Cindi Cogswell, 31 Highfords, Icklesham

There is a Church Market tomorrow morning (Saturday) in St Thomas’ Church between 10.30 am and 12 noon. This is the pre-Christmas, last one for the year and the next is on Epiphany, 6th January 2013. On sale you will find home-made produce, plants and hardback books, coffee, tea and good company, with Iain Kerr on the piano and the proceeds in aid of church funds.

This Saturday evening (1st December) Sussex Brass will be leading a concert of traditional carols in St Thomas’ Church. The Bonfire Boyes invite all to come along and enjoy the concert which begins at 6.30 pm.

You are invited to join in the Advent Carol Service in St Thomas’ Church this Sunday 2nd December at 6 pm. It is a candlelit celebration of readings and music to begin the season of Christmas and will be led by Revd Canon David Frost, Rector of Rye and Rural Dean. After the service refreshments will be served in the church. If you are able to volunteer as a sidesperson to help with welcoming and collections at any of the Christmas services please leave a message at the back of the church for the churchwardens.

The Friends of Winchelsea Methodist Chapel would like you to join them for a special Christmas Carol Service on Wednesday 12th December at 7 pm. This service will be led by the Revd David Freeland and Mrs Christine Freeland (Minister and Local preacher in the Hastings, Bexhill circuit). There will be seasonal refreshments to follow and a collection will be taken for the Battle Methodist church project.

Work on carriageway resurfacing is due to take place on the A259 at the junction of Monks Walk and Back Lane on Monday 10th December (2012) for about 2 weeks. Take note that this will involve overnight speed restrictions, traffic signs and side road closure between 8 pm and 6 am with traffic being escorted through the works area by a convoy system.

You may have noticed that a section of the ancient wall of the churchyard is missing opposite the Little Shop. This was the outcome of a car driven in reverse by an elderly lady which went over the pavement and collided with the wall last Wednesday afternoon. Fortunately no one was hurt but the car was badly damaged and it is likely that the wall will very soon have to undergo some skilful renovation.

The voting turnout in Winchelsea for the Police Commissioner post of last Thursday week was 13.22% (includes part-time residents). Approximately only 1 in 8 people in the town voted which would seem to reflect the norm for the rest of the country, while making it a very costly exercise.

There was no bolt of lightning nor did the roof cave in for the very first woman to preach at St Thomas’ Church, in its 700 year history, last Sunday morning. She spoke on ‘My kingdom is not of this world’ - John 18:36 and reminded that in the Kingdom to come, ‘If anyone desires to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all’ - Mark 9:35. The Revd Teresa Munro who usually officiates at Iden and Playden Churches was well-supported by a good number in the congregation and we now look forward to having Revd Teresa back to lead the service on many more occasions. The Junior Church Choir, conducted by Marion Lovell, was also present to carry out the readings, prayers and hymn singing and they did so with their usual zest.

Winchelsea Beach

Rye Harbour Nature Reserve has organised its annual Festive Beach Clean for tomorrow (Saturday) at 10 am to 1 pm. This is a pre-Christmas clean-up of rubbish washed up along the beach by the autumn’s storms and will include the chance to see many wintering birds. Your efforts will be remunerated with hot soup at Lime Kiln Cottage afterwards. Please bring gloves if you have them and meet, 10 am at Rye Harbour car park.

There are no services on Sunday 2nd December in St Richard’s Church because everyone is invited to the Advent Carol Service at 6 pm in St Thomas’ Church. It is a service of readings, choral music and congregational hymns to celebrate the beginning of Advent and refreshments will be available after the ceremony.

Following last Thursday week’s Polling Day to elect a Police Commissioner the turnout was 12.14% which was only slightly less than Winchelsea and in the region of 1 in 10 of the population of Winchelsea Beach.