Dartford Living April 2021

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APRIL 2021 - ISSUE 178 - FREE


MONDAYS British Legion Hall (morning) South Darenth Paula 07891 424401

Geddes Place Church(morning) Bexleyheath Adam 07730 405313

St.Anselms Parish Centre Dartford Gillian 07957 135737

Oakfield Primary Academy Dartford Kate 07590 995948

Oakfield Primary Academy(from January 5th 2021) New Venue Dartford Kate 07590 995948

The Howard Venue Hextable Kelly 07904 759587 New Consultant

Fleetdown Community Centre Dartford Paula 07891 424401

WEDNESDAYS St.Edmunds Church Living Well Dartford Jo 07800 797030

VCD Sports Club(morning) Crayford Sue 07507 599691 VCD Sports Club(evening) Crayford Shelley 07979 691619 TUESDAYS St.Anselms Parish Centre Dartford Gillian 07957 135737 Greenhithe British Legion Greenhithe Paula 07891 424401 St.John The Evangelist Church Bexley Adam 07730 405313


The Howard Venue Hextable Kelly 07904 759587 New Consultant

Danson Youth Centre Bexleyheath Shelley 07979 691619 FRIDAYS The Brent Old Boys Dartford Jo 07800 797030

VCD Sports Club(mornings) Crayford Liz 07900 213548

SATURDAYS Oakfield Primary Academy Dartford Sarah 07739 027161

VCD Sports Club(evenings) Crayford Jo 07920 851475

The Christchurch Centre Swanley Paula 07891 42440

THURSDAYS Greenhithe British Legion Greenhithe Paula 07891 424401

*Please contact the consultant for session times*



Dear Readers, Welcome to the April magazine. We live in strange times, but as usual the magazine is jam packed with lots of local information and local businesses. Please support as many as you can - use them or lose them! Like no time before, your community needs you. In case you weren’t aware, we run Dartford Living alongside volunteer members of the local community FOR the local community. It’s the only independently run magazine serving the local area with information, fun, good news and positive local stories! Please 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! If you email editor@dartfordliving.com we will add you to our e-newsletter and you will join 7,000 others who receive a copy of the magazine by email once a month. Until next time, stay safe

5 Dartford Running 6 Straight out of Dartford 8 Land Bridge Landmark 10 Dartford Giving 14 Debbie’s delicious recipe 16 Darent Valley Hospital Wellbeing Fund 20 Dartford Provides a warm welcome 22 Practice to calm your nerves 24 Travel Inspiration- with Harden Holidays 28 Fitness April 35 Senior Snippets 37 Christians Against Poverty 38 Life under the Stairs 40 Wellbeing at Ellenor 41 Sports Roundup 43 Lockdown TV picks 44 Dartford Painted Rocks 47 Car News 52 Where to go locally 55 Useful numbers 56-57 Business directory


Vijay - Editor, Dartford Living (and the rest of the fantastic Dartford Living volunteer team) ONLINE

Front cover photo by Janice Blake

www.dartfordliving.com www.dartfordlivinglive.co.uk www.dartfordbusinessdirectory.co.uk


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DARTFORD RUNNING Spring is in a full swing and it’s time to get out and enjoy the blooms. Excuses we make all the way through winter - such as; it’s cold, it’s raining, it’s wet – are not good enough anymore.

By local resident, Silvie Mazacova run around the park several times. Try extending your run by carrying on through the underpass under Princess Road (yes, through the park, no need to deal with traffic) and extending your run all the way to the Brooklands Lake. Starting at the High Street entrance to Central Park and going all the way down to and around the lake and back, gives you decent 4–5km, depending on which way you go and you don’t need to cross a road once! Make the route shorter or longer using a great variety of paths. Unsure about where exactly the paths go or where is the Princess Road underpass?

Spring is in a full swing and it’s time to get out and enjoy the blooms. Excuses we make all the way through winter - such as; it’s cold, it’s raining, it’s wet – are not good enough anymore. Gyms are still shut and the majority of them won’t see their doors opening until 12th April. How about going out for a run?

three times a week and you’ll feel Google Maps is an excellent tool – it will show you everything. All the and look much better. paths are there – I checked. Where to go? So, get out today! Don’t be scared I have recently visited the Central of running – you don’t have to be Park in Dartford after a while – parks a record breaker. Feel tired? Slow are not my favourite destination in down, walk and enjoy the fresh air. winter, I have to admit. I’d suggest No lives depend on your speed, which Central Park as a number one unfortunately can’t be said about the location – there are fresh, beautiful poor Greek messenger Pheidippides and colourful blooms being planted who ran from Marathon to Athens. I bet he had no idea he’d be so famous everywhere. 1,500 years later. Just about anyone can choose a running track there – whether you He collapsed and died on the spot, are a seasoned runner and need 5k, so take it easy. Enjoy the fresh air, or whether you are a beginner and but don’t go crazy. And don’t forget to stretch before and after! 1k or 2k is just about enough.

It’s an incredible way to burn off some extra calories you may have accumulated during the cold months. Running is a quick and effective burner – even a 20 minutes long run will set off a decent afterburn effect, which means that you’re burning calories for hours Enjoy the smooth terrain with no hills after you finished exercising. and gorgeous green environment. One go around the park using the You are basically burning them paths gives you around 1–1.5km. For off while sitting on the sofa! How me, two goes are just about right, but effective is that? All this for only there is a good solution if you need 20 mins? I’m sold. Try this two or a longer route and don’t want to




Find out more about Dartford born musician Mick Jagger


each other, Richards on Chastilian Road and Jagger on Denver Road, before moving to Wilmington a few years later. Of course we all know that Jagger went on to study at Dartford Grammar School thanks to the aptly named Mick Jagger Centre! This facility was named after Sir Mick and added to the boys school in 2000. A multi-purpose venue with a passion for inspiring a love for arts and music; Jagger generously funds the ‘Red Rooster’ project, which aims to teach key musical skills to children in the community in group sessions at the centre (currently online!) and in local primary schools. The most famous spot in Dartford -before it got renovated- seemed to be platform 2 of Dartford Train Station, the location which reunited Jagger and Richards. The story goes that Jagger was on his way to the London School of Economics -something that sounds very far from the Mick Jagger everyone has come to know- when Richards turned up to get his train to the art school he was attending. That was the catalyst for what would become The Rolling Stones.

Mick Jagger is definitely one of the largest and most inspiring people to come from Dartford, but the thing What would a ‘Straight out of You could say his ease and comfort that sticks with me is the legacy he Dartford’ piece be without an in front of the camera showed early left behind in our small town. article on the most famous man signs of where his life was headed. to have been born here. This article http://www.themickjaggercentre. is about Mick Jagger’s connection There are several locations around com/red-rooster.html to locations throughout our town Dartford that have become hotspots https://www.greatbritishlife.co.uk/ rather than his rise to stardom, as for tourists thanks to, not only people/mick-jagger-on-his-love-offacts surrounding that are widely Jagger, but also his bandmate and dartford-7284366 known to most who care already! childhood friend, Keith Richards. Pat https://faroutmagazine.co.uk/ Michael Jagger, as he was formerly on the back if you can place them all! mick-jagger-rolling-stones-tv-debutknown back then, had his TV debut The pair met and became steadfast aged-15/ when he was just 15 ears old on a friends from an early age when they TV show called Seeing Sport which both attended Wentworth Primary. his father had a weekly segment on. It helped that they also lived close to



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A new ‘bridge’ in Swanscombe’s Craylands Gorge has reopened a footpath that once again joins Greenhithe and Swanscombe. This long-awaited link followed the demolition of the old, condemned ‘caged in’ bridges a number of years ago.

pedestrians using the route. But it is more than simply a footpath as it will eventually allow access down into the important Craylands Gorge ecological corridor and link the local communities.

