Parish Pump Lewes - May 17, 2013

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PLANT SALE: Barcombe Garden Club Plant Sale is tomorrow, Saturday, in the village hall from 9am till noon. Please bring containers with you to carry your plants home. On Tuesday there will be Gardeners’ Question Time at 7.30pm in the village hall. New members and visitors welcome.

PARISH MEETING: The Annual Parish Meeting will be at the village hall at 7pm on Tuesday. Come along with your praise or brickbats. Susie Mullins from Lewes Council will be there with the latest news of the Lewes District Strategic Plan, the call for potential house-building sites and the possibilities of a Neighbourhood Plan.

BOWLS NEWS: Monday, the Roll up Evening will be at 6pm. All members and potential players are most welcome. Flat shoes are the only statuary needs. Results. Thursday May 9: Les Line 12 J Jarvis 19, Derek Stewart 28 Steve Barton 17, Shaun Smith 20 Andy Bannister 9, John Blackmore 15 Pat Lloyd 21. Club won 75-66 a very rare win over local rivals. Saturday May 11 home to Portslade: Derek Stewart 18 Vic Tester 15, John Osmond 13 J Miles 15, Jas Osmond 7 J Hale 19, Jean Uridge 12 Alan Saunders 23. Club lost 50-72.

CRICKET: The first game was cancelled on Saturday as the track was too wet.


THANKS to all who took part in the sponsored link walk in aid of the new sports pavilion at North Chailey. Entrants, aged four to 80 years, finished at the sports ground where there was an excellent pig roast, provided by Southern Events, a superb display of Maypole Dancing by the Rainbows and Brownies and music from Square the Circle, who donated their time for the cause. Thanks also to everyone who assisted with the preparations and on the day, including the bonfire society who organised the much needed liquid refreshments and ice lollies.

WALK: Archaeology and Local History Group Walk is tomorrow, Saturday, on Memorial Common starting at the Sports Club car park at 10am. For more details call 01444 831098.

PLANT SALE, organised by the horticultural society, is at the Horns Lodge forecourt tomorrow, Saturday, from 10am to midday.

OPEN GARDEN at St Peter and St James Hospice takes place tomorrow, Saturday, from 1.30pm to 5pm. Enjoy a tour of the Woodland Walk, buy plants (kindly donated by South Down Nurseries), books and homemade teas. South Down Nurseries plant doctor, Ed Nugent, will answer questions between 2pm and 4pm. For more information call 01444 471598.

CRICKET sees Chailey in a league game against Hurstpierpoint tomorrow, Saturday, starting at 1.30pm and a friendly against Sussex Ukranians on Sunday starting at 2pm. Both games are at the sports ground, North Chailey, just off the A272 and supporters are most welcome and refreshments will be available.

CHURCH SERVICES: St Peter’s Church services on Sunday are Book of Common Prayer Holy Communion at 8am and Parish Communion with baptism at 10am. The Revd John Maskell will also be in church tomorrow, 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. Free Church services on Sunday are a Family Service at 10.30am and led by Mark Ventham at 6.15pm. Tea, coffee and biscuits will be served after. Also on Wednesdays at 10am there is a prayer meeting and Thursdays at 7.30pm bible study and prayer.

SPORTS CLUB annual general meeting is at the Pavilion, at the sports ground, North Chailey on Monday at 8pm.

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.

VILLAGE Information Point session is on Friday May 24 when the parish clerk with be at the Coffee Stop, Free Church from 10am to midday to assist with any questions.

AGM of Chailey Bonfire Society Ltd is at the Reading Room on Friday May 24 at 8.15pm.

ENTRIES for this month’s St Peter’s Church Photographic Competition need to be submitted by Friday May 31. It would be lovely to have some new people entering this competition, to bring fresh ideas to the project. You don’t have to be professional to take good pictures, just give it a try and send a photograph of the church, inside or out, to the parish office or by email to

CHILDREN’S CENTRE, at Chailey School, is now on Facebook so you can keep up-to-date with all their activities and groups. There is also useful information and tips for young families, recipes, local events and details of funding you may be entitled to. Search on Facebook for Chailey Children’s Centre and click on the Like button to access the information. For more details call the Centre on 01273 336940.

cooksbridge, offham & hamsey

CHRISTIAN AID WEEK runs until May 18. During the week over 30,000 volunteers will take to the streets to deliver 8 million envelopes to over 40 million people. The Rector reports that Christian Aid is an essential arm of the church, demonstrating that as we are all children of God we are one universal family and depend on each other. Those who are familiar with the way Christian Aid works know that the days of food parcels, except in times of crisis, are largely over. Christian Aid is much more concerned to give the poor more control over their own situation so they are better able to improve things for themselves. Envelopes should be returned to your newsletter distributor, or taken to church or given to someone likely to be going to church. Please be generous, there is a real need.

