Parish pump Hailsham - Februaru 6, 2015


THE ALFRISTON PLAYERS succeeded in giving their audience a really good night out with this year’s pantomime, May the Farce Be With You by Andrew Yates. They played to packed houses and raised £400 with the raffle in aid of SUDEP - Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy. The sets, lighting, costumes and make-up created the lively atmosphere of pantomime. The cast told the tale of poverty, changing to good fortune, surviving threats from Garth Invader and his minions (from the planet Zog) and true love overcoming resistance from overbearing mother. And the whole play was held together by the junior players, Guy Beddows, Andrew Harmer, Seraphina Watkins, Xanthe Watkins, Rebecca Uridge, Ruby Matthews, Patrick Jackman, Connor McKenna and Macy Spencer, linking the scenes. At the Alfriston Oscar’s party the coveted Glass Head for going the extra mile in performace was shared between Liz O’Neill and Debbie Exley with the Junior Glass Head being awarded to Phoebe Watkins. Sylvia Daw and Mandi Kegg directed a tight piece of theatre which had the audience booing, hissing and shouting and singing as all good pantomimes should.

AMENITY SOCIETY: The Alfriston and District Amenity Society will be holding its Winter Talk on February 10 at 2.30pm in the Old Chapel Centre. A member of the Bentley Wildlife and Motor Museum will talk giving an overview of the whole enterprise - the family, the house, the motor museum and the birds.

NEW YEAR FITNESS can be easily embraced in Alfriston. I am not sure if the Art Club can be said to be an exercise to fitness but it can be a challenge so I include it in the list. More vigorous (though requiring varying degrees of effort) there is Knit and Knatter at Abbeyfield, bell ringing at St Andrew’s. Singing with the Octaves at the Old Chapel Centre, line dancing, yoga and short mat bowls all at the War Memorial Hall, Falun Gong at the Old Chapel Centre, chair based exercises at Abbeyfield and the Meanders walking group. These are some of the activity groups held in the village. The new year is always a good time to embrace a new challenge.

Bodle Street Green

CHURCH SERVICES: St John’s Bodle Street: 9.30am Family Service. Warbleton Parish Church: 11am Morning Worship with Holy Communion. St Giles, Dallington: 6.30pm Evensong.

BSG WI: The speaker at the meeting at 2.30pm on Tuesday in the village hall will be Harvey Sweetman. His talk has the intriguing title Five Elements of Acupuncture and Me on My Mandolin. New members are always welcome. For further information contact Judy (president) on 01323 832491 or Anne (secretary) on 841278.


CHURCH SERVICES: On Sunday we celebrated Holy Communion under the leadership of The Reverend Neville Manning. The service ended with a candlelit procession from the alter to the font while Nunc Dimitus was read to celebrate Candlemas. On Sunday February 8 The Reverend Daniel Merceron will lead Mattins at the later time of 11am. Daniel has recently been licensed at Alfriston. The Benefice that Folkington will shortly join. We would like to welcome him to our small Downland church. This service will commemorate the Dakota Air Crash of 1944. On Sunday February 15 the service of Mattins returns to the usual time of 10.30am. Tim Fogden will officiate at this service. As always, refreshments are served in the church after every service. All very welcome to join us.


COMPETITION: Adults and children can get creative, make their Valentine’s Day card and bring it along to the next Farmers’ Market which is on Saturday February 14 from 9am to 12.30pm. Get votes from our customers and stallholders and at noon the lucky winners of the three categories for ten and under years, 16 and under years and adults will be judged and awarded produce, crafts or a voucher to spend at this or a future market. Amateur hobbyists only please. Also at this market you can find out how you can sign up to the Love Your Local Market campaign. The Farmers’ Market has launched its new website and you can find all the latest news and dates for future markets at or like us on Facebook.

