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By the community, for the community


0800 023 8974

April 2017 - Issue 130

Dartford’s Local Independent Travel Agent


Tom Johnston - The Voice 2017- Page 8 NWK Volunteer Centre - Page 26 Dartford FootGolf - Pages 36

Plus - All your regular

features, events, information and much more in your larger 60 page issue. - -

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Slimming World MONDAYS VCD Sports Club, Old Road Crayford, DA1 4DN 9:30am, 11:30am, 5:30pm and 7:30pm Sue 07507 599691 British Legion Hall Devon Road South Darenth DA4 9AA 9:30am, 5:30pm and 7:30pm June 07957 902767 Fleetdown Community Centre Swaledale Road, Dartford, Kent, DA2 6JZ 3:30pm, 5:30pm and 7:30pm Paula 07891 424401 Church Centre, 112 Swanscombe Street, Swanscombe, Kent DA10 0JZ 7:30pm Lisa 07986 030199

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Glentworth Ex Service Club 154 Lowfield Street, Dartford, Kent, DA1 1JB 9:30am and 12:00pm Angela 07956 896679

The Howard Venue (formerly South East Dance Studios) 39 Egerton Avenue, TUESDAYS Hextable, BR8 7LG Greenhithe & Swanscombe 5:30pm and 7:30pm British Legion Club Caroline 07776 181413 London Road, Greenhithe, DA9 9EJ Temple Hill Community 10:00 am Centre Paula 07891 424401 Temple Hill Square, Dartford, DA1 5HY Glentworth Ex Service Club 3.30pm, 5:30pm, 7:30pm 154 Lowfield Street, Jo 07800 797030 Dartford, Kent, DA1 1JB 5:30pm and 7:30pm THURSDAYS Angela 07956 896679 The Howard Venue (formerly South East Dance Studios) WEDNESDAYS 39 Egerton Avenue, VCD Sports Club, Old Road Hextable, BR8 7LG Crayford, DA1 4DN 9:30am 10:00am, 5:30pm and Caroline 07776 181413 7:30pm Liz 07900 213548

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St Anselm’s Parish Centre 89 West Hill, Dartford, Kent, DA1 2HJ 5:00pm and 7:00pm Gillian 07957 135737 Greenhithe & Swanscombe British Legion Club London Road, Greenhithe, DA9 9EJ 5:30pm and 7:30pm Paula 07891 424401 SATURDAYS Amar Hall East Hill, Dartford, Kent, DA1 1RX 9:00am Sarah 07739 027161 Christ Church Centre Kingswood Avenue, Swanley, BR8 8AN 8:00am and 10:00am Kelli 07931 085668




26 36 37 8 Contents

8 ........................Tom Johnston 9.........................Harden Holidays 10.......................Hesketh Park Bowls Club 12.......................Dartford Living Meets 13.......................Dartford Property Report 16.......................Life Under the Stairs 19.......................Quartz Financial Services 24.......................Dartford Arts May Fair 25.......................Money Advice 26-27..................North West Kent Volunteers 28....................... The Art of Autism 32.......................Crossword 34.......................Sports News

35.......................News from Princes Park 36.......................FootGolf 37.......................Dartford FC Book 38.......................DAODS Made in Dagenham 44.......................Local Entertainment 45.......................Fitness 46.......................Auto News 47.......................Gardening News 48-55..................Where to go locally 56.......................Orchard Theatre Competition 53.......................Advertising Index 54.......................Useful Numbers

check out our website for even more local news and articles Dartford Living does not certify, endorse or verify the contents of any communication within the magazine/our online presence or make warranty of any kind, express or implied, with regard to the information contained therein. Dartford Living and its owners cannot be held responsible for any errors, omissions or claims made by advertisers or endorse companies, products or services that appear in any Dartford Living publication or media outlet. Dartford Living is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

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Dear Readers,

I hope you enjoy March’s magazine. As usual it’s jam packed with lots of local information and local businesses. Please support as many as you can - “use them or lose them!” Don’t forget that we run Dartford Living alongside volunteer members of the local community FOR the local community. Dartford Living is YOUR magazine, the only independently run magazine serving the local area with information, fun, good news and positive local stories! Feel free to get in touch if you would like to write an article for the magazine. If writing is not for you then perhaps you could volunteer to deliver 100 or so magazines to your local roads - you will guarantee your copy of the magazine and get a little exercise as well! We deliver to thousands of homes and businesses in the local area, however if you don’t always receive a copy directly through your door, you can pick up a copy from various drop off points. These include Dartford Football Club, numerous local libraries, Fairfield Leisure Centre, The Priory Shopping Centre, Stephen Oliver Art Gallery, numerous health centres and local Barclays branches. The ‘Previous Editions’ section of the Dartford Living website also includes electronic versions of Dartford Living magazine. Additionally, if you email we will add you to our newsletter email mailing list and contact you just once a month with an electronic copy of Dartford Living! Nearly 5000 local people already do this!

Until next time, Vijay - Editor, Dartford Living (and Amie , Annie, Barbara, Bhavesh, Bradley , Cath, Catherine , Christine, Daniel, David, Dawn, Derek, Debbie, Dhiren, Elaine, Eleanor, Emma, Emma, Holly, Jackie, Jane, James , Jenny, Joanne, John, Kay, Ken, Kelly, Mark, Nickki, Nicola, Pam, Richey, Sarah, Sam, Sharon, Stephen, Steven, Teresa, Vanessa and the rest of the fantastic Dartford Living volunteer team) Photo by



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Facebook: FEATURE ARTICLE: TOM JOHNSTON - THE VOICE 2017 Twitter: @TomJohnstonMusic

Have you done many gigs/auditions before? I’ve gigged a fair bit around Kent in pubs and bars etc but nothing could prepare me for The Voice UK. Your voice reminds me of Sam Smith, who inspires you in the music industry? For me, it’s all about the voice and I love big voices. I grew up on Phil Collins and Luther Vandross and I think you can hear their influence. My musical taste spans so many genres. I currently love what Tori Kelly & JP Cooper are doing and I think their voices are very special. Also, Adele who I feel is one of the best female vocalists to come out of the UK, as well as Jessie J. Tom has lived in the Hextable/Wilmington area all his life. He has recently been seen on The Voice UK singing Hometown Glory. With a brilliant voice and the crowd cheering him on, it was a disappointment for everyone to see that he didn’t get through to the next round. We catch up with Tom to find out a bit more about him and what his plans are for the future: How was the experience on The Voice UK? And how did you prepare for it? My experience on The Voice UK was amazing and I am so thankful for the opportunity. I haven’t got a bad word to say about it at all. From the start, everyone seemed to really care about you. I entered The Voice UK on a bit of whim and didn’t expect much to come from it, so my preparation probably could have been better.

Have you always wanted to be a singer? When I was younger all I wanted to do was work in Starbucks haha! But this changed as I got older and I started to realise more and more that singing might be something I could do as my career. What are your hobbies? I love to cook and I am a big foodie. I love being with nature, playing my guitar outside and writing songs. What do you like to do in your spare time? I spend time with friends and family. I have a very tight group of friends who are very supportive and are also good at keeping my feet on the ground. What are your plans for the future? My plans are to really use the platform of The Voice UK as much as possible. Get some of my new music recorded and released, keep gigging as much as I can

How much support did you get from the local people of Dartford? I wasn’t allowed to say a lot to people. The staff and young people I work with at The Bridge Youth Centre knew and were so supportive. Since the audition being aired, everyone has had such nice things to say and seem to really be rooting for me, which is still really hard to get use to.


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Dartford Living had a chat with Tim Harden, the founder of Harden Holidays, to find out why he thinks it’s time for some independence in Dartford. You live and work locally Tim, has it always been this way? For the most part yes, although I grew up slightly outside Dartford, I went to secondary school here and have always had a group of friends in and around the area. I’ve moved around and had a varied career, but it felt almost inevitable that my wife and I would settle here. Dartford’s a great town and we’ve always felt a connection here. In fact, we met whilst working in a local hotel. So why the travel agency? Well I’ve worked in a variety of travel related jobs through the years, flight attendant, travel consultant, hotel reception, finance, all sorts. Moving back to Dartford it really became apparent that there is very little choice now for local people to book their holidays. The town centre shops have all closed and moved to Bluewater, leaving no other option for travel shopping. Those shops are great at what they do, but they’re all tied to various brands and hence only sell their own products. How does that make you different? Well I felt strongly that the area needed an independent agent. Being independent means that although we can offer the regular products that the big brands sell, we can also look at smaller, more niche products. Although we are small, we still provide the same financial protection by having our own ATOL licence. We also sell a massively wide range of products, so we have package holidays with Jet2 and Thomas Cook, adventurous tours with Cosmos, all the way through to the ultra-luxury of Silversea cruises. We are not tied to any brand and so the advice we give is impartial and based on which holiday we think will suit each client. It’s about building a relationship that can grow year on year.

easy to get around so you never feel bored, but also never feel pressured to do a lot. It’s a truly relaxing holiday. Where are you going this year? My daughter is nearly four, so she’s just reaching the age where we need to visit Disney. We’re torn between Orlando and Paris, they both offer so much. For Paris, there’s an amazing Eurocamp resort about an hour away, it has great facilities and means it’s easy to have a day or two in the parks. But then Orlando is the classic, has Universal Studios and some beautiful villas to rent. And of course, the weather! You can contact Tim on 0800 023 8974 or email

What’s your favourite destination? Well I’ve always been a big fan of Barbados, it has such a great mix of tropical beaches, friendly locals and places to explore. The island has a great, chilled out vibe and is

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Telephone:01322 526424

Our open days are scheduled for April 30th, May 1st, 6th and 13th. We will also be following on from the open days with “Roll ups” on Monday afternoons and Friday evenings throughout the season with opportunities to stay after to socialise with other members. Hesketh Park Bowling Club was founded in 1904 and play their games at Hesketh Park, Park Road DA1 1ST. The park itself was presented to the people of Dartford by “Everard Hesketh”, a prominent figure in the Edwardian years and indeed Dartford’s history. Bowls has played its part in England’s history and we are probably all aware of the Sir Walter Raleigh story. But did you know that it was in fact banned at one time as the country needed men off the Bowling Green and back practicing their archery skills?