CHURCH SERVICES: St Peter’s, Holy Communion 8am; Sunday Club in the church hall 10.15am; Parish Communion 10.30am followed by coffee in the church hall.

ELECTED: At St Peter’s annual parish church meeting the following were elected and everyone is very appreciative for all they do (and many others too) in the parish church. Churchwardens: Geoffrey Spinks and Pamela Conlon. Deanery Synod representatives: Brenda Gough, Roland Gough and Jeffrey Spain. Elected to the parochial church council: Phyllis Burchett, Janice Doran, Caroline Featherstone, Christine Glover, David Glover, Ursula Hare, Fiona Rees, Christopher Sheldrick, Meriel Spain, Andrew Stewart-Roberts, Caroline Wheeler.

MEETING: The parochial church council meet on Thursday at 8pm in the church hall.

ADVANCE NOTICE: Next month there will be two concerts in Hamsey Church, the first on Sunday June 9, and the second on Sunday June 16. More details nearer the time. On Friday June 14 retired Judge Michael Kennedy’s group will be singing the ancient service of Compline in the original plainchant in Hamsey Church. I am told that it is a very beautiful service.

ENDURANCE GB South East Group Pleasure Ride will take place from Plumpton Racecourse on Sunday. The route will be the same as the last few years. During the morning the riders come through Courthouse and up the bridleway onto the Downs. All competitors will be wearing fluorescent bibs with numbers clearly displayed. Checkpoint and road crossing stewards will be on duty at the farm entrance on the B2116 to ensure safety when riders cross the very busy road. The ride organiser is Jane Cook from Burgess Hill.

DIARY DATE: The annual parish picnic to celebrate St Peter’s Day will be held on the church lawns immediately after the 10.30am service on Sunday June 30. What a blessing last year when the rain came down and everyone was able to enjoy the rest of the picnic in the comfort of the church hall. Details later.

JUBILEE WINDOW: Work has started on the repairs to the great Capronnier Window set in the western end of the nave of St Peter’s Church. This will be a lasting parish memorial to the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. The overall cost will be in the region of £14,000, a sizeable sum to raise. Below are three planned fundraising events. Please support. Saturday June 22 at 7pm in St Peter’s Church the Sussex Police Choir will be performing a programme of light music. Wine and refreshments. Saturday July 20 at 10.30am there will be a coffee morning at Picketts by kind invitation of Marion Fuller. Friday November 1 at 7.30pm in St Peter’s Church Hall there will be a spectacular slide show by David Lang. Subject Antarctica. £10 to include wine and refreshments.

OPEN GARDEN: On Sunday June 2 the lovely gardens at Offham House will be open again, from 1pm to 5pm.

HAMSEY FESTIVAL is on Saturday June 15 from 2pm to 8pm at the village hall.

NEW BOOK by Judith Bastide and Michael Rich entitled Follow These Kent, The Handbook for Literary Detectives. The book is now on sale at the Offham Farm Shop and Lewes Tourist Office. Although I have not got down to reading it yet it looks very interesting and has some very nice photographs of places worth a visit around Kent. I think that Judith’s husband Derek, our Rector, also deserves a pat on the back for the completion of this second book as I know he was the chauffeur on Judith’s travels around Kent.


GOLF: Falmer’s own Peter Lenihan will be defending his title as Sussex Senior Golf Champion on Monday at the East Brighton Golf course. Peter is a terrific golfer and takes the sport very seriously. We wish him the best of luck in the championship.

