Lewes Parish Pump - February 8 2013


QUIZ NIGHT: The tennis club is holding a Quiz Night at the village hall on Saturday, March 2 at 7pm. Tickets costing £10 (to include food) are now on sale in Barcombe Village Stores. There will also be a licensed bar. All welcome.

ON SUNDAY at 6pm in the village hall a free offering from Operaplayhouse. Conclusion of training classes.

THE WI meeting on Tuesday will have a demonstration of Indian cuisine by Sue Hollings. Easily cooked meals at home even if you do not like curry.


CHURCH SERVICES: St Peter’s Church services on Sunday are Book of Common Prayer Holy Communion at 8am and All Age Family Service at 10am. The Rev John Maskell will also be in church on Saturday from 8.30am to 9.30am and everyone is invited to join him in prayers. Transport can be arranged by calling Peter Martin on 01825 722680 or Teresa Wenban on 01825722586. Lent will begin with a combined service at St Mary’s Church, Barcombe, on Ash Wednesday (February 13) at 7.30pm. There will then be a Lent course with Barcombe and Newick to be held in the Conker Room, the hall attached to St Mary’s Church, on Thursdays February 28 and March 7 and 21 from 7pm to 9pm. Free Church services on Sunday are at 10.30am when there will be communion and 6.15pm with Grenville Biddulph at 6.15pm. Tea, coffee and biscuits will be served after the service. Also on Wednesdays at 10am there is a prayer meeting and Thursdays at 7.30pm bible study and prayer.

INFORMATION POINT session is on Friday February 15 when the parish clerk with be at the Coffee Stop, Free Church, from 10am to midday to assist with any questions you may have.

TR GROUP: South Downs TR Group Club Night is at the Five Bells on Tuesday from 8pm. Anyone with an interest in Triumph TR sports cars will be made most welcome.

APPLICATIONS for grants from the Thompsett Charity must be made to the trustees by March 1. Thomas Thompsett enabled a Trust to be set up in 1926 for grants to boys and girls in the parish of Chailey to promote their education, including social and physical training. Grants have, for example, been given by the charity for school residential trips and guide and scout events. Only a small amount is available annually for distribution but if you would like to be considered please write to The Thompsett Charity, c/o Ann Jones, Pellingford, Lewes Road, Scaynes Hill RH17 7NG. For more information call Ann on 01444 831244.

TRACK TREK is a sponsored walk over the length of the northern extension of the Bluebell Railway, from the station at East Grinstead to Kingscote and back. The event is being run with the support of East Grinstead Town Council, which has agreed to pay £1,000 to cover expenses. East Grinstead Town Mayor, Liz Bennet, will be walking the four mile trek on February 24 which covers the route that future trains will take through Imberhorne cutting and over the viaduct. You can support the Mayor at www.justgiving.com/LizBennett or if you wish to take part an application is available to download at www.bluebell-railway.co.uk/

MARJORIE DAVIS: Recognised Readers of Chailey News will remember that local artist Marjorie Davis illustrated the magazine covers for many years and designed the village sign. You will be pleased to learn that her work as a children’s illustrator has won lasting recognition. Seven Stories, the National Centre for Children’s Books, is to archive her work in its permanent collection. When Marjorie died, in 2007, she left at her home in Cinder Hill a treasure trove of her work from the 1930s onwards, including countless proofs and drafts of her pictures for well-known children’s publishers and her sketchbooks covering the 10 years she spent as one of Enid Blyton’s leading illustrators in the 1950s. Seven Stories, in Newcastle, holds the largest collection of Blyton’s manuscripts, letters and books in Britain and is planning a major exhibition on the author this summer which will feature some of Marjorie’s work. The 120 originals that remain from Marjorie’s many drawings for Chailey News are not, however, on their way to Newcastle and it is hoped that a more local, permanent home might be found for them. If you have any thoughts as to where they could be housed please call Sally Varlow on 01825 723768.

