Parish pump Newhaven _ March 6, 2015


SPRING CLEANING has been the order of the day in the village hotels. The Wingrove has converted the lounge into a cosy restaurant. Deans Place Hotel has had Park Grove Interior Designs with local builders JBC Construction refurbish the restaurant which is now called The Dining Room in keeping with the Country House style of hotel. The restaurant seating area has also been redecorated making it a more relaxing place in which to have pre or post dining drinks.

THE STAR INN has been closed for the whole of January and February while the bedrooms and lounges have had major refurbishment designed by Judi Watkinson of Design Noir. The new carpets, curtains and fittings have been designed to bring out the history of The Star. Art work, illustrating the Inn and local scenes over the centuries since it was built, line the corridors and lounge walls. The designs of the bespoke carpets and fittings are all influenced by the past. All the work has been done by local firms, the wooden floors have been repaired and replaced by using reclaimed wood and new furniture has also been sourced locally. The Inn is privately owned by Martin Gobbee and Lorissa Covell and plans are now being made to update the 1960 extension to make it more in keeping with the main building.

THE 300 CLUB this month will meet at the newly refurbished Star Inn at 8pm.


JUMBLE SALE on Saturday, March 14, 11am to 1pm in Bishopstone Parish Hall. There will be a tombola, coffee, tea and cakes. All proceeds to the Seaford Bonfire Society.

APC MEETING on Sunday, March 22, 11.40am (after 10.15am service) in Bishopstone Parish Hall. Please attend this annual meeting to vote for churchwardens, PCC members and to accept the annual accounts and reports. There are various duties that need to be covered including a new churchwarden appointed.

ELECTIONS are in the air and canvassing has started. Nearly 300 years ago last Saturday, 21-year-old Bishopstone-connected Henry Pelham got elected MP for Seaford. Little canvassing was needed for the next half-century as the Duke of Newcastle’s men always got in, although William Pitt the Elder required a well-lubricated party for the voters.


VERY PROUD: We are very proud to hear the news that Sue Barnes has had a picture accepted for exhibition at the Royal Water Colour Society, congratulations Sue. Those of us who have seen Sue’s paintings know that this is a worthy recognition of her work. Watch this column for details of the Easter exhibition in St Laurence church that will feature Sue’s work along with those of her colleagues.

CONCERT: Tomorrow, Saturday, we are looking forward to a concert of music by Jean Hubeau, Anton Diabelli, Henry Mancini, Friedrich Weber, Eugene Bozza and an arrangement by Marlatt of variations on Blue Bells of Scotland, performed by Karen Kennard trumpet and Raija Walker piano. This is the first time we have had a trumpet concert in St Laurence, and the acoustics in the church, will I am, sure do justice to the sound of this instrument. The performance begins at 5.30pm, admission is free with a retiring collection.

On Sunday there will a second concert in St Laurence at 11.45am after the Eucharist service, a choir of young people called ‘Angel Voices’ singing to raise money for the Chestnut Hospice. We hope that there will be many people who will come to support them.

A BLOIS SCHOOL EXCHANGE: In the 1970s my daughter, then a pupil at Priory School, went on an exchange visit to Blois arranged by the school. The visit led to a great friendship with the family and Veronique her exchange partner, and just last week my granddaughter visiting Paris, where Veronique now lives, met up with her and her daughter. I wonder how many other lasting friendships were made by these exchanges.

PARISH COUNCIL: Pond area tidy up tomorrow, Saturday, starting at 10am, volunteers needed. Peter Lenihan and Mark Gapper will be cutting back vegetation around the pond to tidy and improve this area. Help is needed to remove the vegetation and load it into trucks for disposal. Please wear gloves and bring a rake if possible. Coffee and cake in the village hall afterwards.