ST MARY’S: This is the Second Sunday before Lent. Holy Communion (BCP) at 8am. Morning Service with crèche and children’s groups is at 10.30am, Encounters with Jesus the outsider. Holy Communion is at 2.45pm at Emmanuel church on Hawkswood Road, Horsebridge. Evening Prayer is at St Mary’s at 6.30pm, Disciples of the King, Outlook Changed.

CORINTHIAN CHURCH: This Sunday there is a service at 11am followed by refreshments at Primrose Hall followed by refreshments. The medium is Penelope Hart.

PCSO STREET MEETINGS: Tuesday 2.30pm to 3pm. Reef Way, off Battle Road. Thursday, 6pm to 6.30pm, Acorn Green. Wednesday February 18 from 1pm to 2pm, The Cedars. Police surgery and crime prevention local surgery on Thursday February 19 from 10am to 11am, Dippydoodah, High Street. Wednesday February 25, 4pm to 4.30pm, Eastwell Place, Hailsham. These meetings give residents the opportunity to talk about concerns or issues they may be having where they live. It does not have to be simply police related as local town and Wealden councillors will be invited to attend also and any housing officers responsible to the area. PCSOs will also be promoting police community messaging which they use to give members of the public police news and advice.

OUR HOUSE: From February 11 to 14 Hailsham Community College Performing Arts returns to the Devonshire Park Theatre with its dynamic production of the hit musical Our House, based on the iconic songs of Madness. 2011 saw this talented group bring the hugely successful On One Day to Eastbourne and now they are back, to bring the house down. This is a family show jam-packed with fun and enjoyment, by talented young Hailsham people on the professional stage. There are daily performances at 7.30pm from Wednesday to Saturday, with a 2.30pm Saturday matinee. Tickets from the Eastbourne Theatres Box Office on 01323 412000/ priced at just £10 for adults, £8 for senior citizens and £6 for under 16s and students.

ORGAN CLUB: On Wednesday the very talented James Sargeant will be appearing. He is a very versatile organist who always pulls in a big crowd. The show is at the Charles Hunt Centre, Vicarage Field, and the club is always on the second Wednesday of each month. There is plentiful free parking very close to the venue, which is very comfortable and has excellent acoustics. Doors open at 7pm, shows start at 7.30pm. Non-members are welcome, just turn up and pay at the door. Information from Charles Clegg on 01323 762411.

HEALTHY LIVING GROUP: This week yoga. The group meets on Tuesdays at the Methodist Church Hall, from 10am to noon. This club is for the over 50s and promotes social, healthy activity, some chatting and tea-drinking, boccia, table tennis, yoga and line dancing.

BARN DANCE: Tomorrow, Saturday, at Summerheath Hall. Doors open at 7pm for 7.30pm start and everyone is welcome. No dance experience is needed, it will be a great night out. Bring your own drinks and snacks. Coffee and tea available. Adults £10, U16s free. Information and advance tickets from Richard on 01323 842931 or Joy on 01323 840382. All ages welcome.

ANZAC PARADE: There is an ANZAC Day Gallipoli Campaign service being held on April 26. The service will be held at the Hailsham War Memorial. If any of your members wish to march, it starts at about 10.30am from the car park next to the Age Concern Hall, Charles Hunt Centre, by going north along Vicarage Lane to the junction with the High Street, then tuning left down the High Street to the Hailsham War Memorial. Those participating in the parade to be assembled by 10.20am. Any other members or supporters to be at the Hailsham War Memorial by 10.45am for the service. If you have a Standard or Flag and wish to parade, please do so. If your organisation or any members wish to lay a wreath, posies or flowers at either of these, there will be a time during the service to do this. If you require a wreath, could you contact Frank at your earliest convenience on 01323 440749. ANZAC Day is on April 25 which coincides with the Gallipoli Campaign which commenced a century ago on 25 April 1915 on the Gallipoli peninsula where the ANZAC and British (Mediterranean Expeditionary Force) 29th Division Forces participated.