Visiting the land bridge on the day it opened Greenhithe and Knockhall Borough Councillor, David Mote said: “It is very pleasing to see the path reopened and so many people using it already. There are still minor access challenges to pin down but but this is a very important landmark for the Greenhithe, Swanscombe and Constructed by Ebbsfleet based Ebbsfleet as it marks the only point Henley Camland, the new land where all three communities meet.” bridge connects Swanscombe Heritage Park to Knockhall Park and is already seeing a large number of Used by generations of residents, and especially parents from Greenhithe taking their children to the Craylands school, this traffic free footpath has been greatly missed.


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By Kate Hargreaves

This month I’m writing about a role which allows you to see the direct impact of your time spent – through engaging in various fun activities with a vulnerable child living in care, you will see their confidence grow and your relationship develop.

Independent Visitor “What is it?” This role is essentially being a “buddy” to a young person (aged 4-25) living in a residential care home or with a foster carer and involves visiting them on a monthly basis to enjoy a fun and motivational activity together – be that developing new skills or interests, or doing something you both enjoy, whether that’s a trip to the cinema, trying new food, going trampolining or just a walk in the park. During recent lockdowns, this has more commonly become a video call while watching the same movie on Netflix! Councils outsource the Independent Visitor service to various organisations, but here I will write about the process with Barnardo’s (the children’s charity), which covers some London and Kent areas.

with a young person with similar interests, so you will likely get to do activities you enjoy while supporting a young person and developing their emotional wellbeing and skills. For many young people living in the care system, you may be the only adult in their life who is not paid to be there, which puts you in a unique position and means you can build a stronger bond. A big part of the role is providing the young person with someone else to talk to, should they want to do so.

children’s charity. “How much time do I need for it?” The visits are monthly and typically last a few hours, depending on what activity you’re doing, and take place outside of school hours, so you need to be available for evening or weekend visits. You will be expected to keep in touch with the young person between visits, maybe with a weekly call or text, depending on their age. A key part of the Independent Visitor role is to provide continuity in the young person’s life, which is something not always possible with changing carers and social workers, so a minimum two year commitment is requested. “Are there any requirements?” The ideal Independent Visitor is reliable, trustworthy, friendly and enthusiastic, acts as a positive role model and has an open-minded approach. A DBS check will be carried out as you will be spending time one-to-one with a vulnerable young person.

“Anything else I need to know?” Unlike all other adults in the young person’s life, you will not be told anything about their background or why they are in care; it will be for them to decide how much to share with you. There will be a monthly budget for activities agreed in advance, so you will not be out of “What would I get out of it?” As pocket for your visits. well as building an enduring trusting relationship with a young person, “This sounds great, how do I get you will be given training and regular involved?” Go to www.ivnetwork. supervisions to ensure that you are org.uk to find out more about the well-equipped to discuss issues they independent visitor role or email may face and understand how you can ivnetwork@barnardos.org.uk to play a role in keeping young people get involved through Barnardo’s. safe. There are lots of other benefits of If you have any questions, feel free to “Would I enjoy it?” This can be volunteering including experience for email kate@dartfordliving.com. As a really fun and rewarding role. your CV, increasing self-confidence, always, happy volunteering! Barnardo’s will try to match you and a chance to contribute to a great


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FRUIT PIZZA By Debbie Dickinson sheet. Pop the pizza bases in the oven – they will need between 10-15 minutes. The cinnamon topping needs to be added during baking, the other toppings will go on once the pizza is cool. For the Cinnamon Apple Pizza: Mix the butter, brown sugar and cinnamon together in a bowl. After the pizza has been in the oven for 10 minutes, spread this mix on the pizza, top with sliced apple or banana and return to the oven for the remaining time. Take the bases out of the oven and allow to cool. For the Fruit Pizza: Spoon Condensed milk onto the middle of the pizza and spread to the edges. Top with fresh/tinned fruit of your choice. Many years ago, I travelled With friends, around Brazil and Argentina. When we were visiting the amazing Iguazu Falls, we stopped at a pizza restaurant - I think it was in Brazil, but we spent a few days border hopping so not 100% sure! There was one pizza on the menu whose ingredients/ toppings weren’t listed in any of our travel guide dictionaries so, naturally, we ordered it! I couldn’t tell you exactly what was on it, but it was a sweet pizza, with a condensed-milklike sauce and toppings of fruit (again, some we didn’t recognise!) So I thought it would be a fun thing to share with you as an activity with the kids over the Easter holidays – let their imaginations go wild with the toppings! What you need: For the pizza dough 400g Plain Flour 2tbsp Sugar 1tsp Quick Yeast 225ml Warm Water


For the toppings – my examples! 50g Softened Butter 50g Brown Sugar 2tsp Ground Cinnamon Sliced Apple Condensed Milk Selection of fresh/tinned fruit – cut into bite sized pieces. Chocolate Spread Mini Marshmallows Mini Chocolate Eggs

For the Chocolate Pizza: Spoon Chocolate Spread in the middle of the pizza and spread to the edges. Top with mini marshmallows and mini chocolate eggs. What other crazy combinations can you think of? Let me know what you try (and how it turns out!) Enjoy xxx

What to do: Combine the plain flour, sugar and yeast in a large bowl. Make a well in the middle, pour the warm water in and stir to bring the mix together. Tip the mix onto a clean surface and knead for a few minutes until you get a smooth dough. Turn the bowl over, cover the dough and leave for 10 minutes. Turn your oven on to 200°C Fan/ and very lightly grease a baking sheet. If you want to make more than one pizza, divide the dough into smaller balls. Press and stretch the dough into circles and put on the baking

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Shaping Lives, Transforming Communities


DARENT VALLEY HOSPITAL WELLBEING FUND There’s no doubt that the past 12 months have been some of the most challenging in many people’s living memory. It hasn’t mattered where you’ve turned; news channels, news conferences, newspapers, social media, etc, the outlook has been a constant barrage of bad news, sombre stories, with an invariably bleak outlook. Even now, when the nation is at its most optimistic, the messaging from leading scientists and advisors still has downcast undertones which urge caution.

