Parish pump Uckfield - June 8, 2012

Bodle Street Green

CHURCH SERVICES: St John’s Bodle Street: 9.30am Family Service. St Mary’s Warbleton: 11am Morning Worship with Holy Communion.

WI: The meeting at the hall on Tuesday at 6.30pm will be the institute’s birthday party. The speaker will be Edward Padget with his talk The Life & Legacy of Stanley Holloway. Information from Maggie on 01323 442296.

VILLAGE HALL: At the AGM Hans Petri was re-elected as chairman with Charles Harding as vice-chairman, Bryan Gibson as treasurer and Geoff Holt as Secretary. New events in the past year include the launch of the successful film club and the incorporation of TOBS into the village hall. The committee is not resting on its laurels, and is working on updating the facilities available to hirers. Future events include a Charity Soup Kitchen on 1st October, a Race Night on 27th October and a Family Matinee on 1st December.


JUBILEE: As I write this, we are half way through the Jubilee weekend, and despite the rain’s best efforts, we are having a good time here in Burwash. The Saturday afternoon tea at Dudwell St Mary’s was lovely, relaxing and delicious. The Barn dance in the evening was great fun, enjoyable, hilarious and hot. The hog roast supper went down well and everyone had a good time. The big lunch held in the swan Meadow playing field was somewhat squashy, but several hundred people pulled out all the stops and didn’t allow the rain to spoil things. Tables were groaning with food as friends got together in groups for pot luck lunches. The children had a great time on the bouncy castle, trampolines and cart track. They all got soaking wet as they competed in the races and the tug of war, but didn’t seem to care. Good Rockin’ Tonight played some lovely, lively, music throughout the afternoon. Well done to all those who braved the weather and stayed to the end, despite the down pour mid way through. Special thanks to all the organisers, another brilliant village event. Can’t wait to see the village photo.

QUIZ: Tonight is quiz night in the Pavilion at burwash common. Teams of six players are invited to go along and join in the fun. Entry is £2 per person with proceeds going back as prize money. The licensed bar will be open. For more details call Karol Richardson on 01435 883318.

BLG: The Burwash Ladies Group will meet on Wednesday afternoon at the village hall from 2.15pm. Allan Roffey will talk about Feathers Wild Bird Care. There will be tea and a raffle to end the afternoon. New members and visitors are welcome.

HORTICULTURAL: Burwash Horticultural Society are holding the annual rose, sweet pea and delphinium show next Saturday, 16 July. Schedules are available from the Burwash Newsagents. The show includes art, craft and juniors classes as well as the flowers. Entries can be handed in on the morning of the show.

STOOLBALL: The Burwash Ladies stoolball club finally got to start their league games last week with a home fixture against Mountfield. Despite some great batting from Nikki MacKay (49) Burwash could only make 99 from 13 overs. Mountfield scored 128 Karen Towner (37). The Burwash team were sporting their new kit, for which grateful thanks are given to The Burwash parish Council for their kind donation towards. They will play at home again tonight against Geebro.

PARTY: On Sunday friends and family will be gathering at the village hall for a special birthday lunch for yours truly, who finally will reach the ripe old age of 60. I have already had some lovely good wishes and am looking forward to seeing long lost friends and family for the three course lunch. I am sure we will all have a great time. But i couldn’t do this without the help of my great friends Sam Birch and davina Swaine. Thank you guys for all your help with this. I have ask for no presents, but donations to my favourite charities Demelza and Hayley’s Hope.

East Hoathly

CHURCH: The service this Sunday is 8 am. Holy Communion and 10 am Matins.

SHOW SOCIETY: The Open Gardens Day is on Sunday 17th June and access to view the gardens is by ticket only, which can be obtained from Jane Tarry on 01825 840575. This ticket also entitles the holder to a cream tea at The Gate House from 3.30 in the afternoon.