KNITTING GROUP: Knit’Inn Nights at The King’s Head are on the second and last Tuesday each month. The new year has started well. Enthusiasm generated by the wish list for the year was still strong at the last meeting. There was a unanimous vote for the charity knitting for the year. Marie had researched extensively and found a project that fitted the criteria set, a local cause needing individual small items, with no specific time frame. This year rescued chickens that go to Raystede will have cosy coats to cover their baldness. A discussion followed about animal welfare and ethical choices. Quite a lot more serious than the usual chat. The next meeting will look at knitting techniques from other countries. It will be on Tuesday at 7.30pm. There is no attendance obligation, visitors are always welcome. Phone Su (07552 229473).

DALEKS ARE COMING: The Daleks are coming to Hailsham Pavilion for a special showing of the 1965 film Dr Who and the Daleks for one show only. This will be on February 13 at 7.45pm put on by the Hailsham Old Pavilion Society as it is the 50th Anniversary of the first Dr Who movie and the film has now been digitally enhanced. The society is also delighted they will be visited by a real full size working Dalek and Dr Who’s trusty companion K9 and you can go along and have your photo taken with these authentic characters before the film. Tickets, which are expected to go fast, are £7 adults and £5.50 concessions with a ten per cent discount for HOPS members so book in advance to avoid disappointment at the Pavilion box office 01323 841414 or online at

PHOTOGRAPHIC SOCIETY: The speaker last week was Colin Westgate FRPS MFIAP who gave a PDI lecture entitled Wild Britain. All about landscapes, in colour and monochrome, weather and light, the presentation started in Sussex with several images of the famous coastguard cottages at Cuckmere Haven. Firstly, they were atmospheric in the mist, then at sunset with pale pink cliffs, and lastly after a snowfall with the sun shining. Moving on to Yorkshire, Colin showed a limestone pavement with a dead tree in the snow, and a waterfall taken with a slow shutter speed, Colin’s preference, to create a milky effect of the spray cascading over the rocks. Next came the Scottish Highlands with a picture of Destitution Road, Dundonnell. There was light on the wet road which meandered along the foot of a mountain shrouded in mist and had a small croft by the side. There were also some wonderful photographs of sand patterns left by the tide which had subtle orange colours, puddles reflecting the blue and white sky, and many gulls dotted about. Colin was extremely knowledgeable about the UK as he organises many photographic field trips and workshops each year. He also travels much further afield including Iceland, India, Cambodia and Vietnam. It was a very inspirational evening and the club was very lucky to see him as he does not make many presentations now.

HAILSHAM FM QUIZ: Nearly 100 people joined in the fun at Hailsham FM’s first fundraiser held at Grovelands School. Teams battled against each other in a family quiz that covered a whole range of topics. The winners, I’d Rather Be Playing With My X-Box, were presented with a bumper hamper overflowing with many high value prizes to be enjoyed by all the family. The total raised was £564 which is earmarked to help finance Hailsham FM’s involvement in this year’s Festival of Arts and Culture during September.

YOUTH BAND: The band rehearses at St Mary’s church each Tuesday during term-time, from 7.30pm until 8.45pm. Any secondary-school age youngsters interested in joining the band should contact Chris Taylor by emailing or ring 01323 304927. In particular they would love one or more young singers to join the band.

100 YEARS AGO: In February 1915 the Parish Magazine reports from the Vicar of the day: My dear friends, we are reaching a stage in the War when endurance will come into play. The novelty, the excitement, is giving place to a grim settling down to its stem realities and circumstances, ups and downs, are influencing us less than they did. We are setting our teeth and doing the job: and we mean to finish it, if it costs us very much more: this endurance is the characteristic of the nation today and will be more and more, till the end comes. The order about ‘lights out’ from 5pm to 8am, put us to a considerable flutter, being anxious to fall in with the spirit as well as the letter of the Law. I hear that it is withdrawn.

