fast, direct and unhindered at over 150 miles per hour, and the entire county can be reached in minutes. The Sussex Air Ambulance also covers Surrey and is backed up by the Kent Air Ambulance, based at Marden, for incidents in the eastern parts of Sussex.

After presenting the Lions cheque, the Lions were given a tour of the helicopter and a briefing by paramedic, Dave Marshal, and Dr. Amy Hughes, who completed six months training in Queensland, Australia with the Royal Flying Doctors and the Rotary Wing search and rescue team.

Further information on Rye & District Lions is available from Conrad Freezer, President, Rye & District Lions Club, 01797 252921 or email

The Rye and District Association of the National Trust has an event on Saturday 29th January.

The Members coffee morning will be in the tea rooms at Bodiam Castle, starting at 10.30 am. For further information please contact Philip Romani on 01424 883420

To help with planning, for the foreseeable future could contributors please get any information to me by 10:00 am on the Sunday prior to publication.

To send information for the Westfield Village Voice, please email



The Etchingham Singers resume their meetings from Wednesday February 2, 7.30pm to 9pm in the village hall, new members are very welcome to join.

The singers have enjoyed singing popular music, mostly of the sage and screen, they would now like to encourage a few new members who sing alto, tenor and bass, so they can broaden their horizons a bit.

Members contribute £2 a session to cover costs. If you are interested in joining or want to find out more, contact Mary Barnes 01580 819142

Do you enjoy flower arranging?

The PCC is looking for someone with an interest in flower arranging, to take on the role of co-ordinator for the annual Flower Festival in the Church, which always takes place during the weekend of the Etchingham Fete in July.

The role would involve co-ordinating the displays and encouraging village groups and individuals to contribute displays. If you are interested, contact Mary Barnes 01580 819142

You may be aware that following a well attended emergency meeting in December, to decide on the future of the Social Club, after it was closed in November, the Club has now re-opened.

A new committee has been formed, with Peter Goodsell as Chairman, and a number of members have volunteered to help run the club.

It will take time to get things running smoothly, the building is in a bit of disrepair and money needs to be spent on it. Initially the club is set to open on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday evenings, it is hoped a fifth evening can be added on Sundays in the summer when the cricket season starts, and at some point in the future it may be possible to open every evening.

Volunteer cleaners are also needed to help keep the building looking good, if you can spare an hour once a month, or more, contact Lucy Tooke

If you have information for this column get the details to me as soon as you can, so that your event gets all the publicity it deserves, try and get your information to me by Sunday evening to make sure it is included, and get the details to me as far in advance of the date as possible.

COLIN BOYLETT, 2 Park Farm Cottages


THE East Sussex County Council Mobile Library service will next be in the villages tomorrow (Saturday, January 22): Hooe, opposite Denbigh Court, 1.50pm - 2.35pm; Ninfield, Millfield (Manchester Road), 2.50pm - 3.25pm; Ninfield, Downsview (Church Lane), 3.40pm - 4.05pm.

The Catsfield Amateur Dramatic Society (CADS) pantomime The Lost Land of Narkurs, was due to take place at the beginning of December but due to the weather, was postponed to January 20, 21 and 22.

This will be held at the Catsfield Village Hall, 7.30pm (2.30pm Saturday matinee). All tickets purchased for the original scheduled dates in December are carried over to the January dates, same days/times.

There are still a few tickets available for the Saturday (January 22) matinee.

If you would like to purchase one of these tickets, or reserved tickets for the previous scheduled dates but are no longer able to make the new date, please contact Mike Cooper on 01424 892681.

Ninfield Brownies are holding a bring and buy sale on Tuesday January 25 from 5pm to 5.45pm, which is within their brownie time at the Memorial Hall.

There will be stalls and tea, coffee and cakes on sale as well as a few games for the children and a raffle.

All proceeds raised are going to the much needed Memorial Hall floor fund.

The Brownies are a small pack who do struggle sometimes for numbers. They had a great time last year, as guiding celebrated 100 years, and a lot of activities revolved round this, with a day at the big Olave camp at Blacklands Farm, and a sleepover for all the brownies in Battle.

We also had the Ninfield Flower Group come and teach the girls about flower arranging, which was enjoyed by all.

A big thank you to them. They also did some tree planting with Robin from the Village Society who looks after Church Wood, which was also successful.

They have a full programme planned for the coming term to include some cooking and a trip to London. The theme this term is the London challenge, so some of this we can do at pack meetings, like a visit from a pearly King & Queen, pie and mash night etc.

If you are interested in helping at Brownies or would like more information on joining, please contact Julia Wilkins: 07508080608.

The 1st Ninfield Scout Group are holding a jumble sale on Saturday January 29, 2pm at Ninfield Memorial Hall.

You are invited to go and join in the post Christmas bargain hunting, raffle and refreshments. If you have any jumble that you would like collected, please call one of the following team: Peter Mann - 01424 892640, Sandra Titherley - 01424 892848, Dick Creasey - 07970559226 or John Gladstone - 01424 734938.

Alternatively, you can drop off your jumble at the hall on Friday January 28 after 6pm, or on the Saturday after 8.30am.

Don’t forget that schedules are now available for the Ninfield Horticultural Society’s Annual Show (March 26, 2011). These can be obtained from the Village Post Office so you can plan your entries! For further information please contact Rose Franks or 01424 892422.

Ninfield Parish Council will be meeting on February 3 at 7.15pm in the Methodist Church Hall. All Ninfield residents are invited to attend and share their views.

The Hooe Open Group held its first meeting of the New Year on Friday January 14, despite the rather inclement weather the attendance was exceptional. The members had an opportunity to put forward their individual suggestions regarding the club’s programme for the coming year.

The annual membership fee will remain at £10 and casual visitors at £2 per visit, the cost not having been increased since the club was founded some four years ago, after the demise of Hooe WI.

The Hooe Open Group is always ready to welcome new members at their monthly meetings, held on the second Friday of each month at 2.30pm.

If you would like to come along you will find a ready welcome waiting from the group organiser Edna Wallis, who can also be contacted on 01424 842591.

Ninfield Flower Group is holding a meeting on Monday February 7, commencing 7,30pm in the Memorial Hall. The evening’s workshop is titled Take Five Flowers.

For further information on the flower group, please email:

Ninfield School invites you to its Ice Skating Extravaganza on February 17, 3.30pm - 7pm at the school. There are still a few places left for skating.