BRIGHTON FESTIVAL: It seems if you live anywhere near Brighton you are bound to get involved in the Brighton Festival in some way or another. Last year my son was performing in a Fringe production, this year we had our own Fringe event here at St Laurence in Falmer. The concert took place last week and was a great success. The music by the little known Brighton composer Clara Ross was delightful and the solo singing, trio of voices and the guitar and mandolin combination made for an interesting variety of sounds. We’re pleased that the Brighton concert goers know of our venue now and hopefully they will come out to our other May concerts. This week’s event is the Pastores Ensemble, the early music consort that play their own compositions as well. The concert tomorrow, Saturday, starts at the usual time of 5.30pm, entry is free with a retiring collection and drinks will be available. Details will be in this column next week of the concert on May 25.

IF YOU WANT to go on to something after the concert the Swan has Miss Jason Cabaret Queen performing live from 8pm tomorrow, Saturday. A night of songs and laughs is promised. Also at the Swan, the Chanctonbury Ring Morris Men arrive for an evening of dance and drink on Wednesday from 8pm. A Charity Quiz night will take place at the Swan on Sunday May 26 at 7pm in aid of Azafady, a charity that helps the poor communities and the environment in Madagascar, have a fun evening and support a worthwhile cause at the same time. To book a table call 681842.

CHURCH SERVICES: There will be a Choral Evensong service here at St Laurence on Sunday as well as the usual 10am Eucharist. The choir of St Luke’s, Queens Park will be singing. The congregation can enjoy afternoon tea with home-made cakes before the service in the parish hall from 4.30pm and evensong will start at 6pm.

FOOTBALL: When I started writing this column my thoughts were punctuated by the shouts and singing from the stadium where the important play-off between Brighton and Hove Albion and Crystal Palace has been taking place, by now you will all know that, sadly, the Albion lost this time, hopefully next year will see them move up. The good news is there was no significant trouble on the night, in spite of the bitter rivalry between these two teams.

glynde & beddingham

THE PARISH COUNCIL will hold its annual parish meeting on May 29 at 7pm in the Reading Room. This will be followed by its regular meeting, now to take place monthly instead of every other month. Everyone is welcome and there will be an opportunity at the beginning of the meeting for villagers to ask questions and make comments and suggestions for the coming year.

MEMORIAL PARADE: The committee would like to thank all the residents who took part in Phil the Bag to help raise funds for this year’s event on November 7. Anyone who would like to advertise in the monthly newsletter should contact Lisa on 01273 858416. The main fundraising event will be The Event in The Tent after the Glynde Flower Show on Saturday August 10 on the recreation ground. Headliners are Hayley Marie and the fantastic Brass Monkeys.

COMMUNITY SWIMMING POOL: Congratulations to the committee and helpers who managed to get the pool up and running for the beginning of May after the long lingering winter. The pool is for the use of residents of the three parishes, Glynde, Firle and Beddingham. For more information please go to the website where you can find out about the history of the pool as well as membership details.

THE TREVOR ARMS: It’s all go at the Trevor Arms. There is now a delicious fish and chip take away service available Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights for anyone without the energy to cook themselves. The hollyhocks are starting to grow again and there is even talk of chickens arriving in the garden. There are two forthcoming music nights this month: the brilliant Skalettoes are back by popular demand on Sunday May 26 followed by The Reluctant Ramblers on the bank holiday Monday, May 27. This is of course on top of the regular folk evenings on the third Wednesday of every month where talented musicians from all over the county get together for a session of inspired music. This is the start of great things, musical and culinary, throughout the summer.

STOOLBALL: Once again this traditional Sussex game is being enjoyed throughout the summer with practice sessions on the cricket pitch every Tuesday and Wednesday evenings. Please feel free to come along.

CHURCH SERVICES: This month the services are as follows: Sunday May 19, 10.15am Firle; Sunday May 26, 10.15am Beddingham; Sunday June 2, 10.15am Glynde.


BRIDGE CLUB: Tuesday April 30 Duplicate Pairs: 1, Mike Keeping and Richard Burnett; 2, Simon Fishburn and Richard Pearson; 3, Peter Cattermole and Jennifer Wilson. May 7: 1, Paul Allen and Rosemary Land; 2, Janet Cattermole and Di Johnstone; 3, Martin Hall and Sylvia Hall. Thursday May 2 Duplicate Pairs: 1, Alan Disney and Rita Hartnell; 2, Pauline Brown and Sue Malley; 3, Adela Thomas and Peter Cattermole. May 9 Teams: 1, Nigel Osmer and Peter Cattermole; 2, Anne Davison and Edith Jeffery; 3, Ron and Margaret Buddery. Lewes Bridge Club meets Tuesday evenings and Thursday afternoons. Contact number 01273 473026.