Cooksbridge, Offham & Hamsey

AFTERNOON CLUB: The Monday Afternoon Club meets on Monday in St Peter’s Church Hall, at 2pm. Brian Walter will be talking about his travels in New Zealand. New members always welcome. Lifts available by contacting Judith on 01273 474356.

SKITTLES: I put an advance notice in last week about the skittles evening at the Chalk Pit Inn which is on Friday March 1, which is correct. For those who have called me to say that it is on March 8, sorry but it is the wrong date in the Community Newsletter. Not my fault.

PARISH COUNCIL: When Hamsey Parish Council met recently it was reported that the clerk had contacted ESCC regarding further speed checks. The details of the last checks in 2010 are available but dates for re-checking were not available at the time of the meeting. The clerk has spoken to Environmental Health regarding the tipping behind Hamsey School which has been there for over two years now and is an eyesore. Since then a quantity of old tyres has also been dumped nearby but in spite of continuous complaints nothing has been done. Environmental Health have said they will issue an enforcement notice. It was reported that a precept of £18,413 in total will be required for 2013/14. This is an increase on last year (which was reduced from previous years) and takes account of proposed spending to produce a neighbourhood plan. There had been no further report from ESCC or Cllr St Pierre regarding a footpath to the village hall. Council discussed the current position on the wind turbine. This was to be a decision for the hall trustees but the council wish to be kept up to date. Council had received complaints about a vehicle parked on the A275 opposite Hamsey School which was felt to be a traffic hazard. Sussex Police have informed the council that parking in this position, whilst inconvenient to motorists, is not illegal. The council were to write to the owner asking for cooperation with the PCSO request to move it. Cllr Ginn would be delivering a letter to all Malthouse Way residents reminding them that children might be playing in the street and speed should be kept below 20mph. He would liaise with the PCSO regarding cars parked too close to the junction of the A275. It is dangerous and the PCSO will be asked to issue warning notices. Cllr Dodd gave an update on the LDC emerging core strategy. He said there had been a good turnout at the public meeting. Council had been pleased to note that the expansion of the Offham traveller site was no longer in the core strategy document. Council would be responding to the latest consultation. Several residents expressed interest in the Neighbourhood Plan after the meeting on November 29. The plan group now had representatives from all areas of the parish (except Bevernbridge), the school, church, council and local business. There are plans for an open meeting later in the year to update residents on progress. Council discussed working with LDC to obtain funding for improvements to the Offham Conservation Area. Cllr Armstrong, Cllr Bates and the clerk will progress this. Cllr Ginn and Offham resident, Kevin Froude, will meet with Plumpton PC to discuss improvements which have been achieved in the Plumpton rail timetable. In his absence Cllr Bates sent a report to say he was exploring the cost of green parking materials. Cllr McBrown and Cllr Bates were to have talks with Hamsey School and the Governors about the possibilities of limited green parking on the edge of the playing field. Cllr McBrown felt that residents in Chandlers Mead would prefer to see the verge area Tarmac rather than grass. This would stop damage from parking and would widen the pavement. The clerk will arrange an ESCC site visit. There have been enquiries as to the ownership of the car park at Cooksbridge Station. The site is owned by Network Rail and leased to Southern Rail. The next Hamsey Parish Council meeting will be on Thursday March 14.

LITTER PICK: The council will be arranging a parish litter pick from 10am to noon on Sunday March 10. Meet at the village hall car park.

VACANCY: It was noted at the recent meeting that there was still a vacant seat on the parish council.


ART SHOW: Plans for our Eastertide Art Exhibition are progressing nicely. I met some of the artists involved last week and we looked at the church and discussed the potential for exhibiting. It was exciting to hear what the artists have been working on and it will be a very interesting and rewarding challenge to display the work to its best advantage. The show will be opening at Easter so look out for further details nearer the time.

