All this for a penny-farthing

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Last Friday, October 16, the Rye Museum held a Gala Evening to raise funds for the restoration of their penny-farthing bicycle, originally owned by the late Rev E. W. Baker.

The evening started at 6:30 pm with wine and cheese at the East Street Museum with about 50 attendees. The magnificent spread was prepared by Diana  Hajikakou, Sue Manktelow and Heather Stevenson. Diana provided wonderful bread and biscuits and Sue provided a selection of cheeses.

The highlight was, probably, the cheese penny-farthing created by Heather and shown below.

The gathering then moved on to the Town Hall where the Rye Shakespeare Company (RSC) were to perform and the audience were welcomed by the RSC leader, Dilys Mayor.

The first play was “Lucia and the Strange Case of Martha Lamb” and involved a haunting at Mallards, Lucia’s home. There were stories about haunting in India from Major Benjy Mapp-Flint and eventually an exorcism performed by the Rev. Kenneth Bartlett which resulted in the appearance of the ghost of Martha Lamb.

But no more about this tale as you may be tempted to come when it is next performed.

The second play was “Ryebecca”, a rework of Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier, but based at “Mandible” – a gothic mansion on the coast below Rye – and the owner of Mandible, Mex de Mincer, has bought his second wife home after their honeymoon. The first Mrs de Mincer, Rebecca, died in tragic circumstances when a storm sank the boat she was on, alone.

The newly weds are welcomed by a strange crew of staff led by Mrs Lucifer and her dead cat, Tiggles. I can not say too much more about the story without giving things away, but there are many twists and turns about the night the boat sank in a storm.

The evening was a great success and I am sure the event will have made a great contribution to the restoration of the penny-farthing.

Photos and slide show by Ray Prewer

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