Parish Pump Lewes - January 18, 2013

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GARDEN CLUB: Mark Saunders, head gardener of Fittleworth, is coming to speak to us on the subject A Head Gardener’s Year tomorrow, Saturday, at 2.30pm in St Francis Church (please note change of venue). Visitors and new members very welcome.

ADVANCE NOTICE: Nick Lear will be Bringing Knowlands Wood to Life on Friday February 8 at 7.30pm in the village hall. Tickets are available from Barcombe Stores, Turner’s Shop and Mary Duncan (01273 400 215). He will be showing slides and talking about the flowers, butterflies, trees, birds and other creatures. Money raised is going towards providing new items for the hall.

BARCOMBE WI: The first speaker for 2013 was Brian Braby, talking on the subject of Climate Change. He told members that he had worked as a geography teacher, and now lectures for U3A in Eastbourne. His father had been a meteorologist, and he had always been fascinated by geology and meteorology. He started by explaining the difference between weather and climate, the latter relating to the weather pattern in a given area over a period of time. He illustrated his talk throughout by a Powerpoint presentation, showing numerous charts demonstrating the changing composition of the earth’s atmosphere over millions of years. Originally there was no oxygen, but gradually, after the original gaseous earth collided with a giant object, the earth and moon were formed separately, and the earth developed an iron core, giving it gravity. He explained the interaction (interchange of energy and gases) of the atmosphere, ocean, geosphere (rocks and soil), cryosphere (ice and snow), and biosphere (living organisms), involving the absorption or reflection of sunlight, and their heating or cooling effects. Over the course of two billion years, the earth has alternated between being an ice house, a temperate house and a hothouse. This is natural climate change, affected by the elliptical orbit of the earth round the sun with the variations in that ellipse occurring in 10,000-year cycles, the so-called Milankovitch cycle caused by the varying tilt of the ecliptic plane (the angle of the earth’s axis in relation to the sun) over a 41,000 year cycle, and precession, ie the earth’s tendency to behave like a gyroscope, which has a 26,000-year cycle. When the three cycles coincide, an ice age occurs, and we are due for another glacial period, whereas the average temperature seems to be rising. Other factors affecting climate are sunspots, meteor strikes (a major one 65 million years ago wiped out the dinosaurs), the runaway effect of loss of reflectivity if the ice sheet melts, erupting volcanoes, plate tectonics, ocean movement, and changes in flora and fauna, which is where human activity comes in. This was illustrated by an “energy budget” which must be in balance for our impact on climate to remain minimal. Since the 19th century with increasing industrialisation the emission of greenhouse gases has rocketed, and more methane will be released by melting ice. Mr Braby talked of the efforts being currently made to avoid a disastrous rise in the earth’s temperature, and distributed a chart showing what we could do as individuals.

FOOTBALL: Mid Sussex Div 10, away: B&H Disability 2 Barcombe II 4. Peter Black scored all our goals, well done.

SNOOKER: Monday January 14 at home to Peacehaven: Jack Schaufler 9 Steve Gaines 82, Derek Stewart 45 Simon Gill 57, Harry Stewart 38 Paul Walker 49, Tony Deakin 68 S Brown 41, James Stewart 32 Keith Bowens 55. Club lost 1-4.


ST PETER’S CHURCH services this Sunday are Book of Common Prayer Holy Communion at 8am and Parish Communion at 10am. Transport can be arranged by calling the churchwardens Peter Martin on 01825 722680 or Teresa Wenban on 01825 722586. Plans for the alterations to the church can now be viewed on the boards at the front of the church. The plan is to undertake the alterations in two stages. In response to the wishes of the congregation the first stage will be to install a disabled toilet and a kitchen, which will involve modifications in the North Aisle. The second stage will be to address the heating and seating system. The alterations are going to involve a huge amount of money and there will be fundraising throughout the year. If anyone can help by organising a small event e.g. a bridge session, sponsored event or sale it will be hugely appreciated. If you have any questions about the work that is to be undertaken or wish to offer assistance with fundraising please call one of the churchwardens.

FREE CHURCH services on Sunday are a Family Service at 10.30am and with Graham Nicholes at 6.15pm. Tea, coffee and biscuits will be served after the service.

PARISH COUNCIL meet at the Reading Room on Tuesday at 7.30pm. Members of the public may attend and will be given an opportunity to make representations if they so wish.