PRESERVATION SOCIETY: The next event is A Walk and Talk in the Butterfly Reserve, a guided tour at Park Corner, Park Lane, opposite the Land Rover Garage on Saturday 9th June at 2.30 pm. Everyone welcome, but if you are a non-member of the Society a donation would be appreciated. Please ring June Tidswell for further information on 01825 872240. The monthly walk arranged by Chris and Jenny is entitled Discover the Ashdown Forest, meeting at the Foresters Arms, Fairwarp on Sunday June 10 at 2pm. All welcome, and booking not essential. For further details please ring Chris or Jenny on 01825 872830

DENIS’S CRICKET: Our match against Firle today was cancelled after they were unable to use their pitch as their outfield had marquees on it due to another event (plus it’s raining as I write this on Sunday afternoon). The week before we had hosted a Sunday match against Beeding & Bramber and what a cracker it was. I felt obliged to apologise to them for the amount of hay lying in ridges on the outfield as the contractor does not collect the grass which had grown rapidly in the preceding fortnight. We batted first and crawled to 39 for 6 in the first 14 of our scheduled 40 overs. At this point, I congratulated the team on achieving more than the 27 runs scored in their first match. But then we found a batsman. Matty Cramp decided to play himself in and, partnered by Tom Welch, the score crept towards a hundred. At 97 Tom was out for 25 and it was the turn of Diving Dick to hold up the other end while Matty cut loose. Striking the ball with great timing and playing some wonderful shots Matty smote his way to reach 80 and contributed 48 of his partnership of 49 with Dick. The opposition were truly impressed with his performance and trooped off to a glorious tea needing a target of 147 to win. They claimed that there was too much fantastic food laid on by Jean Drinan and that this slowed them down in their run chase. Their run rate was never greater than ours and all our bowlers were on good form. Wickets fell steadily and they were all out for 110. There were two wickets apiece for Ryan Packham, Andy Cramp, Mark Randle and Adam Powles and one for Matty Cramp. Paul Church took two excellent catches on the boundary under the oak tree. The Goblins have had two matches and two wins so far. The first match was away to the Fairies of Chiddingly where James Packham (31 not out) and Mikey Brown (26 not out) got us off to a flier using one of our new pink balls. Nigel Bolton (23), Ryan Packham (22), Dan Church (18), Simon Clarke (18) and Jim Medrow (15) ensured that the run rate stayed above 9 runs per over and at the death we were 187 with Mark “Roller” Wren smacking a six off the only ball he received. In reply, the Fairies were held to 6 an over until they gainfully spurted in the last 4 overs adding 41 runs but their effort came too late and they lost by 46 runs. Kenan Bilal notably took 3 for 9 runs in his two overs and our bowling was generally tighter than theirs. The second match was at home to the Rats of Waldron on May 30 and a glorious evening it was. Again we batted first and Dan Church (16), Jim Medrow (24) and Mark Randle (17) kept the runs flowing at the rate of 6 an over to a total of 120. Again our bowling was tidy (despite Diving Dick conceding 31 runs in his two overs as his shoulder showed its age) and they only scored at the rate of 5 an over. Seven of our bowlers took a wicket apiece as we won by 15 runs and celebrated in the Foresters Arms with a great spread laid on by Tim and Donna. Weather permitting the Goblins are away to Upper Dicker on June 6 and away to the Rats on June 13. Our Sunday team’s match on June 10 at Bucksteppe Park has been cancelled so it will be June 17 before our next game when we play the Long Men at home. Finally, there has been a great response to our fundraising appeal and recent contributors are Vic Tidswell, Mervyn Barnes, Brian Denyer, Doug Rice and Neil Packham who have brought our total to £685. Many, many thanks to you all.

TWINNING SOCIETY: All arrived back safe and sound after another fantastic visit to Juziers. The weather was brilliant as was the organisation and goodwill. Everyone came home with gifts from the Mairie and the AFJ of beer and specialities from the Vexin like rapeseed oil, mustard and spiced cake, together with gifts from French friends. They in turn were presented with special beers from our 1648 Microbrewery which had been brewed to celebrate the Queen’s Jubilee and also the twinning. Thanks to everyone who helped with this visit and took part, to the very well behaved children, the veteran twinners and also the new twinners.

THOMAS TURNER’S DIARY: Monday 12th June 1758: “… A journeyman carpenter at work for me today a-jobbing, who dined with me on the remains of yesterday’s dinner. This day we had a very fine shower, which appears to be very seasonable, there having been almost a continual drought for near 10 weeks past … Paid the carpenter 2s.”