If you look hard enough, through the doom-ridden headlines, there have been some truly wonderful stories that have cut through. For instance, perhaps the one that will jump to the forefront of everyone’s mind is Captain Sir Thomas Moore. He set out to raise £1,000 for the NHS before his 100th birthday and ended up raising a monumental sum upwards of £32million. There are many other greats stories like this where people have gone out of their way to help support the NHS, and here at Dartford Living, we would like to highlight the efforts of local hero Emma Court of Joydens Wood. Having seen a post on social media


but also other items needed such as earphones, dictaphones, stilus pens, and mask extenders.” The PayPal pool was just the start of Emma’s support campaign. “During the first lockdown a good friend of mine was making keyrings with “NHS Heroes” written on them. They were being sold in the community with all profits going to NHS charities. I asked my friend if they could make some that could be sent directly to the staff at Darent Valley Hospital, which we did!” There have been many reports in the media about just how stretched NHS staff have been during the pandemic. When Emma heard of staff and friends in Darent Valley Hospital being so overworked that many weren’t even able take a break during their shifts, she ramped up the support efforts. “I contacted the well-being team at the hospital to see if ‘care packages’ would be any use and what they would really need or want in them. I just wanted to make their day a little easier and hopefully put a smile on their faces. The care packages that were put together all contained a bottle of water, packets of soup, a packet of crisps, a cereal bar, tea bags and coffee sachets, a sweet treat, some hand cream, and an inspirational quote. The majority of the bags were also suitable for vegetarians.”

from staff at Darent Valley Hospital during the first wave, asking for items to be donated that they were severely short of, Emma saw this as an opportunity to help support the staff that have provided amazing care for her and her family over the years. Emma raised awareness of her efforts by posting on social media, We asked Emma what the main through various online community m o t i vat i n g fa c to r s w e r e f o r groups such as ‘The Joydens Wood supporting the staff. Resident Association’ on Facebook and through groups of friends and “I knew what an amazing community family on the mobile messenger I lived in, and how supportive my service Whatsapp. family are of Darent Valley Hospital, so I setup a PayPal pool to raise “The response from the community money, initially, for water bottles for was amazing. I was flooded with the staff. The response was so great people asking what they could and overwhelming that I was able to donate and/or do to help support purchase not just the water bottles, what I was doing. I had donations

left on my doorstep. People would add stuff to their own shopping orders just for this, it was all a really humbling experience. The local community here is full of some amazing, caring, and kind people. I already knew that much, but the sheer generosity and kindness of people was really brilliant. I even had complete strangers offering to help put the packages together or cart them to the hospital, as well as small businesses offering goods for free and their time.

“It was really fulfilling getting to see the smiles and gratitude on the faces of the staff. They really appreciated the care packages and loved the inspirational quotes. Some of the staff took to the Darent Valley Hospital Facebook page to leave messages thanking everyone involved for their support. Every time I go to the hospital now for appointments, I make sure I don’t go empty handed. Despite of everything that is going on around them, all the staff I’ve seen at Darent Valley Hospital have been so One of my children attends lovely, positive and friendly.” Enchanted Woods nursery in Bexley Park, loads of the children there got It’s no surprise that the impact of the involved by making pictures and pandemic has been far reaching and paintings to decorate the hospital as such, all departments at Darent Valley Hospital have been affected. with over Christmas.” It’s often the efforts of an individual We reached out to the Wellbeing or a small group of people that team at Dartford & Gravesham NHS really make a difference, and Emma Trust to give us their view: has been pivotal in bringing the local community together to help “The community support has really support the amazing staff at Darent been incredible and it’s wonderful Valley Hospital. Where people have to see it being recognised by the been unable to donate goods such local press. as food and drink, they’ve donated cash. To date Emma has raised over “We are extremely grateful for all the £1500 with all funds going directly support the local communities have to supporting staff at the hospital. given us over the past year. A great When asked who else helped with example of this is the support given the project, Emma said:

by Emma Court and the residents of Joyden’s Wood. The generous donations of care packages are such a lovely treat for staff members and really brighten their day. They make such a difference, especially for those who rarely have time to leave their work area - they can now quickly grab a drink and a snack in their break room and enjoy a moment to relax. We have been overwhelmed by the kindness and generosity exhibited by the public, and the level of community spirit demonstrated by groups like Joydens Wood really helps to boost staff morale by showing them just how appreciated they are. This kind of support has been invaluable during the pandemic, but with lockdown hopefully easing soon any future donations would be gratefully received in the form of a contribution to our Valley Hospital Charity Staff Wellbeing Fund which allows us to continue ensuring support from the community is dedicated to promoting the wellbeing of our staff. For example by upgrading areas for wellbeing, staff rooms and outside spaces” You can find the Darent Valley Hospital Wellbeing Fund website here where you can make a donation: www.valleyhospitalcharity.org.uk

“There were so many people involved from the local community in putting the care packages together, and it wouldn’t have been possible without them. The residents of Joydens Wood, my friends and family, especially my mum, dad, and sister, along with many of the parents and carers at Maypole Primary School all came together to do something great.” During the first lockdown, Emma sent the donated items in to the hospital, but during the most recent lockdowns, she has been able to deliver the donations directly to the well-being team in between attending appointments.


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Graham and Elizabeth Harfleet’s life journey has included living in some interesting places including London, Norfolk, North Yorkshire, Essex, Lancashire, East Lothian and now Kent! Elizabeth is an ordained minister and it was an appointment to the North Kent Methodist Circuit which brought the couple to Dartford in 2019, following three years with the Methodist Church in Edinburgh. Previously, Elizabeth was a Nutritional Therapist, helping individual clients with a wide range of health issues, as well as running workshops and undertaking media


work. Elizabeth loves her work as a Minister, helping and supporting people in all aspects of their lives. In her quieter moments Elizabeth enjoys reading, drawing and thinking up new recipes for her home-made chocolate!

friendly and professional service. Fully independent advice is available for both personal and corporate medical insurance, whether cover is currently in place or not. Graham can be contacted on 01322 476113 and at www.ghhealthsolutions.co.uk

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Dartford Living are creating Dartford Online- a place where you can find out about all things to do with Dartford and the local area.

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NADI SHODHANA: A PRACTICE TO CALM OUR NERVES, BALANCE OUR MIND AND IMPROVE OUR MEMORY. - Press the side of the right nostril, unblock the left and exhale - This constitutes one round. We usually practice about 10 rounds or for a couple of minutes but you can practice for longer. As you experiment see if you can slow your breathing down, so you are slowly breathing in and out through alternate nostrils. Focus on the sensation of the passage of the breath.

Often referred to as alternate nostril breathing, Nadi Shodhana is a yoga breathing technique which numerous studies have found to increase feelings of well-being, improve memory, relieve stress and increase physical relaxation. I’ve recently been teaching Nadi Shodhana in my yoga classes and class members have reported feeling much calmer after the practice, some have texted me later on to tell me they have had much more positive, productive days and one class member says she uses the technique to prevent panic attacks. This is a really powerful tool.

me a sense of how it actually feels. There are various ways to approach the technique but the simplest approach involves gently pressing on the side of one nostril with your thumb of ring finger to block the flow of the breath and then breathing in or out through the open nostril. A simple practice would be as follows:

- Find a comfortable seated position, close the eyes or soften the gaze - Exhale through both nostrils - Gently press on the side of the right nostril, and inhale through the left nostril - Press the side of the left nostril and unblock the right to exhale through The Sanskrit words Nadi Shodhana right nostril (Sanskrit being the classical and - Inhale through right nostril intellectual language of India) translate as something like Channel Cleansing. In yoga texts composed around the middle ages, this technique was classified as a cleansing practice as it was seen as cleansing or purifying the energy lines or channels that were visualized to be running through the body. Though it is most often referred to in English as alternate nostril breathing, this being a description of the practice, I prefer to use the original name as it gives


At first, it might seem as though one of your nostrils is blocked, this is more than likely due to the nasal cycle, something we are usually unaware of. At any time one of our nasal cavities will be partially congested and we will be breathing in and out mostly through the other nostril. It’s thought that this biological function helps give each nostril a chance to rest to prevent our nasal cavities drying out. As you work with the practice ,you will likely find the nostrils start to feel more even and you balance the right and left side. If you want to know more about Nadi Shodhana, please do get in touch. I am always more than happy to talk about yoga and would love to know how you got on with the practice. Take good care of yourself, Clair.