PCSO: Meet PCSO Steven Knowles at the Village Stores on Thursday January 24 between 7pm and 7.30pm. It will be a chance to meet with your local community support officer, get crime prevention advice, ask questions or simply have a chat.

SCALEXTRIC Racing afternoon is at the Horns Lodge on Sunday January 27 from 2pm to 6pm. It is being organised by the bonfire society and there will be two categories, children and adults, with prizes for the fastest times in each category. Everyone is welcome to take part.

STOOLBALL: Are you Interested in playing stoolball and/or running a stoolball team in the village? Jenny Waller will be pleased to hear from anyone wanting to join and play stoolball for a team that will play its games at the Sports Ground. Please call Jenny on 07921 725045 or email

SHOWS: Schedule detailing the classes in the horticultural society’s three shows is now available and the first show is on Saturday March 23. There are classes for flowers, pot plants, vegetables, flower arranging, handicrafts, art, photograph, and cookery. Also classes for children according to age. The society is always keen to welcome new exhibitors. You may think exhibiting sounds daunting but members of the society are there to lend a hand and offer advice. An example of a class which maybe lots of us could enter is the photography class as the subject, at the spring show, is a farm animal. To find out about all the classes do contact the membership secretary Nina Bourne on 01273 401994.

cooksbridge, offham & hamsey

2013 EVENTS: Bumps and Babies at the village hall, Tuesdays 10am to noon. Toddler Tunes Thursdays 10am to 11am in St Peter’s Church Hall. Babies and Toddlers Fridays (term time only) 9am to 11am at Hamsey School. Pop-Up-Cafe Fridays (term time only) 8.45am to 9.30am Hamsey School. Yoga classes, Mondays and Thursdays in the village hall, details from 890621. Dance classes in the village hall Mondays and Wednesdays, details from 890621. Running Club every Tuesday at 9am from outside Hamsey CP School. Sussex Police Choir every Tuesday from 7pm in the village hall. Always looking for new members.

LOCAL HISTORY: Just before Christmas I spoke to Wendy Cornwell who was the late Ray Cornwell’s daughter. Ray first arrived here some years ago with his brother Jim who was over from Australia and wanted to come back to the place that he was born, Courthouse Cottages. Following that visit Ray kept in touch with me regularly about our parish as, although he lived near Winchester, our parish was always very close to his heart. His niece sent him a copy of the Sussex Express every week. It was through my column in the paper and help from them at Ray tracked me down. Wendy has now sold the family home and lives near Southampton but still keeps in touch. She has sent me Ray’s birth certificate showing that he was born at 32 Courthouse Cottages on August 28, 1915. Sadly Wendy never knew her grandparents. Mabel, Robert Wadsley’s daughter, died when Ray was four years old, but he said the only memory of his mother was when she was holding his hand when walking along a country lane near here pointing out the wayside flowers to him and telling him their names. Sometime after Mabel died Ray’s father remarried Rose Heasman, known to Wendy as Granny Rose, and they had a daughter Olive. Herbert died as the result of a riding accident when Ray was 15 years old. His wish was to be buried at Old Hamsey Churchyard to be near the Downs, no headstone, just let the wild grass grow over me was his wish. Wendy’s cousin Brenda took her to Hamsey to see her great grandparents graves, Susan and Trayton Turner, on her mothers side. They lived at the Malthouse Cottages. Trayton was head herdsman at a dairy farm, which Wendy thinks must have been the Harmers. Wendy and Brenda did find an unmarked grave in one corner, as close to the churchyard boundary as it could be, with the wild grass growing over it and thinks that is perhaps where her grandfather lies. Brenda did try and find out but it seems the records were lost in a fire. Wendy wonders if he did that to spare Rose the expense of having a gravestone erected as he was leaving her with his and Mabel’s three sons and their own daughter still to be grown up, although Ray’s brother Jim had already added a year or two to his age and gone away to join the army before Herbert died. Wendy says she remembers her father telling her that he was a bit miffed because his father insisted he leave Jim his best suit when he came home on leave. Ray’s grandfather was also the licensee of the Chalk Pit Inn for a number of years. It is lively to know a little of the history of the people who lived and worked at Courthouse Farm all those years ago and what is nice is there are faces to put with the names as Wendy copied some old photographs for me. I think that the country lane where Ray was shown the wayside flowers was Allington Lane as when Ray was into his eighties he drove all the way from near Winchester to visit me and insisted that he go back down Allington Lane. Lovely memories of a very special person who unknown to me at the time was very much connected to Courthouse Farm.