URSULA BROOKER: Last Friday saw the funeral of Ursula Brooker, a much loved member of our Falmer congregation for many years and a very active member of the local community. The congregation that filled the church completely was testament to how well-loved Ursula was and how many people’s lives she touched. Father Colin Lawlor conducted the service and had gathered memories from Ursula’s family. We were told some of Helen and Valerie’s memories of her as a mother, as well as something of her life, including her decision to leave Germany and come to Britain. Father Andrew Robinson, who knew Ursula for many years as a member of St Laurence’s congregation, gave the homily and also spoke of his recollections. The funeral was followed by tea in the village hall. The day was truly a celebration of a life well lived.

ROBINS: I was intrigued by the article in last week’s Express explaining the bird people had been mistaking for a nightingale was in fact a robin. The article was very timely as far as I was concerned as I heard a robin singing at around 9pm just last week when I was walking home. The bird started singing from a bush at the side of the road just as I passed. I recognised it as a robin but wasn’t aware that they sang at night. Now I know.

CANDLEMAS: We celebrated Candlemas last Sunday, the presentation of Christ in the temple, when Jesus was recognised as the Light of the world. Apparently Candlemas is also the day when the priest would bless all the candles to be used through the year. The day is also celebrated in folklore, I heard of a rhyme recently: If Candlemas Day be fair and bright, Winter will have another fight, If Candlemas Day brings cloud and rain, Winter won’t come again. As Candlemas day is on February 2 and it was fairly bright, maybe we are going to see some more cold weather.

CONCERT: Last week’s concert was a triumph. The church was full to capacity with people standing at the back while the different elements that made up the Falmer Court Musicians played for us. Wild Grammar kicked off the proceedings with their gentle experimental folk with guitar, voice and extras. Lee Westwood followed with fabulous guitar compositions. Jules Arthur played three Debussy preludes on the piano. We were also given an amazing set of Flamenco improvisation with Sylvia Saunders. The musicians came together as The Falmer House Choir to give a moving rendition of Tavener’s The Lamb. The concert closed with a set from Le Juki, absolutely fabulous, go to their website and have a listen. The musicians had even provided cakes. People had a wonderful time and went home very happy. Huge thanks to the musicians for giving up their time, and for inviting all their friends along to what was a splendid concert.

NEXT CONCERT: Next week on February 16 at 5.30pm Love Down the Ages, romantic music for Valentine weekend.


MARKET: Laughton Village Market in the village hall tomorrow, Saturday, 10am to noon. All the usual stalls and refreshments. Entrance free. Hope to see you all there.


HISTORY GROUP: Monday, 7.30pm at the King’s Church Building, Brooks Road, Votes for Women! Suffragettes and Suffragists in Lewes by Frances Stenlake. Frances is a former curator of Cuckfield Museum and well known adult education lecturer. As an art historian, she became interested in the story of suffrage campaigning in Sussex through researching her book, Robert Bevan, from Gauguin to Camden Town (Unicorn Press 2008). Her subsequent publication, Mid Sussex Suffragists, tells the story of the artist’s younger sister, Edith Bevan, who founded the Cuckfield and Central Sussex Women’s Suffrage Society. Since moving to Lewes two years ago, Frances has been researching the local campaign for women’s suffrage during the years leading up to the Great War, and the reaction it provoked, in the Lewes area. You will meet what may well be some familiar names, but in a rather different context. We shall be serving free coffee and biscuits prior to the talk. All welcome. www.leweshistory.org.uk

U3A: University of the Third Age Lewes Lecture, The Beatles as Socio-Cultural Zeitgeist by Prof Sheila Whitely. An Examination of the band’s influence during the 1960s and beyond, most specifically their inroads into popular culture and their status as socio-cultural icons during a period of political and social activism, cultural conflict and social legislation. Sheila Whitely is Professor Emeritus at the University of Salford, Visiting Professor at Southampton Solent University, and Research Fellow at Queen’s University (Canada). This free lecture takes place at 2.30pm on Thursday at the Council Chamber, Lewes Town Hall. All welcome.