HISTORICAL SOCIETY: Hailsham Historical and Natural History Society next meeting is on Wednesday at 7pm for 7.30pm start at the Methodist Church Hall. Local man, Peter Hibbs, will be giving a talk on The Battlefield Beneath your Feet: Hailsham at War (1939-45). Visitors welcome £2.50. For the first meeting of 2015 on January 14 the weather forecast predicted heavy rain and strong winds, but 72 people came out to hear about the illustrated talk of Hellingly Hospital and Hailsham by rail by Jon Cruse. Pictures showed maps of the rail lines, the electric loco (nicknamed The Flying Inkpot, look at a picture of it and you can see why) along with coal wagons that took coal to the hospital for the Lancaster boilers. Apart from the carriage of building materials for the hospital, the main use of the line was for coal, but there was a carriage to transport people from Hellingly Station to the hospital. Towards the end of its running days, the loco ran special enthusiast days, where quite a few of the pictures came from. Heading south, Hailsham was the next station from Hellingly on the Cuckoo Line and several pictures were shown from different positions of the station, signal box, sidings, platform etc. The pictures shown spanned the time of early photography of the station and locomotives right through to the last train. There are some unique shots of photos taken by Jon’s late father Derek Cruse, from the cab of a diesel locomotive, driven by engineman, the late John French. Starting at Hailsham showed Ersham farm crossing, Mulbrooks (Ersham Road crossing), Sayerland through to Polegate station, and back again. For society chairman David Bourne, this was a trip down memory lane (track) as in the 1960s, on a Wednesday evening he would go to Eastbourne. One shilling and threepence 1-/3 return (half fare) today 6½p. He would spend one shilling (5p) in the Devonshire swimming baths, then sixpennyworth of chips (2½p) at the Junction Road fish and chip shop and then back to Hailsham. Jon also put up a photo with no railway connection. It was Jon and myself up in the belfry of Hailsham Parish Church repairing one of the bells’ anchoring plates back about 1977, we had more hair then. It was a very good evening and the audience thanked Jon in the usual way.

Hellingly, Horsebridge & Dicker

CHURCH SERVICES: Hellingly: Thursday 9.30am Holy Communion (BCP), Sunday Holy Communion (CW) at 8am and 10.45am. Fourth Sunday Family Service 10.45am. Upper Dicker: Sunday Services 9.15am.

QUIZ NIGHT: There is a fundraising quiz on Saturday February 14 in Hellingly Village Hall at 7.30pm. Tickets are £5 per person. Bring your own refreshments.

PARISH COUNCIL: Planning Committee South has approved a planning application for eight houses to be built at the Bowhill Site on The Drive. It was reported that a contribution of £3,504 would be payable to the Parish Council in accordance with the S106 agreement. It was also reported that half the site was ancient woodland and the future management of this would need to be decided, the options were to transfer it either to the parish council, the Environment Agency or a management company.

COMMUNITY SOLAR: Behind the scenes good progress is being made on developing the solar project at Arlington. You can expect firm proposals to see the light of day as spring arrives. And there will be inspiring ways for you to benefit from the scheme as the year unfolds. Many people want to know more about what is going on. Questions being asked are who benefits from a community solar project? Why build a community solar farm? Why not leave it to people to put solar on their roofs and save ourselves the hassle? This is what they said. Local people can invest their money locally and receive a better rate of return than they can in a bank account, members of the community will be able to buy clean power at an attractive cost through a partnership with a small, innovative power company, they intend working with the farmer to improve the land for wildlife, bringing the community together to do things such as build a swift tower and provide learning areas for children. The project will also generate a community dividend, a surplus each year of £20k to £30k that can be ploughed back into the community, doing good things such as helping people to insulate their homes properly or installing better, cheaper, renewable energy systems to replace expensive heating oil and reduce electricity bills. They say they are also able to influence the way in which the owners of the adjacent commercial solar farm manage their land. So if you are inspired by this get in touch at by email at or write to them at Cuckmere Community Solar Farm, c/o Perkins Copeland, 15 Gildredge Rd, Eastbourne, East Sussex BN21 4RA.