THIS IS my first Parish Pump of the year. Christmas and New Year for us was a whirlwind, travelling round the country to visit relations, when on our last visit arriving in London on New Year’s Eve, we heard the news that our very dear friend in Germany had died. People in the village who know us, and maybe others outside, will know how much a part of this family we are, as soon as we arrived back home we turned around very quickly and travelled to Germany to be with the family. Everyone was so grateful that we were there. We met our friend Eva and her husband in 1960, and watched her family grow. They had seven children, now with seven partners, and children of their own, the family is 43 in number. I remember one special family party weekend, walking in the woods we came upon a watch tower for shooters, and the family and children climbed to the top whilst I stayed with Eva below, she looked up and said ‘can you believe that all those people are there because of me’, we laughed, but what a legacy she has left.

SADLY I have just heard that another friend of Falmer has died, Ursula Brooker. Ursula came to England from Germany to work and met and married her husband George. I first met Ursula through Falmer Primary School, when her two daughters Helen and Valerie were pupils there. Ursula was a member of the congregation of St Laurence, and a great supporter of everything in the village, the bowls club, the charity knitting club and the Ladies Club. It’s hard to believe that such a vibrant personality will no longer be with us. Our condolences go to Helen and Valerie and their families.

A TIP I heard on the radio Gardener’s Question Time before Christmas to make balls from sheep’s wool to place around plants to deter slugs. I thought I would try and see if it works and plan to raid Dennis’s field (I had better ask him first) to harvest the sheep wool collected on the wire fence, if it works Dennis I will make you a cake.

BIRDS: I am not such an expert on birds as Sue, but I do get great pleasure in seeing all the visitors on the pond. The cormorants (there are two) make me smile, one seems knowingly to have taken a permanent position on the no fishing sign, showing off his wing span. I believe he is cocking a snoop at us all.


KINGSTON WI: On January 3, 33 members gathered in the parish hall for the first meeting of the new year, and at the same time welcomed two new members. Because our speaker, Pam Goodall, needed to catch a specific train back to Horsham, the programme was reversed, and it was to huge awe and wonder that we listened to the account of her cycling journey of one year from her home in Horsham and back again encompassing 22 countries and 10,000 miles. However, Pam did not visit us alone because Alchemy came too, and it was on her that Pam reached Kingston. Yes, Alchemy is the custom-made bicycle, red and gleaming with four capacious panniers, on which Pam travelled the world. A remarkable pair of stalwarts. The competition, Traveller’s Fun, gave the winning entry to Diana Crabb. It was a photograph of two almost unrecognisable people covered from head to foot in gleaming mud on an Israeli beach, John and Diana of course. The business of the evening reiterated the dates of the group activities: pilates, walking, tap, book club beginning in January and singing in February. The president, Barbara Cunningham, organised the voting for the 2013 resolution. There are two shortlisted proposals: 1, To prevent the decline of our high streets and town centres by members supporting their local shops and to urge decision-makers to help bring an end to the decline of our high streets; 2, The National Federation urges members to work with all sections of society to keep young people suicide-safe online. Our members decided that Kingston Institute will support the second resolution to keep young people suicide-safe online and East Sussex HQ has been notified of our voting. The next meeting is on Thursday, February 7, at 7.30pm in the parish hall and will be an Open Meeting. Christine Holliday is to describe Working in the Houses of Parliament. The competition is Unusual Jobs/Tasks. (Janice Barber).


WESTGATE WI: ‘Don’t worry, it may never happen’, was one of the wise sayings of children’s illustrator Mabel Lucie Attwell. Born in London’s East End in 1879 her remarkable, long career as an artist and writer was brought to life by speaker John Henty, former journalist, broadcaster and avid collector. In the 1890s she sent sketches to a publisher of children’s books, receiving a cheque for two guineas. From 1911 onwards she drew humorous postcards featuring chubby children which were hugely popular. In 1922 the first children’s annual was published. Her ‘cherubic’ style was continued in children’s books and many will recall those bathroom plaques showing cute children accompanied by witty words. After much research John produced a book titled The Collectable Mabel Lucie Attwell which contains an enormous range of her postcards and dolls. The secret of her charm could be that her work appealed to adults as well as children. Next meeting is on February 13. (A Stephen).

