April lived up to its usual self. A taste of days to come then the following day the weather we experienced was cold and dreary. Haze from the water turned many a night into a wonderland hanging above the marsh and letting the tops of the bushes of thorn and willow grace the sky.
Two days of light rain on the fourteenth and fifteenth was a boon to the young growth emerging. A few mallard duck broods I saw were huge, many totalling over the dozen. With the mild weather they should manage to grow into adults.
Another thing I have noticed all winter which is now becoming evident to all, is the number of foxgloves growing. It would appear that last year’s seed shed itself at an opportune time to germinate and the warm winter allowed it to survive.
The nature reserve people have a raft with a tunnel on the top that allows wild mink to run through. The floor of the tunnel has a pad of Plasticine, so recording their footprints. The idea is to record the number of the animals on the river. The other day the man that checks the monitors asked if he could fingerprint my two terriers as he had some rather odd prints in his tunnel. The raft floats away from the river bank on the end of a rope tether. Taking my youngest Jack Russell in my arms, I pressed his left foot into the tray alongside the marks there. ‘No,’ much too big. The older father dog was the next to have his prints taken. ‘Yes!’ Somehow he had managed to climb aboard the raft and investigate the interior of the dark tunnel. This very dog will not go out if it is raining. Even a heavy dew is enough. He detests water!
The increase in parking fees for the locals in their own town by Rother seems harsh. The sooner Rye regains control of its own affairs and pulls that drawbridge up to the Rye Mint that supplies Bexhill with so much wealth, the better for Rye.
Queen Elizabeth 1st called Winchelsea Little London and Rye Royal. Another monarch, this time a king, named Bognor Regis “Bugger Bognor”. Now it’s time Rye said “Bugger Bexhill.”, “let them whither on the vine,” another saying from a great man.
The fact that Rother District Council have closed the toilets at the top of Rope Walk is a disaster. God help Rye! The old Ryers must be turning in their graves! The very custodians that had the town given to them are treating us shamefully. Perhaps that thought has gone through their minds and that is why they have laid the tombstones down flat, hoping to contain them until the rape of Rye is complete.
Looking at the old Soup Kitchen today, you can see how much they are caring for it. The chimney pot around the back, visible from the Rope Walk is sprouting a forest of trees and brambles. I suppose I am mad to think that it is the Rother District’s intention to take part in Rye in Bloom this year, and to use every receptacle capable of holding plants, even old chimneys! The sheer fact that plants are growing there, shows that they have not been vigilant in their upkeep for sometime.
The trees on Hilder’s Cliff would have benefited from a light haircut to allow an uninterrupted view of the marsh. Also the ice cream van still finds a place to park each day, churning visible smoke out into the road. Even though I read he was banned, I suspect the enforcement officer is too busy the other end of town making sure the light bulb is removed immediately from a Mint pub’s fascia!
Make the High Street a Shopping Precinct
It is too late now in history to resurrect the old toll gates around the town to keep Rother out but surely history screams out to reinstate the town to its former glory and by that I mean clean out the three foot of pigeon dung in the Landgate and replace the portcullis allowing the high street to become a precinct from ten to four.
Rye’s Own May 2005
All articles, photographs and drawings on this web site are World Copyright Protected. No reproduction for publication without prior arrangement. © World Copyright 2015 Cinque Ports Magazines Rye Ltd., Guinea Hall Lodge Sellindge TN25 6EG