COFFEE MORNING tomorrow, Saturday, 10am to noon at Cliffe Church Hall (behind church). Cakes, preserves, tombola and more. Proceeds to South street Bonfire Society.

BRIDGE CLUB: Tuesday January 22 Duplicate Pairs: 1, Peter Gannon and Janet Cattermole; 2, Irene Gannon and Rosemary Land; 3, Richard Burnett and Peter Waters. January 29 Play with Students: 1, Peter Waters and Janice Hale, Mike Keeping and Lynne Tunley; 2, Richard Burnett and Mike Preece, Pat Elliott and Rita Hartnell; 3, Peter Cattermole and Janice Barber, Irene Gannon and Liz Cheek. Thursday January 24: 1, Peter Cattermole and Peter Waters; 2, Paul Allen and Lynne Tunley; 3, Ann Wykeham and George Hearn. January 31: 1, Nigel Osmer and Peter Cattermole; 2, Martyn and Terry Walwork; 3, Alan Disney and Frank Hibbert. Lewes Bridge Club meets Tuesday evenings and Thursday afternoons. Contact number 01273 473026.

NT LEWES CENTRE: On Thursday there will be a meeting at Priory School, Mountfield Road at 7.30pm. The speaker will be Roger Antrobus who will be talking about How a Banker Found His Soul...handmade clocks, ships and cars. Non members welcome £3.

HOUSE OF FRIENDSHIP, School Hill. You may have seen the excellent review of one of our tasty lunches, why don’t you come and try one for yourself? Lunch is served at 12.30pm and costs £5.50 for a two course meal (£5 for members) cooked from scratch with fresh ingredients. We are open Monday to Friday and we get busier as the week goes on. We are therefore offering a Monday Madness special offer of two meals for the price of one for the month of February, so bring a friend and sample our delicious food. For more details phone 01273 476469 (mornings).

FOOTPATHS GROUP: Our walk, on Sunday January 27, started at the Ashdown Forest Centre and followed a circular route of about 4.5 miles. There were 14 of us and the weather was mild, dry and sunny, a welcome break from the snow and freezing temperatures of the previous week. The route took us across typical Ashdown Forest heathland, then through pretty woodland, coming out at a cluster of houses near Coleman’s Hatch. From there we followed a section of the Vanguard Way before skirting the edge of the Royal Ashdown Forest Golf Club and then headed uphill through the wooded Broadstone Warren until we followed a metalled road back to the main road and the Ashdown Forest Centre once again. As could be expected, the terrain was very muddy in many places, particularly in the valleys and wooded areas but it was a very enjoyable walk led by Sally. The next walk is on Sunday at Henfield. Meet at the top North Street car park for a 9.30am start. Programmes available from The Tourist Information Centre, The Walking Shop or at www.lewesfootpathsgroup.org.uk


SOUTH MALLING SCHOOL: As part of the school’s focus on reading and understanding, Year 5 enjoyed an amazing workshop with an actor around The Highwayman text, which they have been following in class this term. Well done to the school’s wonderful Year 6 Cross Country Runners. The boys’ team came First in the Inter-Lewes Competition and they will now go on to compete at county level. Watch out later on today (Friday) for South Malling School Choir. Fresh from their magnificent performance at the O2 Stadium in London, it is hoped, weather and other factors permitting, that they will be singing outside Tescos between 1.45 and 2.45 this afternoon. All welcome. On Tuesday, the Friends of South Malling will be holding a cake, book and uniform sale to help school funds.