LEWES HISTORY GROUP talk on Monday, 7pm for 7.30pm at the King’s Church building, Brooks Road, Unlocking the Reeves’ Photographic Archive. Two years ago Brigitte Lardinois, a photographic historian and Lewes resident, approached Tom Reeves and his wife Tania with a proposal to map their archive which is housed at the Edward Reeves Studio. Their business has been in continual operation since 1855 and is likely to be the oldest still working photographic studio, run by the same family at the same premises, in the world. Brigitte will share her research strategy and discuss the plans for the unlocking of this archive. All welcome. Free refreshments. £2 members, £3 for non-members.

CONCERT: Former Priory School and Bhasvic student Alistair Gregg will be hosting a cake sale and concert in aid of the charity Restless Development on Sunday at 3pm, at St John sub Castro church, Abinger Place. Alistair has been selected to travel to Zimbabwe for 12 weeks with the charity, where he will undertake educational projects in rural communities. His placement is funded by the government as part of the International Citizen Service scheme, and any funds raised will go to the charity. The concert will feature a professional flute and guitar duo, Armonia, plus students from the Royal Academy of Music and East Sussex Academy giving performances on piano, violin, flute, clarinet and voice. There will also be a short choral performance following the workshop Baroque Blockbusters held the same day (run by John Hancorn and Ruth Kerr).

INCREDIBLE EDIBLE LEWES? In Todmorden, people plant vegetables all over town, could it happen in Lewes? Mary Clear, chair of Incredible Edible Todmorden will speak today, Friday, at 7pm upstairs in the John Harvey Tavern. Free entry, for more information see or ring 01273 477870. This small Yorkshire town has led the way in planting herbs, vegetables and fruit on public land and plots owned by businesses and organisations. This includes the police station, where they have aquaponic beds and lighting confiscated from cannabis farms. Every primary school is growing food and some have hens. People from all sections of the community are involved.

FOOTPATHS GROUP: On our last Wednesday walk we started from the churchyard at Folkington. We noted the grave of Elizabeth David the cookery writer who introduced continental cuisine to the British table. From there the group of 15 followed an old coach road, now the Wealdway, to Jevington. The track was muddy and rutted in many places, which was probably no worse than when it was used by coach and horses. In the churchyard at Jevington is the grave of Lord Shawcross and his second wife, Joan. Lord Shawcross was the chief prosecutor at the Nuremberg trials and the first chairman of Justice, the human rights group founded in 1957 From Jevington we turned north-east and gently climbed to the top of Combe Hill. It is but 193 metres high but the 360 degrees views over the sea, Eastbourne, Polegate, the Weald and all other points of the compass makes the climb worthwhile. The precipitous descent tested our knees and our balance on some muddy and uneven paths. The walk back to the start through Wannock was pleasantly uneventful, though the last field did its muddy best to increase our height by at least an inch with the mud firmly stuck to our boots. Graham and Hilda were the leaders. The next walk is on Sunday, Bishopstone to Southease Youth Hostel where lunch is available at the café. Meet at Lewes Railway station in good time to catch the 9.29am train to Bishopstone. Our programmes are always available at the Lewes Tourist Office and new walkers are always welcome.

SOUTHOVER CHURCH: On March 21, 9.30am to 5pm, come and join us for an interactive walk through the Old Testament. Transform your understanding of the bigger picture. Cost £14 including workbook, accompanied 11 to 16 years free (concessions available). Information leaflets are at the back of the church, which is open from Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm and on Sunday for services. During Lent we are having early morning prayer sessions at 6.30am on Fridays. All are welcome for a time of quiet prayer and reflection. We still need warm clothing, blankets and sleeping bags for homeless people in Brighton: a collection box is in the porch. Thank you for previous donations. Please remember that we have a number of rooms available for hire, seating between eight and 60, with kitchen facilities of various descriptions, loos, gardens and disabled access. To discuss details please contact the church office on 01273 470616 (Monday to Friday, 9am to noon) or Services this Sunday: 8am communion (prayer book); 10am morning service, a blend of traditional and contemporary, with choir, organ and band; 11.15am informal communion service (church hall); 6.30pm informal evening service with singers and band. Please do come and join us.