So please ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, come along, enjoy the summer outdoors, meet new friends and stay active. Please give it a try, you may like it? For further information, contact Ken Plant on 01322 526424 who will be happy to help you.

The club itself can boast of its friendliness and its standing within the Kent bowling fraternity. We compete in the Kentish men’s league and participate in friendly games against other clubs located in the county. We have also been on bowls tours to various overseas destinations including Portugal, Spain and Holland over recent years. Our Ladies and Gentlemen, club members also compete at county competitions and local competition levels. If social bowling is your thing, then we can accommodate this as well. Hesketh Park is open for new members of all ages and will be hosting several open days for new potential bowlers to come along and give it a try. We will have bowls available for you to use, with willing members and indeed a BDA Coach on hand to guide you in the rudiments of bowling. We would only request that flat sole shoes be worn to prevent damage to the Bowling Green.


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DARTFORD LIVING MEETS....... KIERAN POOLE BY KELLY GOLDSWORTHY Dartford Living Meets 25 year old Dartfordian Kieran who tells us about his radio show.

I cannot wait to see what happens. It is celebrating the talent in the South East.

I’ve lived in Longfield all my life and spend a lot of time in Dartford as my school friends are mostly from here. I also play in goal for Dartford Vipers FC on Sundays.

I have done stand up comedy since I was 16 and then at 21, I gave radio a go and fell in love with it. My radio show is The Kieran Poole Sessions on Miskin Radio every Wednesday at 7-8pm. I am fascinated by artists, especially musicians, as I only got into stand up because I cannot sing. So I love interviewing them and hearing about their creative processes and it is even better when I have more than one guest. By putting an actor, comedian and musician together on the sofa, it’s the perfect blend. The best moments are when they ask each other questions during the show so

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Come and join our friendly choir to sing songs from musicals, old and new. No audition needed, you just need to enjoy singing. We meet at St Anselm’s Church, West Hill, on Tuesdays from 7.30 p.m. to 9.30 p.m., £7 per session, first one free. To find out more, our website is or ring Patricia on 07763482178.


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Dartford Property ReportUseful - AprilNumbers 2017 Dartford First Time Buyers Are Paying 16.5% More Than 12 Months Ago Figures just released by the Bank of England, show that for the first half of 2016, £128.73bn was lent by UK banks to buy UK property - impressive when you consider only £106.7bn was lent in the first half of 2015. Even more interesting, was that most of the difference was in Q2, as £68.12bn was lent by UK banks in new mortgages for house purchase, which is the highest it has been for two years. Looking locally, in Dartford last quarter, £1.13bn was loaned on DA1 properties alone! Even though the Bank won’t be releasing the Q3 figures until December 2016, as I discussed a few weeks ago, HMRC have published their own preliminary data to suggest Q3 will be even better, with a massive growth of buy-to-let landlords to the housing market in that time frame. Fascinating, as it seems to fly in the face of the popular narrative – that the uncertainty surrounding Brexit would negatively impact buyer sentiment. And it’s not just buy-to-let landlords that seem to be flourishing. I am finding that first-time buyers are also a lot more confident too. Low, and now negative, inflation has had a tangible impact on household finances and first-time buyers feel more secure in their jobs. Couple with a low interest rate environment and you have all the ingredients for a strengthening property market. To back that up with numbers, of the £68.12bn of mortgages lent in the Quarter (Q2), £14.9bn was lent to first-time buyers (the highest proportion of that overall lending for over two years at 21.99%). When I looked at the data for Dartford Borough Council

area, the average price paid by first-time buyers (FTB’S) was £259,480, which is a rise of 1.57% from last month and a rise of 16.5% to twelve months ago. The Land Registry then categorise the remaining buyers into cash buyers or those buying with a mortgage. The average price paid by cash buyers was £267,792, a rise of 1.51% from last month and a rise of 16.36% to twelve months ago, whilst buyers with mortgages (but not FTB’s), the average price paid by them was £287,028, a rise of 1.51% from last month and a rise of 16.46% to twelve months ago.

What surprised me with these figures was how close the property prices, values and percentages were to each other. It just goes to show the combination of low mortgage rates and a stable job market will continue to have a positive effect on the Dartford and UK market. And that is why, while there is undoubtedly more cautiousness in the market at present than a year or so ago (among borrowers and mortgage companies alike) - mortgage rates are so competitive that they are inducing people to commit to a home purchase. It seems the great Brexit uncertainty was over hyped, and house price growth as well as mortgage approvals, could pick up pace well into 2017.

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Life Under The Stairs by Jane Stevenson There is something very odd happening at Stevenson Towers lately. For the past week, I’ve had a visit from a very large bumblebee which keeps getting locked in the conservatory. I’ve let it out four times so far and this morning it was back again. It is huge – at least the size of a 50p that suggests it’s either a queen or a male. In bumble bee terms, think of Sylvester Stallone. This bee has muscles and attitude. It’s noisy, and as it keeps getting caught, presumably not very bright. It always goes to exactly the same window, where it flaps around until it’s let out, all the while daring any of the cats to go near it. Frankie, as named by the Other Half, flies off in the same direction every time it’s freed, but doesn’t seem to stray too far from our garden. This morning, over a breakfast muffin and a chat with the cat, Frankie appeared again. True to form he flew in through the conservatory door (it’s Spring, I have the doors open) and made a beeline for the same window, where he proceeded to noisily attack the glass clearly annoyed that he couldn’t get back outside. Or was he attention seeking? I got my patent bee catching kit – a wine glass and a postcard - in case he moved away from the window. He didn’t, but this morning he stopped buzzing and sat quietly while I opened it and shooed him out. As normal, he flew across the garden, round the tree and came back to the ivy. As far as I know, he’s still flying around outside looking for whatever it is he’s searching for. The meaning of life? A bee girl friend? Pondering this behaviour back at the breakfast table with the cat, I wondered if bees are intelligent. Perhaps I was being less than kind to Frankie’s mental powers. Bees have a brain the size of a grass seed, yet the most intelligent of them are capable of recognising patterns, can identify shape, colour, scent and texture. They can learn the location of landmarks, and most surprisingly of all, they can recognise human faces. So, perhaps Frankie just likes me and his regular visits are his way of saying hello. Whatever the reason, I’m going to make sure he has free access and egress from Stevenson Towers. Frankie and his colleagues are in decline, and their passing will have an untold impact on the food chain. And as a nod to his mates, wherever they are, I’m planting bee friendly flowers


in the garden in hopes that my small effort will help. MY WALLET’S ON LIFE SUPPORT! Will, our alpha cat has been to the dentist. I was fed up with him dragging his food out of the bowl and then leaving many small half-chewed pieces all over the place. Not being the most co-operative of cats, trying to see if there was any dental problem was stressful for both of us. Eventually, he was ‘persuaded’ to get in the cat basket and visit the vet. The upshot was a bill, in the hundreds for a scrape and polish, and the removal of three teeth. I’m not sure who needed the sedative and painkillers more; him, for undergoing the procedure, or me for paying for it. I don’t have pet insurance – in my opinion it simply isn’t worth it. The restrictions on what it can cover and the high cost of the initial excess mean most visits to the vet aren’t covered. Additionally, Will’s dental treatment was deemed ‘cosmetic’ so not covered by any policy. Other Half winced when I gave him the credit card bill. Our holiday cost less than Will’s teeth. Then I got to thinking: we ask a lot of our vets. We expect more from the procedures on our sick animals; we all watch Supervet and expect our own vet to be able to perform the new surgical techniques and cure the unusual ailments animals fall prey to. We see the success of microsurgery and the extraordinary skills employed in the most pitiful of cases. We expect X rays and tests as the norm in healing our animals. Come back to the real world! Most vets look after the mundane – dogs, cats, rabbits, small furries. Abscesses, bites, infections for example. The drugs they use for our animals are extremely expensive. A visit to the vet not only includes these medicines, any tests required but also the skill of the vet in interpreting what is wrong with our pets. You or I go to our GP and tell him what the matter is, our symptoms etc. A vet has to interpret the signs and work with patients who can’t communicate in language with them. Such a large bill is a small price to pay for getting Will home, watching him tuck into a plate of fish, and exploring the joys of salmon paste (good for hiding the antibiotics). My duty to all my animals is to ensure their optimum health. Sadly, it can be expensive, but by learning about correct diet, care and making informed decisions about their welfare, with advice from the vet. I do the best I can. I won’t complain about the price of animal health. See you next month.

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Want to get fit in 2017 whilst enjoying fresh air and home grown veg? Allotments for rent in Gore Road, East Dartford are available now. Contact Clive 07542 477322 or

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QUARTZ FINANCIAL SERVICES Personal Protection – are you covered should the worst happen?

Website: Telephone: 07932 616400/01474 887948 out up until the end of the policy or to retirement. It can be taken out if you are employed or self-employed. Mortgage Protect Plan: Pays out for up to two years if you had an accident, was sick, or unemployed and unable to pay your mortgage.

We insure our cars, appliances, home and phones – but often forget to insure ourselves! Money won’t replace someone, but it can provide financial security to those left behind. Life insurance is an area of financial security we can advise on and provide cover for. It comes under a collection of insurances called Personal Protection, which includes critical illness cover, income protection, mortgage payment protection and private medical insurance. You may want to take cover that provides a lump sum, or monthly benefits – we will find the right policy for you, providing adequate cover and the right protection. Here is a quick guide to our policies – you can read about each in much more detail on our website:

Vitality Life: We are specialists in this policy; one which motivates you to get fit and rewards those who are already living healthily. The cost is directly related to your health and offers discounts on healthy-lifestyle-related products and services such as gym membership, trainers and Champneys Spa. Whilst being specialists in this policy, Quartz is able to access many more and will suggest the best policy to you, to suit your requirements. Contact us to discuss the best policy for you. 07932 616400 01474 887948 Quartz Financial Services Limited is an appointed representative of New Leaf Distribution Ltd which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Melinda Bush - founder, Quartz FS

Life Term: This is a fixed term insurance policy which pays out on the event of your death if it is within the fixed term. It can be used to pay off a mortgage or loan. Critical Illness Cover: This can be added to a life insurance policy, or you can hold it as a stand alone policy. It pays out a lump sum on diagnosis, and can be spent as you wish. You could pay off the mortgage, repay a loan, buy more time off work, pay for alterations to your home if needed, or private treatment. Income Protection: This policy provides a regular income if you can’t work due to accident or illness. Employers’ sick pay only usually pays up to 12 month; this policy would continue to pay


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The only independently owned and family run funeral directors in Longfield, Dartford and the surrounding villages Especially for the first time, any time of the day or night you can talk to us We will attend to everything We will liaise with doctors, coroners, hospitals, churches, celebrants and ministers We have a private chapel of rest and can provide a fleet of Hearses and Limousines to compliment a dignified occasion We also provide: 24 hour personal service Experienced staff members Worldwide repatriation

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Dartford Living 23


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beers, dance acts, art competitions and much more to explore…

New FREE Dartford Arts Festival set to Spring up in Central Park this May!