WESTGATE WI: The spotlight was on high streets and how to revitalise them as members debated the National Federation of Women’s Institutes’ resolution going forward to the AGM in Cardiff in June. In a nutshell, concern over the decline of town centres had prompted a call on WI members to support their local shops and on decision-makers to help revive high streets and create a focal point for local communities. After discussion and voting, members celebrated Westgate WI’s birthday with a buffet lunch much enjoyed by all. The next meeting is on June 12. (A Stephen).

GIVE BLOOD: There will be a blood donor session at the Corn Exchange, High Street today, Friday, from 2pm to 4.30pm and 5.30pm to 8pm.

OPEN GARDENS EVENT: Southover Bonfire Society are holding their annual open gardens event on Sunday June 9 from 2.30pm to 5pm, to fundraise for November 5. This event has proved extremely popular with new gardens being offered each year. There is still space to accommodate further garden entries this year and if you wish to find out more about opening please contact Johnny Marshall on 01273 478153 or by email at

CONCERTS: There will be concert in St John sub Castro Church tomorrow, Saturday, at 4pm by The Oriole Quartet. On May 25 at 4pm Juliette Gregg (violin). Tickets are £8 (£5 concessions) on the door.

TABLE TOP SALE in aid of St John’s Church tomorrow, Saturday, in Cliffe Church Hall. Home made cakes, local cards, jewellery, books, CDs, gifts, bric-a-brac, tombola and refreshments. Admission free, 9.30am to 1pm. All welcome.


SOUTH MALLING SCHOOL: Well done to all the Year 6 children who took their SATs tests this week. They approached the tests in a very calm, sensible and focussed way and were the first cohort of children to sit the new SPAG (Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar) Test. Their thoughts on the whole process will be published in the next school newsletter. Congratulations to the school tennis team from Years 3 and 4. They took part in a tennis tournament at the Southdown Club and came first. They are now through to the next round and might even get a chance to go to Eastbourne to watch the tournaments. Children from the Lemon Lobsters and Silver Sharks classes have had a very exciting week. As part of their Survival topic they spent Tuesday building tents and lighting fires on the school field and then learned how to build shelters and survive in the wild during an action packed day at Plumpton Agricultural College. The school Garden Club is well and truly underway now. The raised beds have exploded during the recent warmer weather and the children are now busy weeding and planting seeds and vegetables. Good luck to the South Malling Choir who are singing in the Hastings Choir competition today (Friday).

SOUTH MALLING CHURCH: Last Sunday’s Family Service, which has changed from the first to the second Sunday of the month, was hugely enjoyable. There was a drama which did actually help to get over the Revd Steve Daughtery’s theme, a high level of participation from adults and children alike and a really good sing. This coming Sunday is Pentecost Sunday, celebrated by a Communion service with the usual Children’s Club, where children move out for their own teaching and return to join their parents for communion. The service will be led by Revd Helen Garratt, and Revd Jeremy Bamber, Malling’s new (acting) Vicar, will give the sermon about Pentecost - the day when the Holy Spirit settled on the burgeoning Church in the first century AD.

PARKING IN CHURCH LANE: we have already mentioned that Cllr Matthew Kent, who is a Governor of South Malling School, has undertaken a survey of the Church Lane/Malling Hill intersection amongst the school’s parents, to identify concerns and issues about parking in this area. He has initially reported a good response to the survey by approximately 25 per cent of school families which represents a high sample size providing a confidence level in the results of about 88 per cent. He is preparing a report and he and the Head will meet with the police and senior transport planners to discuss conclusions. He has offered to provide Parish Pump in due course with a brief report on his findings as well as writing in the school newsletter. We understand there were some lively responses.

mobile library

THE LIBRARY will be visiting the following areas this week. Tuesday: Berwick village hall noon to 12.30pm; opposite Lamb Inn, Ripe 2pm to 2.25pm; Laughton village school 2.45pm to 3.30pm.


MY BLOG: I went to a council meeting for the first time in my life as it was about Save St Mary’s Social Centre. A motion was put forward by our very worthy councillor Ruth O’Keeffe, to get it removed from the list which wasn’t successful because it would make the council look bad to be seen to have put this list out only to remove part or all of it. A second motion, put forward by another worthy councillor Ian Elloart, was accepted as reported in last weeks local. I was not too impressed with the leader of the council who drew up the list in the first place, but St Mary’s lives to fight another day.