SOUTH MALLING CHURCH: last Sunday, the family service included the baptism of little Freddie Lyons, formally Alfred Thomas. He took the process with a dignified calm and seriousness, settling back afterwards to play on the floor among the group of children gathered at the front, helping the Vicar talk about a passage from the New Testament. The subject of this and the last few sermons has been the armour of God, illustrated by a model soldier made from a music stand and a variety of toy mediaeval accoutrements, probably purchased from the National Trust. St Paul’s message about the effectiveness of the shield of faith, was effectively demonstrated as a small child held a very large, rectangular Roman shield and was pelted with cardboard arrows, each representing doubts and fears which assail us all. This coming week, the service will be Holy Communion at 9.30am. At this service, children leave part-way through for their own activities, and rejoin their families for the last hymn and the blessing.

THE COMMUNITY CENTRE are very pleased with the work that is being done at the moment to improve the Centre. The redecorating of the hall is going well, hand in hand with the development of the new children’s centre, mentioned last week. Also, the town council is currently considering options for some kind of community space on the land which has recently been cleared on the left side of the Centre. Community Centre Officers will be making a formal statement once the redecoration work is completed.

Mobile library

THE LIBRARY will be visiting the following areas this week. Tuesday: Berwick village hall noon to 12.30pm; opposite Lamb Inn, Ripe 2.00pm to 2.25pm; Laughton village school 2.45pm to 3.30pm.


SAVE ST MARY’S: What is the future of St Mary’s Social Centre? Have you signed our petition yet? We have had a good response but need your help to make sure we keep St Mary’s in Community use. Our current Mayor, Councillor Chartier is to raise a ward issue with Lewes DC at the next council meeting on February 27 where the trustees will be presenting the signed petition and to register St Mary’s as an asset of community value. Lewes District Council Chief Executive has assured us that there will be full discussions with the tenants regarding their wishes, and what the implications of any LDC decisions would be. Please sign our petition to let the council know our wishes; it is available from Nevill Residents Association members or their website and both the shops on Nevill and at the Leicester Rd and Winterbourne Stores. The petition can be signed on Saturday morning when we will again be represented on Cliffe Bridge.

CHRIST CHURCH: Today, Friday, is our Friendship Lunch between noon and 1.15pm, a warm welcome awaits you plus a ploughman’s lunch for just £2. Worship on Sunday at 10.30am will be led by Rev John Gordon and will include Holy Communion. This will be followed by a church walk. Our Little Fishes Group will be meeting at 9.30am to 11am on Wednesday morning, we have spaces in this group so if any carers with pre school children would like to attend we would be pleased to see you. At the well-attended meeting of the Christ Church Thinktank on Wednesday January 30, Alex Kirby talked about some of the pressures on professional journalists. He drew on his extensive experience at the BBC in newsgathering for both radio and television, and answered a wide range of questions from the appreciative audience. Last Friday at Tots we had a cake sale in aid of the Trevor Mann Baby Unit (Rocking Horse appeal). We have some very talented carers coming to our Tots group who made some delicious cakes and biscuits. Most of these were sold on Friday morning with the remainder being enjoyed on Sunday after worship. We are delighted to report that a total of £265.71 will be sent to the Rocking Horse appeal, well done everyone.


RUGBY: Both teams are playing away tomorrow, Saturday. The first XV are travelling to Holbrook, and the second XV are off to Heathfield and Waldron III. Kick off is at 2.30pm.

CHURCH SERVICES: The services on Sunday at St Mary’s are Holy Communion (BCP) at 8am, and at 10.30am Holy Communion (CW). Everyone welcome. Lifts are available, please telephone in advance 01825 722582. The Ash Wednesday Service is be Holy Communion(BCP) at 10.30am.

AFTERNOON CLUB: On Thursday the Afternoon Club will be meeting at 2.30pm in the Community Centre. There will be a demonstration on Cooking for One or Two by Louise Henkel and Katie Jones. They are frequently asked for new ideas for everyday cooking for one or two, over several months they have combined their expertise to produce some delicious new recipes using fresh ingredients including fish, meat and vegetarian meals for one. As this is Valentine’s Day what a great idea to help you fall in love with cooking again. For details call 01825 722650.

