Cooksbridge, Offham & Hamsey

CHURCH SERVICE: Sunday, at St Peter’s Church, 10.15am Sunday School in the church hall, 10.30am Family Communion followed by coffee in the hall.

HAMSEY: It will be the second concert by the Musicians of All Saints, Lewes on Sunday in Hamsey Church at 6pm. For further details see www.mas-lewes.co.uk

ADVANCE NOTICE: It will be the Parish Picnic at noon on Sunday June 24 in St Peter’s Church grounds.

AFTERNOON CLUB: The Monday Afternoon Club meeting on July 9 will be in Caroline’s garden for tea at 2pm.

HAMSEY PARISH COUNCIL: More news as I did not have room for all of it last week. Council discussed correspondence from a resident requesting repairs to a garden fence adjoining the Malthouse Way Park. The council deeds for the park do not show any fences as being the responsibility of the parish council. The clerk contacted LDC and the parks department who were not aware of any responsibility for the fences apart from the roadside. The Housing Department said they had no records as the house had been sold off. Council had been informed that very large conifers in the garden adjoining had produced large branches that were pushing the fence over and will need to be removed. Council was to arrange a meeting with the owner or their representative to try and find a solution. An anonymous note had been left in the post box at the village hall asking the parish council to clear a drain at the station. It was not their responsibility an had been cleared by ESCC. A resident had contacted the council who was concerned at the poor state of the the riverside path from Hamsey to Lewes. It was felt that the main problem has been caused by the wet weather. Council considered the implications of the decision by ESCC to reduce cutting the verges in Cooksbridge from four cuts per season to just two, and to consider quotes received for the PC to cover this contract themselves. Quotes had been received from a number of local providers and the council agreed to offer it to Lakers Garden Services who will cut the verges in Cooksbridge as well as the Malthouse Park. Cllr Baughan reported that the poor state of the pavement towards Lewes should be raised with the County Councillor Jim Sheppard.

The chairman had been approached about a quiet lanes initiative. This was a proposal from Lewes MP, Maria Caulfield. QL is an old scheme discontinued some years ago. ESCC say that they don’t have any budget to fund such a scheme.

EVENTS: Council considered a proposal for a parish event to be held on November 24. The chairman reported that the cost is estimated around £1,200. It will be a free event for residents with a band, food and a alighting feature in the grounds of the village hall. Hamsey School will provide a bar. Cllr McBrown has organised a car boot sale for August Bank Holiday Monday. Details later. The Christmas Party will be on Monday December 17.

N WATCH ISSUE: There had been problems with young men off an early train damaging bikes and a fence at Cooksbridge Station, then damaging books in the phone box, but overall anti-social behaviour in Cooksbridge has reduced.

The next meeting for Hamsey Parish Council will be on Thursday July 19 at the village hall, Beechwood Lane, 7.35pm.

ROAD KILL: Having mentioned about ESCC reducing the cutting of verges in Cooksbridge from four cuts per season to just two, I was horrified to be told by someone I know very well and who travels regularly, that the decision to reduce verge cutting across the countryside is having disastrous effects on a lot of wildlife. I have been given a list of road kill that has been seen over a period of two days during last week. 20 dead badgers, 20 foxes, three cats, 12 grey squirrels, 12 hedgehogs, three species of deer. With the taller verges any wildlife that attempts to come out from the overgrown verge to cross the road will not be spotted by passing traffic until it is too late. If this has happened in just two days, what will the future hold for our wildlife?

WHAT NEXT?: I had to laugh when someone called in who had admired the beautiful red chestnut trees that Derek planted here in 1982, which were at their very best this year. The caller asked if it would be alright to bring her son along to collect the conkers. I then had a phone call from someone who had read my column and had taken photographs of the trees in all their glory, but this time it was not conkers they wanted, it was chestnuts that they would like to collect in autumn. I have explained that the trees do not have conkers or chestnuts, but if they go along the B2116 road past me towards the junction which joins the A275, on the right hand side of the road are some magnificent horse chestnut trees which will have plenty of conkers when the time is right. I can’t answer for the sweet chestnuts, but I am sure there are plenty to be found.

NATIONAL PROJECT: An interesting article in my recent South East Farmer reports that TV presenter and farmer, Adam Henson, has launched his national project to enable every school child across the UK to know where the food on their plate is from. The project is called Pleas Sir! Feed Me Truth and aims to connect the supply chains behind all school food to what’s on the children’s plates.

MANY RESPONSES: Also reported was more than 44,000 responses have been received on the government’s proposals for the future of food, farming and the environment once we leave the EU. DEFRA said that in one week alone, nearly 20,000 responses were submitted to the Health and Harmony consultation which closed on Tuesday May 8.