Cross in Hand, Horam, Blackboys & Five Ashes

NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH: Update On Significant Planned Road Works On the M23 And the Brighton Main Line Improvement Project. The following works are scheduled on the M23, subject to weather conditions: February 26, South and Northbound full carriageway closure between 10pm and 4am. This closure is to construct one super span and one gantry. Both sides of the M23 will be closed between Junctions 8 and 10. Diversion for M25 via A264 Copthorne Road, A22 and re-join at J6 M25. Diversion for Gatwick from junction 10, A2011, A23 London Road. To contact Sussex Neighbourhood Watch please E-mail or visit

CRIME: Heathfield North and Central Crime Statistics January to December 2018. Violence and sexual offences 94 cases, 31.65 percent; vehicle crime 22 cases, 7.41 percent; theft from the person 0; shoplifting 22 cases, 7.41 percent; robbery 0; public order 14 cases, 4.71 percent; possession of weapons 0; other theft 37 cases, 12.46 percent; other crime 3 cases, 1.01 percent; drugs 2 cases, 0.67 percent; criminal damage and arson 27 cases, 9.09 percent; burglary 20 cases, 6.73 percent; bicycle theft 0; anti-social behaviour 56 cases, 18.86 percent.

ACTION FRAUD: Lonely Hearts Romance Fraudster Alert. The NFIB have become aware of techniques used by romance fraudsters against people using dating sites. Not only will they steal your heart they will steal your money and your identification. When you think you’ve met the perfect partner through an online dating website or app, but the other person is using a fake profile to form a relationship with you. They’re using the site to gain your trust and ask you for money or enough personal information to steal your identity. A dating fraudster, previously involved in deceiving people that wanted a friendship explained how they would create fake accounts with social media platforms so that their details matched and could be searched. By appearing to be a real person their fake persona could be corroborated by prospective partners searching their background and believe them to be genuine. Avoid sharing too many personal details when on online dating profiles. Revealing your full name, date of birth, or full home address may lead to your identity being stolen. Never respond to any requests to send money, or have money transferred into your account by someone you don’t know and trust. These types of requests should always raise a red flag. If something feels wrong then it is usually right to question it. Pick a reputable dating website or app, and use the built-in messaging service. Fraudsters want to quickly switch to social media or texting so there’s no evidence of them asking you for money.

OPERATION BLITZ: Blitz Half Term Week. As part of Sussex Police’s continued efforts to reduce anti-social behaviour, they are putting on extra Operation Blitz patrols throughout the half term (February 15 to 23.) These deployments will be between 4pm and 10pm weekdays, and 4pm to 11.30pm Friday and Saturday. You can contact an officer directly through the Blitz phone numbers in these times to report anti-social behaviour. The phone numbers are Eastbourne 07785 372050; Lewes 07989 188960; Wealden 07770 700642. Seen something suspicious or have information about a crime or incident? Please contact them online, email them at: or call 101.

WEALDEN ALERTS: Show your support for a school star. The Sussex Teacher of the Year Awards were started to mark the vital contribution that teaching staff make to our community. The awards recognise the expertise and dedication that is the hallmark of an outstanding teacher. Nominations open each January. Award categories include primary, secondary, newly qualified teacher, non teaching member of staff including midday supervisors and caretakers and a volunteer award, which includes members of the PTA and governors. Winners of the event will be announced at a ceremony in June at Jury’s Inn, Brighton. The awards dinner will have a fundraising element with additional seats available to purchase on a paid basis and a raffle held. Proceeds raised from the Sussex Teacher of the Year Awards go to literacy and road safety projects in the region. For further information phone: 0844 2640291 (lo call) email:

HEATHFIELD ABOUT TOWN: Dog Attacks. There now seems to be a weekly occurrence of reports on social media from local residents reporting their dogs being attacked by other dogs when out exercising their animals. The latest is a resident whose dog was attacked by an Alsatian in Mill Road. Both handlers were knocked to the ground by the offending dog with one dog escaping across Mill Road car park and running across the High Street in terror. Not only could this have caused a serious accident and injury to drivers and harm to the animal, but it does not bode well for the confidence of the young dog that was attacked. Apparently this is not the first time the alsatian has been involved in attacking another animal. The police have been informed of the incident and a case number issued. Hopefully in my next report I shall bring you the news of two rescue dogs I shall be collecting from Cyprus next week. One is for the woman who rescued both as puppies; the other will join our household. Her name is Sophie, she’s a black and white pointer and she was rescued with her brother Oreo (named after the biscuit) on a very busy mountain road when she and her brother were very small. Since being rescued, both dogs have been in the safe care of the wonderful Kyrenia Animal Rescue centre in Cyprus which works not just to satisfy the dog-loving character of the Brits on the island but educate local people, especially children, on the pleasure they can have from owning an animal as a pet, not simply to hunt or guard. It’s been an uphill struggle but they are making amazing progress.

MAYFIELD AND FIVE ASHES: The East Sussex Hearing Resource Centre with Adult Social Care mobile information and advice service for deaf, deafened and hard of hearing people will be in Mayfield Memorial Hall car park (or overspill car park) Tunbridge Wells Road, from 1.30pm to 3.30pm on Thursday February 28. The bus is accessible to wheelchair users and representatives will be available to provide individual information and advice on all aspects of hearing loss. For further information please contact: East Sussex Hearing Resource Centre, Tel: 01323 722505 (voice/text/fax) e-mail: Sussex Hearing Resource Centre

NEWS FROM MAYFACS: Chess Club. Would you be willing to come and teach and play chess with the Mayfield primary school children during Wednesday lunchtimes? MAYFACS and the Primary School are setting up a new chess club for children and volunteers with an interest in chess. Wednesday lunchtimes 12.30pm to 1pm. If you have a chess set, you could bring it along with you but if not, don’t worry we have a few. Please get in touch with Freya Huxtable for more information. 07866628170.

COMMUNITY CARS: Transporting to medical appointments. MAYFACS has taken over the bookings of this transport service, so should you need to get to a medical appointment, whether it be to the doctor’s surgery, the hospital, the opticians or any other medical appointment, you can ring this number: 01435 873888 and we should be able to help you. This is an answerphone service so please clearly leave your name, telephone number and brief details of the date you require transport and location and you will be called back to make arrangements.

Please give as much notice, at least 48 hours, if possible.

Photocopying, printing and laminating. We now offer photocopying, printing and A4 and A3 laminating. Our MAYFACS office is open most Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays between 9am and 3pm. For the printing and photocopying there will be a base cost. Please bring in your memory stick if you need any printing done.

OUTINGS: The next outing will be on February 25 to Tenterden. There will be a maximum of 14 spaces allocated due as we only have the HAC bus available.

LIFE STORIES PROJECT: We finished the exciting pilot project and exhibited photos and extracts from each book at Mayfield School after the performances of the Community Play. We are now embarking on the project again with six participants paired with six girls from Mayfield School and we are excited to see how it unfolds as our ideas from the pilot project are implemented. Contact details: Shirley Holland 07908 516875. The Old Library 9am to 3pm most Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays (to the right of the main entrance to Mayfield Memorial Hall). Five Ashes Village Hall 2.30pm to 4pm, second and fourth Wednesday of the month.

ST DUNSTAN’S CHURCH: St Dunstan’s Parish Choir. The Choir of St Dunstan’s is always looking for new singers, both young and old, to join its ranks in its task of leading the music in worship in this ancient and beautiful parish church. It has an extensive repertoire and a long standing tradition of excellence. Choral singing is a team activity that can involve all age groups, the common bond being Christian worship and a simple love of singing and music. The choir is always looking for members that are looking for fulfilment and enrichment in their lives, through singing to the glory of God. Singing to a high standard, the choir has an increasingly varied repertoire which consists of service settings, anthems, psalms, responses and hymns, the music ranging from Sixteenth Century to the present day. For children and adults alike, choral singing is a most rewarding and increasingly popular activity. The choir is affiliated to the Royal School of Church Music. In 2017 a new anthem was commissioned, ‘When in our music, God is glorified’ and again in 2018 The Beatitudes by distinguished organist, conductor and composer, Malcolm Archer. This year sees an early summer visit to join the choirs of Salisbury Cathedral for Evensong and Sunday’s Choral Mass and you are welcome to come along. Please contact our Choir Secretary David Lees-Jones on 01435 873689. We have recently introduced some new choral scholarships for this academic year (worth £500 per annum) for singers aged 16 to 25 years, and for details please click below. Bruxner-Randall Choral Scholarship Application Form (November 2018) apply now for January to December 2019. Junior Choir. We have an enthusiastic group of children, seven years plus who have a love of singing, and we meet on Wednesday afternoons at 5pm in St Dunstan’s.