If you would like to take one of these places the cost is £4.50 per person for a half hour skate. Please book your tickets with Mrs Sleet at the school, Tel: 01424 892486 (opt 20). Payment will need to be made to the school by February 14, to secure your place. There is also winter warmer refreshments, fair ground rides and more. The school would welcome the local community to come along and join in and looks forward to seeing you there.

Ninfield Parish Council is holding an open event on February 17 at the Reading Room (Church Lane, Ninfield), 2pm-7pm.

This is due to it being election year and thus the parish council would like to inform you what is involved in being a Parish Councillor. If you are considering becoming a parish councillor and would like to know more, please do go along.

There will be refreshments available to assist in the digestion of the information! Even if you are not wanting to become a parish councillor, please do go along to see what the parish council does for our community.

Ninfield and Hooe Christian Women’s Fellowship may only be small but it has a great big heart. The 22 Fellowship Members decided to raise money for St Michael’s Hospice during 2010.

Hundreds of cups of coffee were served at numerous coffee mornings; lunches were enjoyed, a bric a brac stall at Ninfield Carnival not only raised the profile of St Michael’s Hospice but was also a financial success. Ladies made jam, made soup, baked cakes, grew flowers and vegetables, walked dogs, sold bits and pieces from the attic.

The fantastic amount raised for St Michael’s Hospice during the year came to £1542.74. When the cheque was presented to St Michael’s Hospice at the January meeting of the Fellowship it was greeted with amazement.

So what about this year? Yes – the ladies will be hard at it again during 2011 and have decided to re-adopt St Michael’s Hospice for another year. Let the fun begin......

More information from Mrs Pam Doodes, Leader of Christian Women’s Fellowship, Catslide, Hooe, Battle TN33 9EY. 01424 892329 /

There are plans to hold a village exhibition in Hooe Village Hall on Saturday September 24. Obviously an exhibition needs exhibits and so, if you have anything of historical interest, photographs, documents, letters or records of organisations - anything at all - Peter and Pam would love to hear from you. Please contact Pam or Peter Doodes on 01424 892329 / /

Church Services:

St Mary’s Services (Church of England, Ninfield): Sundays - 9.30am Parish Eucharist (Family Service on first Sunday of the month); first Sunday of the month - 6pm Book of Common Prayer Communion; Wednesdays - 10am Holy Communion.

St Oswald’s Services (Church of England, Hooe): Sundays - 11.15am Parish Eucharist (Family Service on first Sunday of the month).

Ninfield Methodist Church - all services at 2.30pm: January 23, Worship Service led by Mrs Margaret Bickerdike; January 30, 2011 Worship Service led by Mr David Hanson; February 6, Worship Service led by Revd Malcolm Hope; February 13, Worship Service led by Revd Marion Proud; February 20, 2011 Holy Communion led by Revd Stephen Maunder; February 27, 2011 Worship Service led by Mr David Hanson.

Anything that you would like included in the Village Voice for Ninfield or Hooe, please email the details to me:

Rachel Feeley, 17 Smith Close, Ninfield


The complex is going ahead!

After some robust discussion the motion to proceed with the former Roman Catholic church being used as a “Hub” was carried by majority.

There will be basic post office facilities together with a shop and tea bar. These general ideas will be the basis for plans which will begin to be discussed at once by the company known as Hurst Green Community Shop and Centre Limited. Much effort has already been put in by this company.

Money in the form of grants and loans has been secured. There were some reservations expressed before the vote to proceed was taken focused mainly on the future costs involved.

Members of the company have done a lot of costing and advise the plan is feasible given that the residents of Hurst Green will support the complex.

In time, they will be asking for volunteers to staff the shop, as happens in Etchingham, with one full time Manager in charge and receiving a salary.

The vote is an act of faith in local people to make it happen and make it a success. Reports from other villages are positive but in all of these a sense of strong community has to be present.

More details will emerge in due course but the key to this becoming a great asset to the village is the support it will receive from every one.

Support for Etchingham Stores has increased a little, the snow being the catalyst together with the new look of the shop, and the Bistro the Station is roaring ahead and has won a national prize. This gives cause for optimism for Hurst Green’s great new venture.

More optimism for the future of Holy Trinity Church is promised. It has a bright future and it is hoped that shortly a formal agreement will allow full details to be published.

There will be no service on Sunday 23 but people are invited to attend Salehurst Church at 11 am or the Church Room in Fair Lane, Robertsbridge at 9am. Both these services are Communion and taken by The Reverend Jack Lusted.

On 30 January there will be a Christingle Service at 10 am at Holy Trinity taken by the Reverend Dengate. Bring the children to this enchanting service when oranges and sweets are distributed in symbolic form to represent the world, Christ’s sacrifice and the fruits of the earth.

On February 13 there will be a musical concert in the church at

Notices will soon be appearing in the village and magazine but please note the date now.

The PCC, church Warden, Helen, and the Greenfield family are to be thanked for what they all have done to keep the church alive in the last year. It has gone through a challenging time but we dare to hope that it will follow the success of Etchingham and revive as a flourishing vital part of the village.

Graham, now back in operation which is good news to all in the village, sends the following message on behalf of Hurst Green Royal British Legion as he acts as poppy collection organiser.

“I would like to extent grateful thanks to all those poppy collectors who worked so hard tramping around the village and the collecting points at our local businesses who together swelled our village total to £1,946.76.

A very special thank you to one family, Derek, Marylyn, Kevin, David, Paul,and Barry Seymour, who every year collect their change and take great delight in giving Tom the task of filling a collecting box completely year after year.

Sadly, Derek passed away in July at the very young ago of 61. A short life full of giving and helping people totally unselfishly. The Legion was Derek’s main charity, therefore, the family took a collection at the funeral which amounted to £300 and held it until the village collection in November, Derek’s last year.

Thank you Derek and family.”

The Historical Society held a successful and enjoyable social evening on 12 and those present wish to thank Mrs. Barrett for the excellent food. The next meeting will be on February 9 when David Martin will speak about Local Farm Buildings -we are told VERY local so come along and be part of the scene.

The Carousel Angels lunch Club meets on 31 January at 12.30 at the Village Hall when everyone will be guaranteed a good time and good food.

The Parish Magazine excels itself, especially good was the Adult Money puzzle! What a clever brain devised that. If you have not seen it open the mag at page 28 gloriously refreshing and timeless.

