DICKENSIAN EVENING: yes, it is very, very early to be talking about Dickensian evening but this year the date has changed and for those who think ahead and mark their calendars with annual events I feel due notification should be given. Drusillas, who for 25 years has generously donated their car parking facilities to the village, need the space for themselves on the usual Dickensian Saturday. The announcement from Drusillas arrived on the same day that 25,000 copies of the Alfriston and Cuckmere Valley Partnership brochure was published with the usual Dickensian Evening date duly entered. However, Frankie Reynolds and a team of willing helpers stuck a striking red sticker on the front cover of all 25,000 announcing Alfriston Dickensian Evening now 24 November; a date for the diary.
THE ALFRISTON and Cuckmere Valley Partnership has once again produced a very comprehensive brochure listing all amenities to be found in our area together with Calendar of Events and a map showing places of interest. It is a valuable reference for residence as well as visitors. All the phone numbers of restaurants, pubs, B&Bs and hotel accommodation and shops. There is also contact details of bus and train services. It can be picked up from all shops in the village and tourist centres in the area. In fact, no home should be without it.
PRO MUSICA will be performing at St Andrew’s Church on April 1 at 7pm. Kathryn Sargent, Lucy Williams, Robert Little and Michael Bunting will be the soloists for Mozart’s Requiem Exsultate Jubilate with Charlotte Taylor the soloist for Vivaldi’s Gloria with accompaniment by the Florentine Ensemble all under the direction of Ray Maulkin. Tickets at the door £10/£8 concessions, children under 14 free.
EASTER BUNNY HUNT at the Clergy House will be held this year from March 31 to April 15 (including Good Friday). There will be a charge of £1.50 to take part in the search for bunnies hidden around the cottage garden and those who find a bunny will receive a chocolate treat. The event is sponsored by Cadbury’s who will also supply a face painter on April 8 and 9 for the bunny hunters. Booking is not required. The Clergy House is open from 10.30am to 5pm, with last admission at 4.30pm, every day except Thursday and Friday though there will be a special opening on Good Friday.
COFFEE MORNING: Alfriston Cricket Club will be holding their Coffee Morning on April 7 from 10am to noon at the War Memorial Hall. There will be books, produce, bric-a-brac and cake stalls and, of course, tombola and raffle. A sure sign that the seasons are changing and summer is on its way with the promise of leather on willow soon to be heard round the field.
NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS for getting fit should by now be showing some rewards. However, if the waistline is still a little more generous than you would like can I point out that there is an activity class available on every day of the working week in Alfriston. Art on Monday may not be very physically active but it is stimulating. Pilates, Bell Ringing, Tai Chi and singing on Tuesday, Line Dancing, Yoga and Short Mat Bowls on Wednesday, Zumba on Thursday and Yoga again on Friday. The surrounding countryside offers walks a plenty and the Cuckmere Meanderers are meeting at the Market Cross on Saturday April 14 at 2pm for a group walk. It seems there is no excuse.
COFFEE MORNING: The Community Coffee Morning will be held at the Parish Hall today, Friday, from 10.30am to noon, free coffee and cake. If you need a lift please contact Sally Eyton-Lloyd on 894520. These coffee mornings are held regularly on the last Friday of the month, unless notified to the contrary in the Parish Pump.
TIDE MILLS: The next beach clean is at 10am on Sunday April 15; meet at the beach end of Mill Drove (off the A259). Come along, grab a bag and a litter picker and help clean up the area for visitors and the local wildlife. For further information call Jim Skinner on 01273 517291.
AN ART EXHIBITION by Bishopstone Art Group is to be held in the Parish Hall on Saturday April 21, 10am until 4pm. There will be light refreshments available, a raffle, plus free entry and parking. For further information, contact Maggie Exley 01273 512507.
VILLAGE FETE, May 5, helpers, books and bric-a-brac for sale are needed now. Please leave at Linda’s Stores.
CONCERT: Tickets are now available for the concert by Vivace! on Saturday May 12 at 7pm in St Andrew’s Church. Tickets cost £7.50 and are available from the churchwardens, Jim Taylor, Linda’s Stores, or Newberry’s. The price includes a pre-concert glass of wine in the Parish Hall.
HISTORIC CHURCHES TRUST: The Sussex Historic Churches Trust help churches throughout Sussex which are undertaking structural repairs. If you are interested in joining its Friends (subscription £10) and visiting churches in East and West Sussex, please contact Gladys or Philip Pople, who would be pleased to give you further details on 01323 894634.
LAST WEEK, we said that Thomas Pelham, prime minister, was the most famous resident of the former Bishopstone Place. Thanks to Maggie Healy, we learn that TP on the front of nearby Bishopstone Manor refers to another Thomas Pelham, the First Baron of Laughton. The building behind the initials contains bricks from Bishopstone Place, like the ruins at Tide Mills. There’s some curious masonry too in local flint walls. Bishopstone Place didn’t disappear but was recycled.
