HARVEST SUPPER: Tonight, Friday in Offham Church Hall at 7pm. Delicious home cooked three course meal with wine. At time of writing I am not sure if all the tickets are sold, but if you would like to join in it is always worth giving Judith a call on 01273 474356 to see if there are any places left. Tickets cost £12, concessions available. Judith will have all the details. There will also be a quiz and a raffle.
HARVEST FESTIVAL: On Sunday at St Peter’s Church. This year’s Harvest Festival will be a simple Family Service at 10.30am. During the service the children will process bearing their Harvest gifts. Anyone wishing to add to the Harvest array can take either fresh produce, tinned or dried is also acceptable. The church will have been beautifully decorated for this wonderful Harvest season. Following the service coffee will be available in the church hall.
MONDAY CLUB: The Monday Afternoon Club meet on October 9 in Offham Church Hall at 2pm. This month it will be Patsy putting everyone through their paces to Get Fit and Healthy. The afternoon will end with a lovely home-made tea. Lifts are always available by calling either Judith on 01273 474356 or Caroline on 01273 477151.
ACCIDENT: About a fortnight ago there was an accident almost opposite Courthouse Cottages. It happened on Sunday morning and I kept getting calls from people asking me what was going on as the police helicopter was circling overhead and landed in a field off the B2116 where there was already an ambulance and a police car. Nobody seems to know what was going on and I only hope that nobody was hurt. Lots of people have told me how scary it is driving, cycling or even walking along the B2116 on a Sunday morning with motor bikes creaming along the road.
BERRIES: It looks like the birds will have a feast this autumn as there are masses of berries all over the place. The RHS also say that there are many plants, including spindle bushes, firethorn and crab apple that have ripened early due to rains in July and August following a warm, dry spell in the spring. The fruit will be less susceptible to autumn rot, meaning we could experience a longer than normal display of seasonal colour. ‘Autumn raspberries are yielding lavishly and mulberries are still producing their luscious fruits. All of the berries will mature in the predicted warm spells we have had during September and contrast gloriously with the autumn colours from October, before being consumed by birds, including blackbirds, finches and starlings, fieldfares, redwings, as well as other wildlife’. Although I have been reading about a shortage of butterflies in one magazine I then read in another that the warm spring has meant many butterfly species emerged and bred early, such as the comma, red admiral and speckled wood. Wildlife charity Butterfly Conversation would like the public to keep butterfly spotting over the autumn and early winter and take part in its Garden butterfly Survey www.gardenbutterflysurvey.org.
YELLOW PAGES: Will cease printing its mammoth phone book from January 2019, after more than 50 years, to go fully digitalised on www.yell.com
SAVED: Nightingales. An application to build 5,000 new houses on the SSSI at Lodge Hill, Kent, one of the last strongholds for the endangered songbirds has been withdrawn.
SWALLOWS: At the time of writing I am delighted to see a few swallows still here. It is always sad to see them fly off to warmer climes, but also a delight to see the first ones appear in the spring. The nuthatches have arrived back in my garden and are feasting on the bird food along with a huge variety of birds that are probably socking up for winter.
I HAVE JUST READ: Such a funny piece in the old Overseas and Transatlantic Mail dated August 19, 1950. It was written by the Rev Eric Bailey, bachelor vicar of St John’s Upper Norwood, SE. In his church magazine, after seeing a beauty demonstration for young wives. He writes: What a frightful sight a woman is made to look before retiring for the night. I can’t help thinking this might be the cause of some of the marriage break-downs. The hair is gathered up into a kind of net strapped under the chin, and the face and neck are smeared with face creaming known as ‘nourishing food’. I couldn’t help thinking that every prospective bridegroom should have the opportunity of seeing all this before the wedding.