Boxes for Troops continue to be sent to Afghanistan from the base at Teknique Hairdresser. Lesley and Helen are among the world’s “Get Things Done” brigade so anything on the list in the shop will find its way to our soldiers whose courage we can only marvel at.

Pot holes abound but it seems that this is a common feature the county council has to struggle with due to the weather Hurst Green however, has some nasty churnings up of verges in the Burgh Hill area where it looks as if heavy lorries have driven over grass.

Why are these vehicles using narrow lanes? The junction at Station Road and Burgh Hill is very ploughed up . The grass will grow again but the concern is that lorries seem to be using this dangerous corner more frequently.

The build up of traffic has intensified in the last year which adds to the problems for resident of the that part of the village. Other narrow lanes, such as Merriments and Silver Hill area, are not immune from the heavy goods vehicle making such “quiet and picturesque “places more dangerous than the M.25! people who feel strongly about this subject should contact the Council who will act on their behalf with the appropriate authority. A police car was seen monitoring traffic at Cooper’s Corner recently but the speeding and overtaking on double lines takes place on the A21 before the Village sign.

Chiropody Clinic Wednesday and Thursday afternoon. Appointments Jeremy Harris 01797 230 251 mobile 0799991 7948 Aerobics Class Tuesday 8-9 Martial Arts (Juniors) 6-7 (Seniors) 7-8 Jumping Beans Tuesday 1.30-2.30 Trefoil guild ring 01580 819 330 Maestro babies (early musician learning) 01580 880 135 Mobile Library calls Village Hall Friday 2.25-3.15 Jmespon’s Peasemarsh bus picks up at the George Tuesday 1.25 There is a scheme to help elderly or disabled people in council housing with small jobs in home or garden. Full details and conditions ring 0845 871 321.

May I thank the very kind people who have sent flowers and given me support recently. It is much appreciated by my family and myself. I hope to be in social circulation again in due course and please keep me informed with items for the village voice.

All items for this column to 01580 860 340 or flora@jennerations .com

Flora Jenner, Max Gate, Burgh Hill


The next meeting of Sedlescombe Green WI is on Wednesday January 26 at 7.30pm in the village hall.

This is their birthday party evening with friends from the Rother group joining in the evening. A warm welcome is extended to all present, past and prospective members to attend and enjoy the evening with friends old and new.

It is a busy time for Sedlescombe Green WI with only one week to go until the barn dance at the village hall on next Saturday January 29 at 7.30pm. The caller will be Janice Bolton and the evening should prove to be great fun.

Tickets which will include supper are just £5 adults, £3 Children and you are welcome to bring your own drinks. There hasn’t been a barn dance in the village for quite a few years now, so tickets may be in short supply, to get yours please contact Margaret on 870808, Sylvia on 870688 or collect direct from Sedlescombe stores.

One of the many groups that run in the village is the Thursday club.

This is a small mixed group of retired people from the village and local area who meet for the morning at 10am on the first Thursday of the month at Sedlescombe village hall to listen to speakers on a variety of subjects.

Recent talks have included Winchelsea, Venezuela and the work of a magistrate.

Their first meeting of 2011 is scheduled for February 3 when Stuart Earl will be giving a talk on Earl’s Bakery.

They would be very pleased to welcome new members to the club and invite you to come and join them. Your first visit to the club is free so you have nothing to lose but all to gain.

This column will be giving information each month on the speaker along with a reminder of the date and time.

A reminder now for the committee of the Friends of Sedlescombe Church Trust that the first meeting of 2011 is on Monday January 24 at 6pm at Asselton House.

One of the items on the agenda at the meeting will be to discuss arrangements for their spectacular evening of “Sedlescombe’s got Talent”.

If you haven’t already registered your interest in taking part in the evening, then please contact Jean Dann on 882438 or Anthony Rand on 870722 without delay. There will be their own character panel of judges and super prizes to win on the night.

If you have an event coming up in the local area or would like to have a small piece, outlining your club or organisation aims, activities, membership etc. then please contact me by email to or by calling 870344.

Judy Torrance, Asselton House


It’s one of those evenings where there is a great choice of entertainment in the village.

In the Village Hall, the Conservation Society are holding their annual Wine and Wisdom evening, starting at 7.30pm.

Doors open at 7pm for you to have a look at the raffle and get your drinks from the bar.

Teams of eight will compete, but if you would like to turn up in smaller groups, then I am sure that a pretty effective team can be assembled on the night.

Please call Lynn or Mervyn on 253443 if you haven’t already booked, as there will be catering implications if everyone turns up at the last minute (however welcome you will be!).

At Brickwall, the postponed concert with The Fibonacci Sequence will be held.

It may be that some ticket holders are committed elsewhere, so please call 01424 883103 to see if there are any spaces.

Over in Beckley Village Centre, Sussex Brass will be holding their Winter Warmer Brass Band Concert in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support, organised by Rye and District Lions. Entry is £6, to include refreshments on arrival, and the fun starts at 7.45pm.

The usual badminton clubs will meet in the Pretious Sports Hall at 5.30pm (Primary school-age), 6.30pm (Secondary school age) and 8pm (Adults).

On Saturday, Gymnastics clubs run in the Pretious Sports Hall between 9am and 5pm.

There will be an extensive Book Sale in the Village Hall, organised by Northiam Village Hall Trust, on Saturday between 10.30am and 1pm.

Books, puzzles, DVDs, videos and ephemera will be on sale at very reasonable prices.

The Line Dancers will be holding a Social event in the Village Hall from 7pm on Saturday.

On Sunday, Bodiam Castle suggests you blow away the cobwebs with a one hour guided tour around the grounds and castle led by one of their Medieval characters, followed by a two course roast lunch in the Terrace Room.

Gates open 11am, with tours from 11.30am – 2.30pm. All tickets £25 – to book, phone 01580 830074.

On Monday, sports on offer are Shortmat Bowls and Pilates in the Village Hall, with Badminton in the Pretious Sports Hall at 5.45pm.

Northiam Friendly Bridge Club meets in the Jenkins Room at 2pm with refreshments provided, and the Budgerigar Society AGM will be held in the Jenkins Room at 7pm.

Toddlers meet in the Pretious Sports Hall on Tuesday mornings between 9.15am and 11.15am with many activities, a healthy snack and the chance to meet new friends.

Street Dance, Hip Hop and Funky Dance sessions are held on Tuesday at 5.30pm (6-12 years) and 6.30pm (13-18 years). Call Charmaine Masters 07816 417538 for more details. Penny’s Keep Fit/Aerobics is in the Pretious Sports Hall at 7.45pm.