DIARY DATES: February 21, Gardeners Question Time with the horticultural society. February 27 is their AGM.


ST JOHN SUB CASTRO: Events this week start on Sunday when we will have our Morning Service and Holy Communion led by Rev Al Pickering at 11am, followed by a time to chat and enjoy refreshments. Then something new, at 6pm at St Leonard’s, Seaford, a Deanery Healing Service where the preacher will be our Archdeacon, Philip Jones. If you don’t have transport please email peter.stjohnspump@gmail.com. Now a happy correction; our giant Christmas Card made by children at Pells School, raised a further 25 percent to £100. Many thanks to the children.

WOMEN’S SUPPER: For those women who would enjoy good female company there is a Women’s Supper at Spring Barn Farm on Tuesday. For information contact carolctaplin@aol.com or phone 01273483307.

LENT COURSE: Starting from 7.30pm to 9pm on Tuesday February 19 and 26, and March 5, 12, 19 and 26 there will be an evening Lent Course at Christ’s Church, Prince Edward’s Road lead by Rev John Gordon. Also Mornings at 10.30am to noon. If you are interested please contact Gretel ASAP as places are limited gretel.scott@btinternet.com or 01273 473904.


BARGAIN HUNT: It will be jumble time in the village hall tomorrow (Saturday) kicking off at 2pm. After the scrummage cakes will be on sale and visitors can sit back and relax with a cuppa and light refreshments and gloat over bargains secured. If you have items to donate please take them along to the hall during the morning. In aid of village hall funds.

SUNDAY SCHOOL: Youngsters will be welcome at All Saints’ church annexe on Sunday for one of the regular Sunday School sessions that will start at 10.30am and coincide with Family Communion in the church.

CHINESE RACING? There will be racing at Plumpton on Monday with ATR Chinese Raceday. I am not sure of the significance of the title as I am certain that the runners will not have travelled over from Beijing for the event. Perhaps the jockeys carry chopsticks instead of whips. Whatever, the first race kicks off at 1.50pm and it is bound to be a thrilling afternoon’s racing.

TYPESETTER WANTED: The present typesetter for the Parish Magazine finds his work commitments make it difficult to continue and a replacement is sought. The magazine is produced every month, so there is a regular commitment. A moderate fee is payable for a few hours’ work each month. If interested please contact me (Reg Stone) on 01273 890722 or plumptonmag@aol.com. The present incumbent will co-operate fully with his successor. The mag is also posted on the website www.plumptonmag.com and is produced by the local church for the whole community, being delivered free to over 800 homes in Plumpton and East Chiltington.

PARISH COUNCIL: Plumpton Parish Council will meet on Tuesday in the committee room at the village hall at 7.30pm. The meeting is open to the public.

MEXICAN ART: Newick branch of the National Association of Decorative and Fine Arts (NADFAS) will hold one of its very popular meetings in Plumpton village hall on Tuesday at 2.15pm. Chloe Sayer, a specialist in Mexican art and culture, who has worked for the BBC and Channel 4, will be talking about Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera. Frida Kahlo was a Mexican artist who suffered a horrific accident which ruined her career chances, so she took to art. She was a very passionate and intelligent woman who by all accounts had some legendary affairs. Diego Rivera became a legend in the art world in his own lifetime and his personal life was as dramatic as his artwork. Go along to learn about two great artists who had a tumultuous marriage, two in fact as they divorced and remarried to carry on in the same way. Visitors welcome on payment of £5 at the door to include tea and biscuits during the socialising that will follow. More information on 01825 723250.