JUBILEE: The pundits predicted the weather so everyone was well-prepared. But local folk even managed to outdo the London crowds for sheer stoicism and good humour throughout every minute of the four day celebration. I’m sure my colleague Valerie Chidson over in Waldron will pay full tribute in her column this week but I also want to say well-done to everyone in the village, whether they helped organise the outdoor event or simply turned up to enjoy it. Tables were put out in the road and by golly, no-one was going to waste the opportunity to enjoy themselves. There were Union Jacks everywhere – on umbrellas, cup cakes and even a very smart Lanson champagne bottle cover. People huddled in mini tents and under sunshades but lots simply sat it out in the rain – like those brave singers on top of the Philharmonic barge on Sunday. Paul and Debbie organised a smoking hot barbecue and there was a very jolly magician blowing gargantuan multi-coloured balloons, much to the delight of youngsters. There were also street parties across town including a lively one in Springwood Road where a boules-meister lined up residents in a nail-biting competition. Famous comment to organiser Patrick Coffey; “Do you want the shiny balls Patrick?” Unanswerable. Individuals held garden parties, I went to a super one (half in, half out) and there was a moving oak tree planting ceremony in Jubilee Park where two young pupils from Cross in Hand School energetically excavated the hole, plonked the tree in and filled it up with earth. Presiding over the event were parish council chairman Pat Clark, accompanied by most of her fellow members, plus Cllr Chris Dowling (chairman, East Sussex County Council) and his wife, Wealden councillor Clair Dowling. Good to see former chairman Peter Newnham in good form too, and looking much better than just a few weeks ago. Get well soon Peter. Top marks to – of all people – funeral directors Cooper and Sons from Cross in Hand which is currently covered with flags and bunting. A lovely sight in a part of town we usually speed through on our way to somewhere else. I know everyone else has said it, but in a single line, didn’t Sky knock spots off the BBC in terms of Jubilee presentation? The commentator seemed to know what he was talking about and the coverage did not include one C-list celebrity with wet hair and a soggy hat. Hooray.

CROSS IN HAND WI: This was the resolutions meeting where members put forward their resolution for the national AGM which is to be held later in the year. The unanimous decision was that the government should make provision for more midwives. There is a serious national shortage of midwives due to various reasons: lack of funding, a baby boom, particularly amongst older mothers who often require support at home and failure to reach targets set by the government. Sarah Brown started the charity White Ribbon Alliance in support of the scheme. A ploughmans lunch was prepared and served by members of the committee, followed by a game of Bingo which was enjoyed by all. Birthday flowers were given toGill Becker, Georgina Braithwaite and Audrey Cousley. Their chosen charity is Associated Women of the World which supports women in poorer countries. A competition is held for the flower of the month, which this month was won by Gill Poulton. By giving a small donation, members vote for their favourite flower and the proceeds sent to the AWWC. Afternoon tea was then served to the 32 members attending. They now look forward to the next meeting on the 27th June at the garden of one of their members. Please phone 01435 862161 if you would like to know more about us or go to for more information on this friendly group.

SILVER BAND: The Heathfield Silver band enjoyed a sunny warm afternoon playing at the 2012 Heathfield Show. The band’s principal cornet player, Kerry Pert, played Sunset at the closing of the Show at 5pm. Anybody wishing to find out more about the town’s band or is thinking they would like to learn to play a brass instrument should come along to the Heathfield Farmers Market in the Co-Op car park on Saturday June 16 where they can meet and listen to the band. You will also have the opportunity to experience playing a brass instrument for yourself. The band has members of all ages and ability so it’s never to early or late to start playing. Maybe you played in the past and wish to rekindle that talent, either way everybody’s welcome. To find out more, visit:

HOW to photograph the forest – ‘Using a Digital Eye’, Getting the best from your digital camera while walking on the Forest – 11am-2pm. A short course with local photographer Dave Brooker who will be showing you how to capture the fleeting moods of the forest with a digital camera. Dave will give a short introduction before you go out onto the heath to take your pictures. Later on in the education barn you will share your images and learn about creating that ideal shot. Take a packed lunch, sensible footwear and appropriate clothes. This is a bookable and event and each place costs £10 – call 01342 823583 to book a space - they can take card payments over the phone. What Dave says about himself: “I am an amateur photographer and had been a member of Cranleigh Camera Club for some 33 years, prior to my move from Cranleigh to Crowborough nearly eight years ago. Although semi-retired I run my small cartographic and photographic operation, Mapping Ideas, from home. My main interest is landscape and travel photography, and creating digital audio-visual shows which I present to various local organisations. I have held a couple of exhibitions at the Ashdown Forest Centre and have plans for another in the future. I have also been pleased to supply maps and images for some of the Ashdown Forest publications. I especially enjoy the varied photographic opportunities available in and around the Ashdown Forest area and East Sussex. I have had a keen interest in photography for nearly 50 years having processed my own prints in monochrome and colour until my move into digital photography about eight years ago. I currently use a ‘Canon 500D’ digital SLR camera. Using ‘Aperture’ and ‘Photoshop’ software on the ‘Macintosh’ platform for image cataloguing and adjustments, I print my photographs in monochrome and colour on an Epson R3000 ink jet printer using light fast inks.”

JAZZ: Waldron Cricket Club holds a Jazz on the Lawn evening on Saturday at 7.30pm at Heronsdale Farm, Moat Lane. Take your own picnic and there will be a cash bar. Tickets cost £10. For tickets contact Malcolm and Alison Hunt on: 01435 862694.

TAKE THAT tribute band. Next weekend is the event lots of people have been waiting for. Heathfield and Waldron Rotary Club have booked the ‘Greatest Take That Tribute Band’ to perform at the Community Centre on Saturday, June 16. There will also be a Tina Turner tribute. Heathfield Community College Batacuda Band will also be entertaining guests. The event is being set up as a picnic in the park when everyone is invited to bring their own food and drink and enjoy the music. But if you are all picnicked-out, then there will be food and drink on site. The Rotary Club tell us the Take That band has its own website and performs twice during the summer at the Eastbourne bandstand. They also have a Robbie Williams in their group who will perform his own songs. All the proceeds go to Rotary charities, the major one being Help for Heroes. Tickets cost £15 (adult) £7.50 (child under 16) bought in advance but on the night tickets will cost £20 (adult) and £10 (child.)


JUBILEE: Mayfield knows how to organise an event with skill and style. Well done to those in charge of the Jubilee street party on Sunday who so wisely opted to utilise the Memorial Hall. Some brave souls (including the vicar) showed their stiff upper lips by occupying tables outside, but the majority huddled indoors where bunting and flags created a terrific atmosphere. The Mayfield Band excelled themselves and it was good to see band members playing happily, without having to dodge showers, huddle under a marquee or just keep blue hands moving. I really believe absolutely everyone in Mayfield was there and there was a celebratory feel to the event. Whether people opted for champagne or lemonade, spirits were high and some of the picnics looked extremely sophisticated. Marco the Magician did his act and delighted children and their mums and dads. What a triumph of organisational expertise.

