Winchelsea village voice

There will be a Cellar Tour tomorrow (Saturday) at 11 am from Castle Street arranged by FOAM. The cost is £5 per person and all proceeds go to help maintain and repair the Ancient Monuments of Winchelsea. Bookings are from Winchelsea Post Office (01797 229525).

Don’t forget that an open meeting will be held in the New Hall tomorrow at 11 am to update everybody on the Jubilee Committee’s plans for the Weekend. This is also to inform on the year-long task that will portray events in the Town throughout that time. Should you need to contact Tina Alexander (Chair of the Committee) the number is 226382.

A talk on The Norman Invasion, by Dr Marc Morris will take place tomorrow at 3 pm in the New Hall. Winchelsea Archaeological Society has organised the event and it will finish at 4.30 pm.

The Winchelsea Open Gardens afternoon is tomorrow from 1 till 5.30 pm. Seven gardens are open for the NGS charity and the cost is £5 (children free). Teas will be served at St Thomas’ Church from 2 till 5 pm and the proceeds are in aid of Demelza Hospice Care for Children and Church funds. Tickets can be purchased for all gardens at the first garden visited and a map will be provided. Also during your garden tour you will be able to visit the historical Methodist Church which is open from 2 till 5 pm and the Friends will be pleased to show you around.

Ferry Road Health Centre & Rye Medical Centre Patient Participation Groups have arranged a talk and question time on ‘Skin Diseases and Management‘. This will be held at Rye Primary School on Wednesday 18th April, 6 for 6.30pm and all are welcome. The speaker for the event is Dr. Mahendra Kondagari (M.B.B.S. & Diploma in Dermatology).

‘From Book to Film’ is a talk by Jonathan Smith at the Literary Society’s next meeting on Friday 27th April at 7 for 7.30 pm in the Court Hall. Jonathan has a novel currently in production which is, Winter in February. Light refreshments available and non-members are welcome to come along.

Winchelsea Singers are presenting the town’s opening Jubilee event with their Jubilee Concert on Saturday 28th April at 7 pm in St Thomas’s Church. The soloists are Grace Constable, Gary Marriott, Janice Reeve, Michael White and Anne Whiteman; Music Director: Duncan Reid; Piano: Ivora Rees and Organ: Roger Marvin (the Church Organist). Entrance cost is £10 per head by programme at the door and a bar will be available.

Winchelsea Garden Society has arranged a visit to the Gardens of Arundel Castle for Wednesday 16th May. The gardens, designed by Isabel and Julian Bannerman are very creative and the central feature is a re-creation of the Earl of Arundel’s garden in London which is considered by many as the finest Jacobean formal garden of its age. For members the cost is £27 and includes a garden tour and admission to the castle (membership is £3) and tickets can be purchased from Winchelsea Post Office.

When a hosepipe ban is called you can be sure that it will rain soon after and so it did for this year’s Mayoring Ceremony on Easter Monday. Appearing undaunted by the prevailing winds and showers, the Mayor and party in full ceremonial dress waited outside the Court Hall while the photo session went ahead, before leaving for the New Hall. The appointment of the 720th Mayor of Winchelsea had taken place inside the building and was conducted as usual by the Town Clerk Malcolm Pratt. However this will be Malcolm’s last Mayoring occasion as Town Clerk, a role he has performed each year since 1984. He plans to retire after the Speakers Day Mayoral ceremony that will be held in Winchelsea this year during October. The popular candidate at present to follow on from Malcolm is likely to be jurat Melvin Pett. Other changes were of course the new Mayor and Mayoress, Roger and Tina Neeves. They replace Mike Melvin who held the chain of office for 2 terms (2010 and 2011) and his wife Jo. Together Mike and Jo fulfilled their duties with great commitment; attending a wide range of events and particularly enjoying their involvement in activities around the local community and the Primary School. When Roger first became Mayor of Winchelsea in 2002 it was 2 days after the previous Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports the Queen Mother died and he also stayed for 2 terms (2002 & 2003). At this year’s ceremony it therefore seemed appropriate to have the present Lord Warden, Admiral Lord Boyce and his wife in attendance, along with the Cinque Ports Mayors and two representative Sea Cadets. The current Chamberlain and Sergeant at Mace, Bernard Llewellyn Dibble much to his pleasure was made a Freeman of Winchelsea. An acknowledgment was also given to the new High Sherriff of East Sussex, retired solicitor David Allam who replaces Mrs Kathy Gore. In addition Rector Howard Cocks who led the prayer for justice and peace at the beginning of the ceremony plans to retire in July after the Patronal Festival. For his Deputy Roger chose Peta Cameron-Clark who unfortunately was unable to be at the ceremony. She was also the Deputy for the out-going Mayor Mike Melvin. Roger is an architect by profession and also enjoys his role on the management team of the local branch of the Sea Cadets. After the ceremony the Mayor and Corporation led the procession with umbrellas to the New Hall where wine, orange juice and an imaginative array of canapés were served.

Cindi Cogswell, 31 Highfords, Icklesham