RUGBY TRIUMPH: Plumpton RFC hosted rivals Shoreham at the weekend, winning in style 24-5. Tries from flying winger Joe Cook, back row Joe Bryant and Grant Restieaux, rounded off by an opportunist try from returning hooker Rob Blake, who also converted two, sealed the win. Plumpton started the brighter , playing with the wind on their backs they dominated possession and territory. Playing a forward dominated game, Plumpton were able to dominate the weaker Shoreham pack. With most of the first half attacking, Plumpton flanker, New Zealand born Grant Restieaux set the scoreboard ticking with a crash over try. Another try from Joe Bryant, whose pick and drive was too much for the floundering Shoreham captain to stop, put Plumpton in a commanding position and rattled Shoreham. Plumpton looked the better side throughout, and deserved to leapfrog Shoreham in the league, as they again dominated the 2nd half. tries from on-form Rob Blake and flying winger Joe Clark sealed an easy win. Man-of-the-match abrasive number eight Steve Blake, whose dogged work rate at the ruck was too much for the Shoreham forwards. This week Plumpton host Horley, ko 2.30pm.


DROP-IN sessions to discuss any aspect of the draft Neighbourhood Plan have been arranged for 4pm to 7pm today Friday, and 10am to 2pm tomorrow, Saturday, in the St Mary’s Room, village hall. At 7.30pm on Wednesday there will be a public meeting in the village hall to discuss the sites for new housing proposed for the Broyleside and for the rural parts of the parish. Finally on Wednesday, February 20, there will be a further public meeting to discuss the possible new housing sites in and around the village. This consultation on the draft Neighbourhood Plan ends on Friday, March 8, so please ensure that your comments reach the parish council by that date.

FOOTBALL CLUB: Tomorrow, Saturday, the first team have an SCFL Div One fixture at home to Lancing FC with kick off at The Caburn at 3pm. Then on Tuesday the firsts have another league fixture, this time at home to East Grinstead with a 7.45pm kick off. The second team are away on Saturday to Eastbourne United and kick off time at The Oval is 3pm. On Sunday the Veterans hope to finally get their league fixture played away against Uckfield FC Kick off at Princes Park is scheduled for 11am. On the social side, a reminder to annual members that subscriptions are now overdue if you have not yet paid. New members are always welcome and annual membership fees are a very reasonable £15 for adults (£7 for seniors) with a discount for family membership of £35 for two adults plus all children under 16 years. Membership forms are at the clubhouse.

MEN’S CLUB: At its meeting on Tuesday, in the Church Room at 7.30pm the speaker is Wendy Walker, senior Archivist, whose talk is entitled The Keep is Coming. There is a new Historical Resource Centre opening this year and Wendy will be talking about records which date back over 900 years. Visitors welcome.

TABLE TENNIS: A meeting is being held at the Scout HQ at 2pm on Wednesday to explore the possibility of forming a table tennis club in Ringmer. Please contact Paul Hathway on 813742 for information.

BRIDGE CLUB: The result of the duplicate pairs played on January 30 was: 1, Liz and Tim Owen; 2, Alan Disney and David Warner; 3, Frank Hibbert and George Montgomery. The next meeting of the club is on Wednesday at 7.30pm in the St Mary’s Room of the village hall. At the club’s AGM held on January 30, Tim Owen was elected hon chairman, with Sandra Dudley-Williams, hon secretary and Liz Owen was re-elected as hon treasurer.

SOUPER SATURDAY: Notice that the fundraising committee of the village hall is holding this event in the village hall on Saturday, February 23, from noon to 1.30pm when homemade soups will be served.

QUIZ NIGHT in the village hall on Saturday, March 2, commencing at 7.30pm in aid of the Pestalozzi International Village Trust registered charity 1098422. Teams of four. Admission £7.50 per person payable at the door but booking is essential to 01273 472801 or to david@denelson.demon.co.uk leaving your name, telephone number and whether you have a complete team of need help in forming one. Finger food provided but bring your own liquid refreshment.