LEWES PASSION PLAY 2015 Group: Children, please enter our art competition. Anyone in Year 3 and above can submit an A3 or A4 picture of any event in any part of the Passion Plays. See our website or email for an entry form (details below). Could you help us with any or all of our four performances during Easter week? We are still looking for people, including families, to dress up as members of the crowd and Roman soldiers. Do you have your own costume? If not, we can provide one. However we do need help with costume and scenery making, and with materials for them. We should be very grateful for donations of fabric in earthy colours or which can be dyed (eg curtains, sheets). You can leave fabric on Saturdays at St Pancras Church lower hall or from 1pm to 3pm on Tuesdays at Christ Church upper hall, when you are also very welcome to join our team of stitchers. Or we can collect from you. Please email or visit our website at

Newhaven, Denton & South Heighton

NEWHAVEN FORT opened its doors on Sunday March 1 for the new season under new management. The Fort is now run by Wave Leisure and they have an exciting programme of events lined up for 2015. March is Home Fires month which is an arts/heritage project exploring the role Newhaven, Seaford and the surrounding villages played in World War One. It culminates in a brand new play with music by Sara Clifford. You can visit the Fort tomorrow (Saturday) and learn more about the project, take part in hands-on workshops and listen to educational talks and music. The play Home Fires takes place from Wednesday to Saturday, March 18 to 21 at 8pm. Tickets are free but must be booked in advance by telephoning 01273 517622 or email

COFFEE MORNING and Table Sale takes place at Riverside Hall, West Quay, tomorrow (Saturday) to raise money for Lewes and District Mencap 10am to 2pm. There will be homemade cakes, bacon sandwiches, tea and coffee for sale at very reasonable prices. To book a table for £8 ring 01273 517345.

SOUTH HEIGHTON WI: Peter and Carol Goodman will talk to members on Monday on From Sheep to Knitting Wool. This is a hands-on meeting which takes place in South Heighton village hall at 2.15pm and visitors are welcome.

GUEST HOUSE STORYTELLERS present The Best Medicine on Tuesday at the Hillcrest Centre. They say laughter is the best medicine and you are invited to spend an evening listening to high-spirited tales of life, love and laughter. If you have a funny story to tell maximum ten minutes you can book a slot by emailing The Hillcrest Café opens at 7pm, stories begin at 7.30pm. Admission £5, concessions £4 on the door.


BEST WISHES: All council staff and councillors send best wishes to Brian Vernon (your regular correspondent) for a speedy recovery. For the time being until Brian returns Deborah Donovan will be writing this column. Please contact Deborah on 01273 585493 with your news, marked Parish Pump.

COMMONWEALTH DAY: Residents are invited to attend the Commonwealth Day service from 10am on Monday at the War Memorial Meridian Park. The Deputy Mayor will be heading the service. The Commonwealth Flag will be raised at 10am. Following the main service and unveiling of the plaque which marks the day; guests are invited to join the Deputy Mayor at Community House for refreshments. If the weather is bad the service will be held at Community House from 10.30am.

BIG PARKS PROJECT: The grand opening of Centenary Park, which includes the skate park and play areas, has been organised for tomorrow, Saturday, from 11am. The Gateway Café will be open too.

FOOTBALL: Peacehaven and Telscombe FC. Sign up for your seat. Please check out to support your local club.

PEACEHAVEN E-NEWS: For up to date Peacehaven news please subscribe to Peacehaven’s monthly magazine via

CINEMA: The next film at Peacehaven is Mr Turner (12A) on Wednesday. Tickets just £5 available from the Information Office 01273585493.

MEETING: Leisure and Amenities meeting in the Anzac Room, Community House at 6.30pm on Tuesday.

FAREWELL to Steve Keogh, Assistant Town Clerk, Leisure and Amenities. Our best wishes are sent to Steve in his new job at Parish Clerk at Willingdon and Jevington Parish Council.

PLANTERS: If local businesses wish to sponsor a planter which are situated around the town, contact Angela Read 01273585493.