Join us on 20th May 11am ‘til 4.30pm for an inspiring, fun, and art‐filled Spring Fayre. Keep up with what’s happening by visiting us online: @dartfordarts

Dartford Arts Network, in association with Dartford Borough Council, will soon be hosting a new and improved version of their successful 2015 May Fair. Now with a specific creative arts focus, the 2017 Spring Fayre taking place on 20th May in Central Park is set to be an exciting biennial fixture in Dartford’s events programme - and it’s completely free to join in! This new and unique Fayre will feature both modern and traditional events; with a street‐art paint jam as well as nature sculpting, delicious local street food stalls, craft Coffee Morning for Demelza Hospice - 15th April 10.30am to 2pm Anyone looking for something fun to do Easter weekend come along to the Easter Family Coffee Morning on Saturday 15th April in aid of Demezla Hospice Care for Children! At Farningham Village Hall between 10.30am and 2pm, there will be delicious cakes, some traditional fete games, an easter raffle, tombola’s, book stall and more!  Demelza is a fantastic organisation that supports children and families at what is undoubtably one of the most difficult times in their life. Any amount of money raised will be supporting the hard work and dedication of the team at Demezla. You can view their website to see some of the amazing things they do - Come along, enjoy some cake, have some fun and help us to raise lots of money for such an amazing cause at the same time! 


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THIS EASTER BREAK, DON’T BREAK THE BANK Every year around Easter time, parents’ minds inevitably turn to a fortnight full of restless, chocolate-fuelled children. For some, keeping the kids entertained over the break may come as a concern, especially if money is tight. Here are our suggestions for an Easter break that will keep the kids happy and the parents’ pockets happy too. The National Trust has once again teamed up with Cadbury to host Easter egg hunts in 250 locations across the country this April – always a popular way to get the kids out and about. Visit join-the-cadbury-egg-hunts to find your nearest hunt. If you’re not able to make it to these events or are looking for something a little less purse-strenuous, why not set up your own hunt for the youngsters? Grab some small chocolate eggs (usually available in pound shops) and hide them around the house or garden. Simply set the kids off to search, sit down and put your feet up with a cuppa. Or, if you fancy making things a bit more challenging, create a ‘treasure map’ or a series of cryptic clues leading to the goodies – be creative! If there’s a river or stream near your house, why not take the kids down and play some games? Collect lots of twigs and leaves, build some boats and have a race down the water. Or go for a classic game of Pooh Sticks. Fun, free and outdoors – perfect!

Website: Telephone: 0800 328 0006

up your region at and see what free museums and exhibitions are on offer nearby. Get active, fill some time and support your local leisure centre this April. Cuts to council funding are sadly having an impact on leisure centres across the country, with many on the verge of closure. Why not make the most of the facilities on your doorstep this Easter? Go for a swim, play some badminton, or see what special events are on. This is stuff you can do alone, in a group or with the family, and it’s usually cheap as chips, most importantly! Christians Against Poverty (CAP) is a charity determined to combat debt and its causes across the UK, with the help of local churches. It does this through various ways including debt counselling centres and money education programmes. Want to know more? Pop in to the CAP Drop In at Dartford Community Church Bungalow, 171 Dartford Road, DA1 3EW on the last Wednesday of the month between 12 noon and 2pm to have an informal chat over a cuppa with Karen, our Debt Centre manager (no appointment necessary) or contact Kelvin on 07861 101496 regarding a local CAP money course to help you with budgeting and saving. Alternatively visit or call 0800 328 0006. All CAP’s services are available to everyone regardless of age, gender, faith or background and are free.

Here’s an Easter classic: hard boil some eggs for the kids to paint as their favourite characters and celebrities. Get some orange paint and you’ve got your very own Egg Sheeran! Why not stage the Oscars starring Eggs-Benedict Cumberbatch and Tom-lette Hiddleston? Or set the kids off on an adventure with Dora the Eggs-plorer? Okay, okay, enough of the puns, we’re just getting… eggs-cited… But this really is a cheap and cheerful way to keep the little ones occupied for an afternoon. What treasures does your hometown have to offer that you’ve never got round to visiting? Often you don’t need to travel for miles to find an interesting day out. Look Interested in advertising? Tel: 01322 507817

Dartford Living 25

NORTH WEST KENT VOLUNTEER CENTRE With busy lives, it can be hard to find time to volunteer. However, the benefits of volunteering are enormous to you, your family, and your community. The right match can help you to reduce stress, find friends, reach out to the community, learn new skills, and even advance your career. Giving to others can also help protect your mental and physical health. Why volunteer? Volunteering offers vital help to people in need, worthwhile causes, and the community, but the benefits can be even greater for you, the volunteer. Volunteering and helping others can help you reduce stress, combat depression, keep you mentally stimulated, and provide a sense of purpose. While it’s true that the more you volunteer, the more benefits you’ll experience, volunteering doesn’t have to involve a long-term commitment or take a huge amount of time out of your busy day. Giving, in even simple ways, can help those in need and improve your health and happiness. North West Kent Volunteer Centre manages three services that are in need of volunteers. S.M.I.L.E.S. (Services Maintaining Independent Living & Elderly Support) is the project name, and we hope that through you we can put smiles back onto people’s faces. A smiley face over a cup of tea with one of our Befrienders’ makes all the difference if you are housebound. It only costs time to make someone smile.

website: Tel: 01322 272476 longer an option, and the bus stop seems miles away. Then your Doctor tells you that you need treatment in let’s say… Maidstone! Unless they have family nearby who are not working, or that kind Neighbour who they don’t really want to put upon, then what are their options? We Are! - Our volunteer transport service is a door-todoor, wait and return, friendly, DBS (police) checked, service for people 60+ or with a disability. Volunteer drivers use their own vehicles and are reimbursed 45p per mile by the client, plus any other expenses incurred such as congestion charge, parking etc. Clients’ pay a Registration Fee of £15 per person per year and an administration fee of £4 per journey, but in return the client gets a safe, helpful, and caring service, that will take them to their medical appointments, to visit loved ones in hospital or residential homes, and will take that worried look off their face and put a smile in its place. Garden Support is for the frail and elderly who are no longer able to maintain that once much-loved, but now sadly neglected garden. Volunteers’ will retrieve an overgrown plot and then visit regularly to maintain the garden and provide the client with some companionship. Unfortunately, an unkempt garden can sometimes lead to vandalism or distraction burglary. We need more of you to help We have long waiting lists for all our services and we would like to help more people - so we need more volunteers to help us. You can make a difference in your community.

“Vol*ntee*s” – what’s missing? – You Are!! Contact us on 01322 272 476 or 01322 294 600 for transport. Email

Volunteer Transport & Gardening Support These two services help take the worry away from people wanting to continue to live in their own home. Transport to and from anywhere can be difficult for people who have reached that certain age, where driving is no


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What is it?

A door-to-door car service provided by our team of volunteers for residents of North West Kent who find it difficult to use public transport because of age, frailty, illness, disability or location.

Is there a charge?

Passengers pay a yearly Registration Fee, and then a per-journey Administration Fee and the volunteer–driver mileage cost. Full details are available when you call 01322 294 600

If you enjoy driving, your keys can unlock lives.

Drivers take clients to and from medical appointments in Kent. Local drivers regularly take clients to and from Parkinson’s exercise classes and Falls Prevention classes. If you can spare just a small amount of your time, have use of your own car we would like to see you. Mileage expenses are paid direct to you Call 01322 294 600

Volunteer Drivers and Gardeners needed

Volunteer garden service 01322 272 476

What is it?

A service where our volunteer gardeners bring life back into your neglected garden and make it a thing of beauty and a joy to sit in once again.

Is there a charge?

You pay £6 per hour for a maximum of 2 hours per visit. Any travel expenses are also reimbursed to the volunteer. General maintenance and up-keep are our priorities; we cannot handle large, heavy duties. But we can offer a one day blitz to get the volunteers started.

S.M.I.L.E.S. Services Maintaining Independent Living and Elderly Support These two projects come under our SMILES banner. Using volunteers we help older people in the Dartford, Gravesend and Swanley area to remain living independently. Call 01322 272 476 or email Interested in advertising? Tel: 01322 507817

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The Art of Autism Autism Awareness Exhibition

1−30 April 2017

Together with Cllr Mandy Garford, local artist Stephen Oliver is hosting an art exhibition in his Gallery in the Orchards Shopping Centre, Dartford. Most of the artwork on show has been created by local children ages 3-18 on the autism spectrum. Information will be available to help raise awareness and understanding of Autism.

OPENING TIMES Mon: 10am - 2pm Tues: 10am - 2pm Wed: Closed Thur: 10am - 4pm Fri: 10am - 4pm Sat: 10am - 5pm Sun: 10am - 4pm


Dimples Day Nursery, Green Street Green Road, Darenth, Kent, DA2 7HT |01322 285885

Managed by Places for People Leisure Ltd for Dartford Borough Council.