Northiam and District Historical and Literary Society meets in the Village Hall at 7.30pm, with this week’s speaker Peter Rushden, who will relate the History of the Union Castle Line. Visitors are welcome (£2 at the door).

Wednesday brings us Pilates in the Village Hall (ring Sarah 01424 882285 if you would like to join), followed by Shortmat Bowls and Karate.

Coffee Stop opens in the Church Centre each Wednesday between 10am and 12 noon for a chance to meet with friends and have a chat.

Thursday Seniors will be entertained by Midnight Sunset at their meeting in the Village Hall on Thursday.

The Blood Transfusion Service van will be in the Village Hall car park on Thursday.

Next Friday is the monthly Village Produce Market in the Village Hall, and Northiam Bowls Club will be holding a Jumble Sale next Saturday (29th) morning.

For anyone interested in taking up Bowls, there will be coaching sessions arranged at the start of the new season in April, but do contact the club before then if you would like to register an interest or find out more about the game.

Ray Rolles (252753), club captain, and Harry Payne (260436), vice-captain, would be happy to talk to you.

Rye Harbour RNLI are holding their major fundraising events for 2011 on Friday and Saturday – with an Endurance Row on Saturday.

Next Saturday, Rye and District Association of the National Trust will be holding a members’ Coffee Morning in the tearooms at Bodiam Castle, starting at 10.30am.

A date for your diary: the next lecture to the Horticultural Society will be in the afternoon.

Sue Scrivens will share the tale of her discovery of a new type of orchid foxglove in their garden at Saltwood, and the processes involved in bringing it to public attention.

Saltwood Summer starts at 2.30pm in Northiam Village Hall on Friday 4th February - the story of what to do if you discover a new variety of plant and want to share it with a wider number of gardeners.

Getting it shown at the Chelsea Flower Show would be useful but that’s not easy to arrange.

However, after Susan Scrivens and her husband found a new type of orchid foxglove in their garden at Saltwood, near Hythe, they did just that.

The trials and tribulations involved in getting a nursery interested so that it has a sufficient number of plants in order to market them properly forms the basis of Mrs Scrivens’ fascinating talk.

All welcome, non-members £2 on the door.

On 12th January, about 50 people attended the Inquiry on the Restricted Byway by the Six Bells, including members of the Parish Council and their solicitor, although those chose not to speak.

I understand that it was agreed that the two tracks are ancient highway, not village green, and we have to await the ruling as to whether this is a restricted byway, which means that residents requiring access will have to apply for their right to drive on it, or a byway open to all vehicles.

The worst case scenario would be that the Inquiry could result in “no ruling”.

I understand that the ruling should be given in about six weeks, and I do hope it makes sense to the non-legal mind, I’m afraid my head has been spinning with trying to understand all the terminology! An end to this long drawn-out and costly business will be very welcome.

Church Services (23rd): 8am Holy Communion, 10.30am Morning Praise

KAREN AYLING, The White House, Dixter Road


Ladies Darts: We played at The Rose & Crown(Burwash) on Monday and we were losing 3-2 after the singles with wins for Carol Apps and Eileen Morgan while we levelled the match at 4-4 after Eileen/Carol and Dawn Mitchell/Jackie Danaher won their doubles games but we lost all the trebles to lose the match 7-4 however if we could get our double out shots we could have won the match.

There were high scores from Jackie (108), Dawn (98), Carol (93) and Eileen (92). No game on Monday (24th).

Darts: The match at The Kings Head had mixed fortune as the dart team had a surprising 4-3 win with Richard Hawthorne, Trevor Mitchell, Lee Yates and Dave Goodsell all winning while the Ladies Pairs of Jackie Danaher/Dawn Mitchell won 2-0.

There were 100+ scores for Lee (135, 100), Jackie (121) and Richard (2x100).

The pushpenny team were not so fortunate losing 5-0 but there were ‘goldwatches’ for Ted Goldfinch (3), Alec Martin, Alan Apps and Dave Goodsell.

Tonight is the Knockout Cup and we have a bye.

FOOTBALL: Both games last week fell victim of the heavy overnight rain.

Tomorrow (22nd) the 1st team are away to Punnetts Town while the 2nd team are away to Orington II at Netherfield Recreation.

Both matches Kick-Off at 2p.m.

A note for your diary we are holding a Quiz night at Robertsbridge Club on Saturday 5th February 2011 starting at 7.30p.m.

We would value your support because due to the economic climate we have lost a lot of our sponsors and therefore the only way to recoup this deficit in our finances is through fundraising but this does need people to participate.

Sandie Madge & Sue Paine, The Floral Boutique, 20 High Street


Don’t forget the Peasmarsh Quiz tomorrow night (Saturday 22nd).

Teams can be up to eight members, entrance £5.00 which includes a ploughman’s supper, bring your own drinks.

If you haven’t started getting fit for the New Year yet, give your brain a workout instead (from the comfort of a chair!).

I have a note from Tony Curd, Royal British Legion Poppy Organiser, and chairman of the Peasmarsh RBL Branch:

On behalf of the Peasmarsh Branch of the RBL I would like to thank the village for its support in this year’s – 2010 – Poppy Appeal.

Jempsons, The Horse and Cart, The Cock Inn, The Royal Oak, and Flackley Ash Hotel all helped to make it a record year for us, not forgetting all door to door collectors, Willow the horse who did the lanes and Judy Sams who froze outside Jempsons.

Thank you all, we are sending a fantastic £1,900 to the appeal this year.

The Rye and District Association of The National Trust are holding a Members coffee morning in the tea rooms at Bodiam Castle, starting at 10.30 am.

Peasmarsh Flying-Start Parent & Toddler Group is held every Tuesday afternoon during term time, at the pre-school in School Lane and welcomes all children under the age of 5 and their families.

The group starts at 1.20pm and costs £2 per family

Mary Hitchins, 2 The Old Hop Gardens


At a specially called PCC meeting called on Monday 10th January it was agreed to write in agreement with the proposal that Mountfield and Netherfield would continue as a united benefice as the former 4 parish benefice including Brightling and Dallington is now dissolved with the retirement of Rev Stuart Baker.

Formalities and further decisions will of course take time, but services will continue to be advertised in the Messenger magazine.

The Parish council meeting on Tuesday 11th January was attended by 2 PCSO officers plus Councillors Wendy Miers and Kathryn Field.