BINGO: Eyes down for a fun evening of Bingo on Friday March 13 from 7pm. Eight games for £4 plus flyer and snowball games. Cash prizes and free refreshments.

MAYOR’S CHARITY EVENT: Murder in the Dark, on Saturday April 25 at 7pm. Tickets for this popular event are available now from the Information Office at £12.50; bring your own food and drink. The evening is set in the 1920s at an old manor house where guests are in the drawing room playing parlour games; suddenly the lights flicker, someone screams and a body is found, who has been murdered? Can you solve the murder? For further information contact 01273 585493.

WASTE BINS: Combination litter bins have been installed by Lewes District Council along the cliff top; a further eight bins will be sited in the town.


JUMBLE SALE: Nevill Juvenile Bonfire Society will be holding a Jumble Sale tomorrow (Saturday) in the village hall. Doors open at 2pm.

BOB’S BUMPER QUIZ in aid of St Peter and St James Hospice will be held tomorrow (Saturday) in the village hall starting at 7.15pm. If you’re not there, you’ll miss a good evening, so contact Bob (812784).

ST MARY’S CHURCH: In addition to 8am Holy Communion and 6.30pm Evensong, we are very excited to welcome the Bishop of Chichester, the Rt Revd Dr Martin Warner to our 9.45am service this Sunday. All are welcome to this very special occasion.

BRIDGE CLUB: At its meeting on Wednesday February 25, the result of the duplicate pairs played was: 1, Frank Hibbert and George Montgomery; joint 2, Liz and Tim Owen, Alan Disney and Roy Skan. The club next meets in the St Mary’s room of the village hall on Wednesday at 7.30pm.

PRIMARY SCHOOL: Ringmer Primary School is holding a Nearly New Sale of all things children on March 14, 10.30am to noon. It is to be similar to the very successful NCT sale and Tiddlers and Toddlers Sales but for children age four years and upwards. We will be selling clothes, books, shoes, toys, bikes, computer games, uniforms, scooters and small items of furniture, in fact anything to do with children. Sellers must register before the sale and there is a limited number of places. Please contact for further details and if not please do come along to buy. We would welcome any good quality donations which can be collected locally.

DRAMATIC SOCIETY: The dramatic society’s production of Haywire, a comedy by Eric Chappell of Rising Damp fame, is taking place at Ringmer Village Hall from March 18 to 21 commencing at 7.45pm. Tickets £8, or £7.50 for groups of ten or more, available on-line at Ringmer Amateur Dramatic Society Facebook page or from Creature Comforts, the pet shop in Ringmer.

SATURDAY CLUB: The Saturday Club sale raised an amazing £140 for refugee children in Syria and it was a most enjoyable event for everyone concerned.

Rodmell & Southease

QUIZ: Southease Church Quiz Evening on Saturday February 21 made over £600. Unfortunately I forgot about it and I’m sorry I missed such a good evening. However, I hope to make the next Quiz Evening in aid of St Peter and St James Hospice on Tuesday in the Abergavenny Pub, 7pm for 7.30pm start, four to six people per team, £10 per head. Price includes a two course hot buffet. By ticket only in advance from Maureen 01273 474980 or Jenny 01273 473939. It will be a good evening, but I hope they stick to the rules of teams of four to six because I know people get cross when they find the next table have ten to 12 people which really isn’t fair.

ELECTIONS: We definitely know there are elections coming up, there are so many indiscretions on all sides, making news in the media. Why do politicians act like fractious children in a playground and not intelligent people in charge of the country? No wonder people are reluctant to vote, especially the young. What sort of examples are being set by those that should know better. Whilst on the subject of politics why all the fuss about the pink bus. I don’t vote Labour and can’t stand the colour pink (except for flowers) but it is a colour associated with women and the fight against breast cancer, when pink ribbons etc are worn with abundance, so what’s all the fuss about. I don’t get it.

DOGS: Rodmell has an influx of new pooches at the moment, due to the old pooches departing and new people moving into the village with their dogs. We are a dog friendly village with a dog friendly pub.