Easter Holidays Swimming Courses @ Fairfield Leisure Intense Holiday swimming courses are an ideal way to introduce your child to lessons or to improve and speed up their progress on existing water confidence, skills and techniques.. They are also an ideal opportunity to help get your children swim ready in time for those relaxing summer holidays. Classes we offer: Monday 3rd - Friday 7th April 2017 8.00am 8.30am 9.00am 9.30am

Stage 1 Stage 2 Stage 3 Stage 4

Cost of course ÂŁ28.75 (5 lessons)

Monday 10th - Thursday 13th April 2017 8.00am 8.30am 9.00am 9.30am

Stage 1 Stage 2 Stage 3 Stage 4

Cost of course ÂŁ23.00 (4 lessons)

To find out more, or to book your child on a course, please contact our friendly reception team on 01322 421166.

Holiday Activities Keep up to date with activities we are running during the Easter holidays by following us online: w: F: T:

Fairfield Leisure, Lowfield Street, Dartford, Kent, DA1 1JB 01322 421166

PFPT44 100% recycled paper NAPM approved.

Is yours a winning business? Contact: to find out more

The new Dartford Business Awards are a real opportunity to promote your business Officially launching on the 5th April 2017, there are several categories available, all free to enter and designed to cater for every size of business, from the smallest to the largest in the Borough. Entrants must be based in the Dartford Borough Council rates areas, and must have been trading for a full year to January 1st, 2017. When launched, the awards website will take you through the registration process and keep you up to date with news.

DBA sponsors are: Barclays Bluewater Dartford Borough Council Dartford Living Kent Messenger Leigh Academies Trust NatWest Oxford Innovation The Creation Lab The Nucleus Thomson Snell & Passmore Wilkins Kennedy LLP

CROSSWORD Copyright: HobsontarrantŠ2017 1





















9 Golden (7) 10 Run (7) 11

Luxurious (7)

12 Drug (7) 13 Poison antibody (9) 15 Feet warmers (5) 16 An acid (7) 19 Cheerful (7) 20 Strained (5) 21 Aggressive (9) 25 Irritate (7) 26 Humorous (7) 28 Moral man (4,3) 29 Stomach settler (7)










Down 1 Indian turnover (6)

24 Portugese currency (6) 27 False belief (4)

2 Enter forcibly (6) 3 Garden tool (4) 4 Explosive (6) 5 Bursting emotion (8) 6 Struck instrument (10) 7 Tennis prize (5,3) 8 Person turning (8) 14 Application of science (10) 16 Witty converation (8) 17 Response (8) 18 Ocular problem (5-3) 22 Of the face (6) 23 Introduce to (6)

Answers page 58

Local Sports News Bav’s Sporting Comment

The England Rugby Union team have made unprecedented strides under Eddie Jones, been transformed from the nearly-men of the Six Nations and the never-weres of the 2015 World Cup to back-to-back title winners and joint world record holders. Although they won the 2017 six nations title, the last game against Ireland, where they lost and were overwhelmed by Ireland, exposed just how far they might still have to go, given the ultimate target of the next World Cup in 2019. All great teams have phases of development. The All Blacks that won their home World Cup in 2011 had processed the lessons of their own shortcomings four years earlier. England’s champions of 2003 held strong in the last critical moments of extra time in Sydney in part because they had failed to do so at Lansdowne Road, Murrayfield and Wembley in decisive battles that came before. Better for this loss to happen here than in Japan in 2019.

Upcoming events in April include: 2: Rowing - Boat Races, London 6-9: Golf - Masters, Augusta, USA 7: Cricket - County Championship season starts 8: Horse racing - Grand National, Aintree 8: World Cup of Gymnastics, London 9: Formula 1 - Chinese Grand Prix, Shanghai 15 Apr-1 May: Snooker - World Championship, Sheffield 16: Formula 1 - Bahrain Grand Prix 22-23: Football - FA Cup and Scottish Cup semifinals 23: Athletics - London Marathon 29: Boxing - Anthony Joshua v Wladimir Klitschko, heavyweight world title fight, Wembley Stadium 30: Formula 1 - Russian Grand Prix, Sochi

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News From Princes Park

Dartford FC are pleased to announce that after several months of discussions, the Club has entered into an agreement for Thamesmead Town FC of the Isthmian League, Division One North, to play their games at Princes Park for the next 5 years. As well as assisting Thamesmead in re-locating from their previous home at Bayliss Avenue, it is hoped that the partnership will allow an opportunity for some of our younger players to get regular games in a really competitive environment and at their home ground. This will allow Tony and his management team to keep a closer eye or our players of the future. As a club, we know all too well what it is like to have to share another club’s facilities. With your support, we hope to make Princes Park a genuine home from home and with incentives to be announced shortly by Thamesmead, allow Dartford fans, who don’t travel to away games, the opportunity of watching more games at Princes Park. Plus being able to watch some of our young stars of the future on occasions. This arrangement is also an opportunity to improve the financial stability of the club, helping us achieve our ultimate goal of becoming a stable and sustainable National League club. Dartford are entering the final month of the season. It has been a good season for them so far. The title race is virtually out of reach now, after a few poor results, but there are still plenty of games to be played and barring any massive loss of form Dartford will be playing in the playoffs at the end of the season. There are three games left at Princes Park this season. If you have not already been to see them play why don’t you pop down and give your local club some support. The admission prices are: Adults £14, Concessions £7, Youth (13-17) £5 and Children (5-12) £2.



8.04.17 KO 3PM



21.03.17 KO 7.45PM

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Some of you may have heard about a new sport thats now one of the fastest growing in the UK, FootGolf. It combines Football and Golf and is helping bring new people and greater revenues to a lot of 9 hole courses that are currently struggling to golfers through the door. The UK FootGolf Association is the organisation behind it all and are doing a fantastic job. They have been working closely with clubs all over the country to become affiliated. They then help get people through the door with lots of advertising, organising competitions and getting local ambassadors involved to help promote it. I’ve been involved with Princes Park for about a year now. I’ve fallen in love with the sport as you may have seen on social media. It’s great fun for all ages, gets your out in the fresh air, making new friends and exercising. You can keep it simple with a tracksuit and ball from


Website: Facebook: Dartford-junior-parkrun your back garden, or kit up and get a more expensive ball (yes, some people pay well over £150 for a football!) There are also regional, national and European tournaments to join. The next phase of this sport is to create Club Teams for all of these courses. I’m proud and excited to have been appointed the Club Captain for Princes Park FootGolf and we are starting to build a team. We are lucky to have a great sponsor in Dartford Living and have a kit on order. At the time of writing we have nearly 20 players signed up and keen for more to join. We have players of all ages, men and women, experienced and newbies. All are welcome! We are set to start league games against other local clubs in April culminating in regional and national finals. If you’re interested in joining the club please contact myself , via social media or via the club.

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Watling Street Commemorative book planned: Dartford FC need your help Dear Dartford Living, How the past 25 years have flown, and with it the wind of change that has blown through Watling Street! In the summer of 1992, the Dartford football ground was still there, likewise the Co-op Dairy, Cascade Garage, and the Co-op Transport repair garage. Now, in 2017 they have all gone being replaced by housing developments. The famous old football ground saw its last competitive match played there on Saturday 2nd May 1992 – 25 years ago! To commemorate this, we are planning to produce a pictorial history of the ground (19211992) with all the changes and improvements that have taken place over the years. We are continually looking to find old photographs, programmes, newspaper cuttings, medals and all memorabilia connected with local football played on this ground. Many local league and charity cup finals were played here also, and we are interested in those to. Some of the local cup finals that have also taken place here are the Dartford & District League Cups, Livingstone Hospital Shield, Matt Capon Cup, Stone Charity Cup and various other charity cup competitions. We are interested in them all! We would also welcome your personal memories, snippets and anecdotes of your times visiting or perhaps volunteering at the ground. There have been several other sporting ac-

tivities that have taken place on the Watling Street ground over the years. The list includes American Football (Gridiron), Baseball, Boxing both professional and amateur, Lawn Tennis, Wrestling and Motoball (part of a motorcycle gymkhana). In the club house there has been a snooker club. Once again, we are interested in all of these events and activities – it is all a part of the history. There has been a political rally which Margaret Thatcher (then Miss Roberts) and Sir Anthony Eden, gave speeches to the crowd, and the Sunday General Market (opened by Alan Mullery the ex-Spurs and England international) that wasn’t exactly the success it was planned to be. In 1945, there were VE Day celebrations, with a party for the younger ones on the pitch – perhaps you were there! You may have memories of the successful side of Tunnel Sports that used Watling Street ground as their home for a few years in the 1960’s. Anything concerning their stay at Watling Street is an area where we are eagerly seeking material. There must still be so much memorabilia and memories ‘out there’ and we are really hoping that much of it will come to light over the next few months. If you feel you can help in any way we will be very pleased to hear from you and can be contacted either by email: by telephone 01322 224261 or by writing to us, c/o Tony Brown, 52 Weardale Avenue, Dartford, DA2 6LE. Good hunting and thank you, Tony Brown

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MADE IN DARTFORD – WEST END SHOW TO BE PERFORMED BY LOCAL THEATRE GROUP Dartford residents will feel that Essex has moved just that bit closer this April when a recent West End hit show is brought to Dartford’s Orchard Theatre. Dartford Amateur Operatic and Dramatic Society (DAODS) is revving up rehearsals for its upcoming production of the British musical Made in Dagenham, which was nominated for several Laurence Olivier Awards. The group is one of the first in the South East to secure the rights for the newly released show, and the cast of more than 50 local performers have been working hard since October. Inspired by a true story and based on the 2010 hit movie, Made in Dagenham is an uplifting musical comedy about friendship, love and the importance of fighting for what’s right.

of shows over the years, but it has inspired me to pursue a career in the theatre. Last year I started work for the RSC, and the experience I have gained there has certainly been an asset during rehearsals for Made in Dagenham.” The show comes hot on the heels of Annie Get Your Gun, which the group performed at the Orchard Theatre in October, and DAODS will return there in October 2017 with the well-loved classic Singin’ in the Rain. The society is always looking for new talent, both on and off-stage, and anyone who is interested in getting involved should email · Made in Dagenham is being performed from 26th – 29th April at the Orchard Theatre, Dartford. Tickets: 01322 220000 or