Sadly no members of the public.

The PCSO’s reported a break-in to a local residents vehicle and theft of equipment from it outside his house.

The matter was being dealt with. Both councillors mentioned the economy cuts, and Kathryn Field said that children’s services will get major hits in the budget cuts.

Ring fencing for grants has been stopped, and all money going into one pot.

Extend class did not take place on Monday, and sadly will not be taking place in our village hall in the future.

Juliette Williams who has been taking our classes, feels numbers are far to small.

Sadly she is right, as at times there have only been 3 or 5 of us.

We are very grateful to her for all her efforts and much appreciate her staying on with us for so long, I hadn’t realised we have been running for 4 years, see how time passes when you’re having fun!

But many thanks to her, and those who wish to continue classes can join her Battle class on Wednesdays at 9.45am in St Mary’s church hall which has a car park.

The Village Hall committee will be meeting on Tuesday 25th January at 7.30pm in the village hall.

Ruby Willis, 1 Brickyard Cottages


AT the Parish Council meeting last Wednesday Barbara Balkham was welcomed as the new Parish Clerk, a role she has also been carrying out for Westfield Parish Council for the past three years.

Councillors discussed at some length prospects for reopening the playground at Lower Cross Cottages.

Readers of this column may recall that local fundraising has contributed substantially towards the cost of replacing some of the equipment, condemned as being no longer safe to use.

For various practical reasons, it cannot be purchased and installed there until the Parish Council has negotiated the granting of a lease on the site by the legal owners of the property, Messrs Amicus Horizon.

Consequently the playground remains closed. It’s a most unsatisfactory situation, and particularly disappointing for the people who have worked so hard to raise funds for the project.

As the grant approved by Rother District Council cannot be made unless the work is completed by March 30, Amicus Horizon is to be approached urgently yet again for a decision.

Among likely items of expenditure during the next financial year, the need for the council to go on funding two bus shelters was seriously questioned.

Although less used than the shelter near the top of Float Lane, the shelter near the King’s Head only needed refelting to make it weatherproof.

The Council therefore approved the purchase of new felt and battens, which John Owen kindly offered to fit himself.

Taking this and other likely expenditure into account, councillors agreed that there was a good prospect of maintaining the precept for next year at its present level of £6000.

In view of this, it seemed sensible to keep any expenditure on measures to reduce the impact of road traffic on our community in a separate Traffic Management budget.

After lengthy discussion, councillors agreed that a significant part of the £3077 donation from the former Udimore New Hall Committee should be allocated to this budget, the exact amount to be determined once the costs of installing traffic speed reduction devices were known.

The Parish Clerk was to consult ESCC, and other Councils, on the procedure for seeking approval for the installation of flashing signs on a highway.

A list of items still needed by the Hall Management Committee was noted, the principle being established that any items funded by the Council in this way should remain the property of the Council.

Reporting on Rother District Council matters, Cllr Johnson reminded us that clean cardboard of any weight (from cereal packets to cardboard boxes) can now be included in the recycling system. It should be placed in our green wheely bins (together with green garden waste, as before) for the usual fortnightly collection.

All this material will be composted together and at some later date may then be offered back to us for sale, for use as a “soil improver” on our gardens.

Cllr Maynard commented further on the harsher than expected impact of the Comprehensive Spending Review on Rother (“not well rewarded for prudence”, as he said).

ESCC too had been harshly treated. Several capital projects, however, were going ahead, such as the Academy programme and the new Rye Library (due to open on Monday, in the premises previously owned by Woolworths).

He spoke of possible new sources of funding, for such projects as the Bexhill-Hastings Link Road, and even (believe it when it happens) improved broadband provision in rural areas.

Finally our attention was drawn to the current vacancy for a Udimore representative as a Governor on the Board of Brede Primary School.

Anyone who is interested in taking on this important responsibility and would like to know more about what it involves should consult the Parish Council chairman, Bob Turgoose (01424882657).

After the close of the meeting, a presentation of a book by Christopher Lloyd was made to Nadia Florence-Marshall, in grateful recognition of her dedicated hard work as Parish Clerk in recent years.



Donations for the Christmas Tree dedications at St. George’s Church amounted to £150.

Half of this will go to St. George’s and the other half to “Help for Heroes”. The bellringers would like to thank everyone who supported the Tree appeal, which, despite losing the Holly Fair and Farmers markets due to the weather, still managed to raise this sum.

Details of the dedications will be shown in next month’s Parish Magazine.

Brede & Udimore Luncheon Club’s monthly Lunch is in the Village Hall next Tuesday, 25th, at 12.30 pm.

The Club always welcomes new members, but if their membership is full then they will keep your name on file for as soon as a vacancy occurs.

For details please contact the Club Secretary, Frances Parham on 01424-882007.

Brede Crafters monthly meeting will be held in the Village Hall on Wednesday, 26th, at 2.00 pm.

There may be still time to book a table for the annual Quiz Evening, run by the Friends of St. George, being held in the Village Hall next Saturday, 29th

Entrance is £7.50 (including supper) with teams of up to eight people. Tables can be booked by calling Marion on 01424-751165.

Those who enjoy a walk should make a note of Saturday, 29th, when Nick Brown is conducting a walk of around 5½-miles in the area of Bodiam Castle and Sandhurst Cross.

The walk will start at 10.30 am from the car park at Bodiam Castle. For further details please contact Nick Brown on 07918-907265.

Also on the same morning, Rye & District Association of the National Trust will be having a Coffee Morning in the Tea Rooms at the Castle starting at 10.30 am.

The re-arranged date for the Concert by Cranbrook Town Band that had to be cancelled in December is now Thursday, 3rd February at 7.45 pm.

Proceeds go to the Poppy Appeal. Admission is £4.00 – pay at the door.

Brede & Udimore Missionary Overseas Group will be holding their Winter Lunch on Friday, 25th February from 12 noon at the Udimore Community Hall.

The Group supports four overseas charities, and their Lunch is usually well supported, so early booking is advised. For more information or to book please contact Liz Turgoose on 01424-882657 or Caroline Lee on 01424-883463.

The Mobile Library will be in the village again this week.

It will be stopping on Tuesday, 25th, at Oakhill Drive from 3.00 to 3.30 pm and at Reedswood Road from 3.40 to 4.15 pm and also at the Village Hall on Thursday, 27th, from 1.25 to 1.55 pm.

The Library service provides a wide range of things besides reading books including audio books in cassette, cd or some are even in MP3 version, a range of music cd’s and dvd’s as well as its internet access and reference library.