DRIVING: Whilst driving into Lewes one day recently, I was amazed to see the car in front of me driving on the right side of the road. When cars coming from Lewes started flashing lights and hooting, the car, which had a foreign number plate, decided to move rather smartly to the left, much to the relief of all. A day later I was driving into Lewes and came around the bend between Iford and Swanborough to find a cyclist going across the road from the left to cycle on the right into the direction of Lewes. It was a good job I know and respect this road for its dangers and wasn’t going at the speed that a good many drivers do, as it would have been a flattened cyclist.


DAY OF PRAYER: Women’s World Day of Prayer at Cross Way Church, Steyne Road today, Friday. Services are at 2pm and 7pm. This year the Christian Women of the Bahamas have written the service. All welcome.

FAIR TRADE MARKET at Clinton Centre, Clinton Place from 10am to 1pm tomorrow, Saturday. There will be stalls, samples and a raffle. Part of Fairtrade Fortnight. Admission 50p including Fairtrade tea, coffee, soft drink and tasty bites. Accompanied children free. Tel: 01323 491638.

FREE HEALING: Foundation of Spiritual Healing and Guidance are doing free healing, qualified approved healers in attendance. No appointment needed. Tea and homemade cakes at St James Clubhouse, Blatchington Road, tomorrow, Saturday, 2pm to 4pm. Donations welcomed. Tel: 01323 896192.

CHARITY QUIZ run by Seahaven Lioness Club at the Downs 60+ Club, Sutton Corner, tomorrow, Saturday, 7.30pm. Teams of four, bring your own drinks and glasses. Tea or coffee is available. Tickets £7 per person including fish and chips, available from Newberry Tully Estate Agents, Church Street or call 01323 892007.

INNER WHEEL CLUB is holding a Bridge Drive at St Thomas More Church Hall, Sutton Road, on Monday at 1.30pm. Please bring a partner, £7 each, tea served during interval. All proceeds to Inner Wheel Charities. For tickets ring 01323 873490.

TALK: Seaford Natural History Society are holding a talk entitled Beetles in their Sussex Habitats by Graeme Lyons at St Luke’s Church Centre, Walmer Road, on Tuesday at 2.15pm. Visitors £3. Tel: 01323 491964.

POLICE PANEL MEETING for Central, South and West Wards at Seaford Police Station, Church Street, 6pm on Tuesday. Come and meet your PCSOs and discuss any police matters concerning your area.

JUMBLE SALE: Seaford Bonfire Society are holding a Jumble Sale at Bishopstone Parish Hall on Saturday March 14 from 11am to 1pm. There will also be a tombola and coffee, tea, cake being served.

REMEMBER the lady (Liz Holland) with the vibrant pink hair? During the whole month of March in 2014 she had her hair dyed pink to raise awareness and money for Progressive Supranuclear Palsy which is a rare brain disease her mother-in-law is suffering from. Liz raised an amazing £1,670. You can still donate by contacting PSP Association.

FLOWER CLUB: To celebrate Mother’s Day Seaford Evening Flower Club will be holding a coffee morning and sale of Mother’s Day posies on Saturday March 14, 10am to noon at St Leonard’s Church Hall. In addition to refreshments, and the sale of posies, there will be other stalls of interest too. All proceeds to the club and its annual chosen charity for this year. The club is also celebrating its 35th year, and welcomes new members throughout the year. Just a love of flowers is all that is required. Club nights are on the first Thursday of each month 7pm for 7.30pm at St Luke’s Church. For more details please contact the secretary, Marian Burgess, 01273 515544.

LUNCHTIME CONCERT: There will be a lunchtime concert by Julia Kemp (soprano) and Rosemary Kemp (piano) at St Leonard’s Church at 1pm on Saturday March 21. The concert will last for approximately one hour. Free admission with a retiring collection. All welcome.


