Page 1

By the community, for the community


September 2017 - Issue 135


DAODS Singin’ in the Rain - Page 12 Autism Hour - Page 17 Ride4Life - Page 24

Plus - All your regular

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

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 TUESDAYS Greenhithe & Swanscombe British Legion Club London Road, Greenhithe, DA9 9EJ 10:00 am Paula 07891 424401 Glentworth Ex Service Club 154 Lowfield Street, Dartford, Kent, DA1 1JB 5:30pm and 7:30pm Gillian 07957 135737

2 2

Wilmington Memorial Hall High Road Dartford DA2 7DW Tuesday, 530pm Susan 07584991531

THURSDAYS The Howard Venue (formerly South East Dance Studios) 39 Egerton Avenue, Hextable, BR8 7LG 9:30am WEDNESDAYS Caroline 07776 VCD Sports Club, Old 181413 Road Crayford, DA1 4DN 10:00am, 5:30pm and St Anselm’s Parish 7:30pm Centre Liz 07900 213548 89 West Hill, Dartford, Kent, DA1 Glentworth Ex 2HJ Service Club 5:00pm and 7:00pm 154 Lowfield Street, Gillian 07957 135737 Dartford, Kent, DA1 1JB Greenhithe & 9:30am and 12:00pm Swanscombe British Gillian 07957 135737 Legion Club London Road, Greenhithe, DA9 9EJ The Howard Venue 5:30pm and 7:30pm (formerly South East Paula 07891 424401 Dance Studios) 39 Egerton Avenue, SATURDAYS Hextable, BR8 7LG Amar Hall 5:30pm and 7:30pm East Hill, Dartford, Caroline 07776 Kent, DA1 1RX 181413 9:00am Sarah 07739 027161 Temple Hill Community Centre Christ Church Centre Temple Hill Square, Kingswood Avenue, Dartford, DA1 5HY Swanley, BR8 8AN 3.30pm, 5:30pm, 8:00am and 10:00am 7:30pm Kelli 07931 085668 Jo 07800 797030

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14 17


8-9 Contents

8-9..................Lower Thames Crossing 10...................DL Meets .... Louise Davenport 12...................DAODS - Singin’ in the Rain 14...................SMN Will Writing 16...................Life Under the Stairs 17...................Autism Hour 24...................Ride4Life 25...................CAP Money Matters 29...................Riverford Organic Farm 32...................Stanhill Farm Recipe

34.......................Sports News 34.......................HockeyFest 35.......................News from Princes Park 36-37..................Gok Wan Interview 44.......................Local Entertainment 45.......................Fitness 46.......................Auto News 47.......................Gardening News 48-55..................Where to go locally 57.......................Advertising Index

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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Meopham St John’s Church Hall DA13 0AA 3rd Tuesday of the month 10am - 12pm

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Dear Readers,

I hope you enjoy September’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! Over 5,000 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, Tarnya, Vanessa and the rest of the fantastic Dartford Living volunteer team)

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Apex Law are excited to announce the opening of their new offices in Dartford. Our Dartford office is in a very convenient position with free visitor parking and close to the station. It is run by Pam Downes a well known local Lawyer with an experienced team. Pam deals with all aspects of Residential Conveyancing plus Private Client issues such as Lasting Powers of Attorney’s, Court of Protection Applications, Wills, Probate, Compromise Agreements and she is a specialist in Equity Release matters. Apex Law has case handlers located throughout the South of England and further afield who are all highly experienced in their fields of law including commercial property, Wills, Family Law, Residential Conveyancing and Private Client. In this highly technological world, expensive office premises can only drive up costs and at Apex Law LLP we are passionate about offering the highest level of service but at a price you can afford, because many of our Lawyers are self-employed they are frequently able to offer more flexible hours to suit you. We have Lawyers fluent in French, Chinese and Malay. We also have strategic alliances with Spanish Lawyers. At our offices we offer a friendly comfortable environment in which you can relax whilst dealing with your legal issues. We provide a cost effective local, national and international service in most areas of law and if we have no specialist in regard to any matters in which you require advice, we have arrangements with other firms of solicitors to whom we can refer you with confidence. Our offices are located at: 3 The Pantiles