FOOTPATHS GROUP: Thirteen members took part in a recent walk from Balls Green, Withyham. Starting from the former Withyham railway station they followed the old railway track bed, now known as the Forest Way, in the Upper Medway valley towards Groombridge. Then came a short section of the Sussex Border Path before heading up the beautiful Mottsmill valley to Motts Down. From this highest point of the walk it was then downhill past Cherry Gardens Farm and Hunt’s Farm and across well walked field paths back to Balls Green. Most members then had lunch in the nearby Dorset Arms pub. Although there was some mud in places and a few stiles the walk was generally easy going and members appreciated visiting an area a little further from Lewes than is often the case. The walk was led by Robert. The next walk is on Tuesday Cowfold. Meet at 9.30am at top North Street car park. Programme details can be found at


SOUTH MALLING SCHOOL says an enormous thank you to all the parents and local businesses who came to talk about their jobs this week. Children have been introduced to a huge range of potential employment by, for example, a civil engineer, a fitness instructor, a builder, a dog handler from Raystede and a computer programmer. There will also be visits from Harveys Brewery and Bag of Books. As there are threats of snow currently around, the school would like to remind parents and carers about school closure information. Any news about the school closing will be posted on the website: and on the East Sussex website. There will also be announcements on all the local radio stations. Parents should please avoid phoning the school directly when a closure is announced. There was some trepidation on Monday that a forecast snowfall might disrupt the choir’s very exciting trip to the O2 stadium in London. Fortunately, however, the children did get to London and enthusiastically took part in the Young Voices concert, with 8,000 other singers. Many parents and relatives joined the school’s coach to London so they could enjoy their children’s great day. Following considerable damage to the school gates and wall from HGV delivery lorries, the school has decided to close the main gates during the day. All deliveries and other vehicles now need to park on the road and wheel their goods into school. This will also make it safer for the children. In this coming week there will be a workshop for parents and carers to introduce a new handwriting scheme and review the spelling scheme. Children have taken to the new handwriting script really well so now it’s the turn of the adults. The workshop will be on Friday January 25 at 2.30pm.

SOUTH MALLING CHURCH: Last Sunday, following the Communion Service, members of the congregation were told that their Vicar, Revd Al Pickering, would be leaving at Easter to take up a new position. They were also told that, following a joint meeting with the parochial church councils of St John sub Castro and leaders from Southover, the three churches were discussing a proposal to unite under a single leadership, continuing to use the three buildings, with St John sub Castro as a hub for worship and community activity. At the moment this is a tentative proposal. The initial response of the church councils involved has been positive so far. Any changes can only be made after a thorough process of consultation involving the three parishes, Diocesan authorities and the Church Commissioners. Meanwhile, the service at South Malling this Sunday is the rather more freewheeling Morning Praise at 9.30am. All are welcome.

mobile library

THE LIBRARY will be visiting the following areas this week. Tuesday: Village Hall, Ditchling 10.35am to 10.55am; Dumbrell’s Court, Ditchling 11.15am to 11.45am; The Fountain car park, Plumpton 12.10pm to 12.45pm; Old School lay-by, Plumpton 12.50pm to 1.20pm; Grantham Close, Chailey 2.25pm to 2.50pm; Little Mead, Cooksbridge 3pm to 3.30pm; Delves House, Delves Close, Ringmer 3.50pm to 4.20pm. Thursday: Opposite the Post Office, Firle 9.15am to 10am; Weald View, Barcombe 10.45am to 11.15am; Mill Lane, Chailey 11.45am to 12.05pm; Markstakes Corner, Chailey 12.15pm to 12.40pm; South Rough, Newick 1.50pm to 2.20pm; Oldaker, Newick 2.25pm to 2.55pm.


NOW THAT I’M OLDER here’s what I’ve discovered: I started out with nothing, and I still have most of it. My wild oats have turned into prunes and all-bran. I finally got my head together, and now my body is falling apart. If walking is good for your health, the postman would be immortal. Funny, I don’t remember being absent-minded.