Set in the 60s, it follows the main character of Rita O’Grady, who finds herself the spokesperson for a group of female machinists at Ford’s car manufacturing plant in Dagenham. Eventually she leads them on strike when it becomes apparent they are being paid less than their male colleagues for doing the same work. In the West End, the part of Rita was played by Gemma Arterton, who was born in nearby Gravesend and attended the Miskin Theatre at North West Kent College in Dartford. Although the show has many funny moments, it also touches on some important themes that are still relevant today. “Women’s rights and equal pay are still high on the public agenda,” says the show’s director Alex Campbell, “and this show highlights just how long these struggles have been going on for.” Campbell has been a member of the society since she was nine years old, and Made in Dagenham will mark her debut as director at the Orchard Theatre. “DAODS is where my love for theatre began”, says Campbell, whose day job is in the Royal Shakespeare Company’s casting department. “Not only have I been able to learn about how a show is put together, and to take part in dozens


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Photos from DAODS

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Local Entertainment

March/ April Theatre Roundup by Liz Dyer This past month at the Orchard has had more ups and downs than an episode of Eastenders. We started with 60s nostalgia in West End sensation Dreamboats and Petticoats, then descended into paranoia and hysteria in The Crucible, Arthur Miller’s chilling tale of the Salem Witch Trials. But then the month ended on a high with The Wedding Singer, which took us back to the 80s and had us all on our feet dancing the blues away. March also saw auditions for this year’s Summer Youth Project - congratulations to everyone who took part; we’re all looking forward to seeing you in Little Shop of Horrors later this year!

West End and ready to wow us with their mind-bending illusions. The Dartford Amateur Opera and Dramatic Society (DAODS) are back at the Orchard with their production of Made in Dagenham (26th-29th). DAODS is one of the first amateur groups to get the rights to perform this musical, and judging by their previous productions, we’re in for a treat. It’s a great show too, which made me want to start a revolution when I saw it in the West End. I’ll try to contain myself this time…

Now on to the next few weeks, which as always have plenty to look forward to, and not only at the Orchard. Right at the start of the month, the Miskin Theatre at North Kent College brings us The Colour of Justice (29th March-1st April, so get your tickets quick), which examines the investigation into the murder of Stephen Lawrence in 1993.

And finally, April sees a bit of a Strictly Come Dancing takeover at the Orchard. The lovely Pasha will be with us on 22nd, which is always something to look forward to. And 2016 champ Joanne Clifton shows off a whole new set of talents as she stars in Thoroughly Modern Millie (10th-15th), based on the 1967 movie about a young flapper who arrives in New York at the height of the Jazz Age. Expect singing, dancing, and a slightly bonkers plot - what more could we ask for?

Back to the Orchard, and young theatregoers are in for a treat with My First Ballet: Cinderella (6th-8th), followed immediately by children’s TV presenter Naomi Wilkinson (9th), who shares some of her scariest wildlife encounters - and she’ll be bringing a few friends along…

One last thing: if you’re feeling brave, The Woman in Black is at the Churchill Theatre in Bromley from 3rd-8th April. Having seen the play as a teenager and been terrified to my very soul, I’ve vowed never to go again - but it’s a great show if you’re made of sterner stuff than me!

There’s plenty of comedy, from Al Murray (2nd), Russell Brand (9th) and Lee Hurst (20th), and for one night only, the Champions of Magic will be in town, direct from the

For regional and London theatre reviews, visit


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Tying it all together If you train in the gym, chances are you use an array of expensive machines that target specific muscle groups and small movements. Even if you use freeweights you’re likely doing specific, targeted exercises such as chest press or bicep curls. This is all great (as long as you know why you’re doing that particular exercise of course). All of these isolated movements though don’t necessarily tie together to make you move better. Picture the big guys in the gym who train hard, get big, and move like a rusty robot. For your body to move well, function well, and perform better both in sports and day to day life, your body needs to move as one complete unit. Smooth, fluid movements that cover all planes of motion (front to back, side to side, rotation). The more you can combine these planes of movement into one larger, full body movement, the more efficient and “functional” your body will become. If you’re working around, rehabbing, or recovering from an injury, these isolated movements and machines are fantastic; or if you have muscle imbalances or weaknesses that need addressing, definitely target those muscle groups until they’re up to speed with the rest of your body.These are also great for bodybuilding as you can really target specific muscle groups to make them grow. If your goal is to feel better, move more freely, perform better at sports or daily tasks though, you need to train slightly differently. Either train solely in this manner if your goal is simply better movement, or if you’re a bodybuilder or targeting specific muscles for any other reason, you also need to include some training that integrates all of the strength you’ve gained from training muscles in isolation. Isolate, then integrate. Build strength in your chest, then integrate that strength into a full body pushing movement… Build your quads (thighs) with a leg extension machine, then integrate that new strength into jumps, sprints, step-ups etc… To do this, you need to use large, full body exercises/ movements that use all of your muscles and joints together. Think about the difference between a bench press (lying

down and pushing a weight up from your chest) and a push up (holding your entire bodyweight up, staying tight and straight through your legs, arms, neck, core and back muscles… and then pushing your weight up whilst maintaining that tension through your body). Bodyweight training is a great way to go. Move your entire body in as many different ways as possible. Think gymnastics… dance… martial arts… yoga etc. If you’re not quite sure where to start or are looking for an exercise class that will get your whole body moving, build strength and endurance, power and stability, co-ordination and fitness, then may I introduce you to Animal Flow. Animal Flow classes are all bodyweight, ground based “movements”. The aim is to master your bodyweight and move it in as many different ways as possible with strength, control, stability and fluidity. You’ll learn various movements that strengthen your entire body and get it moving as one unit, then combine those movements into continuous “flows”. The key being control and fluid movement. When you can move your body under control and have the strength to do so, everything you do will become easier whether it’s a sport or just getting in and out of the car. For anyone from elite athletes to people who just want to get a bit fitter. Whether you run, gym, swim, fight, cycle, bodybuild or do yoga. You can benefit from Animal Flow. Check out the Animal Flow page on my website www. for more information. Classes are Tuesdays, 7-8pm at The Brent School. If you feel like your training needs something extra or like the more you exercise, the tighter and stiffer you get, come and try the class to start tying it all together. Build that new strength into powerful movements and create a strong body, not just strong muscles. Whatever you do, start integrating your “exercises” into “movements”. By Mark Broadbent

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Dhiren’s Auto News April 2017 Nissan Qashqai

Sporting a more aggressive and muscular front end, this updated Qashqai will be the first Nissan to come with semi-autonomous driving capability. The upgraded car can steer, accelerate and brake in a single lane on the motorway. In 2018, multi-lane functionality will allow the Qashqai to change lanes by itself, and by the end of the decade the car will be able to navigate through heavy traffic and junctions autonomously. Nissan has added a new steering wheel with updated multi-function controls for the infotainment system which itself features a new look. More options includes a seven-speaker sound system and a new range-topping Tekna+ trim level. Most owners will find better value with the N-Connecta specification which comes with a surround-view camera system, front and rear parking sensors and satellite navigation. You can choose from 1.2 and 1.6-litre petrols, and 1.5 and 1.6-litre diesels, same as the existing model. The pick of the range, the efficient 1.5-litre diesel, offers low CO2 emissions of 99g/km, helping to reduce both your tax bills and fuel costs. Nissan has also upgraded the Qashqai’s safety systems, and its automatic emergency braking facility – badged as Intelligent Emergency Braking – now gets pedestrian detection. it’s expected to cost a little more than today’s car which starts from £18,795. 2017 Toyota Yaris This generation of Yaris isn’t due to be replaced until around 2019, so Toyota needs to update its small hatchback in order to stay competitive, with this facelifted version. The upgraded Yaris receives new front and rear bumpers and a new mesh grille, designed to give it a more aggressive appearance, as well as redesigned headlights and new 15in and 16in alloy wheels. Our recommended engine


In this month’s article we’ll bring you new small hatchback cars to be launched in 2017.

choice in the current Yaris, the 1.33-litre petrol, is being replaced by a new 1.5-litre engine that’s designed to be even more fuel efficient. The Yaris’s other engine options – a 1.0-litre petrol and a 1.4-litre diesel – remain unchanged, while the 1.5-litre hybrid borrowed from the Prius has been made quieter under acceleration. Even the most basic versions of the Yaris, dubbed Active, receive Toyota’s Safety Sense package as standard, which includes automatic emergency braking (AEB), lane departure warning and automatic high beam assistance. Other equipment on Active models includes automatic wipers, power front windows, Bluetooth connectivity, and climate control on Hybrid versions. The facelifted

Yaris range starts at £12,495, which is a full £1000 more expensive than the old car. Tougher penalties for using a mobile while driving Following a Government consultation, distracted drivers face more penalty points and much bigger fines. The fixed penalty fine for distracted driving has doubled to £200, while offenders will also get six points on their licence. New drivers (less than 2 yrs) lose their licence if they get six penalty points. The only permitted way of using a handheld mobile while driving is via connectivity software such as Apply CarPlay or Android Auto via your car’s infotainment system, or via a Bluetooth hands free headset. The tougher penalties came into force after a week-long crackdown on the use of handheld mobile phones last November, which saw more than 7800 fixed penalty notices, 68 court summons and hundreds of verbal warnings issued.