Newhaven, Denton & South Heighton
EASTER FUN: Newhaven Fort’s Easter programme begins on Sunday and runs until April 15. Throughout the school holidays you will be able to take part in a Special Hops assignment as you follow their Quiz Trail around the Fort. There will also be Punch and Judy, Zoolab animal handling workshops and Easter craft workshops (these are for over 5s only and must be booked in advance) For more information or to book on a workshop telephone the Fort on 01273 517622.
NIPPERS Easter Playscheme begins on April 2 and runs to April 5 and again on April 10 to 13 7am to 6pm daily at Shakespeare Hall. Hours by arrangement. To book a place telephone 01273 514440/07796 267388. On April 4 and 11 Nippers will be holding a Play In to celebrate their 39th birthday. This is a free playscheme from 10am to 3pm at Shakespeare Hall. Places must be booked in advance. Telephone the number above to book.
KIDS DAY: Easter Monday, April 9, noon to 4pm at The Ark. Easter Egg Hunt, face painting, planting session, games. Children’s fancy dress, any theme, two groups 0 to 5 years and 6 to 11 years, to be judged by Newhaven’s Young Mayor. Free admission but collection for Denton Island Children’s Nursery.
MENCAP: Newhaven, Lewes and District Mencap is holding their annual general meeting on Thursday at 7.30pm in Riverside Hall. Anyone welcome to go along and put forward their views.
PLANNING MEETING: Newhaven Town Council’s Planning Committee will meet on Tuesday in Meeching Hall at 7.30pm to discuss the latest applications.
HISTORICAL SOCIETY: Robert Cairns will give an illustrated talk on Edwardian Lewes and the Ouse Valley to members at the Hillcrest Community Centre on Tuesday at 7.30pm. All welcome. Members free, visitors £1.
OPEN AIR CONCERT: On Saturday April 7 Maestro Academy Players will be giving a free concert outside Newhaven Town Centre Post Office from noon, weather permitting.
JUBILEE WEEKEND: There seems to be a misconception that the town is doing nothing to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee except hold the annual Fish Festival on Saturday June 2. But the Jubilee Committee is working hard to make sure everyone has a good time. There will be celebrations at Newhaven Fort and at Shakespeare Hall, a Community Barn Dance in the marquee on West Quay on the evening of the Fish Festival to which everyone is invited to come along and join in the fun. A Community Lunch is being held in the marquee on Sunday June 3 when there will be a large-screen television so people can watch the River Pageant live from the River Thames. Other private functions and street parties are also being arranged, I know South Heighton residents are arranging their own street party, but these are the events for the community to which all are welcome.
TASTELESS: Due to illness and band commitments Newhaven’s popular rock band has been silent for a while although they have been practising behind the scenes. But on Friday April 13 the boys are back in town when they play a gig at The White Hart at 9pm, so go along and give them a big welcome.
QUIZ NIGHT: Remember Nataly and Jessica Spice have organised a quiz night on Thursday at 7pm in the Community House, Meridian Centre to raise funds for a trip to South Africa as part of their Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award. Tickets which cost £2 per person are available from the information office. Make a night of it by bringing your own food and drink.
GARDEN COMPETITION: Remember the last date for entry to compete for Garden of the Year is April 10, although judging will not take place until Friday June 22. This annual event arranged by the town council to brighten up Peacehaven is free to enter and forms are available from the information office. There are many categories to choose from so local gardeners are spoilt for choice.
GOOD FRIDAY: The churches of Peacehaven and Telscombe Cliffs are joining together for a Walk of Witness on Good Friday, April 6. It will start from the north car park of the Meridian Centre near the Joff playing field at 9am. The walk will go down to The Dell, South Coast Road where there will be a time of worship from 9.30am until 10am after which hot cross buns will be served. Everyone is welcome to join the walk or can simply go along to The Dell.
MORNING MARKET: The Saturday market tomorrow has been organised by the Peacehaven Players from 8.30am until noon in the Main Hall, Community House. Next week the market is being arranged by the Harliquin Dance and Drama group. To reserve a table call them on 01273 581742.
COFFEE MORNINGS: The Access Group will be serving teas, coffees and cakes from the Community House refreshment kiosk today, Friday, between 8.30am and midday. Residents who have mobility problems will receive a warm welcome and learn what the group can do for them. Next week on Tuesday the Monday Club will be behind the counter followed on Thursday by the Coastland Church who will be bringing along some puppets and doing face painting. The refreshment kiosk will not be open on Good Friday.