CHRIST CHURCH: Worship on Sunday at 10.30am will be a Pentecost service led by Dr Tony Law. At 6.30pm Rev John Gordon will be leading worship and this will include Holy Communion. On Wednesday at 7.30pm the ThinkTank will meet. Patricia Cockrell will lead the discussion around the theme of Life and Death in Russia today. A warm welcome is extended to all.

WALLANDS SCHOOL: It has been reported some primary aged children have been seen crossing the fence boundary of the railway track near Landport, and playing near the railway line. We cannot emphasise too strongly how dangerous this is. Trains cannot stop quickly and are deceptively silent nowadays. Electric trains are powered either by a rail on the track or from overhead power lines: in both cases the power is strong enough to kill. For more information check out the Trackoff website on keeping safe. Please talk to your children about this important issue. Our Year 6 children will be attending a safety workshop soon, which covers railway safety. After receiving a lot of interest in the short courses being provided by Sussex Downs College the following courses have been booked and are being held at Wallands School: Understanding Dyslexia and other learning difficulties Wednesday, 3.30pm to 4.30pm; Introduction to Child Psychology and Managing Behaviour and Parenting Skills, Monday June 10 and 17, 3.30pm to 5pm; Beginners Crochet Tuesday June 4, 3.30pm to 5pm for three weeks. These will all be held at Wallands School. Unfortunately there is no childcare provision but courses are free. If you have already stated you’re interested look out for the booking form in your child’s book bag. If any additional adults would like to book let Jo Taylor know on 0784208524.

WALLANDS MAY FAIR is tomorrow, Saturday, 2pm to 4.30pm and will have all the fun of a traditional spring fair. Highlights include a May Queen and a Green Man, Wallands star maypole dancers, a fabulous puppet show from Wishworks, the craft competition and wonderful craft activities on the day including mythical clay creature making, spring headdresses, origami, frisbee and button making. Also Wallands Wacky Races for balloon powered cars plus a bouncy castle, penalty shoot out and lots of fun and games, with a Pimms tent and superb cafe. All the fun of the fair in fact. We have a great raffle with fantastic prizes including tickets for Glyndebourne, Drusillas, The Sunshine Boys at Lewes Little Theatre, the Lavender Line, Newhaven Fort, hampers and a cash prize. Please buy lots of raffle tickets and sell more to family and friends. Additional tickets are available at school reception and will be on sale in the crush hall next week.

AGM: Nevill Residents’ Association’s AGM will be held in St Mary’s Church Hall, Highdown Road on May 20 at 8pm. The agenda will include a presentation and debate about drainage on the Nevill and the flood management scheme with representatives from ESCC and LDC, and the latest news from Colin Reynolds on Saving St Mary’s Social Centre. Our meetings are for all Nevill residents.

JUMBLE SALE: Nevill Bonfire Society will be holding a jumble sale at Ringmer Village Hall tomorrow, Saturday. Our next jumble at Ringmer will be Saturday July 6.


THE MARKET will be open today, Friday, in the village hall from 10 to 11am. Hopefully there will be a good selection of bedding plants available, plus a wide selection of cooked savoury items, cakes and local cheese, eggs as well as preserves. You can also enjoy a cup of tea or coffee.

CRICKET FIXTURES this weekend are: The first team will be playing at home against Rye; the second team will travel to Polegate and Stone Cross; the third team will be playing at the Temple Grove ground against Sidley III; the fourth team are also playing away at St Peters IV. All these games will commence at 1.30pm. Sunday’s match will be against Plumpton and East Chiltington (this game is in the VCC competition) play will commence at 2pm at Plumpton. This should be a very good cricket match to watch. There is also another match on Monday against Littehey Lions, this will be played at Newick commencing at 2pm.

SUNDAY SERVICES will be Holy Communion at 8am and Informal Morning Worship at 10.30am. Lifts are available to church, please telephone in advance 722582.

THE VILLAGE GREEN is looking rather splendid with all the different flags flying, great to see the Sussex blowing in the wind.


OPEN GARDEN: The gardens at the Old Mill House, Plumpton Lane will be open on Sunday from 2pm until 6pm. There will be a chance to visit the working water mill and afternoon tea is included in the entry fee of £7.50 (children under 16 years £2.50). Proceeds to St Peter and St James Hospice.