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Gardening Hints and Tips - APRIL Bulbs Remove the faded flowers and seed heads of spring flowering bulbs as they start to go over. Also, remember to feed the plants during and after flowering with a soluble plant food applied over the foliage and around the roots. This will help to make large bulbs to ensure another superb display next year. Clean Up Make sure you’ve carried out any cleaning and repair jobs. Clean the patio and greenhouse, preserve and stain wooden features, and clean out water butts. Not sure what products to use? Just ask – we’re here to help. Feeding Give all your outdoor plants the best start by making sure you feed them now. Sprinkle the fertiliser around the root area and work it into the top inch or so of soil. If the soil is dry, water in the feed to prevent it burning the roots. Controlled release fertilisers are the easy way to feed and forget, as they release their nutrients whenever the soil is warm enough for plant growth, and will feed the plants for up to six months. Greenhouse It’s full steam ahead in the greenhouse this month. There’s plenty to do – from sowing seeds, taking cuttings to potting up young plants. Keep a careful eye on night and daytime temperatures and have heaters and vent openers on stand-by to avoid extremes of temperature – frost, sun scorch and under watering can all be fatal this month. Make sure all plants are carefully hardened off before planting outdoors – a cold frame is ideal for this. Lawn Care Grass should be growing strongly now, so make sure you mow regularly. While you’re mowing, taking note of bare patches, moss invasion and weeds and deal with any problems you see. Now’s also an ideal time to feed the grass for a lush, healthy lawn and deal with weeds and moss. Don’t forget to pick up any grass seed, lawn feed,

weedkillers and mosskillers you need, before you leave. Mulching Mulching the soil with a thick layer of organic material – such as composted bark or bark chippings – will help keep weeds down, as well as helping to keep the soil moist in summer. It will also insulate the soil and prevent it from getting too cold or too hot for good plant growth. For best results the mulch needs to be between 2 to 3 inches thick. If weeds are a big problem in your garden you may need to tackle them with one of our ready-to-use weedkillers, and certainly before you put down the mulch. Patio containers Add instant colour to your patio and garden with our ready-filled pots, or plant up your own. Add a controlled-release fertiliser and water-retaining gel to the compost to make feeding and watering easy. Why not fix up a micro-drip watering system for even better results. Remember to pick up everything you need including containers, plants, compost, feeds, gel and watering system, and get planting today for a superb splash of colour through spring and summer. Pest watch As the weather warms up, pests and diseases will be stirring in the garden. Keep on top of any problems that do occur to ensure they don’t get out of control – early eradication is the key to success. Ready-to-use sprays do away with fiddly mixing and ensure you have something ready to deal with the problems as soon as they’re seen. Slugs and snails are also a nuisance at this time of year because almost all new leaves are soft, lush and good food for them. Sprinkle slug pellets, place barriers, or water a liquid slug killer around all susceptible plants such as hostas, delphiniums and vegetables. www.

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Where to go locally...

...local events, clubs & groups

Parent & Toddler Groups (Term Time) Mondays

£2.00 per one 9:15am - 11:00am - A&J Toddlers - St Anselms Church Community Centre, Dartford. snack for small biscuits, Tea/coffee each. adults or children extra any for 50p and child adult and of session Contact end at dancing and singing and table Craft slice per 20p Toast juice. with children Julie on 01322 291092. Tuesdays , Dartford. Contact Catherine on Session 1: 9.15-10.45am, and Session 2: 11-12.30pm. Christchurch, Crossroad 01322 220036. on (01322) 288434 for further 9.30am -11.30am. The Salvation Army, 66 Hythe Street, Dartford. Please call us information. snack time for the children For 9.30am-11.30am Sticky Fingers - £1.50 per adult includes tea ,biscuits and healthy Greenhithe Contact 01322 382031 pre school children up to 4 years St Mary Greenhithe Church Hall London Road or see


on (01322) 288434 for further 9.30am -11.30am. The Salvation Army, 66 Hythe Street, Dartford. Please call us information. per family including all snacks and 10am -12pm - Little Angels Net Church, (Formerly Gala Bingo Hall) Dartford, £3 drinks. John 01322 272649. Road, Dartford, DA2 6JZ 12:45pm -2.45pm - Fleetdown Open House - Fleetdown Community Centre, Swaledale £2.50 per Adult


9:30am - 11:30am. St Paulinus Church Hall, Manor Road, Crayford. Child - £1 Non Walkers 9.30am-11am Toerags Toddler Group - Adult education centre, Dartford £3 per Child - £1 Non Walkers - facebook. 1pm-2.30pm Toerags Toddler Group - Adult education centre, Dartford £3 per com/ToeRags


up to 2. £1 per adult 9.30am-11am Baby and me for expectant mothers and mothers / carers of chidrenor see 382031 01322 Contact e. Greenhith Road London Hall, Church e Greenhith St Mary Child - £1 Non Walkers 9.30am-11am Toerags Toddler Group - Adult education centre, Dartford £3 per Greenhithe. Jeanne 01322 9.30am-11.30am Carer & Toddler Group, St Mary’s Church Hall, Stone Place Rd, 380322 1-3pm Gigglekidz, Tree Estate Community Centre on Cedar Road - £2 Per Child


up to 5years. £1.50 includes 9.30am-11.30am Daddy and Me - A group for dads and male carers of children Greenhithe. Contact 01322 healthy snack time for the children. St Mary Greenhithe Church Hall, London Road 382031 or see

Toddler Music & Rhyme Sessions

Tuesdays Two sessions, from 9.30-10.30am and 10:45 - 11:45am in Fleetdown FC Hall; Heath Lane, Dartford. Contact Kate on 07770 860450.. ALSO RUN SAME PLACE/TIM E ON THURSDAYS Tuesdays 10.30m - 11.00am (term time only) at Fleetdown Library - Baby Bounce and Rhyme session. Tel: 08458 247 247. Thursdays (term time only) we will be holding 2 sessions - 10.15am & 11am Crayford Rd, Crayford, DA1 4ER. Tel: 020 8303 7777. Also: Coffee and Chat sessions at Temple Hill Library on the First Tues of the month 10am 12noon. Thursdays 10.30am - 11.00am (term time only) at Fleetdown Library - Baby Bounce and Rhyme session. Tel: 08458 247 247. Thursdays 2.15 - 2.45pm (term time only) at Greenhithe Library - Baby Bounce and Rhyme session. Tel: 08458 247 247. Thursdays 10.45am - 11.15am (term time only) at Longfield Library - Baby Bounce and Rhyme session. Tel: 08458 247 247.

Where to go locally... The North West Kent Branch of the Motor Neurone Disease Association meets at 8pm on the

4th Wednesday evening of each month in the Pop-In Parlour, Mill Road, Northumberland Heath, Erith. The meetings last about 2 hours and the group often have a speaker on a variety of subjects, followed by tea and biscuits and general chat. For more information contact Eileen on 01322 228169.

Dartford Ostomy Group Support (DOGS) meet

every third Wednesday in the month at St Anselm’s Parish Centre, West Hill, Dartford DA1 2HJ from 1.00 pm to 3.00 pm. It is for anyone who has an Ileostomy, Colostomy, Urostomy, IBS and pouch, their carers, family and friends.


is a community learning organisation for adults and young people aged 16+ with physical, learning and mental health difficulties. For more information, attend a taster session or visit our community lunch club, contact Caroline on 01322 440482 or 07570 347612 YOGA & MEDITATION CLASSES Every Tuesday from 6-7pm &Thursday from 10.30am to 12.00pm at Peppercorns, 3 Orchard Street, Dartford, Kent, DA1 2DF. For more information please call The Hope Group on 07580 615206.


Our Club presents a programme of workshops and demonstrations in a very informal and friendly atmosphere. We meet on the last Thursday of each month except December. Shorne Village Hall, The Street, Shorne. DA12 3EA. Visitors are always made very welcome, entry £3. We have 30 members and look forward to welcoming anyone who loves flowers. The Club provides an opportunity for people to be creative, make friends. For further information please phone 01474 353405 or email


Swanley History Group Meets 1st Tuesday of every month. Presentations on local social history. Venue Swanley Indoor Bowls Centre Garrolds Close Swanley BR8 7BF. Doors open 7.15 for 7.30 p.m. Members £1 Visitors £2. Everyone welcome. Email swanleyhistorygroup@ for more details or visit our website https://swanleyhistorygroup.weebly. com or Facebook page. Annual membership £5 includes a monthly newsletter. NORTH KENT EMBROIDERERS’ GROUP Meets on the third Saturday of every month (except August) from 2pm - 4pm in the Community Room of Gravesend Library, Windmill Street, Gravesend DA12 1BE. The programme of activities is varied with workshops, talks and sit and stitch sessions. Visitors are very welcome. More information can be found on our website or phone 01474324734. The Dartford Stroke Group is starting chair-based excise classes on Monday afternoons at the YMCA Roundhouse at 2.30pm on 19th September, 3rd October, 17th October, 7th November, 21st November, 5th December and 19th December. This is as well as the regular meetings of the Stroke Group at the Meeting Place on the second and fourth Mondays of each month.  Please contact Theo at or phone/text Theo on 078 755 68 296 to get the current dates for our events and for more information

Age UK, Crayford library Pop in Parlour coffee morning every Friday morning 10.30 - 12.30 Tea, Coffee, Biscuits and a chat - Just £1


For people with Parkinsons and their carers. We have 2 meetings per month. Bexley: 4th Thursday of each month, at Pincott Hall, 2-4pm. Dartford: 2nd Thursday of each month, Mick Jagger Centre, 7.30-9.30pm. Information support workers available, guest speakers and quizzes. Contact Wendy Leach.  Tel:  02083065973


St Michael & All Angels Church Hall, DA2 7EG Wednesdays 1pm - 2pm. Fun, social class learning routines from differing genres to popular music providing exercise for body and brain. No dance experience or partners necessary. Contact Kay 01322 276528

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Would you like to promote a local activity on the “Where to go locally...” page? If so, email your suggestions to DARTFORD BRIDGE CLUB

Dartford Books and

Culture Club meets every Tuesday evening at 7.00 pm at meets once a month Wilmington Christian Fellowship Church Hall, on Saturday mornings Broad Lane, Wilmington DA2 7AQ. at Dartford Library. For We are seeking new members at all levels to play more information, find Duplicate Bridge -cost £2 per session. us at www.meetup. com/West-Kent-BookEnquiries: contact Club/ John Davies on 01474 832221 or e-mail

20s 30s Dartford Bexleyheath surrounding areas social group more information visit:


meets on the first Tuesday of every month (except August) at St Anselm’s Church Hall, West Hill, Dartford at 2pm, For information about meetings and interest groups call 01474-709068 or visit our website.

Dartford Stroke Group is aimed at Stroke Survivors, their families and carers. It meets at the Meeting Place in the Orchard Shopping Centre, Dartford for a chat, support, excise classes, outings and speakers. Please contact Theo at Theo.Hodges@ or phone/text Theo on 078 755 68 296 to get the current dates for our events and for more information.

