Cindi Cogswell, 31 Highfords, Icklesham

The floor of Winchelsea Methodist Chapel has been sanded and varnished and the old carpet has been consigned to the recycling centre. Now that the furniture is returned to its rightful place there are a few jobs yet to complete including repairs to the front doors, so all is starting to look good. The Friends are grateful to those who have helped in this important work, most of which will be finished in time for the next event. This will be tomorrow (Saturday) at 10 for 10.30am in the Chapel. The event is a book launch of the new History of the Chapel and the Rye Area, written by Dr Keith Foord who is a member of the Management Committee and Battle Methodist Church. This new book will cost £6 and you will be able to purchase a copy signed by the author and profits from the sale will go towards maintaining the historic chapel. You are very welcome to attend the launch and hear the talk which Dr Foord will be giving.

This Sunday is Remembrance Sunday to commemorate members of the forces killed in action during the last two wars and in recent conflicts. They died for Christian values and the freedom of our country from tyrannical rule. The customary act of remembrance and wreath laying will be held at the War Memorial at 11am and will be followed by a non-denomination service which will be attended by the Mayor and Corporation.

On Monday November 11th Armistice Day the 2 minute silence will also be observed at the War Memorial at 11am promptly. This moment will be marked as usual by signal rockets arranged by the Bonfire Boyes and you are welcome to lay a remembrance wreath.

‘Let’s Sail Around the British Isles’ is the theme of the talk by Fred Walker at the Second Wednesday Society’s next meeting. This will be on Wednesday November 13th at 2.30pm in the New Hall. After the talk a home-made tea will be available and this will be £1 for members and £4 non-members.

The Poems of Anne Ridler (1912-2001) will be introduced by her daughter, Kate Wilson at the Literary Society’s next meeting on Friday November 15th. Please meet at the usual time of 7 for 7.30pm in the Court Hall where light refreshments will be available. Anne Ridler’s poems are full of exiting images and an example is A Dream Observed which begins as: Out from his bed the breaking seas, By waking eyes unseen, Now fall, aquatic creatures whirl, And he whirls through the ambient green.

A pre Christmas shopping trip to Bluewater at a cost of £11.50 p.p. has been arranged by the Rye & District National Trust for Monday November 25th. This is already filling up but there may still be places if you are quick. All bookings should be made immediately to ensure your place and the person to contact is Ros Adkins on 01797 253763;

Joseph and Mary with the Travelling Crib will start their journey around the parish on Advent Sunday December 1st and return to the Church on Christmas Eve. If you are able accommodate these nativity figures for a night or two please sign up on the list at the back of the church. Ideally twenty four hosts are needed.

The annual Prayer Partner Scheme which supports the view that we all need to be prayed for and to pray for someone else begins on Advent Sunday. If you would like to take part please enter your name either for the first time or to rejoin and the list is at the back of the Church until the end of November.

Canon Robin Whitehead will be formally established as Rector at St Thomas’ Church on Sunday November 24th at 5pm. The service will be conducted by Bishop Martin Warner the Bishop of Chichester and the Archdeacon may also be attending. There is an official guest list of about 50 but the service is open to all residents of the parish so do come along. Canon Whitehead gave a brief description of his career in this month’s Parish Magazine where he explained that he had been in parish ministry for over thirty-three years and for nine years was Team Rector of Boston in Lincolnshire, overseeing one of the largest churches in the country. Last year he received treatment for cancer and so took early retirement. After a process of recuperation in Folkestone where his partner David of thirty years is a parish priest he realised he was not yet ready to ‘hang up the cassock’. Although needing to be watchful of his health Canon Whitehead is pleased to be taking on the part-time role of House for Duty Priest and is looking forward to meeting families and residents of Winchelsea. The new Rector will probably find Winchelsea rather more peaceful than Boston Lincs in July 2011. Newspaper headlines at the time referred to the Boston explosion where five migrant workers died instantly after a fireball ripped through an industrial estate. This was caused by the five members of a gang producing moonshine alcohol when a flash fire turned their cramped distillery into a furnace. The only survivor ran from the melting door of the building with his clothes alight and had to be treated for 75% burns. Canon Robin Whitehead the vicar of Boston at the time visited the yard and offered his prayers and condolences to the families of the victims. He also requested that families and friends should come forward and said that the church would be only too pleased to help them in any way it could.

Winchelsea Beach

This Remembrance Sunday St Richard’s Church will hold its Candles of Remembrance service at 3pm. Friends and visitors are very welcome to this memorial service.

Icklesham Parish Council will be meeting on Monday November 11th at Rye Harbour for 7.15pm. Members of the public are welcome to attend and there is time at the beginning of each meeting for anyone wishing to raise matters of discussion. During this meeting IPC will be looking at the budget for next year.

Bookings are now being taken for the next Fellowship Lunch which will be on Friday November 29th at 12 for 12.30 pm in the Community Hall. Please ring 01797 227158 soon to book your place.

Has anyone seen the slightly camouflaged army tank at the right hand side of the A21 coming from Hastings to John’s Cross? Not immediately obvious but it has been abandoned there for several weeks though could be part of a film set.