Ore in Bloom, general Ore update.

Just a quick up-date. Tomorrow we are off to Chichester for the night. We should be travelling along the A27 past Shoreham Airport, but the road will still be closed. That air crash at the weekend was horrific.
    Saturday was the prize-giving event for Ore in Bloom, and I went along to the Community Centre to support Philosopher, who is currently on the Committee.  My previous post about Ore is, for some mysterious reason, the most-viewed Battleaxe post ever, so it’s good to do an update.
     Ore in Bloom aims to improve the look of the area and to develop interest in gardening among locals of all ages. It is heavily, and generously, supported by Sarah Kowitz from Fairlight Hall, and until he left recently, the head gardener, Peter, was the Chair. His departure has left the group in a degree of disarray. Many of our WI ladies used to enjoy his monthly gardening and flower-arranging groups – I have no idea what will happen to those.
      Sadly, Philosopher is not staying on the Committee. His high-level skills could have been useful, but being a kind and conscientious man, he seemed to end up doing things like making tea and, on Saturday, selling bulbs. Not that he minds, but I don’t think he found it sufficiently interesting. Also, I suspect the Ore-istas on the committee might have seen him as an in-comer, and a posh in-comer to boot.

Philosopher goes litter-picking

      As well as local garden things the group also works with local schools etc., and could potentially do much more.  It deserves support, and if I didn’t have the WI, I might get involved.  However, I also know from long experience that I find working with community-led groups difficult. Bossy, organising Battleaxes like me end up doing more and more while simultaneously getting savaged for our pains.
      I was sitting next to one of our local Councillors, Richard Street, at the prize-giving, and reflected that I would not like his job. Whatever one did, one would never be right. I’ve had plenty of chances to go into politics, and politicians must find ways of surviving and thriving, but I think I’d just expire with frustration.
     I wouldn’t mind miraculously arriving on the parliamentary front bench without having struggled all the way up. Oh, hang on, yes I would mind. Look at the Labour party leadership contest. It makes me despair.  Never mind whether any of the wretched four candidates could win an election, (which they assuredly could not, take it from Battleaxe), the in-fighting will now be successfully antagonising the remaining Labour voters.
       Anyway, the prize-giving was a nice do, despite people grumbling about it being held too early in the year. The Mayor presented the prizes, which are for best local gardens and garden initiatives.


       Ore itself seems to be doing quite well at the moment. The Co-op store, which we use a lot, has
just been refurbished, which presumably means it must be surviving the competition with the unwanted Tesco along the road.  I see the Co-op food business is rebranding itself as ‘local, little and often’, which seems a good move. Battleaxe never goes into the Tesco on principle, but every time I look in the window, the store seems practically empty. Heh heh, sez I. 
       Ore seems to be becoming the take-away food centre for Hastings – as well as KFC, Pizza Hut, a chippy, kebab shops and a couple of down-market Chinese places, we are apparently now going to get a Domino’s pizza….. I suppose it is better than an empty shop, but still, a bit unfortunate.  Far too much junky food.
       I am currently vaguely thinking of developing a WI resolution to go forward from our branch calling for a ‘sugar tax’.
       In my last post I mentioned the controversy surrounding Ore’s open space, Speckled Wood. It has now largely been saved from the developers, which is good news.

Speckled Wood

       It’s nice to get proper coffee in Ore Village, at the Community Centre Pepper Pot Cafe. The other day we walked up to Aldi and stopped on the way back, sitting out in the sun. Excellent.

Proper coffee….

       Last year I entered our front garden for the ‘Best Newcomer’ category in the annual competitions, but came nowhere. Peter said he liked our garden, with its wild, Great Dixterish look, but presumably the other judges didn’t appreciate random outcrops of valerian, dead teazle and thistle heads etc., or maybe it just wasn’t good enough.
       I didn’t enter this year. It’s hard to know what the Ore in Bloom judges are looking for (note to them, how about more feedback from the judges?) but I do know I look at the garden from a ‘before and after’ perspective. The part I have redone looks so different from the featureless chippings desert we inherited from the house’s previous owners.

Before –  arid chippings desert, taken on moving-in day, June 2012

After – chippings scarcely visible

         Just come back from the hairdressers down in the Old Town (Mitchell and Millyard). I went out in the rain to deal with a dying/dead run-over seagull outside the salon door, because none of the girls could bear to go near it. Ah, the trials of being a Battleaxe. Reminds me of the invasion of ants in the middle of the housing association board meeting….. but that’s another story.

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