Dartford Quilters meet on the 2nd Saturday of each

month at the Mick Jagger Centre, Shepherds Lane, Dartford. We run a varied programme of activities suitable for the beginner through to the more experienced quilter. More details can be obtained from the club secretary on 01474 834872

The club meets every Thursday evening from 7.30pm at St Anselms Parish Hall, West Hill and was founded 100 years ago in 1914. All queries to Mike Wiltshire at 01322 272152 or visit

GUITARS IN THE SHADOWS – JOIN IN MUSIC BY THE SHADOWS TO 60S TO ROCK N ROLL Meet at Dartford Working Mens Club (Essex Road) at 7.30pm on the fourth Thursday of the month. Membership is free but we do ask for a small contribution to costs on the night. Call Ray on 07813 540131 or email


meets on the 1st and 3rd Thursday each month at Sutton at Hone Village Hall. 1.30pm until 4.30pm. £3.00 per afternoon (to include a raffle ticket and tea/ coffee) £10.00 yearly fee. We are a small, friendly club, not expensive. Tuition given. All supplies can be bought in situe. Come and see if you like it, You will be very welcome. Contact - Maureen Beckham 01322 287214. Marie Blake 01474 704581. Doreen Goddard 01474 707357.

Dartford Floral Club

The club meet on the 3rd Friday of the month at Hawley Pavilion, Hawley Rd.(opp Papermakers Arms) at 7.30 Come along for an evening of beautiful flowers, fun and friendship. Entrance £6.00, refreshments and a raffle with the chance to take home a beautiful floral arrangement. Contact Chris 01322 836026

The Dartford Chess Club


Come and join your local Morris side, dancing and performing in Dartford, Gravesend and Bexley areas and throughout Kent in the Summer. We are a mixed and very sociable side, and can always find room for new dancers and musicians. It’s a great way of keeping fit and you’ll be helping to conserve a great English tradition. We practice alternate Tuesday evenings at Bexley, from September to April, then dancing out at pubs, clubs and fetes, throughout Kent, from May to August. Private Bookings taken. Contact Alison on 01322 862298, e-mail

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Where to go locally... TONI MOUNT HISTORY CLASSES

The group meet every week at Towncentric in Gravesend and this year we are looking at Everyday Life in Medieval London. We meet every Thursday from 10.30-12.30 at £6.00 per week customers can phone me on 01474 355676 for more information or look at my website

Hi all, if you went to DSTC, DTC, Dartford West Girls or any other name that the school has been known as we would love to hear from you! The school is looking to make links with former students to help raise the profile of the school but also as a way of getting back in touch with people. There will be an event later on in the academic year and we are planning some exciting things for the group so get joining and let’s get reminiscing!!

The Manor Hall Variety Group We meet every Tuesday at 8.00 in the Community hall (opp St Paulinus church) Crayford. We are looking for anyone who could help us with sound, lights, scenery or singing/ acting on the stage - everyone welcome. Email me (Carolyn) for more details at

Haven (LGBT) Social Group. London / Kent area. Every Friday - a safe Place to Meet. For more information please contact 01322 287356 or 07503 306467 or email -

TUESDAY 2.00 - 3.00PM (TERM TIME ONLY) Fleetdown Library Everybody welcome, join us for a friendly chat and light refreshments.



is being held at Hawley Pavilion, Hawley Road, Dartford, DA2 7RB on the 2nd Sunday of the month between 2pm and 6:30pm. It costs £6 which includes refreshments, nibbles and the use of a cricut (cutting machine for those that don’t know). Beginners are very welcome. Contact Michelle on 07910 488428 or email


Is an amateur dramatics group based at the Joydens Wood Community Centre, Wilmington, Kent. We meet every Tuesday from 8-10pm. For more information please visit www.facebook. com/pavilionplayers or call us on 07505 006539. Alternatively just pop down on a Tuesday night! Everyone welcome!

CRAYFORD TOWN ARCHIVE incorporating Barnehurst and Slade Green. Meet every Monday (except the third Monday) of the month at Crayford Library hall - 2pm-4pm. Call in for a chat about old Crayford and to view the large collection of local images, or bring your own for us to copy.


Mummy On The Mend

A support group for parents affected by pre and post natal depression Mondays: Danson Youth Centre Bexleyheath 10-11.30 Thursdays: Belvedere Community Hall 10 -12pm Friday: St Mary’s Church Greenhithe *behind McDonald’s* 12-2pm Email for more details.

Dartford Bellringers Holy Trinity Church, High Street, Wednesdays 8.009.30p.m. Free tuition with a very friendly, sociable group. The ideal way to make new friends. Phone Ester 01322 220458 or email: esther.correia1@btinternet. com

North West Kent Family History Society

The Dartford Branch meet the 1st Saturday of each month from 10am-12:30pm at the Dartford Science and Technology College, Heath Lane, For more information see or ring Janet 01322384836 Book Launch – new & fully illustrated Guide to St Peter & St Paul’s church, Swanscombe. On: Tuesday 18th April 2017 At: Old Fire Station Café, Church Road, Swanscombe DA10 0HF Time: Between 11am and 1pm Launch is free – no need to book, just come and visit. The guide book is £3, all sales going to the church. Christoph Bull (Local Historian) will be there to sell and sign your copies (he has extended and updated this publication) as will Town Mayor of Swanscombe & Greenhithe Bryan Read and Kent County Councillor Peter Harman.

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Dartford Active Retirement Group,[ DARTARA,] We are a group that meets on second Thursday once a month 2 - 4pm at Fleetdown community centre. At the meeting we have a guest entertainer or speaker, we also organise holidays and day trips out as well as activities including theatre trips, curling, short mat bowls, indoor games, coffee and cake afternoons and an art group. Just turn up on the day or phone Maureen Dixon-Jones 01322 383337 or Glenys Theobald 01322 273108 for more information

The Rotary Club of the North Downs

They meet at the Holiday Inn, Black Prince, Thursday evenings 7:30pm for 7:45pm for Dinner and fellowship. For details phone 07759 863836.

The National Women’s Register

The National Women’s Register (NWR) is a national organisation that meets in the Dartford area. The NWR is a discussion group for ‘lively minded women’. Contact can be made via or call 01603406767 and ask about the Dartford group.


The Rendezvous Club (50+) Every Monday Time: 8pm - 10pm

Location: The Pop in Parlour, Graham Road, Bexleyheath DA6 7EG Description: We are a friendly social group open to anyone over fifty. As a social group we enjoy a number of activities including bingo, a Beatle drive, quizzes, to name but a few. We also take part in outside activities including going for a meal or a trip to the theatre. On occasions we welcome a guest speaker. Admission: £2.50 per week. Annual membership £6 (payable in January) Tel: 01322 287356 or 020 8304 6414


A group of retired ladies meet locally for lunch on the 4th Wednesday of each month,. They raise funds for charity and usually invite a speaker. Join them and enjoy meeting and making new friends. If you would like more information please contact Iris (Secretary) on 01474 703448

Dartford & Gravesham Branch Meets the first Wednesday of every month at the Masonic Hall, West Hill, Dartford from 10-12pm.Activities include guest speakers, outings, lunches, holidays and quizzes. For more information contact Marion on 01322 402967

MALE? AGED 18 - 44?

WANT TO HAVE FUN AND DO SOMETHING WORTHWHILE WITH YOUR SPARE TIME? We’ve arrived in Dartford and we are a NEW Round Table Get involved, you WILL enjoy it!

Fairfield (Dartford) WI 2nd Tuesday of every month, Dartford Girls’ Grammar School, 7.30pm. Contact Judith on 01322 278703 Crayford Women’s Institute 1st Thursday of every month at 1.45pm. Baker Trust Hall. Maxim Road, Crayford (near Sainsburys). Contact Secretary, Jean Monk 01322 557142

Over 55’s Club - We meet every Wednesday 2pm to 4.30pm at Tree Community Centre, Cedar Road. We play bingo, tea and biscuits, and socialise. We also run regular coach trips to the coast throughout the year. Our club is open to anyone over 55 wherever you live and costs just 60p to come along and join in. So why not come and join our friendly welcoming social club? For further information please call either John Letchford on 01322 270732 or Pam Carr on 01322 222195. Joydens Wood Women’s Institute meet on the third Tuesday of every month, with meetings beginning at 7.45pm. We meet at the Community Centre, Birchwood Drive, Wilmington, DA2 7NE. More information can be found at joydenswoodresidents. (under Local Clubs and Societies).

Crayford and District Probus Club

meet on 1st and 3rd Wednesdays at the Falcon Wood Club, 1 Falcon Wood Avenue, Welling at 10am. Contact Tony Maun 0208 306 1075 or email

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Where to go locally... WHEELCHAIR EPEE FENCING

Wheelchair epee fencing in Dartford and Gravesham, we are delighted to announce that New Ash Green Epee club, can now introduce wheelchair fencing. If interested in taking up this para sport please contact us on 01474 871484 or alternatively look at our website

Erith Youth Rugby

Sunday 10:45-12:00, Sussex Road Erith. Ages 4-16 welcome 07903 590515

Kent Exiles American Football Club Coach Martin - 07944 730634. All ages from 7 years to adult welcome

Hartley Swimclub at White Oak Pool, Swanley

We are a friendly group of adults who meet for a social swim every Thursday at 9pm. We’re looking for new members. Why not give us a try? Contact Diane on 01689 871846 or join us one Thursday.

LITTLE TIGERS - KARATE FOR 3, 4 & 5 YEAR OLDS Sundays 10:15-10:45 at Swanscombe Leisure Centre. Call Saj on 07903 513104

Dartford Gymnastics

is the only British Gymnastics Club in Dartford to hold the”GymMark” Award for 6 years. Based in Heath Lane, we are a friendly club with super equipment, great coaches and high standards. We do lots of competitions and we do not close through the holidays! Visit our website http://www. for full details or contact Linda on 01322 409312 or email

Learn Karate

Learn karate with Yamato Damashii Every Saturday morning at Becket Sport Centre. Kids start at 9am, adults at 11am. Just turn up, first lesson free or visit [1] for more info.