SUPPORT GROUP: The Breast Cancer Support Group meet on the first Wednesday of each month 1pm to 3pm at the Telscombe Civic Centre and the third Wednesdays of each month at different venues for meals out and trips. Contact Pat Dunkley 01273 582952.

TELSCOMBE CLIFFS WI: Singalong Music with Allcorn and Theresa Hayward at Telscombe Civic Centre on March 11, 2pm to 4pm. Pam Winton will explain on 01273 585285.

RESIDENTS ASSOCIATION meets at the Telscombe Civic Centre on the first Thursday of each month, from 7.30pm to 8.30pm. Contact Chris Bowman on 01273 583123 for further details.

COUNCIL MEETINGS: Councillors’ Surgery tomorrow, Saturday, 10am to 11am at the Civic Centre. Policy and Resources committee, Monday 7.30pm also at the Civic Centre.

ANNUAL TOWN MEETING on Wednesday at the Civic Centre, 7.30pm. The Chair of Lewes District Council, Councillor Tony Nicholson, will host an event from 12.30pm to 3pm on Saturday, April 11, at Newhaven Fort to celebrate the work of unsung heroes, people in Lewes District who volunteer their services for the good of the community. To make the event as inclusive as possible, Lewes District Council would be grateful if you could nominate one or two persons who help your Lewes District-based organisation on a voluntary basis. Nominees may look after the young or old, run sports clubs, art classes, provide rescue services or do whatever you believe has a social or community benefit. Please send the names and addresses of your nominee(s) with a brief description of what they do to Invitations will be sent out in early March.

FIDDLER ON THE ROOF? If this column seems a little confused this week, it is because, with the arrival of scaffolders on Monday, the whole roof of our little cottage had to be removed and replaced. No work could be done before the rain stopped and Jack and I spent many a feverish hour consulting the weather forecasts, whilst peering out from under a mass of boards and poles. Eventually Friday dawned clear and bright and we were awoken at 7.30am, by the sound of heavy boots on the roof. All then went well until about 10am when there was a terrific crash from the kitchen. Both Jack and I raced in, Jack barking frantically, to see two denim clad legs dangling through the kitchen ceiling. Profuse apologies from a very red faced roofer, with promises to immediately repair the ceiling. I have, over the course of many years written dozens of skits, sketches, pantomimes, etc., where someone, usually myself, has fallen through a ceiling, but this was the first unscripted one I had witnessed. However, this seemed to spur them on to great efforts, so that by 3pm, the ceiling had been repaired, the whole roof taken off and replaced and the site cleared. The scaffolding has to remain until next Thursday, but Jack and I can live with that. We have now settled down into our normal peaceful existence, Jack back to snoozing before the fire.

Willingdon, Wannock & Jevington

CHURCH SERVICE: Holy Trinity Church in Cuckfield was packed on February 26 for the Eucharist service with the collation and induction of Rev Michael Maine. Fr Michael had been a curate at St Mary’s Church, Willingdon, for three and a half years, but he is now the vicar of Holy Trinity Church, Cuckfield. The two coachloads of Willingdon parishioners who attended the service were made very welcome. Holy Trinity is a lovely church in a pretty village setting. After the service and a welcome buffet in the old school hall, it was an emotional good-bye and then the journey home, arriving in Willingdon about 10.45pm. It was a long evening, but worth it.

NEIGHBOURHOOD PANEL: At the recently held meeting attended by PCSO Ali Beadon, panel members decided that the two priorities for the coming three months would be illegal and anti-social parking at Willingdon Primary School and dog fouling. PCSO Beadon said that whenever possible there would be a high visibility patrol before and after school when fixed penalty notices could be issued to offenders. There would also be a request to the school asking if letters could be sent to parents/guardians asking them not to park irresponsibly. Regarding dog fouling, local residents who are aware of this in their area should inform PCSO Beadon so that the culprits can be advised accordingly. Following a request to the parish council, it is hoped that an additional bin be put at the top of Coppice Avenue.