NEVILL SHARES: We are having our next community event at St Mary’s Hall Highdown Road, 12.30pm to 3.30pm January 27. There will be home made soup and bread for lunch cards board games and jigsaws available to play with. An opportunity to meet more people in your neighbourhood. All ages welcome. We look forward to more ideas for events and skills and resources sharing on the day for more information please contact

WALLANDS SCHOOL: We have had some enquiries regarding language classes other than the popular French and Spanish that are already running in school, in particular Polish and Japanese. If you are interested in either teaching a language or your child participating in these languages or you have an alternative suggestion could you please contact Jo Taylor, our Extended Schools Coordinator, on 07842085246. James Cragg swam at Littlehampton on Sunday and came fifth in the 50m Freestyle, Breaststroke and 200m Freestyle and ninth in 50m Backstroke. He has also now made his County times in the 50m Freestyle resulting in him swimming at Counties in March. Well done James, you’ve worked hard to get there.

CINDERELLA: St Mary’s Pantomime Cinderella is from January 12 to 19. Saturdays 2pm and 7pm Sundays noon and 5pm. Adult £8, child £5 Tuesday to Friday 7pm adult £8 child £3 OAP £5. For tickets or 01273 477733.

CHRIST CHURCH: Worship on Sunday at 10.30am will be conducted by Sarah Middleton and 6.30pm we will be joining with other churches for the United Service for the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity at St Thomas a Becket Church in Cliffe High Street. Our minister, Rev John Gordon, will be preaching at this service.

JUMBLE SALE: Nevill Juvenile Bonfire Society will be holding a jumble sale at the Ringmer Village Hall on Saturday January 26. We will be collecting jumble on the Nevill Estate after 6pm on Friday January 25. Our next jumble at Ringmer will be Saturday March 9.


LADIES SUPPER: I hope you have booked your tickets for the Ladies Supper in the Barn Centre today, Friday evening, cost £5 per head. For details please telephone 01825 722846.

RUGBY: The rugby teams are both in actions again this weekend tomorrow, Saturday. The first XV are at home to Lewes II and the second XV are taking a trip to Eastbourne to play the Eastbourne III. Why not go and see for yourself how they are progressing and enjoy a drink with the players in the Sports Pavilion after the game.

SUNDAY SERVICES are 8am Holy Communion, and at 10.30am Informal Service, there is also a Children’s Sunday club at 10.45am. Lifts to church are available if booked in advance on 722582.

WINE AND QUIZ: Newick Twinning Association are running a Wine and Quiz event tomorrow, Saturday, evening in the village hall, 7.30pm for 8pm. This is always a popular event. Tickets are £9 each which includes nibbles and a ploughman’s supper. The bar will be open (quizzing is always thirsty work). The quiz will be in the traditional format with several rounds of questions in the familiar Trivial Pursuits categories, plus (here is the surprise) two rounds of extra special questions. To book a table or a place please telephone 01825 724223 . Enjoy the evening.

PARISH COUNCIL: The first meeting of 2013 for the parish council will be on Tuesday January 29 at 7.15pm in the Sports Pavilion, when they will welcome the new parish clerk Sue Berry. The public are allowed to ask questions at the commencement of the meeting for 15 minutes.


POLICE SUCCESS: At the weekend the police arrested two males and a female in a targeted raid following a burglary in Plumpton Green and they recovered stolen items. The trio appeared in court on Monday. Burglaries are not uncommon these days, unfortunately, but it is reassuring to know that the police are on the ball and are nabbing the criminals. Do be on the alert as there have been several break-ins locally of late.

RACING NEWS: Monday saw racing at Plumpton on a cold, damp and very dreary day, but there was heart warming news. Director Adrian Pratt and Chief Executive Claire Sheppard held a press conference and announced some immediate improvements to the prize money on offer at the course, designed to attract more top quality runners and riders. The prize money at the Easter Festival will double and include a new race with a £25,000 pot. There will also be more up for grabs at the popular Sunday and Bank Holiday meetings to improve the quality of racing even further. Remember that top jockey A P McCoy is a regular visitor and has achieved great success at our little, local course. Plumpton has also twinned with the French course Pompadour and that could lead to more French runners over here as well as giving Plumpton’s annual members free entry at Pompadour. There will also be several meetings at Plumpton where entry, to include a race card, will be reduced to £10 if booked in advance. The entrance, parade ring and winners enclosure are in for improvement to improve both safety for entrants and accessibility for racegoers. In all prize money will increase by 37 percent this year. All this can only be good for the course owners and the punters and its success will only help local employment.

ANTARCTIC VISITS Plumpton: This evening (Friday) the Footpath Society is staging a talk on Antarctica by David Lang. It will take place in All Saints’ church annexe at 7.30pm. Judging by the weather forecasts we could have the ambience here too. All welcome.