TASTE OF SUSSEX: On Friday next week there will be another beer tasting at All Saints’ Church annexe at 7.30pm. Ian Burgess, head brewer and joint owner at W J King Brewery of Horsham, will conduct a series of tastings, coupled with some humorous tales. Kings has won national and international prizes for its brews. Tickets cost £10 to include a ploughman’s super and are available in advance from Plumpton Village Stores, the Fountain, Plumpton and the Gardeners Arms, Lewes. Naturally our resident brewer, the Rector, will be on hand to give his expert opinions on the ales.

SUNDAY SCHOOL: Plumpton and East Chiltington Sunday School will meet in All Saints’ Church annexe on Sunday at 10.30am, coinciding with the main service in the church.

POP-IN PARLOUR: A reminder that the Pop-in Parlour at All Saints’ Church annexe is open every Tuesday from 11am. Drop in for a cuppa, a chat with old friends or even meet some new ones. Homemade soup and light snacks are also available. No age limits (either way) here.

WINE TASTING: The tennis club will be holding a wine tasting at Plumpton College on June 8 from 2.30pm to 4.30pm. Apart from tastings there will be tours of the college’s winery and vineyard with the chance to learn about the wine making process. If you are unfortunate enough not to have already done so, this will be a fine opportunity to taste the superb wines the college produces.

JUNIOR TENNIS: Plumpton Tennis Club is offering free tennis lessons for younger people aged 14 to 25 years during this summer. Six week courses are available to start playing the game or to brush up on existing skills. Contact the club coach, Chris Spiller on 07860 859994.

FUEL THEFTS: Mean thieves are still around stealing fuel from both storage tanks and vehicles. There have been two incidents in Riddens Lane of late and damage was caused to vehicles in the process.

JOSEPH: Do not forget Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat will be playing in Plumpton Village Hall on Thursday, Friday and Saturday next week courtesy of Burgess Hill Musical Theatre Society youth section. Performances at 7.30pm with a matinee at 2.30pm on Saturday. Admission £10 adults, £9 concessions and children £6. Book on or 01273 890347.


FOOTBALL CLUB: The football season has now been completed and the club has two or three months to get the work done on the pitch to get it in order for next season. There is quite a lot to do and if anyone would like to lend a hand just let the club know as any help is always appreciated. The social club remains open as usual throughout the closed season and kicks off tonight, Friday, with a Race Night being run in the bar by the Veterans team. Start time is 7.30pm and all are welcome. Tickets for Hailsham Theatre’s production of A Cabaret of Two Halves to be held at the Caburn Pavilion on June 21 and 22 are selling well and are available from the club bar or from the Box Office on

BOWLS: The club had a good Open Morning but if you missed it and would like to have a go do pop along tomorrow, Saturday, sometime between 8am and 10am as some members will be at the club or phone Pat Escott on 01273 813295. The match results for last week were Ringmer v Deanland 71-68, Ringmer v Barcombe 66-75, Ringmer v Hellingly 62-66 and Ringmer v Bexhill 62-69.

JUMBLE SALE: Nevill Juvenile Bonfire Society are holding this sale in the village hall tomorrow, Saturday, at 2pm. Donations of jumble should be brought to the village hall as near to noon as possible on Saturday morning.

PENTECOST Buffet Lunch in the village hall at 1pm on Sunday. There is no charge for this but donations for the Church’s Disaster Fund will be gratefully received. Please let Shirley Squires know on 812417 if you wish to attend.

BRIDGE CLUB: The result of the duplicate pairs played on May 8 was: 1, Deirdre Booth and Simon Webster; 2, Jenny Charman and Michael Slot; and 3, Lesley Durrant and Alan Grindley, Sandra Dudley-Williams and Joan Evett. The next meeting of the club is on Wednesday at 7.30pm in the village Hall. Contact number 01273 814220.

DRAMATIC SOCIETY: A reminder auditions for Graham Stapley’s production of Terry Pratchett’s Wyrd Sisters is being held in the Symons Hall of the village hall on Thursday at 7.30pm. It is hoped there will be a large turnout of people interested in taking part.