BILL CHECKING: The Big Energy Saving Network team will be at the Upper Dicker Cafe on Thursday from 4pm to 7pm. Go along for tea and a chance to check your utility bills and get advice on energy saving initiatives. The Cuckmere Community Solar team will also be there and will be happy to answer your questions about the project. Bring your energy bills with you and they look forward to seeing you there.

Herstmonceux & Wartling

FREE CHURCH SERVICES: Sunday Worship 10.45am. Go4It+ Sunday group for children and a meeting for youth in The Den. Sunday Evening Prayer at 7pm. Squeeze Breakfast Club first Sunday of the month at the village hall at 10am.

VILLAGE HALL AGM on Monday at 7.30pm in the village hall for everyone who uses the hall or who is interested in this valuable village facility is welcome to attend. Nominations to serve on the management committee and for further details to Gerald McBurney Hon Secretary on 832212.

WALKING GROUP: On Sunday the Shinewater walk with a cuppa and cake afterwards. Meet at Dover Road, Polegate, at 10am. Contact Sue on 01323 485769 or 07928 278270 for more details.

BOWLS QUIZ: The bowls club is having a Quiz Night on Wednesday. Doors open 7pm for 7.30pm start. Teams of four at £7 per head (hot dog supper included) at Herstmonceux village hall. Book your entry by calling Terry on 832380 or Sue on 833403, must be done by this Sunday.

PARISH COUNCILS: Herstmonceux: A Planning Committee Meeting to discuss the application WD/2015/0090/MAO land at Lime Cross, erection of up to 70 residential dwellings (including affordable housing), vehicular access from Gardner Street, open space, landscaping including sustainable urban drainage systems and all necessary ground works will be held at 7pm on Tuesday 10 February 2015 in the hall of Herstmonceux Primary School. Members of the public may attend to listen to any debate on the application. There will be an opportunity for up to three persons for and three against, including the applicant and/or agent, to address the committee for a maximum of three minutes. Registration is available by phone (01323 833312) on a first come, first served basis. Please contact the parish clerk if you wish to make an appointment to look at the documents relating to the planning application. Wartling: the County Council made a number of changes to its supportive bus services but there will be no immediate local impact. ESCC has yet to hear from Central Government how much its funding will be reduced by, over the next four years. County Councillor L Keeley reported the hedge at Jenners Lane has now been cut by residents. Drain and ditch clearances remain a problem and he continues to chase the County Council. He is due to meet officers again shortly and councillors agreed Councillor Stevens should go too. Members of the public stated that lorries using Jenners Lane are churning up mud which causes the ditch to overflow onto the road. Paths in Boreham Street are now dangerous because they are too narrow and this is a result of poor maintenance. County Councillor Keeley will talk to the County Council about this.

COUNCILLOR VACANCY: There is a vacancy in the office of councillor for Wartling due to the resignation of Darren Permaul. Where the vacancy occurs within six months before the day on which the councillor whose office is vacant would regularly have retired, the vacancy may be filled either by co-option by the Wartling Parish Council, or at the next ordinary election of councillors on Thursday May 7.

RAY AND SHELDON: Next Friday, February 13, Barry will be talking about Steps, Independent Living at the village hall at 2.15pm for the over 60s. Enquiries to Anne 01323 441244.

BISTRO NIGHT: Lime Cross Nursery Friday February 13, from 7pm. Dine with your Valentine, friends or family with a candle-lit ambience and soft guitar music. Booking essential 01323 833229.

Mobile Library

MOBILE LIBRARY: Today, Friday: Berwick Village Hall 9.55am-10.25am; Arlington Village Hall 10.35am-11am; Deans Road, Alfriston 11.15am-11.55am; East Dean Village Hall 12.20pm-1.20pm; Wannock Village Hall 2.40pm-3.10pm; Community Centre, Hailsham East 3.25pm-3.55pm. Tuesday: Brightling Village Hall, 1.20pm-1.40pm; Dallington Village Hall, 1.50pm-2.10pm; Ashburnham, 2.40pm-3pm; Bodle Street Village Hall, 3.25pm-3.50pm.