JUST QUOTE Dartford Living Magazine




It is hard to believe that we are now in April 2021 and there is still so much uncertainty around international travel which makes it near impossible to plan something for a well-deserved summer holiday. We are eagerly awaiting the PM’s update planned for the 5th April for some more clarity on how the skies may reopen this summer and where we may able to travel in the short term. There is a lot of misinformation and speculation in the press and on social media that does help either. When it comes to holidays and international travel, we strongly advise you: 1. Book with a reputable travel agent with a strong financial protection in place and be sure to have an answer to all scenarios that may unfold i.e. what happens to your money - if the operator cancels the holiday, if you test positive before you travel, if the country of destination will only let in the people who had both Covid vaccines or if you decide you don’t want to travel anymore as you don’t feel safe and the list can continue. 2. Get information and guidance on travel requirements from a reputable travel agent. By the nature of what we do and our membership with industry bodies we have access to a bit more information, and we can give you clear, accurate and up to date advice. UK Exclusive Cruising Given the amazing progress of the vaccination programme here in the UK the cruise industry is coming forward with an interesting proposition for this summer cruising around the British Isles. We love the idea and here is why: there will be no compromise on health and safety – all guests will need have been vaccinated or tested before boarding; the on bord protocols have been made even better more stringent to maintain a safe bubble; these ship are a work of art, floating resorts that can keep you entertained for days with quality food and drinks, excellent shows, amazing spa facilities, fantastic kids area and clubs and the list can go on and on. If you have cruised before you will know what a great

experience it is and for those who have never cruised it is a great opportunity to try. With a range of ships and various duration you can really get a taste of what is like being at sea on one these amazing vessels. Here is a list of liners that will have an offering for the summer: Disney Cruise Lines - departing on select dates from London Tilbury, Newcastle, Liverpool and Southampton aboard the Disney Magic, Disney’s new staycation sailings—exclusive to UK residents—invite you to embark on a brand-new, magical Disney experience. Close to home and at sea—be immersed in Disney storytelling, thanks to an amazing collection of onboard entertainment, dining and recreation for the entire family, with all the care you’d expect from Disney. On sale early April with details on vaccination/ testing protocols to still to be released. Great for families and Disney fans. P&O Cruises - the new coastal cruises will depart from Southampton between June and September, sailing around the UK coast, “where the sun shines brightest.” They will include three and four night breaks and one six night holiday on their flagship Britannia starting from £449pp. And for Iona’s maiden season, she’ll offer week-long escapes from £779pp. Setting sail from Southampton, you will get the chance to enjoy a British break with a serious upgrade. Gourmet dining and poolside pizza, cocktail bars and coffee

spots, boutique shops and cinemas, whirlpool spas and hi-tech gyms, live music and theatre shows – this gorgeous ship offers it all. Great for all ages. MSC Cruises - will offer a special range of short breaks and week-long cruises around the British Isles this summer starting from 20 May, for UK holidaymakers only. Departing from the new terminal in the port of Southampton these first sailings will kick off with a series of short cruises and will be followed by 7-night sailings visiting some of the UK’s favourite destinations and offering additional ports of embarkation to guests. They are also working on a programme of protected shore excursions for guests to experience the destinations they visit, following their successful rollout since last summer in other markets, but of course this is subject to prevailing circumstances and local guidance at the time of sailing. Great for families and great value. Fred Olsen Cruises – their ‘Welcome Back’ programme of cruises will showcase the best of the British Isles this summer, with scenic-only cruises and those with ports of call featured aboard its smaller ships. The 11-cruise programme includes departures from Dover and Liverpool, with scenic sailings taking in the best of the British Isles, including the Shetland and Orkney islands and the Isles of Scilly. New ship Borealis will be the first of the fleet to set sail,

with a three-night scenic ‘Maiden Voyage’ from Liverpool on 5th July, with Bolette to depart on a three-night ‘Maiden Voyage’ from Dover on 16th August. Great for traditional cruising. Princess Cruises – offers short breaks and week-long cruises aboard MedallionClass ships, Regal Princess and Sky Princess, scheduled to sail from Southampton around the UK coast from late summer. Regal Princess will offer 14 UK voyages running from July 31 through to September 23, 2021. Sky Princess will offer eight UK cruises, running from August 30 through to September 28, 2021. Regal Princess and Sky Princess will offer scenic cruises and voyages with stops in UK ports-of-call including Liverpool, Belfast and Greenock, with itineraries ranging from three to seven nights. On sale now. Great for foodies. After months of lockdown life, we have all earned a trip to a luxury hotel, a soothing spa break, dinner and a show… Luckily with a cruise, you don’t have to choose just one. Everything you have missed, and more is waiting on board not to mention the excellent value for money you are getting. Get in touch and we will be more than happy to give you more information - whether you are an avid cruiser or just want to get a taster this summer, please do not hesitate to contact the Harden Holidays team.

Dartford Town Centre www.hardenholidays.co.uk 0800 023 8974



Full-time, experienced, qualified yoga teacher, teaching practical yoga and meditation classes in the local community and now online. When Government advice allows, the regular schedule of in person group classes in Hextable, Swanley, Sidcup and Bexleyheath will resume. For now, all regular group classes are being held online. Yoga Alliance Professionals Senior Yoga Teacher and British Wheel of Yoga Foundation Course Tutor, I am qualified and experienced in making yoga accessible. I teach an embodied and practical approach to yoga, breath work and meditation, appropriate for all ages and abilities. You don’t need to be flexible to start! My classes are friendly, everybody is welcome, so come and see how it feels to tune in and connect yourself and feel better. Please visit my website for more information or email me at clair.crestyoga@gmail.com. I look forward to hearing from you.


FITNESS - APRIL bad at the weekends”. Progress may seem slow, and it won’t always be 1% a week (or whatever your target is). You might lose 1lb one week, nothing the next, 3 lbs the following week, then 0.5lb the next.

How fast can you lose weight?

These fluctuations DO NOT mean you’ve had a bad week, or a good week. They’re normal fluctuations and as long as the numbers are heading in the right direction, don’t change anything! Rapid fat loss seems to be the ultimate goal. Results, results, results… That’s what people want and they want them yesterday. But how fast can you actually lose weight? Are the adverts all lies? (A lot of them, yes!)

this up or down. You can use the Weight Loss Calculator on my website at www. MBonlinePT.com/loss-gain-calculator to get an idea of these timeframes by simply entering your current weight and your goal weight and it’ll give you an estimate, in weeks, of how REALISTIC weight loss is much long it will take you. slower than your “28-Day Shred” type programs would have you Once you’ve worked out your weekly believe. weight loss target, you can start to Yes, faster results are possible, figure out the calorie targets that but there are trade-offs – health, you’ll need to hit in order to achieve that weight loss. sanity… fun! In order to lose any substantial amount of weight, you need to be in it for the long-term. You didn’t gain it over night and you definitely won’t lose it over night. So, what’s realistic for normal people? 1lb a week? 2lbs a week? 5lbs???

If you’re interested in gaining weight, remember that building muscle takes a lot longer than burning fat, so you’ll be looking at more like 0.5-1% of your bodyweight per month. Again, you can use the calculator on my website to get an idea of your timeframes.