Services at St. George’s Church during the coming week will be a Sung Eucharist at 9.30 am on Sunday, 23rd, with Holy Communion on Wednesday, 26th, at 10.00 am, and on Tuesday, 25th, Thursday, 27th, Friday, 28th, and Saturday, 29th, at 9.00 am.

Trinity Methodist Church continues at Broad Oak this Sunday, 23rd, for their regular service at 11.00 am which will be conducted by the Revd. Malcolm Hope who will also administer Holy Communion.

Running a Village Hall costs a lot of money so this is an opportune time to remind you about the Champions of Brede scheme that helps to raise funds for the Hall.

This year’s Membership has just started and is open to anyone and costs £12.00 for a full year (pro rata for less than a year).

Each month a draw is made for prizes varying from £15 to £100 and even if you are not a winner, at least your money is going towards the upkeep of the Hall. For more details please contact Mr. Paul Pryke on 01424-882041.

Summary of this week’s activities at the Village Hall:

Monday, 24th: Age Concern (10.30 am), Rainbows (4.30 pm), Brownies (5.30 pm), Whist Drive (7.30 pm); Tuesday, 25th: Brede & Udimore Luncheon Club (12.30 pm); Wednesday, 26th: Brede Crafters (2.00 pm); Thursday, 27th: Stretch and Tone (9.30 am), Tai Chi (2.00 pm); Friday, 28th: Farmers’ Market (10.00 am), Short Mat Bowls (7.30 pm); Saturday, 29th: Friends of St. George Quiz Evening (7.30 pm).

Scout Hut, Stubb Lane: Monday, 24th: Beavers (5.30 pm) and Cubs (6.45 pm); Tuesday, 25th: Scouts (7.00 pm).

If you have anything to be put in the column it can be sent e-mail to:

JOHN MAY, Mill Lands


It’s panto time at last! After the snow and ice and the hard decision to cancel The Lost Land of Narkurs at the beginning of December, the show is on the road for this weekend.

Mike Cooper, on 892681, is the man to contact if you need to change the date of the tickets you already hold, or if you want to try for a new ticket.

There may be tickets left for the Saturday matinee at 2.30 pm on the 22nd.

Good luck to everyone involved who have had to get up a head of steam to start again and provide the village with one of the great events in our village calendar.

And – 2011 will probably go down in history as the year when we had two pantomimes.

On Friday the 21st we hope to see all our members at the Extend Class at 11 am in the Village Hall, followed by the 55 Lunch at 12.30 pm.

Many thanks to the people who kindly distribute the Parish Magazine round the village and at this time of the year have the task of collecting the annual subscription of £4.

There are still a few more subscriptions due, so if you would have them ready at the end of the month when the February magazine comes round, it would be a great help.

If you would like to subscribe and have the magazine delivered, please give me a ring on 892301.

There was an interesting article in last week`s Observer about our local endangered wild flower, the spiked rampion, Phyteuma spicatum.

Described as native to our woodlands and `common` in my 1965 edition of the Concise British Flora, it is now present at only 8 sites in the county.

We became interest in the flower at the time of our Flower Festival last year, when Victoria Crawshaw and Pauline Putland wanted to find out about rampions, described as our Sussex wildflower, for their display depicting our own county of Sussex. Its other name is Rapunzel, a reminder of the fairy story about Rapunzel who was asked to let down her hair.

For further information visit the website,

On Sunday we shall celebrate the Conversion of St Paul at the Parish Communion at 9.15 am

PATRICIA SPEEDY, Longstone, Powdermill Lane


The Funeral of Mr. George Martin of the Five Villages House took place on Thursday 13 January at St, John the Baptist Westfield with the Vicar the Reverend Evan France taking the Service. George had two daughters, Mrs. Christine Dadson and Mrs, Hazel Smith.

His son in laws were Roy Dadson and Ken Smith. Sadly Ken has recently passed away. His three grandchildren were Martyn,Katie and Hayley and he had four grandsons, Reece, Ryan, Oliver and Owen. We express our deepest sympathy to all George’s family.his friends and his neighbours.

George was brought in Burwash where he lived ,one of a family of ten, in the Mill at Batemans as his Father worked for Rudyard Kipling. The family moved to Pear Tree Croft on Brede Hill and George worked on several farms in the Brede area.

In 1949 he married June who passed away in 1990. George and June are now re-united in Westfield Churchyard. For fifty years George was a gardener at Beauport Park on The Ridge and he often enjoyed driving his pony and trap to work and around the local lanes.

He brought his gardening skills to Icklesham and developed an exquisite little flower garden near his flat. With him too was Jodie his Springer Spaniel and this gentleman and his dog were a familiar sight for those who woke early and you often had a chat with him as the sun was rising.

This Sunday’ January 23 the Service in All Saints Parish Church is Matins at 10.30am and is taken by Janet Waddams.`

Feel Good Live Music at the Queen, Head 4-6pm is by Tea Chest Blues.

Next Saturday January 29 there’s a free guided walk led by Nick Brown, the author of ‘’Walks in 1066 Country’’.

It starts at 10.30am in the National Trust car park at Bodiam Dogs are welcome. It’s a cracking moderate walk of 5.75 miles with lovely views, passing through Sandhurst Cross and finishing with a dramatic descent to the Castle.

Refreshments available afterwards at the National Trust tea rooms or The Castle pub. Please contact Nick on 07918 907625 beforehand if you would like to come.

Icklesham Players panto is in the Memorial Hall Thursday 17 February to Saturday 20 with shows at 7.30pm and a Saturday matinee at 2.30.

With all the fun of the traditional panto like sing-a-longs, boos, hisses he’s behind you and oh no he’s not

It has a great new plot. You see the Fairy Godmother in Panto land loses the Fairy Tale book and the Demon King has got it. So all your favourite characters are in one show with lots of baddies getting at goodies like Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood and Snow White.

This hilarious show is called ‘’The Tale of Tales’’ Real live family entertainment. Tickets are £6 for adults and £3 for children. Booking and further details 01424 814246

LAURIE BOWMAN, Magpies, Oast House Field


Kipling – the Misunderstood Genius is tonight’s fascinating talk in the Lower Court Hall with the Winchelsea Literary Society.

John Walker of the Kipling Society is giving the talk which begins at 7 for 7.30 pm (this Friday) and light refreshments are available.