Ninfield & Hooe

POLICE MEETING: The next Police Panel Meeting will be at the Reading Room at 7.30pm on February 10. The meeting will be to discuss Policing across the beat of our PCSO, Daryl Holter.

MOBILE LIBRARY: The East Sussex County Council Mobile Library service will next be in the villages on February 13 at: Hooe, opposite Denbigh Court, 11.20am to 11.45am. Ninfield, Downsview (off Church Lane), 11.55am to 12.30pm. Please note the new days and times. There is no longer a stop at Coombe Shaw.

HOOE OPEN GROUP will next meet on February 13, 2.30pm at Hooe Village Hall. Call Edna Wallis on 01424 842591.

PANCAKE LUNCH: St Oswald’s, Hooe, invite you all to a Pancake Lunch on Tuesday February 17, in Hooe Village Hall from noon till 2pm. No ticket required just a donation towards the cost placed in the collection box before leaving.

HORTICULTURE: Ninfield Horticultural Society next meet on Monday, February 16, at 7.30pm. There will have at talk by Julian Dormady of Bedgebury on Plant Hunting Around the World. This could be quite an exciting talk as many plants are quite difficult from which to gather seed. Contact Rod Ffoulkes on 893635 or email

GOLDEN CIRCLE meets on Tuesday, February 17 in the Methodist Hall at 2.30pm. Contact Rod Ffoulkes on 893635 or email

LOCAL HISTORY GROUP: Hooe History Society meet next on Thursday February 19, at 7.30pm in Hooe Village Hall. It has always been the ambition of society to research and record the history of our village, its people and the surrounding countryside. This month’s presentation fits into that mould exactly. Peter Doodes has been researching The Salt Marshes. He will tell us about his findings, his talk is entitled The History and Continuing Story of the Hooe Marshes with its Salt Pans, Vanished Harbour, Villages and Airfield. Further details from Peter, 01424 892329.

NINFIELD HISTORY GROUP meets on Thursday, February 19, at 7.30pm in the Methodist Hall. They welcome Chris McCooey, who will be giving a talk on Sussex Characters Wacky Weird and Wonderful. Chris is a very entertaining speaker and he will be well worth hearing. Contact Rod Ffoulkes on 893635 or email

CHURCH SERVICES: Sunday, St Mary’s Ninfield, no service, see St Oswald’s. Sunday, St Oswald’s Hooe) 10.30am Combined Parish Eucharist. Ninfield Methodist Church, Sunday, 2.30pm Worship and Praise with Mrs M Bickerdike.


THE COFFEE MORNING tomorrow, Saturday, in the lounge at Polegate Community Centre is hosted by the Petanque. All welcome from 10am to noon.

WALKS: Tomorrow, Saturday, Linear, Let’s Watch the Waves, 4.5 miles with Pat and Richard. Meet at Pevensey Bay Car Park, 9.45am GR 658042. Bus No 99 at 9.23am Terminus Road, Stand E. Saturday February 11, Linear, Any trains today? with Mary B. Meet bus No 51, 9.53am Terminus Road to Heathfield. Walk starts at Heathfield Fire Station.11am. A winter walk back to Eastbourne via Horam, Hailsham, Polegate, you choose. Leader at Church Street. On Saturday February 14, Valentine’s Day Circular, 4.5 miles with Diana W. Meet at the Co-op, Albert Parade, Old Town, Eastbourne 10am. Frequent bus services Nos 1 and 1A. Hilly walk, followed by refreshments at Victoria Drive. Or, a Brisk Pace Walk, 8 miles with Bob B. Walk starts at Saltdean Lido car park at 10am GR 381021 map 122. Bus No 12 Terminus Road Stop J. 8.43am bus goes to start. Alight near Lido on main road.

