FOOTPATHS GROUP: Balsdean Valley Walk, March 7. It was Easter Sunday morning; it had been stormy and raining all night. Despite this unpromising prospect, 12 intrepid walkers gathered at the Woodingdean car park for the almost 6 mile circular walk. We set off along the grassy path winding gently along the contours of the Downs towards Standean Bottom. For stretches, we were buffeted by the gale, its ferocity making it hard to remain upright and impossible to make oneself heard above the noise; then suddenly, turning a corner, we found ourselves in a different world, calm and quiet, in the lea of a ridge. We took a short break in the valley, by the roofless farm buildings where you can sometimes see sheep being sheared. To dispel any doubts that spring had sprung, we were surrounded by sheep with their recently born lambs, their mothers making sure their little ones kept close to them and away from these strange intruding human creatures. We then started the steep climb up to the South Downs Way, then turning off onto Juggs Road for the homeward stretch. We were once again walking right into the gale, and having so far escaped the rain, now found ourselves putting up hoods as protection against first rain, then hail (those hailstones really can sting). Amazingly, all this did not seem to affect the skylarks who continued to soar into the sky and sing their thrilling song. This was a walk characterised by weather with a capital W, but nonetheless enjoyable for all that. We arrived back at the car park, battered but happy and feeling somewhat smug at having faced the elements and won. The walk was led by Vivien.

The next walk will be on Sunday April 24. We meet at North Street car park, Lewes at 9.30am. For more details go to www.lewesfootpathsgroup.org.uk

TRINITY AT SOUTHOVER: And St John sub Castro. Not long to wait for the new term to start with Lewes sings gospel on Tuesday at Trinity Southover. If you like singing, come and join us in the BBC winning choir. More information at www.trinitylewes.org/lsg. Do you know someone who needs that extra bit of assistance with life and learning? The Lewes branch of the national Prospects Group is based at Trinity Southover and meets on alternate Thursdays from 7pm to 8.15pm in the chapter house, which is fully accessible (entered via Church End, Cockshut Road). Come and enjoy talks, games, music, drama and craft; ending with food, tea and coffee. The group is led by volunteers from Trinity and other Lewes churches. If you would like to know more please contact: biddie141@hotmail.co.uk or go to www.prospects.org.uk. Services this Sunday at St John sub Castro: 11.15am informal service with singers and band; 4.30pm communion, a traditional service. Services this Sunday at Southover: 8am communion (prayer book); 10am morning service, with choir, organ and band; 6.30pm informal service with singers and band. Please do come and join us.

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