A good rule of thumb for the a ve ra ge o ve r wei g h t pe rs o n (obviously if you’re fairly lean or hugely overweight, this will be less accurate) is that you should aim to lose between 0.5-1% of your total bodyweight each week. 0.5% being more realistic and achievable. 1% being quite extreme. I’d suggest aiming somewhere in the middle – around 0.75%, but depending on your current diet and training regime, you could adjust

Also, for those of you claiming to be “swapping fat for muscle” and maintaining your weight, remember these timings – 1% a week for weight loss, 1% a month for muscle gain, so your net weight will be going DOWN, not up, not staying the same. If your weight’s not changing, it’s unlikely you’re dropping bodyfat!


The important thing to remember is to be patient. Be consistent, not “week on, week off”, or “good during the week and

I feel the need to finish this by reminding you that weight is not the best metric to track. It fluctuates wildly from day to day and week to week, and relying solely on the scales to show your progress can lead to misery and frustration, not knowing why “it worked last week but not this week, even though I didn’t do anything different”. By all means track your weight, but please, measure progress in other ways too – fitness and strength levels in the gym, body measurements, photos, how your clothes fit and feel, how consistently you’re training, if you’re eating better than you used to. If you’re making progress in all areas but your weight doesn’t change one week, don’t panic, be patient. As always, I’m here to help if you need it. You can contact me through my website or social media. Mark www.MBonlinePT.com @MarkBroadbentPT


WWW.EFESDARTFORD.CO.UK | (01322) 471458 29



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KENT SERVICES The One You Kent Lifestyle Service can provide 1:1 support sessions to support you . Support is available for: · Weight loss 1:1 and Group support · Exercise sessions · Drinking Less Alcohol · Quit smoking Email: oneyou@dartford.gov.uk for more details 31

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SENIOR SNIPPETS By Christina Uppenkamp Home Instead Senior Care

Welcome to the latest edition of Senior Snippets: the monthly advisory column with the older members of our community in mind. Gardening can be a great activity. It’s satisfying, productive and a very good way to stay active and get some fresh air. Age can make some tasks harder, but here are some top tips on how to make gardening a safe and fun activity no matter what your age. Build raised beds- they make gardening easier if you struggle to stretch or bend down to the plants. They are much easier to weed and maintain as you can perch on the side and use a trowel to plant and weed.

This ultimately makes gardening less strenuous overall. Onions and shallots are very low maintenance. Other easy to grow crops are spring onions, broad beans and carrots. If Try container gardening- This is your soil is poor try growing hardy essentially planting into a pot or crops such as rosemary, sage or a container of your choice. This thyme. is beneficial, as you can place the garden virtually anywhere, so that Path surfaces- Look at the surface of it’s easily accessible. Remember to paths to check they don’t get slippery use light weight containers for extra at any time of the year. Wood can also get slippery so keep an eye on easy handling. decking, and algae and moss are Pick your plants carefully- dangers too. Choosing plants that are easy to maintain and able to withstand a Use the right equipment- Long-hanvariety of conditions is essential dled tools such as forks and spades for an easy gardening experience. will mean less digging, and use tools

that are lightweight to prevent arm, shoulder and back injuries. You can also use a stool or chair to save your legs from having to squat or sit down. Work with your limits and enjoyOnly take on what you can manageif a whole plot is too much, go for half a plot. Make sure you stretch and swap around activities; for example a bit of digging, a bit of watering, a bit of pruning. Most importantly, have fun! By following these top tips, you will be able to do your gardening safely and effectively. I welcome any suggestions for future topics from you all. All you have to do is write to me at c.uppenkamp@ dartford.homeinstead.co.uk or by post to Unit 3, Swanscombe Business Centre, 17 London Road, Swanscombe, DA10 0LH.


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HOW TO BE CHARITABLE WHEN MONEY IS TIGHT If there’s one thing the COVID-19 pandemic has shown us, it’s the power of charitable giving. According to a special giving report from the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF), support for NHS-linked charities skyrocketed in 2020. It just goes to show what’s possible when collectively we all get behind a cause. Perhaps you want to get involved and give to the causes you care about, but money is already so tight that you don’t see how it’s possible. Good news! There are lots of other ways to support your favourite charity and make a difference. Make use of social media Facebook has a feature which allows you to set up a fundraising pot for your friends and family. Why not create one for your birthday and ask people to donate instead of buying gifts? Simply log in to your Facebook page, click to create a post and select ‘Raise money’ to get started. Raise funds while shopping Are you a regular Amazon shopper? When you order through Amazon Smile, they’ll donate 0.5% of the amount spent to a charity of your choosing. It won’t cost you anything – other than what you’d be spending on your purchase anyway – and there are loads of eligible charities to choose from. If you’re not convinced 0.5% will go very far, bear in mind that the initiative has raised more than £5.7 million for UK charities since November 2020. Every little really does help. Head to smile.amazon. co.uk to find out more. Get sponsored The pandemic has shown that we don’t need to venture far to do something worthy of raising lots of funds. Look at the late Captain Tom who raised millions for the NHS without leaving his garden! There

are various websites available that allow you to set up a fundraising pot and gain sponsorship, most of which won’t cost you anything. What activity could you get involved with to help raise vital funds for a worthwhile cause? Do what you love Fundraising doesn’t have to be all about athleticism. Maybe running a marathon or skydiving is never going to be your thing. Think about what you enjoy doing or what skills you have – how could you turn these things into fundraisers? If you love video gaming, you could do a sponsored 24-hour game-a-thon. If you’re into crafts, consider if you could make something to share with friends and family to raise funds. Your handiwork could even benefit a charity directly – for example, you can support your local neonatal unit by knitting or crocheting items for premature babies. See bliss. org.uk/support-bliss/volunteer/ knit-for-premature-babies to find downloadable patterns. Challenge yourself, have fun, and make a difference in the process.

at your local foodbank for one afternoon per week, or support a neighbour by collecting shopping or medicines for them. Your time can prove just as precious as your money – if not more so. Christians Against Poverty (CAP) is a UK charity with over 580 services across the country delivering debt counselling, money management, job clubs, life skills groups, and support for people breaking life-controlling dependencies. Visit capuk.org to find out more.

Volunteer your time Finding ways to be charitable that fit into your lifestyle is a really easy way to make an impact. You could find out more about volunteering



By Local Resident, Jane Stevenson

TAKING OURSELVES TO TASK Happy Easter to you. Now more than ever we are encouraged to look after ourselves. Whether it is through diet, exercise, wellbeing strategies or restful sleep, there are myriads of online and media ads offering ideas.

According to experts (who ARE these faceless people?), we should get enough of our daily vitamins and minerals requirements in our food - if we eat a well-balanced diet. That alone raises some questions, given the number of takeaways delivered to Stevenson Towers recently. Quick and easy, a treat for being lockdown, but not sure if they really qualify as well balanced. To be fair, I usually cook from scratch and use fresh veggies, fruit, and wholewheat products. So why do I still purchase supplements, or invest time and study into an alternative health system, given the lack of hard evidence of their veracity?