The meeting with the ward councillors to discuss arranging possible celebrations for Prince William’s wedding (in April 2011) and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee (2012) takes place tomorrow (Saturday).

It will be held in the New Hall beginning at 10.30 am and representatives from all the clubs, societies, businesses and households have been invited. If you cannot attend but would like to help/offer ideas please contact one of the ward councillors: Ben Chishick (01797) 223333, Richard Comotto 224446 or Mike Terry 07770 210102.

The United Service with St Thomas Church and the Methodist Chapel is this Sunday 23rd January at 3 pm.

The service, taking the form of Evensong will be conducted by Rector Howard Cocks in St Thomas Church. The preacher will be Rev. Stephen Maunder of the Methodist Circuit. All are welcome and there will be refreshments to follow the service.

Winchelsea Film Night - Moving Pictures is showing ‘Made in Dagenham’ which stars Sally Hawkins, Miranda Richardson and Bob Hoskins. This will be on Monday 24th January at 7 for 7.30 pm in the New Hall. Entrance cost is £5 adults and £3 under 16s and a bar will be available.

The Mobile Library will be in Castle Street on Wednesday 26th January at 1.40 to 2.10 pm.

Around the World in 80 Minutes is the coming Fun Performance by the Winchelsea Singers. It starts at 2 pm on Friday 28th January and there is a second performance on Saturday 29th January at 7 pm, in the New Hall. Friday’s performance is £8 (per person) refreshments available and Saturday’s performance is £15 and includes a 2 course supper and there will be a bar.

To buy your tickets visit Winchelsea Post Office or tel. 01797 223159 and please note that it is essential to book for Saturday.

The Lifeboat crew at Rye Harbour are taking part in the RNLI’s biggest national fundraising day, SOS Day 2011, by holding an ‘Endurance Row’ on Saturday 29th January.

The crew along with crew members from Dungeness RNLI lifeboat station will row the historic Whitby lifeboat ‘William Riley of Birmingham and Leamington’ from Rye Harbour to Hastings and back (weather and light permitting).

In 1909 the William Riley was built by Thames Iron Works at Blackwall, London at a cost of £722 9s 1d which was funded by William Riley of Coventry.

The lifeboat was sent to Upgang Lifeboat station near Whitby Harbour and was officially named on 23rd August 1909 by the wife of the local MP the Hon. Mrs Gervasse.

On SOS Day 2011 (held on 28th & 29th January) RNLI supporters from across the south east and London will be helping to raise money for the volunteer lifeboat crews who risk their lives to save others.

Did you watch ‘Inside Out’ on BBC 1 last Monday evening - the programme which features stories around the south-east region?

On this episode Kaddy Lee-Preston (weather girl) visited Winchelsea and Winchelsea Beach where she met with Richard Comotto of the Archaeological Society. The focus was to shed light on one of the least known heroes that came to Winchelsea.

He was William of Cassingham (or Willikin of the Weald who died in 1257) a country squire in Kent during The First Barons’ War of 1215-1217. This civil war in England was between a group of rebellious barons supported by a French army under the future Louis VIII of France and King John of England.

The war resulted from the king’s refusal to abide by the Magna Carta. During that conflict the youth William raised a guerrilla force of archers in the forests of the Kent and Sussex Weald.

They were opposed to the occupation of the south-east of England by Prince Louis and his men and were ready to fight with William. The vast numbers of William’s archers gained the victory in slaying thousands of the occupying Frenchmen across the south-east.

After King John died and was succeeded by Henry III in 1216 Louis sailed from England to France for reinforcements. On the way, William’s force ambushed Louis near Lewes and pursued them to Old Winchelsea which was on an immense shingle bank at the confluence of the Rivers Brede, Rother and Tillingham.

Louis’ men only escaped starvation due to the arrival of a French fleet. When Louis sailed back to England to renew a siege of Dover Castle in May 1217 he found William attacking and burning the French camp there and instead landed at Sandwich to march to the castle.

At the end of the war with the French beaten, William received a pension from the crown and was made Warden of the Weald in 1241 for his services.

During the TV programme it was suggested that William might have been the inspiration for Robin Hood (or vice versa) because of his archery skills, loyalty and courage but there is little evidence to support this interesting theory.

Cindi Cogswell, 31, High Fords, Icklesham


Tomorrow morning between 10-12, the monthly coffee morning in St Mark’s Church Room in Staplecross takes place.

There will be plenty of stalls: bring and buy, books, craft activity for 50p, Avon products, new and nearly new clothes rail as well as a raffle.

An innovation to the morning is the proposal to knit lap quilts for the hospice.

Sally will provide wool and needles for those without, and six inch squares should be made to be incorporated into colourful blankets.

This is an opportunity to meet up friends old and new and chat over a tea/coffee and knit for a good cause.

Tickets are now available from the village shop, or by ringing 830570 or 830245, for the annual pantomime taking place at Staplecross village hall next weekend.

The prices are £5 for adults, with children and concessions at £2.50.

SCATS’ production of Treasure Island has provided an opportunity for younger participants to take to the stage.

The first night is on Friday 28 at 7.30pm and on Saturday there are two performances, a matinee at 2.00pm and evening at 7.30pm.

There were plenty of people in Staplecross village hall last Saturday when the Ewhurst, Staplecross and Bodiam Society held a quiz night.

It was a light-hearted evening and a wide range of subjects in the quiz, some easy and some not so, and at half-time there was a delicious bowl of soup with French bread, with the quizzers enjoying wine to help the brain cells.

The minutes of the November meeting of Ewhurst Parish Council were ratified at this month’s meeting, and some of the items will be of interest at this late stage.

The allotment saga continues with no land available for those wishing to grow their own. The chairman, David Young doubted whether the Parish Council could justify spending in the region of £40,000 to acquire land and pay legal fees, for the 8-12 households who were interested.

The survey to establish whether some parishioners’ wishes to remove the recycling facility from the village hall car park to the Cross Inn had not met with a wide support for the protesters.

There were a variety of suggestions either to relocate within the village car park, or to focus on reducing noise from the recycling glass containers.

Councillor Whitaker suggested planting a “living screen” by way of bamboo which was known to muffle and absorb sound.

Attempts should also be made to address misuse from vehicles using the facility to dispose of commercial glass.

Installing a barrier was not considered viable because pick-up trucks and vans with the commercial glass would still be able to gain access, and the contractor’s lorries would need a key/code on emptying days.

