Becoming’ opens with an anecdote that sets the tone of warmth throughout the book. She tells how, having left the White House, and hungry in the night, she goes down to her own kitchen and makes a cheese toastie to eat on her back doorstep, suddenly becoming aware of her newly-found freedom to do something that would be impossible in the White House. So starts the memoir of a woman who grew up in a humble black-district in the south side of Chicago and rose to become America’s First Lady with many achievements in her own right. Continue reading “‘Becoming’ by Michelle Obama – ‘wife, mother, dog lover’”
Hadlow Down Beavers & Cubs are both part of the 1st Buxted Scout Group and meet on Mondays.
Beavers meet in the Village Hall from 5 to 6 pm
Cubs meet in St. Marks Church from 6.15 to 7.45 pm
Beavers are our youngest members, and generally meet for an hour per week. They enjoy all that Scouting has to offer; being introduced to outdoor activities, having the opportunity to be creative, explore their local community and experience the excitement of a Beaver Scout sleepover with their friends.
The Beaver Colony is the first and youngest section of the Scout Group. Beaver Scouts are young people aged between 6 and 8 years old. There is core flexibility in the age range: young people can join from age 6 to 8 years and can move to Cubs from age age 8 to 10 ½ It may sometimes be appropriate to extend this flexibility for young people with additional needs.
For Cubs, excitement and adventure are key. Their programme offers a huge variety of activities surrounding areas of fitness, global and beliefs; whilst allowing them to be creative and get involved in their local communities. Cubs are introduced to exciting outdoor skills and take part in adventurous activities, as well as camps and residential experiences.
The Cub Pack is the second section of the Scout Group following on from Beavers. Cub Scouts are young people aged between 8 and 10 ½.
For Joining contact firstname.lastname@example.org
or go to website www.buxtedscouts.org
For general communication:-
The Horticultural Society invite you to join them for their Autumn supper to be followed by a talk from Fergus Garrett, head gardener at Great Dixter.
Held at the Village Hall on 16th October ~ 6.30 for 7pm.
Tickets £8 for members, £10 for non-members. The talk will be after supper. For bookings and enquiries please contact Barbara Ball on 01825 830231.
Are you an avid reader? Or perhaps new to the village. Did you know we have a flourishing Book Club?
The book club started about 15 years ago with just 3 members and our first novel was ‘the Girl With a Pearl Earring’. Since then we have grown into a small but enthusiastic group of committed readers. We meet monthly in different members houses for book discussion and a bit of gossip over a glass of wine. Books are chosen democratically: someone suggests a book which we may vote on. We aim to read widely — modern literary books, some classics and, occasionally, a thriller or a biography. We want to enjoy our reading but sometimes to challenge ourselves and read something we may otherwise not have thought of.To find out more about the Village Book Club contact Heather.
Activity Address Rose Cottage and various venues
Name of Contact Heather Mines
Contact Address Rose Cottage, Hall Lane, Hadlow Down, TN22 4HJ
Telephone 07974 204231
Email Address email@example.com
‘ It was the worst of times, it was the worst of times. Again.’
Last month the Book Club read Ali Smith’s ‘Autumn’. Published in 2016 soon after the Referendum, it is the first of four seasonal state of the nation novels and was shortlisted for the Mann Booker Prize. It is a novel that has haunted me since reading and re-reading it, largely due to the poetic flow of the language, which has been described as ‘a beautiful poignant symphony of memories, dreams and transient realities’, but also to the complexity of the ideas, the richness of literary allusions, the use of symbolism and the treatment of time. It is an elusive, multi-layered novel. Continue reading “Autumn by Ali Smith”
“There are chapters in every life which are seldom read and certainly not aloud”
Carol Shields was born in 1936 and died in 2003. She had five children and her first novel was accepted in the week she turned forty. She went on to become a prizewinning novelist and an academic with an interest in women’s rights. The ‘Stone Diaries’ 1993 is her most famous book. it was shortlisted for the Mann Booker prize and went on to win the Pulitzer prize and the Governor General’s award in Canada. In many ways it reflects her own domesticity as well as her wider aspirations. Continue reading “The Stone Diaries by Carol Shields”
She is too fond of books and it has turned her brain
Louisa May Allcott
On a cold November evening in 2003, three of us met in the Village Hall and Hadlow Down Book Club began. Our first book was ‘The Girl with a Pearl Earring’.Since then, our numbers have grown; we have met regularly and read a wide range of books with some lively discussion over a glass of wine. Our meetings are informal and non-threatening and books are chosen democratically. Although we aim to read some challenging books, we do so without pressure and it is an enjoyable experience for all of us.