WOODHILL PATIENTS GROUP: The defibrillators will be in position by June 23. Warwick Child was the first to have the idea of getting defibrillators for the use of the community. There will be two defibrillators in Mayfield: one on the wall of the Primary School and the other in the porch of Woodhill Surgery. There will also be one in Five Ashes on the wall of the Five Ashes Inn. They have been obtained from SECAMB (South East Coast Ambulance Service) without charge and the Woodhill Patients Group will be responsible for their upkeep and maintenance. They are for the use of the public and have the potential to save lives. Clearly there is little point in having them if people are afraid to use them should the need arise. In fact the ones they have been given can be used by anyone without special training. However clearly people must have the confidence to be able to use them and so SECAMB will come and give a talk/demonstration and to answer any concerns or questions that you might have. This will be at the Memorial Hall, Mayfield, at 7.30pm on Friday, June 22. The aim is to show just how easy they are to use and to show why you cannot do any harm when attempting to use them. There is no charge and everyone who attends will be given a certificate by SECAMB. The meeting should last about an hour or so. Also SECAMB will be explaining about the Community Responder Scheme. It is hoped that a similar scheme can be set up in the village. Essentially the scheme is run by volunteers who have received specialist training in basic life support and who can as a result provide support and assistance to a patient pending the arrival of an ambulance. Bearing in mind that we are in a rural location it may not always be possible for an ambulance to arrive here speedily. If there is a Scheme in place then when a 999 call is received, at the same time that the Ambulance Service is notified the community responder on duty is notified too. Being close by they can attend and provide the care needed while the ambulance is on its way. Community responders are not a substitute for fully qualified paramedics but are an added bonus for any patient they may attend, and working with the Ambulance Service can “buy time” for the patient until the ambulance can arrive. There are already many of these schemes in the area served by SECAMB and in 2010 over 10,000 patients in their area benefited from the intervention of community responders. Many people who volunteer for these schemes are not medical professionals but rather “lay” people. If this scheme sounds at all interesting to you then do please come to the meeting to find out more. Finally there are still three places left on the latest Save-Life course. If you want to join the course please call chairman Andrew Watson on: 01435 872202.

MAYFIELD and Five Ashes summer church fete: Everyone is invited to go to Court Meadow for the annual fete on June 16 between noon and 4pm. Organised activities include Mayfield Silver Band (playing for the first hour), tractor rides around Court Meadow, a children’s fancy dress competition with an Olympic theme, a dog show, welly wanging, fun golf, tombolas for the adults and the children, a cheese stall, a ‘hanging basket’ stall, bowling for a joint of ham, and a Phoenix cards stall. Cubs, Brownies and Scouts will be there too. Enjoy a wander around while feasting on a burger or hot dog from the BBQ, a beer or Pimms from our bar, and follow all this with a cream tea from 2pm.

I WAS GLAD: The Mayfield Consort’s forthcoming concert entitled “I Was Glad!”, in celebration of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, will take place on June 16 at 7.30pm in Mayfield Convent Chapel. The Mayfield Consort is a small ensemble of singers and they are looking forward to performing some works that traditionally are sung by “choirs of a 1000” such as Parry’s “I Was Glad” and “Blest Pair of Sirens” together with Walton’s “Jubilate”, mixed with some beautiful quiet pieces such as Wesley’s “Thou Wilt Keep Him in Perfect Peace” and Paul Mealor’s “Ubi Caritas”, which was sung at Prince William and Catherine Middleton’s marriage last year. Jonathan Hope of Southwark Cathedral will be the accompanist for the evening. Tickets (£10 adults and £5 children) are available from Paul Money at the Post Office or from Jonnie Jones - email:

MAYFIELD GARDENS: open in June for charity - in aid of the National Gardens Scheme (NGS). On Sunday (2 to 5pm) we will be treated to seven Mayfield Gardens open to the public to support the NGS charities. Four of them will be new openings for 2012. Combined admission is £5 and children are free. Gardens in the group will be Laurel Cottage, Warren House, Uppercross House, Hoopers Farm (new), Meadow Cottage (new), Tew Cottage (new) and Yeomans (new). Refreshments will be available - home-made teas at Yeomans and Warren House. Plants will be on sale at Uppercross House. For beneficiaries please see the NGS website at:


The highlight of the summer for the village’s many gardeners is about to happen. Members are off on a day trip to the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew, an event that’s open to everyone – members and non-members alike. At Kew, you’ll be able to roam freely around the glasshouses and gardens and see flower beds created to celebrate the Olympics, a symphony of colour based on the Games’ iconic rings. Maybe you’ll just wander around Kew’s parklands, and take in views of the River Thames, and of course there are plenty of tea rooms and cafés whenever you fancy a restoring break.