Fundraising to improve facilities at the Herdman Field had so far raised over £500 and, speaking from the gallery, Dave Perkins said already there was a long list of activities that could be held on completion of the scheme.

The school had offered to be a collection point for a Community Fruit and Vegetables Project for local produce boxes.

There would be a Taste and Touch session at the school to introduce pupils to new foods.

A consent letter, as well as a letter seeking interest in the veg boxes, would be distributed to parents via the children’s school bags.

There is also the possibility of a parents and children cooking session to be arranged as an after school activity.

PCSO Georghiou advised that there was little he could do regarding the hazardous parking on School Hill, unless the Highways Authority applied for appropriate traffic measures.

MARY REEVE, Wodens Wood, Cripps Corner


Netherfield Church – The next two Saturdays see fund raising events for our church.

A Coffee Morning this Saturday 22nd January from 10.30. a.m. to 12 noon at Aversden, Netherfield Hill, courtesy of Emma Kersey.

Half way up the hill on the left and look out for the bunting! Other than a cup of coffee there will be produce, jewellery, a raffle and much more.

The following Saturday, the 29th there is a Jumble Sale in the Village Hall from 10 am until 12 noon.

Gillian Slack is organising this and we will be grateful for any jumble which can be given in at the Village Stores.

Our thanks to Janette for helping out here.

Two future dates have now been confirmed for major events in the village. Following the success of the Music Festival at the White Hart last year, it is being held this time on the May Bank Holiday weekend, Saturday 28th May starting in the afternoon and continuing into the evening.

The Village Fair has been fixed for Saturday 16th July and will be in the afternoon at the playing field.

More details of the content and attractions will be divulged as arrangements are finalised.

Please make a note of the dates so you can come along and give your support.

Both of these events are good family fun and are staged primarily for the people of Netherfield to come together and enjoy themselves.

Services for the rest of the month are this Sunday, the 23rd, Netherfield will welcome Mountfield for a combined Holy Communion, at 10 a.m.

On the final Sunday in January, the 30th there will be a combined Holy Communion at Mountfield, again at 10 a.m. Paul Smith. Churchwarden.

Saturday 29th January between 10am and 12 midday Netherfield Village Hall is Holding a jumble Sale with cakes stall & Raffle, tea and coffee available.

Tables £5 proceeds to St Johns the Baptist Church. Jumble can be left at the village stores ask Janette or phone Gillian daytime 07803709559. Helpers welcome.

Are you willing to bake a cake for the cake stall in aid of Netherfield Church on 29th January?

If so please leave in shop on Friday 27th January or early Saturday 28th January.

Netherfield Stores is holding a raffle, also in aid of the church.

Prizes include a Dolls House and Walkie Talkies amongst others. Tickets 50p from the shop.

Musical Ducklings - From 0-5 years. Contact Claire on 01424 838457 for more details.

Darvel Down & Area Residents Association. Any resident requiring a lift to the hospital / doctors / opticians.

Please call Jim Jefcoate on 838721 or Ron White 838296. (voluntary contributions welcome)

White Hart Darts Team B who play on Thursday played The Albert.

The team won 4-3 with wins for Steve Colvin, Rick Warner, Andy Saunders and Sean Spillett.

The ladies pairs won 2-0.

The mixed doubles won 2-0 and the men’s pairs lost 2-0.

In the push penny the team won its first game of the season 3-2 with wins for Marie Colvin and husband and wife Jo and Bob Lovick.

Dates for your diary at the White Hart - Thursday 10th February.

An audience with Chelsea legend Ron Chopper Harris tickets only £10.00 per head. Saturday 12th February Valentine Party night enjoy a 4 course meal & follow it with live music from Lumpy & the Lumpettes, £21.95per head.

Thursday 24th February Charity Quiz Night In Aid Of St Michaels Hospice.

Teams of 6 people starts at 7.45 pm £2.50 per person.

White Hart Boules Pitch. The pieste is free to use, any clubs please feel free to come and use the pieste, FOC any time except match days which are Saturday afternoons though the season is now over.

We have a group of ladies and Gents that play amongst themselves Monday Lunchtimes.

Netherfield FC sponsored by the White Hart. The lads have had no games recently but hope to resume ‘play’ soon.

The team and supporters are welcomed back to the White Hart after the game where food is laid on.

Orpington F.C. play on Saturdays at the recreation ground.

The lads and their supporters come back to the White Hart where food is laid on for them.

The Rover group joins us on the 2nd Tuesday of the month all welcome.

The Harley Davidson group meets on the 1st Friday of each month ALL welcome.

T R Cars meets on the last Thursday of the month All Welcome.

The Breakaway Club meets on the 3rd Thursday of the month.

This is a ladies group that meet and chat, have talks, days out and are always looking for new members ALL welcome.

HASTINGS MOBILE LIBRARY will be outside the shop from 11.50 – 12.10, today, Friday 21st January 2011.

To include your event or local Netherfield news please e mail me

Maria Standen, Swallow Farm


Sorry to hear that the footpath officer and countryside access warden for the village has retired.

Pat Finch would like to thank everyone who supported the Sunday walks and the volunteers who have helped to make the footpaths more user friendly.

The Sandhurst and District Twinning Association Quiz Night takes place in the Old School at Sandhurst on January 22 at 7.30pm.

Tickets are £6, to include a ploughman’s supper. Bring your own drink and glasses.

For more information call 01580 850133.

Sadly nothing has fallen into place following a plea to take over the Sandhurst Car Service so it is with great regret the demise of the service has taken place.

Hopefully friends and neighbours will fill the gap that will undoubtedly be left.

Geoffrey Goodsell, 13 Levetts Lane, Bodiam


Subscription is now due for the Parish News, £4.50. Bodiam residents can drop the money into the home of Tom and Dora Churcher, Ellen Archers, Bodiam Residents Association, to me.

We do not have a lot of Bodiam news in it yes, that is right, but if residents do not send in articles, Bodiam has to put up with it.

But this year, lets see it packed out with our news and send it to Karen Wake, editor, Old Forge Cottage, Ewhurst Green, Robertsbridge, Sussex.

Bodiam Parish Council meet on January 24, 7pm in the primary school hall.

I must say a big thank you to the vice chairman who took the last meeting when the chairman was not in the best of health.

The next East Area Cricket Association midweek indoor fixture will take place on January 25 when Bodiam will take on the rugby club, start 8.10pm.

The next visit to Levetts Lane of the mobile library service is on January 27 from 3.05-3.30pm.