I’ve now been asked to write a short piece on a regular basis about the books we are reading, and I thought I would introduce it with an overview of some of the books from the past year.
One book by a new author was Francis Spufford’s acclaimed ‘Golden Hill’, a fast-moving story of 18th century New York in the style of ‘Tom Jones’.We recommend it for those who enjoy action but with a deeper meaning. Mothering Sunday’ by Graham Swift was a complete contrast – a short and beautifully intense erotic novel about a relationship between a servant girl and the young master set just after the First World War. I personally loved this novel and find it gets even better on re-reading.
Another short novel was Ian McEwan’s ‘Nutshell’ – a modern version of ‘Hamlet’ narrated by the unborn child in the womb of the Gertrude character. Extremely funny – this foetus develops a taste for fine wine and has a view on the state of the world from Radio 4 that his mother listens to. Our other McEwan Novel ‘The Children Act,’ was made into a successful film after we had read it – we like to think we are ahead of things. For those who, like me, enjoy dialogue and, in particular, closely-argued court scenes, this was an absorbing book about a moral dilemma and it was enhanced by McEwan’s usual erudition.
Elizabeth Moss was a new writer to us and we enjoyed the wit and humour of ‘Tidal Zone’. It was serious and potentially tragic about a teenager who suddenly has an anaphylactic seizure and dies for a few minutes. It is also full of humour, however, with its all too sharp observation of modern institutions and middle-class family life. Moss is herself an historian and her narrator’s research into the bombing of Coventry and the rebuilding of the cathedral provides depth of meaning and enhances a satisfying read. I have since read her ‘Night Waking’ and would recommend this novelist.
We have read a few Mann Booker prize winners including ‘The Siege of Krishnapur’ – a horrifying but hilarious account of moral and physical collapse by JG Farrell. We also read Penelope Lively’s ‘Moon Tiger’ (shortlisted for the Booker 50 Year Golden Award), and then ‘The English Patient’ which actually won the award. These two novels about the aftermath of WW2 marked a high spot in a year of enjoyable reading. Lively’s novel, written from the narrative viewpoint of a dying but reprobate old woman looking back on her unconventional life and loves as a war journalist crackles with life. ‘The English Patient’ by way of contrast centres on four war-scarred survivors who find refuge and healing in a ruined Italian castle – a place of haunting beauty and concealed dangers. It was quite a challenging read but one that continues to resonate in the mind. We all felt it was well worth reading.
Sometimes we enjoy something lighter and Gail Honeyman’s ‘Eleanor Oliphant is Absolutely Fine’ was easy but satisfying with a real surprise at the end. About loneliness, it was sad but also had some very funny moments. We contrasted this with another novel about loneliness, ‘Our Souls at Night’ by Kent Haruf, a subtle, sensitive study of the relationship which develops between two elderly people who decide to spend platonic nights together.
Our current read is Carol Shields’s ‘The Stone Diaries’ and we meet on Wednesday 20th March to discuss it. Should you wish you join the group, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or 830314.
HADLOW DOWN HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY ANNUAL FLOWER SHOW 2019
A challenging few weeks for gardeners prior to our Annual Show on 3rd August. However, our entrants managed to produce their usual high standards of produce (enormous potatoes this year), beautiful flowers, and those who entered the Flower Arranging Class excelled themselves with creative colour for the ‘Bonfire’ display and a bit of humour for a display in an egg cup (there was even a toasted ‘soldier’ to go with the egg cup!)
The Domestic classes were a treat to see, with several fruit cakes, delicious breads, frittata and a good selection of jams, relish and the flavoured brandy.
There was a wonderful decorated cake with a Lego theme, difficult for ‘little fingers’ to keep their hands off as they wanted to play with the Lego pieces.
The entries for the art and crafts classes produced some interesting pieces, and of course the photographic section had some stunning photos as usual. We had 9 entries for a Limerick in place of a poem, so look out for next year’s challenge!!! Thank you to the children who entered the children’s classes, the Rocky Road looked yummy.
From all of us on the Horticultural Society Committee a big thank you for partaking in this colourful event in our Village Hall. Thank you also to the team serving up the delicious cakes and teas in the afternoon, always a high point of the afternoon and a time for committee to sit down and enjoy listening to comments and to see the hall buzzing with people.
Hope to see you all again next year. (1st August 2020)
We meet in St. Mark’s Church for coffee and creative crafts on Fridays from 10.30 am to 12 noon.
Activity Address: St. Mark’s Church, Hadlow Down
Contact Name: Ros Hawthorn
Telephone: 01825 733770