My personal reasons are because they work for me. A general multivitamin backed up with Evening Primrose Oil and an Omega 3 fish oil forms my daily intake. While I can’t prove how I benefit, I’ve noticed a subtle change in my day-to-day life when I have stopped taking them. From feeling energetic and positive I begin to find things just a little bit harder, The use of herbs and plants as a any benefit to us. More worryingly from climbing the stairs or winding source of wellbeing, has grown are some of the claims currently on down for sleep, to experiencing the over the years, coupled with the social media. dreaded writer’s block. purchase of vitamins and minerals to aid our health. The increase in Recently the suggestion that high There is a rich history behind interest in yoga, Pilates, meditation, doses of vitamin D (the sunshine much of these remedies. Before and wellness has touched all groups vitamin) could help lessen the the introduction of the many life of the community. symptoms of Covid 19 did the enhancing, life saving drugs we rounds. However, such an idea has use every day, our ancestors relied The jury is out on the use of no evidence to back the claim and is on the land to provide much of supplements, yet we are obsessed at best misleading if not dangerous. the healing. Aloe Vera for cuts and with buying these products. Many abrasions, feverfew for headaches lay claim to successful results, It is the same with complementary and turmeric for joint pain were all which is often reflected in the therapies. There is a healthy used by cultures around the world costs. I understand that such scepticism surrounding the effects including Native Americans and the products should conform to the of them. Many are regarded as the Romans. Many of these are still in use Food Standard Agency level so province of old hippies. How do today. Even aspirin is derived from I would question the difference you convince someone that using willow bark, and its use is recorded between a named brand or a chain lavender oil helps you sleep, or a as far back as 400BC. store range, apart from the price. Bush Flower Essence can alleviate There is little in the way of scientific demotivation? How does Tiger Balm There is a similar argument for Yoga, evidence that supplements offer work for aches and pains? Pilates, Meditation, and other more


esoteric practices. I can’t offer any evidence for these therapies other than the wealth of history behind them and personal evidence. Some years ago, following a family bereavement I was advised to have a Reiki session. Despite being completely sceptical about ‘…a healing technique based on the principle that the therapist can channel energy into the patient by means of touch, to activate the natural healing processes of the patient’s body and restore physical and emotional well-being…’ I nevertheless went along. After a ninety-minute session I went home feeling calmer and more relaxed than I had in months. I felt grounded. Even more of a bonus was that this air of wellbeing lasted for some weeks. I did some reading and eventually trained as a Reiki practitioner myself. I still can’t explain how it works, except that it does. My comment would be to try before you buy. What suits one person will not help another. I use reiki on myself (especially my poor old arthritic knees), the nearest and dearest and my collection of pets, especially as they are all now seniors, and bothered with the ailments and conditions that affect elderly felines.

I continue to investigate these alternative ways of keeping healthy and try some out for myself. I work on the principle that I ‘know’ me best and will notice any positive effects. My reading and research provided some interesting questions; as with anything plant or herb based there are some golden rules: these products aren’t cures; they are not suitable for all. Find a good health shop and ask their advice when buying supplements. The same applies to considering other therapies. Talk to people who take Yoga or Pilates. Ask them for their opinions. Find a reputable practitioner and try some sessions. Many offer taster sessions to try. I’ll carry on taking my few supplements, using my oils and reiki, tempered with care, and strong feeling that they help me. Do your research, decide if you think you could benefit from such joining a group, or talking to a practitioner. You have nothing to lose, and maybe and awful lot to gain. Stay safe

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WELLBEING AT ELLENOR IS A TRULY HOLISTIC EXPERIENCE ellenor – the charity supporting those with lifelimiting illnesses and their families – believes in offering support for body, mind and spirit, empowering patients and those who care for them to stay as strong as possible, for as long as possible. Here, Andrew Lowden – ellenor’s interim Head of Wellbeing – explains the benefits of this multi-disciplined, holistic approach.

By Basia Wilson

the pandemic means it happens via Facebook Live, but that’s ok: what’s important is that it’s still happening. Our attendees say they get so much out of it that I couldn’t imagine ever giving it up – it’s so rewarding. And in fact, we’ve seen greater numbers of people utilise the class virtually than we did when we met physically. It’s just one of the ways in which we’re helping our patients and their families – and the ellenor team - rise to the additional challenges that Covid has thrown at them.” Andrew says the ethos of ellenor Wellbeing has always been about being proactive rather than reactive: “We have an essential question we ask every patient: ‘What matters to you? What do you want to achieve?’ Sometimes the answer will be something physical – greater mobility, for instance – sometimes it’s practical: to get their finances in order. And sometimes the goal is spiritual: to be more at peace with themselves as the end of their life approaches. In this case the support may come from our chaplaincy team, who handle spirituality in all its dimensions. In encouraging our patients to discuss their wants and needs, it’s ultimately about helping them to take as much control of situations as they can.”

Having worked at ellenor as lead physiotherapist for three years before taking over recently as interim Head of Wellbeing, Andrew Lowden has a hands-on approach to his role - literally. “Although it’s my job to bring together all the teams that work under the


Wellbeing umbrella – so that’s physios, occupational therapists, complementar y therapists, counsellors, family support workers, finance support workers, the Living Well team and our chaplaincy team – I still run a seated exercise class for patients myself. These days,

In his own work as a physio, Andrew knows just what a difference simple ‘tools’ can make in improving someone’s quality of life. “For example, I do a lot of work with breathlessness,” he explains. “It’s a vicious cycle for patients: breathing is hard, you panic, you can’t breathe. Sometimes, the cycle will become so extreme that you end up in hospital. But there are techniques that I can share with patients and their carers so that they know how to break

that cycle – and once they do, it’s incredibly empowering. It makes a world of difference to how they’re feeling physically, and to how they feel about their own sense of control.” And it’s not just patients and their families who benefit from ellenor’s empowering approach. Says Andrew, “We apply the same idea to our own working patterns. Though our roles within the Wellbeing team are different, we are all health-care professionals and we all know that our patients are at the heart of everything we do. This means that, when it comes to certain tasks, there really isn’t much delineation between what we will and won’t handle: “that’s not my job” isn’t something you’ll hear said much around ellenor!

What you might hear, though, is someone saying, ‘If I can’t help you, there’ll be someone on the team who can.” Times have been especially challenging for everyone because of the pandemic – and the Wellbeing team have needed to find new ways of reaching out to patients, whether by visiting them at home, regular phone calls or Zoom sessions. “We’ve supported oneanother, too, with Zoom wellbeing and counselling sessions available and by taking time to ‘check in’ with each other and scheduling regular cuppas where we meet to find out how we’re doing away from work. Sometimes we’ll just chat about

important to have a bit of relaxed down-time together - especially when there’s so much going on.” The team have also forged even stronger bonds with outside agencies, turning to them if required for additional patient support, and providing their own expertise to the wider community as necessary. Says Andrew, “The pandemic has only strengthened the sense of community that ellenor has always embodied. We’re there for each other, for those in the wider area who might need our insight and expertise but first, foremost and always for our patients and their families.”

our kids or what we’ve been watching on TV, but it’s really

SPORTS ROUNDUP It was reported that when Lionel Messi told his family last summer of his intention to leave Barcelona to play abroad, everyone involved in the conversation was in tears.