BOOT SALE: In aid of his chosen local charities the Mayor of Peacehaven has arranged a boot sale at The Dell, South Coast Road on Sunday. As usual the gates will open for sellers to set up at 7am. Buyers will then be admitted from 8am until noon. Remember there is always plenty of free car parking available on The Dell itself until midday.
COUNCIL MEETING: There is a meeting of the planning and highways committee in the Anzac Room, Meridian Centre on Tuesday starting at 6.30pm. Residents are always welcome at committee meetings and may ask questions during the first 15 minutes about relative matters.
BANK HOLIDAY: The council offices and information office will close at 4pm on Thursday for the Good Friday and Easter Monday Bank Holiday. They will re-open for business on Tuesday April 10 at 9am.
U3A: Members Barry and Alison Lowden will be talking about their travels and the culture of Japan at our monthly meeting on Thursday, 10.30am in the Baptist Church Hall. Tea/coffee and biscuits and, as usual, 50p entrance at door. Come along a little earlier to buy raffle tickets and sign up for theatre tickets and monthly lunches with Jayne and Sharon respectively. Seats still available for the Mystery Tour, Tuesday May 15, and Leeds Castle, Tuesday June 5. Get cracking for these. Bookings, shared accommodation, for the Glastonbury weekend trip, November 16/17 need to be made soonest. Deposits of £25 required. For these excursions see Muriel at the meeting or ring her, not before 6.30pm on 01273 513471. It’s officially springtime folks so join in and enjoy.
Rodmell & Southease
LOVELY WEATHER: What lovely weather we are having. I am really enjoying getting out into the garden and it’s wonderful to see what is popping up from under the ground, much of it earlier than last year. The magnolias of Rodmell are an absolute picture at the moment so let’s hope any hard frosts we get won’t turn them brown.
SPRING SHOW: The future looks bright for Rodmell Horticultural Society’s Spring Show tomorrow, Saturday, 2.30pm to 4.30pm in the village hall. Admission £1.
THE JUMBLE SALE last Saturday was very successful. It was in aid of WI finds and the ladies were very pleased that almost everything went. Many thanks to all helpers. I’m afraid my contribution was doing the publicity, giving jumble, and taking left overs to Raystede, but not helping on the day as I was waiting for B&Bs to turn up.
WI: Rodmell and Southease WI had a local speaker come to give us a talk about Herbalism. Haskell Adamson is located in The Herb Loft, Lane House Mill Lane 07842 192614. I am a believer in herbal medicine and have in the past been treated by herbalist Julian Barker of Hove, as have my mother and other family members. Haskell gave a very interesting talk and encouraged members to try herbal tea for relaxation. He finds lots of his herbs locally on the Downs. My father and friends used to shoot rabbits a lot for food, during and after the war, to help with peoples meat rations and it was always known that rabbits shot on the Downs had sweeter meat because of the herbs they ate.
CAMPER: The first camper turned up to camp in the orchard last weekend and was entranced by the daffodils, violets and wildlife around. The pheasants around here are getting very cheeky and now sit on the fence outside the back door with all the other birds waiting for their breakfast.
OUTING: I took a friend to Spring Barn Farm Park last Saturday. We had a lovely time and she loved the baby animals. I could not help wondering how farmers are going to get on this year feeding their animals, as grazing will not be good if we don’t get more rain, and hay will be scarce. It will be quite a worry for them.
WATER: It looks as thought with the drought situation we shall all have to appreciate the water situation and not waste it. It always amazes me how many people wash their cars several times a week, with hoses, when a bucket of water suffices. Are they making sacrifices to the car god whilst the true need for water is being ignored?
MANY people have been wheezing and coughing along this valley since around December. I have had two bouts of this awful bronchial affliction, and it’s not nice. You sneeze a lot with a burning sensation in your nose and throat and a really bad tickly cough which seems to last forever, leaving you short of energy. Let’s hope the sunshine will rejuvenate us.
NO COLD CALLING ZONE: The Seaford No Cold Calling Zone was launched at the AGM of the Seaford Neighbourhood Watch Group last weekend. Cold Calling at the doorstep is now banned in the town with the exception of local registered community and charity groups such as the Rotary and Seaford Bonfire Society. If an unregistered caller knocks on your door call the police on telephone 101 (The national non-emergency number). This scheme is supported by Seaford Town Council and East Sussex Trading Standards.
FOLK CLUB: The Black Strap Molasses are Old friends of Seaford Folk Club. They are an Eastbourne based band who perform mostly modern singer songwriter folk, including Jim Page, John Gorka and Mary Chapin Carpenter. The club meets at the Royal British Legion at 8pm tonight, Friday.
CONCERT: The Navarra String Quartet will be guests of the Seaford Musical Society tonight, Friday, at 7.15pm. they will be playing works by Haydn, Brahms and Schubert. For further information call Paul Moore on 01323 491601.