GOOD NEWS: Ringmer Village Hall has been listed in the Direct Debit Big Break award list for May, so are in with a chance to win up to £2,000 towards the Extension Appeal. They need however to try to get as many votes as possible so it would be great if you can share this news with anyone you know who would be willing to vote. The website link is or you can write to The Big Break, 131-151 Great Titchfield street, London, W1W 5BB.

COUNCIL VACANCY: Ringmer Parish Council has a casual vacancy for a parish councillor to be filled by co-option at the council’s meeting on Thursday, July 11. If you are interested in having a direct say in local decision-making for your community, have ideas for improving the quality of life in Ringmer or would like to contribute to the life of the village why not apply. Further details on how to apply are available from the Clerk to Council at the Parish Council Office, Village Hall, Ringmer on 01273 813242 or e-mail or in his absence from the chairman Cllr. John Kay. Applications have to be received by Friday, June 21.

MARATHON: Frank Longhurst managed to raise over £3500 for Breast Cancer Care when he ran the Brighton Marathon in April, he finished in 4hrs 46mins. He would like to thank all those who sponsored him by performing in or coming to Acoustic Moods in February, and all those who sponsored him by donations.

rodmell & southease

SALE/SWAP: Tomorrow, Saturday, Seedling Sale/Swap in the village hall, 2pm to 4pm. Bring your surplus seedlings to sell or swap, and enjoy tea and cake at the same time. There is usually a very good selection of healthy plants at a very reasonable price.

CRICKET: On Sunday Rodmell Cricket Club play a match against Brighton and Hove Crescent CC, 2.30pm start on the sports field. All welcome.

CAMERA CLUB: On Monday the camera club evening walk with tuition from professional photographer, Keith Gibson. Open to all people interested in photography. Phone Bob Foster 01273 480749 or Carolyn Orchard 01273 470935. There is a small charge.

WI: On Tuesday Rodmell and Southease WI meet in the village hall for their monthly meeting which is to discuss the resolution, Halt the Decline of Our High Streets, to be debated a the Federation AGM in Cardiff in June.

JUMBLE SALE: Get sorting out your lofts, garages and cupboards for items for the jumble sale in the village hall in aid of hall funds, on Saturday June 1.

OPEN GARDENS in the lower village on Sunday June 2 in aid of church funds.

ARTICLE: I see Adrian Orchards write-up in our parish magazine that Simon Calder wrote an excellent article, entitled Upping the Game on the South Downs Way which covered all the aspects of the South Downs Youth Hostel at Itford Farm. Adrian wonders what effect it will have on the villages and the Abergavenny Arms, our local pub, as the Youth Hostel has restaurant facilities. I am impressed with it and it doesn’t seem to have affected village B&Bs yet. In fact I tell many of my walkers about it. A bit of competition keeps everyone on their toes and in these days of tightening belts, may keep prices at a sensible level.

NEW BOOK: At long last Willie Edmonds, our intrepid village gardener, has put pen to paper and had a book launch on May 14 at the Abergavenny Arms. The book is titled Weeds, Weeding (and Darwin) The Gardeners Guide, Frances Lincoln Publishing. I look forward to buying it and hope there is an answer to the problems of ground elder which loves growing in this area. I’ve always understood that the Romans were responsible for bringing it over, as they ate it like spinach, as it was supposed to fill them full of vigour. Perhaps it is nature’s answer to Viagra? Has your husband asked for steamed ground elder followed by nettle tea – watch out.

VISIT: A surprise visit to the village recently by John Ambler, who used to do a lot of gardening around the village but then moved on to pastures new. John is now a dad and he and his partner have a sweet little daughter who was only two days old when I met her. So far I’m told she is a very placid baby, let’s hop that continues, and her parents get good nights of sleep in the months to come.

PEOPLE have a habit of just turning up when you least expect to see them, as did Richard Crossland at Monk’s House this week. Richard used to drink in our pub and loved to go fishing. I can well remember cleaning and gutting piles of mackerel late in the evenings when he would present us with the spoils of a fishing trip. The years fly by but the memories linger on.

THERE IS A LOT of blossom on the fruit trees and bushes this year but will it set with these winds and the shortage of bees. On the subject of bees it appears that the nicotine based spray used on crops makes bees disorientated and they can’t find their way home to their hives. If this is happening to bees and we ingest toxins, (even in small quantities over the years) could it be one of the causes of the increase in dementia I wonder.