he wins the election, although they would hardly say anything different while the campaign is under way. On the other hand, Messi does dream one day of going to the United States, an idea encouraged because of the close friendship with former team-mate Cesc Fabregas. Eventually Messi decided not to become embroiled So, bets are on… where will Messi be next season? in a legal battle, despite the fact he was convinced he could have won it to manufacture a move away. But that was a million miles away from saying he was happy about the situation. There is no buyout clause in the final year of his contract so he could have left for free in January, but Messi has yet to make a final decision about his future. Even though he has considered moving on a few occasions, he has never been so close to leaving the club he joined as a 12-year-old. The only thing Messi has decided up to now is that he has no intention of deciding anything until the season is ending. The first thing he is waiting for is to find out who the new Barcelona president will be. The favourite is former president Joan Laporta, and the news from his camp is that they are totally confident the captain will stay if


8-11 April: Golf - Masters at Augusta National 10 April: Horse racing - Grand National at Aintree 17 April-3 May: Snooker - World Championship at the Crucible Theatre 25 April: Football - League Cup final at Wembley



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It is safe to say, TV and Film have become a daily staple to a lot of people over the past year and audiences are spoilt for choice. What started as a DVD renting service, quickly turned into an innovative and gamechanging streaming service: Netflix. From there, streaming platforms started to pop up everywhere. Amazon Prime, Disney plus, Hulu, even Youtube tried to get into the game. What better way to spend your remaining days in lockdown than by binging some of the best!

and the lives all three girls lead are far from the norm for most of us, it covers interesting and deep topics every episode. Examples of this are feminine healthcare, polygamy, the patriarchy and even the politics of journalism for women. WandaVision (Netflix) People have a love or hate relationship with Mar vel, but whatever side of the coin you are on, WandaVision will blow you away. Whilst some of the plot depends on knowing the marvel universe, the visual and artistic elements of it are astounding and it is far from the Marvel that we are used to. Big Little Lies (Sky on demand) I have only seen the first season of this so far, so can’t speak for the entirety but this show is an intense and dramatic watch from the first episode. As each episode goes by, more and more tension seems to build up to a climax with several seemingly separate stories colliding. Not only is the plot interesting, but the editing is unique to everything else I have seen before.

Raya and the last dragon (£20, Disney) This film is set against the backdrop of east Asia, combining such countries as Thailand, Indonesia, Cambodia and the Philippines. Full of strong female characters, child-friendly humour that is also highly entertaining to adults and some POWERFUL music, Raya is a pick that is worth the money. It was originally purposed for cinema release, but because 2020 happened Disney Plus was a backup. With it being a culture

that has largely been pushed aside in children’s films, I think it is important to support this film and send some money its way. The Bold Type (Netflix) Having only recently discovered it, I was happily surprised to see four whole seasons of this show readily available with lengthy episodes and seasons. In another girl-led storyline, we follow three girls thriving in New York who all work for the same magazine. Whilst the initial synopsis doesn’t sound very revolutionary

Abstract (Netflix) I instantly fell in love with this series from episode one. If you are into the creative in any way, you will also love this series. Each episode follows someone who works in a different job in the design and creative industries. From eco-design to animation and sketch, this series covers everything, even jobs that you maybe aren’t aware even exist. After watching this series, you will leave feeling inspired and motivated to add a little bit more creativity into your life.


DARTFORD PAINTED ROCKS Rock Painting in Dartford.

Local people from Dartford Painted Rocks on Facebook have been busy this month painting

hiding them around town. The rocks can also be exchanged at Stephen Oliver: Studio and By and Maria Kingsford Gallery located in the Orchard Shopping Centre.

Here are some great photos of their painted rocks.

Local people from ‘Dartford painted rocks’ on Facebook have been busy this month painting and hiding them around the town. The rocks can be exchanged at Stephen Oliver: Studio and Gallery located at the Orchards Shopping Centre . Here are some of the photos of their latest painted rocks.


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form within the next 5 working days

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Email: gareth.johnson.mp@parliament.uk Website: Whilewww.smnwillwriting every effort will be madeservices.com to follow up and contact you about your advertisement, it is ultimately the c Telephone 020 7219 7047 regarding any artwork, either by email, telephone or post. In the event we do not hear from you with Email: susan.norris@ www.garethjohnsondartford.co.uk we will assume all is correct and approved for press. C smnwillwritingservices.com

www.gov.uk/coronavirus All advertisements, artwork and associated images, unless supplied by the advertiser or their representatives, are the property of C Tel: 01322 291379 of the Publisher. Where an advertiser has supplied individual images to the Publisher fo form without the express written permission will remain the intellectual property of Community Ad Web Ltd and may not be reproduced in any format or used in any other publ 45


Please call Mike or John on: Tel 01322 406439 / 01322 525708 Mobile: 07742 085333 Email: mikeperry5001@aol.com Partners: Mike Perry and John Petherick



By Dhiren Ganesh

In this month’s article we look at new hybrid and electric versions due in 2021 from SUVs to family cars.

2021 Jaguar E-Pace P300e – this is the overhauled Jaguar E-Pace for 2021 including a plug-in hybrid version, labelled P300e. It has a 1.5 litre petrol engine with an electric motor that results in the fastest E-pace in the range and a reasonable electric range. It has a combined power of 305bhp and is very smooth in electric mode. The rapid charge on the battery allows the car to go from 0-80% in little over 40 minutes. On a full charge , using just electric mode, you will get a distance of 34 miles which is better than some of its rivals. On this inside it features a new 11.4in touchscreen infotainment system where you can customise the home screen for ease of use. On sale now ! prices start from £32,575. 2021 Peugeot 308 family car – the new Peugeot 308 gets a bold new look and plug-in hybrid power. It comes with a lower roofline, more

space between its front and rear wheels and a longer body. It has a more prominent front frille and thin LED lights. At the start two plug in hybrid versions will be sold – the first a 148bhp petrol engine with a 109bhp electric motor. This can travel 37 miles without using any fuel. The second and more powerful Hybrid will have a 178bhp petrol engine – this will have a similar range of 37 miles on just electric. Non electric version using the 1.2 petrol engine will also be available. On the inside the steering wheel is smaller to see a 10.1 instrument cluster which can be customised in many ways. A separate central 10in screen is dedicated to infotainment, and while physical knobs and dials control the air conditioning system on some models. Apple CarPlay or Android Auto smartphone mirroring can be connected wirelessly to your phone which can be charge wirelessly too. Available in Autumn 2021 prices will start around £22,000.

2021 Kia EV6 electric SUV – this is the first of the new range of Kia’s electric cars – the EV6 – based on a concept car from a few years ago. It will be all electric with battery packs starting from 58kWh and with a maximum range of 310 miles expected on a single charge. Using the fastest chargers it can go from 10% to 80% charge in less than 20 minutes – it will be longer with standard public chargers and home wallbox units. Inside, there’s a digital screen in place of analogue instruments, plus a separate infotainment screen angled towards the driver. The EV6’s climate control functions are accessed using a touch-sensitive panel on the dashboard. The car would come with Kia’s 7-year warranty for peace of mind. Available late 2021 the prices are expected to start from around £45,000.