SPRING FAIR: Seaford National Trust Group Association are holding their Spring Fair tomorrow, Saturday, at 10am in St Leonard’s Church Hall. Entrance will be 50p which will include a cup of coffee and there will be the usual craft, plant and cake stalls.
FOOTBALL: Seaford Town FC will be playing Oakwook (Crawley) tomorrow, Saturday, at the Crouch. The kick off is at 3pm. Refreshments are available. Why not turn up and support your local team.
NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH now has nearly 900 members, membership needs to be renewed now, it costs just £3 per year and membership forms are available at the police station.
CUCKMERE: There will be a public meeting to launch the Friends of the Cuckmere tomorrow, Saturday, at 2pm at the Pump Barn at Exceat Visitors Centre. The speakers will include Charles Peck (Vice Chairman of the South Downs National Park), Tony Whitbread (Chief Executive Officer of the Sussex Wildlife Trust) and Barry Yates (Warden of Rye Harbour Nature Reserve); afterwards there will be opportunity for discussion. The Friends of the Cuckmere is to be a non-political, non-campaigning body; anyone who loves the Cuckmere landscape and cares about its future can join. This is the very first meeting of the Friends of the Cuckmere. Do come along if you can and see how you might make a difference. Free parking for those coming to the meeting. Tea at 3pm, no charge.
MAYOR’S CONCERT: The popular Fabulous Baker Boys will be performing at Seaford Rugby Club in the Salts tomorrow, Saturday, night at 8pm. This is the last event in the Seaford Mayor’s Mad March Marathon which has been raising funds for her nominated charity WAVES.
ART LECTURE: The latest lecture in the Raise the Roof series of talks at St Peter’s Church will be about the Pre-Raphaelites. The talk by Kay Blackburn will start at 2.30pm but these lectures are always popular so turn up early for a good seat.
MUSEUM EVENT: There will be another Children’s Event at Seaford Museum in the Martello Tower between 10am and noon on Wednesday. This event is open to accompanied children between the ages of 3 and 8 years old and there will be a chance for dressing up and making Easter related crafts.
BONFIRE MEETING: The bonfire society will be holding an open committee meeting at their headquarters at the White Lion Pub on Thursday. Come along at 7pm and meet the committee. This will also be an opportunity to join this popular new group.
COUNCIL MEETING: There is a meeting of the planning and highways committee at 37 Church Street on Thursday at 7pm. Members of the public are welcome and can ask questions at the start of the meeting. An agenda is available on-line or from the council offices.
SPORTS: This weekend will be the first opportunity to see the 2012 Exhibition at Seaford Museum in the Martello Tower. The exhibition seeks to outline the sports that have been played in the town over the past 100 years with photographs and documents.
MAY BALL: Cradle Hill School PTFA are holding a May Ball to raise funds. It will be held at Deans Place Hotel in Alfriston on Saturday May 19. This will be a fantastic do with a four course meal, live auction and dancing until midnight. For further information call Jo Peppard on 07801 686846.
PARISH PUMP: I have decided to relinquish co-ordinating the Seaford Parish Pump. If you would like to take over as the Seaford Parish pumper contact Sally on 01273 480601.
BINGO: There will be a special Easter bingo evening at the Civic Centre today, Friday, with a 7pm start. There will be eight games played for £4, plus an additional snowball and flyer game. There are cash prizes and free refreshments, including wine as an Easter treat, at a half-time break. There will also be a raffle. This is a very popular event so come along early to ensure you get a seat and join in the fun. It’s a friendly evening and is a perfect opportunity for getting out and meeting new people. Net proceeds raised will go to the Mayor of Telscombe’s Charity Fund.
MEETING: There will be a meeting of the local Breast Cancer Support Group on Wednesday from 1pm to 3pm in the Civic Centre. The group’s aim is to give social support to anyone with breast cancer, or anyone with concerns about it friends, relatives or those awaiting diagnosis. The meetings are friendly and relaxed with tea, coffee and delicious cakes. They have a qualified therapist providing reflexology or hand massage. If you prefer to have a one-to-one chat, or for more information, please ring Pat Dunkley on 01273 582952 or 07760 300467.
COUNCILLORS’ SURGERY will be held at the Civic Centre on Saturday April 7 from 10am to 11am. This is your opportunity to discuss local issues with your town councillor. There is usually a district or county councillor present too. Make the most of this opportunity to meet your councillor and come along on Saturday. No appointment is necessary.
EASTER BUNNY HUNT will be taking place at Paradise Park from March 31 until April 15. Why not take your children along and see if they can find all the bunnies around the park? They also have a cafeteria serving refreshments.
EASTER CLOSING: Telscombe Civic Centre will be closed for Easter on Friday April 6 and Monday April 9, re-opening at 9am on Tuesday April 10.