As life very, very slowly returns to something like normal (behind a face covering) Rye and District Fixtures appeared through my letter box again. However, just as Rye News is experiencing, fixtures, ie events, are still few and far between.
Outdoor markets are open though with Wednesday mornings in Rye staging the farmers’ market at the rear of the Cinque Ports pub with fresh food, produce and crafts and Thursday’s general market in Rye’s old cattle market by the station open from very early to sometime early afternoon – depending on the weather.
And the Thursday market, much shrunken after Christmas, is getting back to its old size apart from the big white food tent. But Friday’s indoor market at the Rye Community Centre has yet to resurface and social distancing and numbers attending could be a problem – and it probably could not be the social gathering it normally is.
Events are therefore very thin on the ground in August’s Fixtures (as they are in Rye News as well) and are limited to two – volunteering in Rye’s Community Garden in Love Lane between 11am and 1pm on Saturday, August 22 and between 2pm and 4pm on Monday, August 31.
You will need to bring your own gloves, and follow social distancing guidelines. For more information visit their website or Rye Community Garden on Facebook.
One other event mentioned, also with social distancing, is Ocean Ceramics “Mad Potter’s Garden Party” on Sunday, August 30 from 11am to 5pm at 7 Windmill Way, Winchelsea Beach in aid of St Michael’s Hospice and the Pett Level Independent Rescue Boat. Apart from the potter’s studio with original ceramics there will be a fortune teller, stalls, refreshments, and a “Mad Hat” competition with prizes.
Apart from the usual mix of information and adverts, Fixtures also features Rye and District Community Transport’s 200 Club monthly winners, and the 200 Club is one of the fundraising ways the local 326 service keeps running.
To join the club, which starts a new year in September and has monthly draws, a Christmas draw, and a jackpot draw, contact the driver on one of the 326 buses, or Rye and District Community Transport at Rye Wharf, Rye Harbour TN31 7TE.
Fixtures reports that other bus and train services are still subject to change because of the pandemic, although train services seem more reliable. Eurostar no longer stops at Ashford. The 102 bus to Camber and Lydd has been laying on extra services in the school holidays to cope with both demand with social distancing on the buses and delays caused by the Camber traffic.
Rye Mutual Aid continues to be active during the pandemic and Fixtures publishes a long list of volunteers – which may still be useful in the autumn. Adams in Rye High Street, who produce Fixtures, are also advertising personal protective equipment (PPE) and meeting other business needs as life struggles to get back to as normal as it can be.
Rye Food Bank also continues to advertise as needs continue over the school holidays and growing unemployment may fuel demand.
Blessed are those that stay indoors
And while on the one hand some advertisers like Rye TV Aerial Satellite Services and CCTV are stressing the steps they are taking to follow government guidelines, others like an opticians were saying they had to “close our doors for all non-essential care”. So life is still far from normal.
Rye’s Methodist Church updates the Beatitudes with a pandemic list starting with “Blessed are those that stay indoors, for they have protected others” and in the advertisement for Rye’s Parish Church Rector Canon David Frost says “as for predicting when the remaining restrictions will be lifted, particularly to do with music and singing, I have no more idea than you do! I have been caught out trying to predict progress before, and it hasn’t worked out, so this time I’m making no predictions at all”.
However some church services have re-started, but with social distancing, one way systems, pews closed off, and an emphasis on sanitation – it’s bit like going on a bus or train really!
But Fixtures is back on paper – even if like Rye News it does not yet have many fixtures to write about and life is partially getting back to a “new normal”.
Image Credits: Rye News library , Gillian Roder , Kenneth Bird .