CROSS IN HAND: Ghyll Road- Sheepsetting Lane Traffic Calming. The installation of the traffic calming measures is now nearly complete. A lot of comments have been made on social media complaining there are too many speed cushions. Obviously the measures are working, well done ESCC.

HORAM: Horam Emporium. I called in to the opening of The Horam Emporium last Saturday. This is a very welcome addition to Horam’s browsing, shopping and eating scene. It’s beautifully put together and manages to combine enough attractions for village families and visitors from further afield to ensure a sure-fire success. Tpodz Cafe manager Sue Spies has assembled a bright young team who lay on lunches, fabulous cakes, cheese scones (made by Philippa Dunnell to a secret recipe but very cheesy and well-flavoured - she wouldn’t tell me any more,) soups, jacket potatoes, fruit teas and hearty breakfasts as well as proper coffee. As a bit of a coffee fanatic, I can heartily recommend the blend and the presentation. It’s a light, bright room at the back of the store, with cream walls and pale cream and pine tables and chairs. Modern and classy. I know we’ve mentioned it before, but try some of the cakes baked by Cross-in-Hand mum Charlotte Carey. It is so good to see the café using local suppliers. All the meat and bacon is supplied by Davies and Sons, the local butcher located a couple of doors away and freshly laid eggs are from Riverside based in Vines Cross. Out front Steve Wesson and his wife Loz have assembled a juxtaposition of stalls selling memorabilia, vintage clothes and accessories, French bric-a-brac, soaps, turned wood accessories, plants and planters, decorative items for the garden and even a selection of model trains (took me back to the Hornby Double OO days.) Each stall is rented to the seller and you, the customer are left alone to browse. No-one hassles you as would probably happen in a traditional antique shop. Good to see May Pankhurst with her famous May’s Terracotta stall stacked with garden ornaments, fabulous modern lighting, very reasonably priced indoor planters and, of course, the famous terracotta, re-located from their former outlet on the A26 between Lewes and Uckfield, (now being redeveloped for housing, like every other square yard of land in East Sussex.) The Feminine Touch (fabulous fake furs, frocks, gloves and bags from the thirties, forties and fifties is worth a look (couldn’t drag Mrs PP away) and there’s a gorgeous memorabilia and original art stall run by Sally Baldwin whose claim to fame was rescuing ‘hero dog’ Bryn, captured by the Taliban in Afghanistan and re-homed back here in the UK. Bryn helped save the life of British soldiers by sniffing out the fact that the ground had been disturbed while a roadside incendiary device was planted. It was impossible to see with the naked eye, but a dog’s sensitive nose could tell something had recently been buried there. A former teacher in Laughton, Sally gives a percentage of her takings to Warpaws, an animal rescue charity in Iraq. There’s a lot of stories here, plus some nice things to look at and buy - I can see it being a good source of unusual gifts. First customer of the day was Willow Lindfield, nine, who bought a vintage teddy bear. Loz can be seen most days cuddling the smallest miniature Yorkshire Terrier I’ve ever seen, just nine weeks old but already getting used to greeting customers. By the way there are comfy benches and tables out front where smokers can enjoy a cigarette or a vape in pole position to survey the comings and goings in Horam village.

BLACKBOYS: Blackboys CEP School says during term three in PE they welcome back Zara Breeze who takes over Tuesday afternoon sessions. She will focus on dance and gymnastics. Also this term they welcome Adam who will teach the class cricket skills on a Thursday afternoon.

Homework schedule changes this term with home learning now set on a Wednesday and returned the following Monday. Children will take part in Forest School on a Thursday afternoon. Correct outerwear is needed and there is also a parent sign-up form for volunteer helpers in Mrs Sheffield’s office.