Wednesdays & Fridays 9:30am-10:30am At Europa Gymnastics Centre Mondays 7.30pm to 8.30pm and Fridays 7.00pm – 8.00pm at Becket Sports Centre For more information please contact Emma: TEL: 07932 621415



Come and join one of North Kent’s fastest and most successful Martial Arts clubs. For more information, call Saj on 07903 513104 or just come along to one of our sessions and join in the fun! With the most reasonable fees around, you’ll find that training can be affordable too! For all details please visit our website

DARTFORD JU JITSU CLUB Mondays 7-8pm for 7-16s at the Dartford Girls Grammar, Shepherds Lane Dartford DA1 2NT in the Dance Studio. We have an adult class 8-10pm too.  We've been running for 20 years, building confidence, teaching self-defence, hardening the target, developing skills and always welcome new members.

Dartford Orienteering Club

For more details see

The Highly Strung Badminton Club, a friendly, all ages (must be over 18years old) & all abilities(sorry no beginners) Thursdays at 745-945pm,at the Dartford Girls Grammar School sports hall Shepherds Lane,Dartford,Kent,DA1 2NT For further information email

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Classes for under-fives teaching the basic elements of music through whole body movement, using the Dalcroze and Kodaly methods. With action songs and games, using percussion instruments and props like hoops, balls and soft toys, the children develop musical, physical and social awareness, concentration, co-ordination and confidence - and have lots of fun! Becket Sports Centre, Thursdays during term time: babies and toddlers: 9.15 till 9.55; 3 and 4 year-olds: 10.00 till 10.40 Contact Myrtle : 07763 378451 Email :

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Little Bright Sparks Fun phonics, literacy and numeracy classes for 2-4 year olds. Classes held on Weds in East Malling and Thurs in West Kingsdown £5.50 per class 07768 447657 for more info

Slade Green and Howbury Community Library Baby and Toddler Action Rhyme time group Every Wednesday (Term Time only) at 11.15am LEGO Club Every Saturday 2-3pm for ages 5 and over Chrome Road Slade Green DA8 2EL Tel: 01322 333602


Our unique drama programme will help children develop excellent social skills. Over time, we guarantee children’s confidence and communication skills will increase in many ways.

OPENING IN DARTFORD -JANUARY 2017 Contact us NOW to arrange a FREE trial lesson.

Classes also available in: Bexleyheath, Falconwood, Plumstead and Welling

01322 221251

Interested advertising? Tel: 01322 507817 ininadvertising? 01322 507817 InterestedInterested in advertising? Tel: 01322 Tel: 507817 Dartford Living

11 15 55

COMPETITION Inspired by a true story and based on the hit movie, Made in Dagenham is the uplifting new British musical comedy about friendship, love and the importance of fighting for what is right. Essex 1968. Like millions of other working women, each morning Rita is just trying to get her husband out of bed, get the kids off to school and get to work at the factory on time. But life is about to change forever when it’s announced that the girls in the stitching room of Ford’s Dagenham car plant will have their pay grade dropped to ‘unskilled’. Quickly drawing on a strength she never knew she had, Rita leads her friends in a battle against the might of Ford and the corruption of the Union supposed to protect them. Funny, touching and timeless, the musical shows how ordinary people can do extraordinary things when they stand together. Produced by arrangement with Josef Weinberger Ltd

Which car is made by Ford? a) Fiesta b) Corsa c) Clio d) Polo Please email your entries to by the 15th April RUES: 1. The winner(s) will be the first correct entry/entries drawn. 2. The judge’s decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into. 3. Prizes are as stated and no cash in lieu or an alternative prize will be offered.. 4. Winners will be notified by telephone by the Orchard, within 5 working days of the competition being drawn. 5. Employees and the immediate families of participating companies are ineligible to enter. 6. Closing date for the competition is stated above.


Please call Mike or John on: Tel 01322 406439 / 01322 525708 Mobile: 07742 085333 Email: Partners: Mike Perry and John Petherick


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Advertisers Index

Directory of Local Businesses advertising in Dartford Living

ACCOUNTANTS, FINANCE & LEGAL Buss Murton .............................................................. 40 Downton Ali Associates..............................................59 GF + Co........................................................................41 Lynton & Co ................................................................4 Quartz Financial Services.............................................19 Smith Kiew Partners......................................................16 BUILDERS, DECORATORS ROOFING, BATHROOMS, KITCHENS & WINDOWS

Claremont Decorative Services..................................52 Nightingale Bathrooms.................................................5 Steve Cook - Double Glazing.......................................23 CHILDCARE Anchor Fostercare........................................................14 Dimples Nursery...........................................................29 CONVENIENCE STORE S3 ................................................................................17 COSMETIC, BEAUTY & HEALTH Dia Wipes................................................................7 COUNCIL Dartford Borough Council ...........................................31 DATING Wishes Online Dating...................................................17 EDUCATION Kip McGrath.. ...................................................14 ELECTRICIANS AES Electricians.. ....................................................4 ESTATE/ LETTING AGENTS GPS Lettings............................................................7 Fox Estates ..................................................................11 Virotti................................................................13 Wisdom Estates...........................................................34 FUNERAL SERVICES Stephen P Gay Funeral Services..............................22 GARAGES & VEHICLE SERVICES Orchard Garage...........................................................60 Shenley Road Garage...................................................42 GARDENING SERVICES Barge Group................................................................11 HIGHWAY MAINTENANCE The Barge Group.....................................................11 HOTELS

Campanile...................................................................4 JEWELLERY Bradleys..................................................................23 LOGISTICS/ REMOVALS FD TRANSPORT ...................................................42 MUSIC/DANCE & FITNESS Worried about your childs weight?.............................21 Dartford Bootcamps.....................................................30 Fairfield Leisure Centre...............................................30 Monkey Music............................................................49 Why Weight?...............................................................20 Vibe...............................................................18 OPTICIANS Linklater Opticians.. ...............................................40 PICTURE FRAMING Craft Frames.............................................................42 SANDWICH BAR Sally Sues....................................................................22 SECURITY Advance Security Services....................................19 SPORTS Fairfield Leisure Centre................................................16 TRAVEL AGENTS Harden Holidays.....................................................1 TREE SURGERY The BARGE Group.................................................11 THEATRE DAODS ....................................................39 VOLUNTEERING NWK VOLUNTEER CENTRE...................................27 WILL WRITING SMN Will Writing .....................................................22 WEBSITE DESIGN/ DESIGNERS/ GRAPHICS DS Brochure Webdesign.........................................43

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Dartford Living


Call 999 in an Emergency Fire, Police, Ambulance and Coastguard 101 Non Emergency Number for Kent Police Crimestoppers 0800 555 111 111 NHS Non Emergency Number

Useful Numbers KEY NUMBERS Police 01622 690690 NON EMERGENCY ONLY Fire Safety Advice & FREE Home Fire Safety Check 0800 169 1125 Dartford Borough Council 01322 343434 Gas Leaks (24 hour) 0800 111 999 EDF Energy Networks Emergencies/Powercuts Helpline 105 Flooding 03459881180 Highways Kent 03000 41 41 41 Social Services 03000 41 41 41 Water Burst 0800 820 999 (Southern) 0800 714614 (Thames) HEALTH Darent Valley Hospital 01322 428100 Dartford East Health Centre 01322 421480 Dartford West Health Centre 01322 222998 Boots Chemist Bluewater 01322 624780 (Late Night) ASDA Greenhithe Chemist 01322 374100 (Late Night) The National Pandemic Flu Service 0800 1513 100 West Kent NHS helpline 0800 0 850850 TRAVEL Heathrow Airport Enquires 08700 000123 Gatwick Airport Enquires 08700 002468 National Rail Enquires 08456 484950 Highways England Info Line 0300 123 5000 HELPLINES 24 Hour Kent Dementia Helpline: 0800 500 3014 Alcoholics Anonymous:


08457 697 555 Citizens Advice Bureau: 01322 472 979 Debt Councilling (CAP) 0800 328 0006 Information About Drugs - FRANK: 0800 776600 Kent Homophobic Incident Reporting Line: 0800 328 9162 Kent Racial Incident Reporting Line: 0800 138 1624 Local Breastfeeding Counsellors Judianne/Paula 01322 224072 National Domestic Violence Helpline (24 hour) 0808 2000 247 NSPCC Child Protection Helpline: 0808 800 5000 RSPCA Kent, North West Branch Helpline 01322 286720 Samaritans: 0208 301 1010 LOCAL MP Gareth Johnson 020 7219 7047 LOCAL SPORTS CLUBS Bexley Rugby Club 01322 550142 or bexleyrfc/

Dartford Volleyball Club Graham - 01322 275290 or 07984 106134. Stone Lodge Indoor Bowling Club 01322 274111. VCD Table Tennis Club Eric Jenkins - 0208 3038312. ‘Play & pay’, 9 hole, par 3 golf course on Dartford Football Club’s Princes Park- PRINCES PARK GOLF CLUB. Contact: Mr. Pat Coleman, Secretary 01322 863730. email: The Ashes Badminton Club Mondays, Dartford Technology College, Heath Lane. 7.30-9.30. Jacqui 07764 182854. Dartford Valley RFC darenthvalleyrfc/ USEFUL FACEBOOK GROUPS Dartford Living Dartford Today and Tomorrow Dartford Remembered Dartford Gossip Dartford Hour Love Dartford

Dartford Ladies Hockey Club Dawn Hall (Secretary) 07793 777250 Dartford Ju Jitsu Club Mondays, Dartford Girls Grammar School, Shepherds Lane. 6.30-8.00 Juniors, 8.00-10.00 Seniors www. Dartford Sharks Basketball Club Tim Dickson - 07855 692527.

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Dartford Living



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Dartford Living April 17  

April issue of Dartford Living featuring Tom Johnston (The Voice 2017), NWK Volunteer Centre, Dartford FootGolf and our usual features and m...

Dartford Living April 17  

April issue of Dartford Living featuring Tom Johnston (The Voice 2017), NWK Volunteer Centre, Dartford FootGolf and our usual features and m...