They’re off on June 20, so if you want to secure your place on the coach, please urgently get in touch. The day trip costs £25, and they’ll be departing from the Middle House at 9am (other pick-up points to be decided), returning by 6pm. To make your reservation, contact chairman Eddie Du-Cann (01435 872705;

BONFIRE SOCIETY: The society is having a family sponsored nature walk on June 16 for about five miles around Mayfield. There will be a list of plants and animals to spot with prizes for the children. Start at the Carpenters Arms at 10am. Everyone welcome to get sponsored to fund-raise, or just come for the walk and give a donation. Please ring Jo for sponsor forms and details. There will also be a 70/80s disco (with a little modern thrown in) at the Mayfield Memorial Hall on June 16 from 8-11.30pm. Come and have a nostalgic dance and relive your youth. There will be a licensed bar. Quiz Night Saturday will take place on June 30 at Mayfield Memorial Hall, 7pm for 7.30pm (ploughman’s supper included). Tickets from Rosina’s or on the door. Please come along and have some fun supporting our fundraising activities as the coffers are very low this year!


THE BOWLS CLUB will be playing away at the Isle of Thorns tomorrow, Saturday, and will play Buxted Park at home on Sunday. They also have the following mid week games Tuesday Mid-Sussex Lindfield at home, plus a game against John Spriggs Crawley Town away. Games commence at 6pm.

CRICKET: Tomorrow, Saturday, the first team are away to Hailsham, the second XI are playing Buxted Park at home, the third XI have an away game against Crowhurst Park III and the fourth XI are at Temple Grove against Hailsham IV. All these matches will commence at 1.30pm. On Sunday Newick are playing at home against Sussex Martlets at 2pm. The junior under 11 year old have an evening games away against Lindfield, this will commence at 6pm.

SUNDAY SERVICES at St. Mary’s Church are Holy Communion at 8am, and at 10.30am Morning Service with Holy Communion.

AFTERNOON CLUB: On Thursday the Afternoon Club will be meeting in the Community Centre at 2.30pm. The speaker will be Tony Turk and his subject The Hisotry of The Newick and Chailey Railway Station. If you require further information please telephone 01825 722154 or 722650.


JUBILEE: We’re glued to the TV again, watching the Queen. No celebrity in the world is as admired as her. It makes you proud to be British, despite all our moaning. Let’s hope the Duke recovers OK. Uckfield was very quiet and there was a lack of decorations. My neighbours went for a drive yesterday and they said that a lot of villages were well-decorated. We drank some of my home-made cherry wine. Cherries Jubilee? It was very acceptable.

NEXT EDITION: Please send in your articles early, by the weekend, or straight to the Sussex Express for next week as I’m off to The Lebanon for a week. That should be interesting.

UCKFIELD SINGERS: The Uckfield Singers are going from strength to strength. We are now 85 strong and 16 on the waiting list. We are singing on Monday night jubilee with the Brass Band and we are singing in Greenwich in June which I would like to put an advert in for we are having our summer concert in July then the Uckfield Brass band would like us to do a concert with them in the autumn and then next year there is a possibility we will put a concert on with the Crowborough Singers it is wonderful to think we are doing all this we feel very proud.

SING THE MERIDIAN: An evening of songs from the shows and the worlds of folk and popular music by the Greenwich Community Choir @ the Uckfield Singers at Eltham Park Methodist Church, Westmount Road SE19 1XX. June 25, 2012, 7.30pm. Tickets £5 please ring Brian Redman on 01825 713482.


FR DAVID It was announced on Sunday that our Priest-in-Charge Fr David Charles will be leaving our parish of Waldron and Cross in Hand to go to Christ Church, Eastbourne. Fr David has only been in our parish for just two years and has been tremendously active so he will be very much missed, not only in the pulpit for his thoughtful and stimulating sermons but also for his participation in all the activities in the parish. High points for me were seeing him striding up the hill at the end of 15 miles sponsored walk round the footpaths of Waldron and his hilarious acting role last weekend as the obsequious Norman Seakins in the extract from The Uncommon Reader by Alan Bennett. Both of these were part of the programme of events put on by the Friends of Waldron Churches in their efforts to raise funds to repair our belfry roof at All Saints’. We can wish Fr David well in his new parish, but everyone will be sorry that we are again into interregnum while the PCC looks for another priest.