Charity No. 1148298

FREE VOLUNTEER TRAINING Home-Start are recruiting new volunteer parents – of any age, background, culture or gender – to attend a free 40-hour course of preparation beginning

Thursday 6th May 10.00 – 2.00 [ then a further nine Thursdays ]

Subjects covered include ADDICTION, DEPRESSION, LISTENING SKILLS, LOSS, PARENTING SKILLS, LEARNING THROUGH PLAY, CHILD PROTECTION, SPECIAL NEEDS Following training (plus DBS checks and references) individual volunteers will be ‘matched’ with isolated, vulnerable local families with pre-school children – to home visit for 2-3 hours per week, offering emotional and/or practical parent-to-parent support. Travel expenses are paid – and ongoing supervision / training provided www.homestartnwkent.org.uk

CALL 01322 225 100 for details or email office@homestartnwkent.org.uk 50

This Easter FREE WORKSHOPS Introduction to Game Design Plus Easter Themed Coding Workshops www.juniorgamecreators.co.uk 0800 08812:15 6510 Page 1 Steve Cook postcard final:Layout 1 27/1/14



Mob: 07747 015223 Tel: 01322 412791 45 Knole Road, Dartford, Kent. DA1 3JN. E-mail: steve.cook3@ntlworld.com

OVER 30 YEARS’ EXPERIENCE Most common problems that arise with double glazing can be solved quickly and cost effectively:

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WHERE TO GO LOCALLY PARENT AND TODDLER GROUPS - TERM TIME ONLY MONDAYS 9:15am - 11:00am - A&J Toddlers - St Anselms Church Community Centre, Dartford. £2.00 per one adult and child and 50p for any extra children or adults each. Tea/coffee biscuits, small snack for children with juice. Toast 20p per slice Craft table and singing and dancing at end of session Contact Julie on 01322 291092. TUESDAYS Session 1: 9.15-10.45am, and Session 2: 11-12.30pm. Christchurch, Crossroad, Dartford. Contact Catherine on 01322 220036. 9.30am -11.30am. The Salvation Army, 66 Hythe Street, Dartford. Please call us on (01322) 288434 for further information. 9.30am-11.30am Sticky Fingers - £1.50 per adult includes tea ,biscuits and healthy snack time for the children For pre school children up to 4 years St Mary Greenhithe Church Hall London Road Greenhithe Contact 01322 382031 or see www.stmarygreenhithe.com 9:30-10:30am at Fleetdown Utd FC (near Dunelm). £5 per session if you sign up for the term, siblings go free.Contact 07770860450 or Facebook.com/musicandrhymetime WEDNESDAYS 10am -12pm - Little Angels Net Church, (Formerly Gala Bingo Hall) Dartford, £2.50 per family including all snacks and drinks. Catherine 07878658685 11.15am - SLADE GREEN AND HOWBURY COMMUNITY LIBRARY BABY AND TODDLER ACTION RHYME TIME GROUP 12:45pm -2.45pm - Fleetdown Open House - Fleetdown Community Centre, Swaledale Road, Dartford, DA2 6JZ £2.50 per Adult THURSDAYS 9:30am - 11:30am. St Paulinus Church Hall, Manor Road, Crayford. 9.30am-11am Toerags Toddler Group - Adult education centre, Dartford £3 per Child - £1 Non Walkers - facebook.com/ToeRags 1pm-2.30pm Toerags Toddler Group - Adult education centre, Dartford £3 per Child - £1 Non Walkers - facebook.com/ToeRags 10:30-11:30am, at Fleetdown Utd FC (near Dunelm). £5 per session if you sign up for the term, siblings go free.Contact 07770860450 or Facebook.com/musicandrhymetime FRIDAYS 9.30am-11am Baby and me for expectant mothers and mothers / carers of chidren up to 2. £1 per adult St Mary Greenhithe Church Hall, London Road Greenhithe. Contact 01322 382031 or see www.stmarygreenhithe.com 9.30am-11am Toerags Toddler Group - Adult education centre, Dartford £3 per Child - £1 Non Walkers facebook.com/ToeRags 9.30am-11.30am Carer & Toddler Group, St Mary’s Church Hall, Stone Place Rd, Greenhithe. Jeanne 01322 380322 jeannehoadley@ yahoo.co.uk 1-3pm Gigglekidz, Tree Estate Community Centre on Cedar Road - £2 Per Child SATURDAYS 9.30am-11.30am Daddy and Me - A group for dads and male carers of children up to 5years. £1.50 includes healthy snack time for the children. St Mary Greenhithe Church Hall, London Road Greenhithe. Contact 01322 382031 or see www.stmarygreenhithe.com 2-3pm - Lego Club- ages 5 and over - Chrome Road Slade Green DA8 2EL Tel: 01322 333602

Toddler Music & Rhyme Sessions at Dartford Libraries - Monday 10:30am - 11am 2:15pm – 2:45pm Friday Thursday 10:30pm -11:00am Story Time Fleetdown - Tuesday 10:30am -11am Greenhithe - Thursday 2.15pm – 2.45pm - Thursday 10:45am -11:15am Longfield Summerhouse - Tuesday 10:30am – 11am Sutton-at-Hone -Monday. 2pm – 2:30pm Temple Hill - Wednesday 10.30am -11am Dartford

Come along and join in the fun! Term time only For more information please call

Advertise in the magazine for as little as £40 for a month Contact: sales@dartfordliving.com


Competitive Rates!

A BAINES & SON ROOFING • New Roofs • Repairs • Tiles • Slates • Flat Roofs • All Lead Work • UPVC Fascias & Soffits • All Guttering • All Work Guaranteed • Insurance Work Undertaken

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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 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: 116 123 LOCAL MP Gareth Johnson 020 7219 7047 LOCAL SPORTS CLUBS Bexley Rugby Club 01322 550142 or www.pitchero.com/clubs/bexleyrfc/ 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.

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

dartfordjujitsu.co.uk Dartford Sharks Basketball Club Tim Dickson - 07855 692527. 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 ParkContact: 01322 299990 www.dartfordfc.com Dartford Valley RFC www.pitchero.com/clubs/ darenthvalleyrfc/ USEFUL FACEBOOK GROUPS Dartford Living Dartford Today and Tomorrow Dartford Remembered Dartford Gossip Dartford Living Community Group

DARTFORD LIVING MARKETING FOR ALL YOUR MARKETING NEEDS! Want to set up a Twitter, Facebook or Instagram page for your business but don’t know how to? Maybe you already have social media accounts but you want to increase your number of follows? Looking to write text for a blog or website but don’t know where to start?





ORCHARD GARAGE ……………………….....…...60 GARDENING BOW ARROW GARDENING ………………...…….36 CARE PROVIDERS HOME INSTEAD SENIOR CARE………….....……..4 CHURCHILL RETIREMENT LIVING ………..…….42 HEALTH AND WELL BEING SLIMMING WORLD……………………….........….2 GH HEALTH SOLUTIONS …………………..…....21 CREST YOGA………………………………....…..27 ONE YOU KENT SERVICES………………....…....31 ON POINT PILATES ………………………....…...36 FEET MATTERS……………………………....…..45 OFFICE SPACE /SUPPLIES NUCLEUS ……………………………….......…….7 ORCHARD OFFICE SUPPLIES …………………..12 OPTICIANS LINKLATERS…………………………….....……..53 PICTURE FRAMING CRAFT FRAMES………………………….....…….53 PRINTERS DARENTH PRINT………………..………………..12

FARM SHOPS H&M FOODS…………………………......…….….11 STANHILL FARM ……………………..……….…..18 PIPS SEEDLESS……………………....……….….39

RESTAURANTS, CAFES & FOOD OUTLETS THE SNACK SHACK………………….....………..13 EFES………………………………….....………..29 THE CHURCHYARD……………………..………..26







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