WANNOCK ARTISTS: Members and visitors alike were treated to a great evening at Wannock Village Hall on February 27 when talented artist Roger Della demonstrated a café scene in water soluble oils. He explained his various techniques and invited questions throughout the evening and produced a stunning painting at the end. Roger has exhibited at the Mall Gallery in London and is a member of the Wapping Group. Hopefully he will return in the future to encourage and entertain the members again. Wannock Artists meet from 7pm to 9pm on the last Friday of the month at Wannock Village Hall. For further information visit .

DAY OF PRAYER: Women’s World Day of Prayer is today, Friday. This year the service has been written by the Christian Women of the Bahamas under the title of ‘Jesus said to them Do you know what I have done to you? At St Mary’s Church, Willingdon, the service will be held at 10.30am. There will not be an address but as in previous years there will be a short period of meditation and after the service there will be some refreshments which will hopefully include cakes made from local recipes provided by the people of the Bahamas. An exhibition of information about the country and the organisation has been displayed in St Mary’s Church. The Women’s World Day of Prayer service at St George’s Church in Polegate will be held at 2pm. Anyone is welcome to either or both of these services, men as well as women.

ASTRONOMY: Eastbourne Astronomical Society members will be meeting from 7.30pm to 10pm tomorrow, Saturday, at Willingdon Memorial Hall. The speaker is Dr Jillian Scudder and her subject is entitled Cosmic Train Wrecks, When Galaxies Collide.

MEETINGS: Willingdon and Jevington Parish Council will be holding a planning meeting at 7pm on Monday followed by a full council meeting at 7.30pm at Willingdon Community School. Please ring 01323 489603 for further information. Meetings are open to the public.

COUNTRY SINGER Jane Imgles will entertain customers at the Wheatsheaf from 8.30pm tomorrow, Saturday.

THE 3 MMM’s (Mrs, Miss and Ms): The committee really excelled themselves at the recently held meeting of the 3 MMM’s. To celebrate the Chinese year of the sheep/goat, tables were decorated with Chinese lanterns and other Chinese items and there was a delicious Chinese meal, a bit more than just tasters which the members were led to expect. Little lambs were everywhere and there was a competition to choose the best home made one, not an easy decision to make. There were three joint winners. Last Wednesday there was lunch at Sussex Downs College prepared by the students for the 3 MMM members. The next meeting at St Mary’s Church Hall will be at 8pm on Wednesday when a representative from WRAS (Wildlife Rescue and Ambulance Service) will be giving a talk.

WILLINGDON WI will be meeting at 2.15pm on Thursday at Willingdon Memorial Hall when the speaker Tony Hale will be giving a talk entitled A Lifetime in Radio.

THE GROWERS’ GROUP will be meeting at 7pm on Thursday at the Red Lion when there will be a general gardening discussion as well as a plant and seed swop.

PFPA: The annual general meeting of the Paragon Fields Preservation Association will be held at 7pm on Friday March 13 at Wannock Village Hall. If you would like to nominate a member to join the committee, nominations should be in by March 10, although the chairperson may also invite and accept nominations from members present at the AGM. Please contact the secretary Mark Harley on 01323 489366 email or membership secretary Mary Taylor on 01323 485241 email . Membership is just £5 per year. After the business side of the meeting there will be a talk by David Morgan, senior ranger for the National Trust, followed by tea and coffee. In 1992 PFPA was formed, the purpose of which was to purchase and preserve the land as an open space for the amenity, recreation, quiet enjoyment of the general public and for the protection and encouragement of the local flora and fauna. Some of the active members have been busy trimming the hedges and planting new natural hedgerows along the field entranceway from Wannock Lane. A round stone seat is to be built in early spring at the top of the field which will give walkers the opportunity to rest and take in the wonderful views over the village and the Downs. The seat will display the Queen Elizabeth II Fields in Trust Association plaque together with a permanent reminder of how the PFPA came into being. Other plans include removing the rubble placed around the west entrance by the dog bin and replacing it with honeycomb mud busters and Tarmac chippings which will hopefully make footwear less muddy.