JUBILEE Waldron people have always been ready for a party and didn’t we have a great one last weekend? From Friday through till Monday evening there was something going on in the village with scarcely time to take a breather and recorders were certainly well-used so that we could keep up with events in London at the same time. Our village entertainment on Friday evening, “Britannia Rules OK!” was a sideways look at the Queens of England and from the bloodcurdling opening with Buddicca and her female cohort of terrifying women to the present day with Queen Elizabeth trialling a spraycan of paint in the amusing tale of her faithful corgi Titus, it was a throroughly entertaining event. The packed audience made it obvious that they had thoroughly enjoyed themselves with generous donations to the collection for the belfry roof repairs. “What a shame it’s only on for one night” said several people, but the rest of the Jubilee weekend was packed with happenings and there was just not enough time to fit in another performance.

CRICKET On Saturday afternoon the cricketers got in on the act with their match against Chiddingly which entertained rather more people than normal, happily watching the game in the fitful sunshine and then enjoying a vast tea. Alison Hunt, Angela Hough, Alison Bather and several other ladies produced cakes and there were more pairs of hands roped in to serve the teas and clear up afterwards.

THE BIG PICNIC If anyone was watching at about 9.30 am in the middle of the village, they would have observed a small huddle of people with their heads together conferring and looking up at the grey sky. The question was “in or out?” for the Big Picnic, and having heard about the vast crowds in London standing in the rain to watch the Thames flotilla of 1000 boats, the decision was made. “We’re British, for goodness’ sake, we can party in the rain” we agreed, and out went the tables, the WI’s bunting flapped in the breeze, the big telly was installed, the gazebo put up for the band, another erected to protect the vast array of raffle prizes, the barbecue prepared, the Pimms mixed and from noon the first-comers arrived carrying their picnics and chairs to bag a good spot. The centre of the village hummed with activity, cameras clicked, every version of the union jack was worn in a splendid variety of costume, and the Queen clad in furlined cloak and wearing her crown was seen selling raffle tickets (or was it her stand-in?). Nick Beak entertained children and mums and dads with a large collection of circus amusements and some absolutely huge soap-bubbles and Bev Healey put on two performances of Punch and Judy under cover behind the shop, to great applause from an excited group of children. The Wakin’ Snakes played like dervishes and got the crowd dancing, and despite the occasional burst of rain, there was a smile on every face. When it was wet, the brollies went up and the Pimms went down and what if the sandwiches got a bit damp? What’s a little shower between friends? And by the end of the afternoon, when the raffle was drawn and the picnic baskets were packed away (for the next time) we were all the best of friends. Those with some energy still left went across to the church for a celebratory Festival Evensong rounded off with two verses of the National Anthem and a rousing performance of William Walton’s Crown Imperial on the organ and then we tottered off to rest our aching feet.

OPEN GARDENS And our Jubilee celebrations were still going strong on Monday when three beautiful and contrasting gardens were opened for villagers, family and friends to wander and admire. The amount of effort and imagination which had gone into the design and upkeep of all three gardens was phenomenal and there must have been about 250 people who visited and enjoyed all three.

BEACON The day and our four days of celebration was rounded off by the lighting of our Jubilee beacon on the Cattam at 10.26 and we had an excellent turnout of about 100 people roaring out the National Anthem and giving three cheers for the Queen before Ben the Bonfire Boy thrust a burning brand into the bonfire to set the whole thing ablaze. We could just see another beacon in the distance to the south, to link us with the other 4000 beacons which were being lit all over the UK and throughout the Commonwealth. It was a great way to finish a very jolly weekend. When’s the next excuse for a party, Your Majesty? We’re all ready in Waldron!

THANKS Frankly, after all that has gone on in the village over the last four days, it’s invidious to pick out individuals to thank, because I’m certain to forget someone, but you all know who you are! You’re the team who made the bunting and those who put it up, the men who worked tirelessly to assemble the staging and lighting and sound in the church, to locate and collect the huge TV, those who dreamed up, rehearsed and performed in “Britannia Rules”, those who assembled all the various parts of the Party, who sponsored the entertainers, who poured the Pimms and made the cupcakes, who sponsored the prizes for the raffle, who opened their gardens to the public, who planned and executed faultlessly the beacon bonfire project, and finally those who cleared up afterwards, took down the signs and collected the bunting. And of course the Friends of Waldron Churches committee members and the group of Jubilee weekend planners who schemed and dreamed to make it all happen. And as well as having a marvellous time, we did make some money (the outturn isn’t quite complete yet, but I’ll tell you next week) which will all go towards the repair of our beautiful belfry roof at our 800-year-old church of All Saints’. An enormous thank you everyone!