LOCAL HISTORY: Polegate and Willingdon Local History Society next meet on Friday February 13 when our speaker is Barry talking about the 1950s Seaside Fun with old penny machines. He will bring along a few of the old one penny machines for us to play on. Meetings are held at St John’s Church Hall, High Street. Doors open at 6.30pm, meetings start at 7pm. Visitors welcome £3. Information from Margaret Worrall on 484293.

NATURAL HISTORY: Eastbourne Natural History and Archaeological Society meet on Friday February 13 when our speaker is Patricia Stevens on Eastbourne’s extensive early Anglo-Saxon Cemetery and the discovery of an Iron Age Settlement in 1990. Meetings are held at St Saviour’s Church Hall, South Street, Eastbourne from 7.30pm. Visitors £2.50.

YOUNG QUILTERS at Polegate, now meet at Polegate community Centre once a month on a Saturday afternoon. If anyone aged five to 16 years are interested to join us, we charge £5 per session for Quilters Guild YQ members. Although we do reduce the fee if there is more than once child from the same family. Our targets are to have fun, learning about different kinds of sewing. Our next meeting is on February 14. To book a place contact Kathryn Greig on 01273 510193 or email Look at

LUNCH WITH Trinity Diners is on Friday February 20. To book call Jennie on 484189.

Warbleton & Rushlake Green

QUIZ NIGHT: The horticultural society is holding a quiz evening tomorrow night, Saturday, at 7.30pm for 7.45pm start at the Dunn Village Hall. The cost is £2 per head, or why not book a table of six. Please call Isabel on 01435 830263. There will be a bar and raffle, with all proceeds divided between the Flower Show and the Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance Trust. You can renew your membership (£4) which gives you free and early entrance to the marquee, reduced cost of membership of the RHS, garden visits and discounts at local nurseries. Call Margaret on 01435 830560.

CHURCH SERVICES: Warbleton Parish Church: 11am Morning Worship with Holy Communion. St John’s Bodle Street: 9.30am Family Service. St Giles, Dallington: 6.30pm Evensong. Heathfield Chapel: 11am Morning worship led by Martin Povey.

HISTORY GROUP: We welcome back Peter Gillies with his magic lantern for A Meander Through the Victorian Weald, on Monday evening at 7.30pm for 8pm start, at the Dunn Village Hall. Coffee is served prior to the meeting, and our bookstall will be open.

Willingdon, Wannock & Jevington

LAST SERVICE: Fr Michael Maine conducted his last service at St Mary’s Church, Willingdon, on Sunday February 1. The church was packed. A buffet lunch had been prepared in the church hall for after the service, and Fr Michael was presented with a number of leaving gifts, and farewell speeches were made. It was an emotional time as he will be sorely missed when he becomes the vicar of Cuckfield Church.

ALADDIN: This year’s pantomime staged by Willingdon Church Players was dedicated to Doris Atkins and Jean Wise, who were active participants and loyal supporters of the pantomime for many years during their lifetime. This year, the pantomime was directed by Terry Harvey and produced by Lesley Etwell and they worked well together. The first scene opened in Old Peking and the ‘backroom boys’ John Pritchett and his team should be congratulated for their colourful scenery. Abanazar, played by Mike Barber, sang If I Ruled the World. He has a powerful voice and also really looked the part. Aladdin was played by Lucy Sarsfield, and Princess Jasmine by Sophie Sarsfield who provided the love interest. Paul Martin was a humorous Widow Twankey and Liam Avery, her son, an excellent Wishee Washee. This part was shared during the five performances with Kim Dack. It is impossible to mention everyone in this column but a new ‘star’ for Willingdon Church Players has definitely been found. Trevor Amey as Genie of the Lamp in his all green outfit was fantastic and his singing of Give ‘em the Old Razzle Dazzle brought the house down. Congratulations also to Clara Gott and her team who organised Trevor’s outfit as well as many of the others. It was nice to see the vicar Fr Kevin Agnew becoming involved as the man-servant to the Empress as well as a chorus member with his wife Kate. It was their first experience of the Willingdon Church Players’ pantomimes. It will sadly be the last time that Fr Michael can be called upon to be musical director and pianist. In the finale, the whole cast sang We’ve Had the Best of Times and I think the audience agreed that on that evening - they had.