VACANCIES for councillors on the parish council. The council currently has two vacancies that it is keen to fill as soon as possible. If you are interested in community life and would like to undertake an active role in local decision-making why not consider becoming a parish councillor? There are 13 councillors in all, aiming to represent a good cross section of the community. Council meets monthly (except August) on the second Thursday of each month and its planning committee monthly on the fourth Thursday. There are also a couple of other committees the membership of which is split between councillors, all these meetings are held in the evening. Candidates should apply by February 28. For further details please contact Chris Elphick, clerk to the council on 01273 813242 or John Kay, the chairman, on 01273 813388.

Rodmell & Southease

CALM: Life is calming down a little at the moment, thank goodness. I can’t begin to explain how chaotic the past weeks have been, but at last, I can see the light through the darkness. I feel so much for all the other people I know who are having to cope with traumatic situations. Just think folks that it has to get better and think positive.

BRACELET: If anyone finds a small flat linked gold bracelet in the town of Lewes, it may be mine, and I’m very fond of it and would love to get it back. I wear it all the time, never taking it off, as the clasp was rather fiddly. I noticed it had gone when I was driving to a friend’s 100th birthday party so I presume I lost it on Thursday or Friday. I’m keeping my fingers cross that it turns up.

THE PARTY for Frederick Grainger, my best friend’s father, who reached the grand age of 100 on Friday, was held at Hollingbury Golf Club and it went off very well. Fred as he is known, is remarkable as he has lived on his own for some years after the death of his beloved wife Ethel. He keeps his house spotless and his garden is a picture. Until around two years ago he was driving and used to go to a local supermarket at 2am to shop as he liked to take his time. He said the girls and staff were lovely to him. He was also painting the outside of his house up a ladder and as he had been crippled in the war, that on its own was quite a feat.

FARMERS must be tearing their hair out a the climatic conditions. The ground is so sodden that little can be done with it at the moment. I do hope the fruit harvest is better this year, as last year was the worst ever for our fruit trees. We’ve had snowdrops and daffodils out since January 1 and our outside banks will soon be a riot of colour giving an entrance to the village, that is if drivers don’t persist in driving up the banks and destroying them. Several banks and verges have been gouged out in the village by careless drivers not being patient about waiting for traffic to move especially at school run time.

OUR PUB: The music evenings seem to be very popular and the pub is still doing well. It’s very nice for me as a carer, to be able to just pop over the road to mix with people or have a meal with friends whilst being able to pop back and forth keeping an eye on things at home. Some carers can lead such lonely lives, but I’m one of the fortunate ones who has such wonderful caring friends to keep me afloat.

WI: On Tuesday February 19 Rodmell and Southease WI hold their monthly meeting when the speaker, Betty Houghton, will talk on My Time at Bletchley Park. Visitors welcome at 8pm.

AGM: On Tuesday February 26 Rodmell Horticultural hold their AGM at 7.30pm in the village hall with speaker Michael Blencowe, wildlife officer with Sussex Wildlife Trust, giving a very interesting talk about his work and the lovely trust lands around Lewes.

COFFEE CLUB meets on the fourth Wednesday of each month, 11am to 12.30pm in the village hall. All welcome.

THE SEWING GROUP meets every other Wednesday, starting form January 30, at Drummond House from 10am. Phone Sarah Last (483523) for more information.

WILDLIFE: This is the first year for ages that I have not had ladybirds hibernating in the window frames. Usually you open the windows a fraction and there are loads of them huddled in the spaces. Hedgehogs also seem to be a bit thin on the ground too and I have not seen them squashed on our road for ages. I love these little creatures, and encourage them as much as possible as in these days of wet weather slugs and snails are in abundance, especially last summer, and hedgehogs can eat a huge amount of them, as can rats. When we had rats in a bit of rockery there was always a pile of snail shells outside.

PIGEONS: Whilst I was sitting enjoying a tasty cheese straw in the precinct last week, I was mugged by one of the pigeons who tried to peck it out of my hand. It was a bit of a shock, and it’s a good job I like birds as it then settled on my shoulder. I know a lot of people feed them so I expect they are getting cheeky.