LET’S WALK: Tomorrow, Saturday, the Footpath Society will be out for a stroll if the snow drifts are not too deep. Join them at Ditchling Beacon car park (fee payable if not National Trust member) at 10.15am ready to set off on a five mile trek taking in Heathy Brow, Highpark corner, Stanmer village, Home Brow and return to car park. If you need to know more ring 01444 241463.

DELAYS INEVITABLE: From January 29 Plumpton’s sewer in Station Road will undergo repair and maintenance and the work is set to last for nine weeks. Works will start at the entrance to the railway station and four sections will be involved between there and Wells Close. There will be little excavation but temporary traffic lights will be in operation, so allow a little extra time for journeys by car. The works are purely for repair and maintenance and will not increase the capacity of the sewer, although flow may be improved a tad. Southern Water and the contractors have given an assurance that inconvenience will be kept to a minimum. We shall see.

NO CHANGE: Plumpton Parish Council has now set its precept (the amount it collects via Council Tax) for 2013/14 and it will remain the same as for the current year. By careful budgeting the council has not only avoided an increase during very difficult times but has also been able to provide very positive support for the projects being undertaken at the playing field. Services will not be reduced as a result and this will be the third successive year that there has been no increase. In real terms (to coin a modern day catchphrase) the parish council will actually be providing more for less.

BROADBAND: A number of people, including me, have observed that the Broadband service to Plumpton seems to be at an all time low, with dreadfully long download times. BT is responsible for our telephone exchange but seemingly concentrates its efforts on areas with high populations. Plumpton Parish Council in co-operation with East Chiltington, Streat, ESCC, Lewes District Council, AirS (Action in Rural Sussex) and the Village Action Plan last year conducted a survey to ascertain demand for Superfast Broadband in the area and the result showed that it is high. ESCC has funding to bring the fast service to rural areas and Plumpton submitted a good case to bring it to our exchange. The County Council is continuing its efforts and seeks more support. If you are interested please get behind the effort and go to www, to register or ring 01273 335991.

RUGBY LATEST: Plumpton and Littlehampton are considered by some as the best one team rugby clubs in Sussex, Their games are always extremely physical and competitive and last Saturday’s match was no different. Littlehampton started the brighter, attacking the Plumpton line. Plumpton repelled a barrage, before taking the game to Littlehampton for the next 60 minutes. It took a simple try from Plumpton Captain Steve Cropper to get points on the board, swiftly followed by a long range penalty from the boot of Lewis Beale. A further length of the pitch solo try from Rhys Beale, put Plumpton further ahead. Littlehampton’s ill-discipline didn’t help their cause. First a yellow card for consistent infringements by their prop, followed by a red card for the second row for a serious offence. This left Plumpton in the driving seat. Further second half tries from Rhys Beale and George R led to an easy win. Special mention to second row Ed Bowman, whose massive presence in defence stopped Littlehampton in their tracks early on, putting in an excellent display and base for the 27-0 win. This weekend Plumpton host Shoreham, kick off 2.15pm.


FOOTBALL CLUB: Tomorrow, Saturday, the first team are due to be at home in an SCFL Div One fixture against near neighbours AFC Uckfield. Kick off at The Caburn is 3pm. On Tuesday the firsts are at home again against Peacehaven in round three of the John O’Hara Cup, kick off is 7.45pm. The second team are away to Lancing on Saturday in the SCFL reserve section premier division and kick off time at Culver Road is 3pm. Please check before travelling as all of the pitches in Sussex are a bit wet, to say the least, at present. On the social side, 55 of the club’s senior members enjoyed their post Christmas get together at The Caburn Pavilion last Monday January 14 and a good time was had by all. Many thanks to all those who contributed towards the refreshments and the entertainment and helped out on the day, a great team effort. The Cricket Club Review, The Secret Cricketing Footballer’s Odd Shaped Second Ball, which was due to take place on Saturday February 9 has regrettably been postponed until later in the year due to unforeseen circumstances, but watch this space for the new date.

TAIZE SERVICE: This popular service of reflection and special music will explore the theme of light and dark. It will take place in St Mary’s on Sunday at 6.30pm.