SERVICES This Sunday June 10 is the first after Trinity and it will be celebrated with Holy Communion at All Saints’ at 8.00 am, and a CTH (Churches Together in Heathfield) United Service at Heathfield Community Centre, Sheepsetting Lane, at 11am.

Warbleton &

Rushlake Green

CHURCH SERVICES: St Mary’s Warbleton: 11am Morning Worship with Holy Communion. It is my sad duty to report the passing of Berwick Smith. After a private funeral in the morning, there will be a memorial service at St Mary’s at 2.30pm on Monday 11th. Joanna requests that NO black be worn. All are welcome. St John’s Bodle Street: 9.30am Family Service. Heathfield Chapel: 11am and 6.30pm services. The speaker will be Leslie Message, who works with the Belgian Evangelical Mission, and grew up in Punnetts Town.

HISTORY GROUP: The speaker on Monday at 7.30pm (for 8pm) will be Kevin Gordon who will tell us about the Lost Village of Tide Mills, near Newhaven.

THE JUBILEE: The weekend started with a ploughman’s lunch at the Dunn Village Hall last Friday. The tables were beautifully laid out with red, white and blue decorations. There was a good selection of food, and a good number tucked in. On Saturday, the focus shifted to the village green, for the Jubilee Tea Party. In the morning, a parish walk from Warbleton church, via the Green was led by Pat Breusnel, and refreshments were kindly provided by Ian and Isabel Collett. I gather about 40 people joined the walk. At 3pm Nancy Buss, our oldest resident, welcomed everyone and declared the proceedings open. We then enjoyed a series of games for children and adults with many taking part. We were entertained by three forms of music, in turn. Firstly, Goff Radcliffe started his wonderful 89 key Marenghi fairground organ, which in fact is built from the front of one organ and the works of another. Then we had Dan and Sarah playing their folk music, with Warbleton Brass Band finishing the afternoon with their great music. It was a great afternoon with many people present, some choosing to have their tea at the tables set out on the road between The Stores and the Horse and Groom, and others spreading out across the Green. The pub provided a barbeque and bar and we had a tea stall. Guests were invited to bring a decorated cake to be displayed together, and then shared. They looked good and tasted great. At 5.30pm, Peter Dunn proposed the loyal toast, followed by one to Prince Philip for his support to Her Majesty. Nancy as the oldest resident and Eli an 11 month baby were given commemorative gifts. A village photo was taken, and copies are available by email to those who were present. Later in the year a commemorative oak tree will be planted, along with a time capsule. The weather, although not brilliant was dry and fairly warm, and helped things along. Thanks to the small committee who worked so hard to arrange this event.

Sunday morning was the family service at church with a jubilee theme. Monday saw an interesting collection of soap boxes gather in the car park of the Black Duck for the Church Hill Challenge. This event was first held in 2002 for the Golden Jubilee and again in 2003 and 2004. I think there were about 20 carts in total, most of which made it all the way down the hill, with the best carrying on up Kingsley Hill, to the point where the wooded section starts. The most testing part of the course is the junction with Hammer Lane. As you approach the junction the road slopes down to the right, and then you have to bear left. Once you have cleared that it is a plain run, apart from the potholes. The winner was Daniel Lambert-Gorwyn in a very sleek streamlined cart. Second was Douglas Andrews in the same cart – it was obviously a good design! In third place were Glenn Hadlow and Anton Daw in a two-seater streamlined cart. It was a fun day with many people attending. The event was raising money for prostrate cancer and a couple of village charities. Again many people were involved in planning this event and in marshalling etc. Thanks to them and to Gary and Nikki Kinnell for bringing this event back to Warbleton, they were very busy all day.

FLOWER SHOW: Schedules for the flower show, to be held on July 28 are available from The Stores. Full details of the classes and the other events around the show are contained within.