OUR PARKS FITNESS: Free group exercise classes will take place at the Western Road Recreation Ground starting tomorrow and every Saturday morning from 9am starting. It would be great if you could register online if you are attending, but if not, don’t worry it’s just so that they can gauge numbers and have the right number of people there to cover the event. The exercise sessions will be led by experienced, fully qualified and insured instructors. Hailsham Town Council is working with Hailsham Active and Our Parks to deliver a range of classes such as yoga, Pilates, back-to-exercise and gentle exercise. The scheme will run throughout the spring and summer. To join and book a space, visitwww.ourparks.org.uk.

BOOK SIGNING: Writer Mercedes Prunty is the guest speaker at Wealden Writers April meeting, today, Friday, at The Gospel Mission Meeting Room in Station Road from 2pm to 4pm. Mercedes will be signing copies of her books. Member, Helene Ford met Mercedes at Eastbourne Book Fair earlier this year. She writes fantasy and horror stories. She is young and is into publishing on the net and the group are looking forward to hearing more about her experience of self-publishing and what the latest trends are. She is published on Amazon and has written several books. Alone, The Keeper of the Key, Junia, Bunny Moo and several more. She has also got a Facebook page and is into blogging and has a high presence on the internet. If you type in her name you will come up with her brief biography. As she is so into getting everything out there on the Internet, the writers are waiting to hear how she is getting her stories published. She will be bringing several of her books along and everybody is warmly welcome to this free event.

STRICTLY?: Eastbourne and District Old Time Dance Club meets at Summerheath Hall, Summerheath Road on Wednesday from 7.15pm to 10pm. Costs £3 which includes tea and biscuits. Beginners very welcome. Enquiries to 01323 500180.

ANNUAL TOWN MEETING: If you want to know what is going on in the town and want to have your say or ask questions of local councillors, this is your opportunity. The town meeting is usually very well attended so get there early to the Civic Community Hall in Vicarage Lane on Wednesday April 25. There will be information stands from 6.30pm and the main part of the meeting will start at 7.30pm. At the Annual Town Meeting, the Mayor will also be presenting the 2018 Hailsham Community Award, given to someone who has served and shown commitment to the Hailsham community.

TOYS GALORE: Thanks to an extremely generous anonymous donor, Hailsham Lions were able to give over 100 pre-loved children’s cuddly toys and furry cuties to Kids Count. All the toys were carefully washed, dried and fluffed up by a member of the Lions, ready for their new owners. The Kids Count Project, spearheaded by Mary Laxton, is designed to help families in and around Hailsham by providing baby bundles for new mothers who have fled their homes due to domestic violence, among other things. Each baby bundle includes nappies, creams and clothes to help mums give their babies a better start in life. Kids Count now also help toddlers in need, so these toys will bring a little sunshine into the lives of children whatever their age.

PHOTOGRAPHIC SOCIETY: Hailsham Photographic Society welcomed once again David Eastley to judge their PDI Final of the season. David is based in Sussex and has a wide range of photographic interests from portraits to landscape, from travel to flower photography. There were 77 entries, over three classes so a full evening for David to make his comments. David talked about picture content and composition, does the picture work, or tell a story, does it show an original approach? Results of the Swallow Cup for beginners: Highly Commended, Kafalonian Sunset by Jane Phillips; 3, Groynes by Emma Grosvenor; 2, Tower of Pebbles by Emma Grosvenor; and 1, Gannet Family by Dee McNab. For the Sussex Shield Final for intermediate: Highly Commended, Crofters House, Auchindrain by Graham Willkinson, Evening Ice by Bryony Bruce, Early Morning by Richard Goldsmith. 3, Defensible Space by David Phillips; 2, Wet Scammell by Chris Bartlett; and 1, Anyone for cricket by David Phillips. For the Albert Hillman Cup for advanced: Highly Commended, Spring Zing by Mandy Willard, Chaenomeles Apple Blossom by Louise Pemberton, Freesia by Janet Monk. 3, Stormy Sea off Seaford by Gay Biddlecombe; 2, Little Reader by Marian Child; and 1, The Dark Side of London by Marian Child. Chairman Colin Monk thanked David for judging, for his variety of comments and advice and entertainment.

RED WHITE AND BLUE PARTY: On Saturday May 19, to celebrate the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, Hailsham FM and Environment Hailsham invite you to join them at Grovelands School from 7.30pm to 11.30pm for an evening celebration with live music from Recycled, cash bar until late, prize raffle, Best British Icons Fancy Dress competition. A fish and chip supper is included in the advance ticket price of £12 adults, £5 children on (01323) 842931. Don’t miss out, get your tickets now for another fantastic event in Hailsham Town.

CRICKET CLUB: Ground was broken this week to signal the start of the exciting extension to Hailsham Cricket Club’s pavilion. The pavilion, in the Western Road recreation ground, has been around for over 100 years. However, with cricket developing and new and more players playing the sport, the cricket club embarked on a bold project to extend the facility. The project started with securing planning permission for an extension to the pavilion. The pavilion will grow by 5 metres to the side, which will allow for new changing rooms, a new girls only changing area, disabled access together with disabled changing and toilet facilities, as well as a fully refurbished interior. Following planning approval, the club were then successful with fund raising efforts, particularly through securing grants from Sport England, Veolia and Hailsham Town Council. And finally, this week, the club started work on the building work, with local builders Kevin Hallett and Kenny Dawber leading on the work. The initial phase will see the laying of a new footpath to the side and rear of the pavilion and then the exterior of the extension will be erected. At that point, the works will pause to allow the cricket season to take place uninterrupted. However, as soon as the season ends, phase 2 of the project will commence with the whole interior of the pavilion being gutted to allow the new rooms to be formed, and a complete refurbishment of the interior to take place. With a new kitchen, showers and toilets in addition to the changing areas and open spaces, the project will create a first class facility which the club hope will last them another 100 years. The club are continuing to fund raise to complete the project and if anyone is interested in donating, be that through money or in kind donations, then please do get in touch. The club would love to hear from you.

RAISE YOUR VOICE: Almost 200 people descended on the Pavilion last week for a concert in aid of the charity Parkinson’s UK, featuring an amazing showcase of talent from Hailsham Community College’s students and the occasional teacher. What an absolutely brilliant night it turned out to be. The atmosphere was buzzing before the curtains opened and when they did the audience’s enthusiasm and anticipation was already palpable. So many genres covered from Rock through music hall to punk rock and power ballads, something for everyone and not a note out of place. Singers and musicians from years 9 through 13 held the audience transfixed as bands, soloists and even talented singer songwriter Caleb Goldsmith, took to the stage. Some for the very first time. We were reminded half way through that the event was a fundraiser for a cause close to organiser and Rancid Shed lead singer Danny Adsett’s heart in memory of his granddad to whom he paid an emotional tribute accompanied by Ezra Goldsmith on piano to Assisted which deservedly attracted the biggest applause of the night. Manager of the Pavilion, Paul Nunney commented ‘what an incredible amount of talent there is at HCC’, and I think everyone would agree. Well done also to organisers hosts and performers Danny Adsett and Chloe Grayling, along with all the performers, technical crew, back stage and brave teachers.