BRIDGE CLUB: The result of the duplicate pairs played on January 9 was: 1, Gill and Tony Spaven; 2, Alan Disney and Roy Skan; 3, Liz and Tim Owen. The club next meets on Wednesday in the St Mary’s Room of the village hall. Please note that the AGM of the club will take place that evening at 7pm.

EXERCISE CLASS: Want to get in shape and lose a few pounds after Christmas? Why not join the friendly group of ladies on a Thursday evening at Ringmer Community College at 7.10pm for an hour’s class. After a warm up, they do 15 mins of aerobic activity followed by body form exercises. Pay as you go £5 per session or a more reasonable rate if paid half termly. For more information ‘phone Jane on 07962492040.

TABLE TOP SALE: Advance notice that the Community College will be holding another Table Top Sale on Saturday, February 16, between 10am and 12 noon. If you would like to book a table please contact Ruth Whitlock on 01273 812220 ext 253 during school hours or e-mail Table top pitches are available at £5 if pre-booked, so don’t leave it too long if you wish to have one. Bookings are now being taken. It is regretted that the college cannot accept individual food stalls. Refreshments will be available and there is free car parking on site.

rodmell & southease

FLOWERS: I forgot to mention in last weeks PP that I was so cheered up on January 1 when I went into my garden and saw snowdrops out and daffodils in bud. The first daffodils I’ve seen out are again outside Raystede at Ringmer.

THE STREET, Rodmell was closed for two days last week so that the awful pot holes and uneven road surface could be repaired. Not an easy job in this village with only one way in and out and a very narrow street. Since the church and the school are also down this end and it creates a lot of traffic it took a lot of patience from workmen and villagers to get things to run smoothly.

GUNS: Having been brought up for the first 21 years of my life in a gun environment, as my father collected guns and organised shooting parties, I find the American situation about guns sad. My father and his friends adored guns and our house was always full of men cleaning guns, talking guns and having shooting breakfasts and suppers. But as for thinking about them in a macho way as weapons of defence or mayhem that was definitely a no, no. During the war my father and his friends kept meat on the table for many people and to this day people tell me how grateful they were to them. I got so sick of eating pheasant, rabbit, partridge etc that now I never eat it. I can remember Sunday lunches seeing how many lead shots we could count on the edge of our plates and it became a sort of competition. The Shooting Times was regular reading for me and although I have never shot anything in my life, I did, from a young age, go shooting with my father, and I loved the engravings on his guns, many of which had been purchased where Winston Churchill’s gunsmith had his workshop. It was a sad day when I had to take Dad, who had Parkinsons and Alzheimer’s to sell his beloved guns. He was very sad about it but knew it had to be done.

REGARDING PHEASANTS, we have seven in residence at the moment in the garden. Two spend time in with the goat and others are in and out of the greenhouse. They are lovely looking birds but are pretty stupid.

OUR PUB is doing so well these days and the village is very happy with it. Congratulations go to Jon and Lucie who now run our pub and announced their engagement on New Year’s Eve whilst the pub was full of happy customers, including many villagers. Evidently they plan to get married in Rodmell Church in August.

I LOVE Curmudgeon’s, Over the Garden Gate, in Magnet the free magazine available in most shops in Lewes area. I was especially amused to read this little bit: There comes a time in a couples life when a man decides to raise his waistband to just under his armpits and the woman to model her hairstyle on the cauliflower. This brings to mind memories of Frank Dean our late village blacksmith, and his wife Phyllis who had a head of snow white hair always immaculately done. You also only have to watch the coach parties for senior citizens spewing out people, who at times all look as though they are made from the same mould. I endeavour, as do many of my friends, to try to look individual if a little eccentric. Maybe that’s why the Red Hatter’s Club has taken off so well.

HAVING WATCHED the fascinating programmes about the Universe on TV recently it makes me wonder how we can expect children of this modern age to believe in certain aspects of the Bible. As one to whom the New Scientist was read, instead of girls magazines or comics in my youth, I had a questioning mind and can vividly remember being turned out of Religious Knowledge class for needing what I considered a sensible discussion on certain aspects of a Biblical nature. Although I have a belief of sorts and do go to our church, when I watch a lot of church events on TV it’s a bit like going to the theatre.

PANTOMIME: Rodmell Stage Company presents Jack and the Beanstalk, 8pm Friday January 25, 7.30pm Saturday January 26, 3pm and 7.30pm on Sunday January 27. Tickets cost £6 adults, £3 children and are available from the Abergavenny Arms.