JEVINGTON CHURCH is part of the united benefice of East Dean with Friston and Jevington and the rector is the Rev David Baker. He writes in the February Jevington Journal that their curate since 2009, the Rev Andrew Smith, is to become the rector of Fetcham in Surrey on March 19 and his final Sunday in Jevington will be on February 15 when he will be preaching at the 11.15am service. Andrew was the first curate for the benefice in living memory and he and his wife Jenny have always had an enthusiastic and positive outlook and have served the benefice well and they will be very much missed. A coach is being booked for the induction on March 19.

TRIANGLE TOTS is a baby and toddler group which is held at Trinity Church Hall from 9.30am to 11.30am on Tuesday mornings. The session costs £2 per family regardless of the number of children who attend with each adult and there is a routine of free play with a good selection of toys, messy play activities that vary weekly, and a snack time and refreshments for adults and children. There is also a bikes and trikes time and a singing and stories time at the end of the session. Within the hall there is a sectioned area for carers with small babies and pre-walkers with a good selection of baby equipment and multi-sensory toys. Triangle Tots is connected with Willingdon Pre-School Nursery and the tots when they are a little older often go on to the pre-school. Contact Samantha Thomas on .

LOCAL TRADERS are keen to promote their businesses and other activities which are based around the Triangle in Willingdon and slightly further afield. Visit .

DEMONSTRATION: Willingdon Flower Club will be meeting at 1.45pm today, Friday, at Willingdon Memorial Hall. The demonstration is by Christine Nash and is entitled Travelling Light.

ASTRONOMY: Eastbourne Astronomical Society meet from 7.30pm to 10pm tomorrow, Saturday, at Willingdon Memorial Hall. Prof Nial Tanvir will talk on Gamma-ray Bursts and the Early Universe.

MESSY CHURCH: This is a new initiative at St Mary’s Church aimed at children and adult family members, whether they are regular church goers or not. Craft activities will take place in the hall, lasting about three quarters of an hour and there will be a theme to each session. There will then be a time of worship during which the crafts are put away and a simple tea is prepared for the families. There is a lot of enthusiasm for this new venture but help will be needed from volunteers and Fr Kevin has arranged for all those who would be interested in helping to come along to the church hall from 10am to noon tomorrow, Saturday.

MOONBEANS a fantastic band with female singer will be providing the entertainment at the Wheatsheaf at 8.30pm tomorrow, Saturday.

MEETING: Willingdon and Jevington Parish Council hold an events meeting at 7.30pm on Monday at Willingdon Community School. Councillors will be discussing recent events which they have organised, and planning new ones. Meetings are open to the public. Ring 01323 489603 .

THE 3 MMM’S (Mrs Miss and Ms) meet at 8pm on Wednesday at St Mary’s Church Hall when there will be a representative from the Body Shop, Skin Deep and Posh Nails. Members are reminded to bring the £35 for the trip to Windsor on Thursday May 14 either in cash or cheques made out to L J Edwards.

WILLINGDON WI meet at 2.15pm on Thursday at Willingdon Memorial Hall when the speaker Mr G Enstone will be giving a talk entitled Kipling, His Remarkable Life.

THE GROWERS’ GROUP meet at 7pm on Thursday at the Red Lion when the topics will include feeding our plants and pond maintenance.

JEVINGTON AND FILCHING WI meet at 2pm on Thursday in Trinity Church Hall when Dr Jo Shawcross will give a talk about Advance Care Planning. Ring Rose on 01323 849562 or visit .