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FEATURE ARTICLE: LOWER THAMES CROSSING - by Gareth Johnson MP for Dartford will also be a major feat of engineering. The plan is to bore a 55 foot wide tunnel under the Thames between Gravesend and Tilbury to cater for three lanes of traffic each way. The world’s widest ever bore was just two feet more! This will mean drivers, who will be able to travel up to 70mph, will be driving through one of the largest bored tunnels in the world. This ambitious plan, which is expected to cost more than £4 billion, is very exciting for our area and will transform our road network. Over the next few years the finer details of this project will be finalised and consulted on before construction begins. Since I became the MP for Dartford, I have been in close contact with the various Ministers at the Department for Transport over the years to ensure this outcome. At the same time, I have been calling for improvements at the current crossing, which we all know has problems on a weekly, sometimes, daily basis. In April, the Government announced its preferred route for the new Lower Thames Crossing, east of Gravesend. Like most people in Dartford, I welcomed this decision, which has ended years of uncertainty about where the new crossing will be built. It has also given us certainty the crossing will not be sited in our already-congested and polluted town. The announcement to build at Gravesend followed last year’s thorough consultation in which there were more than 47,000 responses. The decision was made to minimise the impact of the new road on communities and the environment as well as to give motorists an alternative route. When the new crossing is built, motorists will have a choice of routes and an alternative when there is congestion. This is perhaps the most important aspect of the decision. There will be more road capacity, more business opportunities and the chance to create thousands of jobs. As well easing our congestion issues, this new crossing


As part of the road network improvement project, £10 million has been allocated for congestion relief funding at Dartford. This money is aimed a tackling the congestion and improving traffic flow. I have met with the Secretary of State, Chris Grayling and Highways England regularly to discuss this matter and there are various ongoing investigations into what can be done. One plan is looking at the best location for an east/west link to help move local traffic around the area. A link across Dartford would really help keep local people moving in and around town, something that is a huge issue when the crossing is congested. There have also been overnight trials of contraflows on the Queen Elizabeth Bridge, funneling traffic in different directions on the bridge. These trials have been very successful and if given the go ahead, this traffic-easing method could be used to ease pressure following a traffic incident. Issues at the Dartford Crossing have always been one

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of the biggest problems facing local residents and I will continue to fight for these much-needed improvements to try and end the congestion-misery for local people. New Lower Thames Crossing - facts in numbers • £4.4bn - £6.2bn cost of the scheme • 70% additional road capacity with new crossing • 70mph speed limit on new road • 3 lanes in each direction • 6,000 potential new jobs • £8bn additional economic benefit for the country • £10m extra cash to tackle existing problems


RSPCA Kent, North West Branch, offers free micro chippings for all domestic animals at its clinic at 37 Gordon Road, Dartford, Kent, DA1 2LX on the 1st Saturday in each month, 10am to 12.30pm. The service is free but donations are appreciated. For more information please visit

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I moved to Dartford nearly 13 years ago. We moved into our house on Halloween 2004. I live with my husband Adam and nearly 3 year old daughter Esmae. Plus Eddie the cat (named after Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam). I trained to be a Breastfeeding Peer Supporter early on in 2016, graduating in March 2016. The reason I trained to be a BFPS was, although I had a relatively easy time with breastfeeding, I have a lot of friends who either struggled with various issues including tongue tie, reflux, over supply and some friends who were upset by having to stop breastfeeding earlier than they would have liked to because they couldn’t access any support. As I was a stay at home Mum at the time I wanted to do something for me. Learn a new skill, meet some new people and help some new Mums. I love it as I get to meet some amazing women, from all walks of life and every background you can imagine. I think to volunteer you have to get something back from it and for me it’s the experience of helping a Mum. It sometimes means that you are referring them onto a Lactation Consultant as they need more specialised medical help, often it’s a latch or position issue, which we as peer supporters have been trained to help Mum’s with. Mostly it’s moral support, a listening ear and reassuring a new Mum that what their baby is doing and how they are feeling is normal and that they’re actually doing an amazing job. Mums are very hard on themselves and


you question every choice you make and constantly compare, sometimes you do just need that reassurance that everyone else has or is going through the same. Some groups include a Lactation Consultant, who you would need to see for a feeding assessment if you believe your child has a tongue tie or you have complicated feeding issues. Peer Support groups are for help with positioning and attachment (latch) and for meeting other breastfeeding Mums. Also at the end of June this year I was appointed as a Growth and Development Officer for Kent Scouts. There are three of us across the county, I cover the North and East of the county, including Dartford, Swanley and Gravesham. Scouts, Cubs and Beavers have become more and more popular in recent years that Kent now have a massive waiting list of children wanting to join and we just don’t have enough adults to run groups to offer Scouting to every child that wants to join. My role within Scouting is to reduce that waiting list by recruiting new leaders and opening new groups. Scouting can offer so much, not just for children but for adults too, fun, friendship and adventure. For full information of the groups available in your local area please go to For information on Kent Scouts email louise.garner@ or phone 07973 896216.

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DARTFORD PERFORMERS FORECAST A DOWNPOUR THIS OCTOBER A local theatre group is forecasting rain this October as it prepares to head to the Orchard Theatre for its next production. Members of Dartford Amateur Operatic and Dramatic Society (DAODS) are getting their umbrellas ready for their performance of the classic show Singin’ in the Rain, which has been in rehearsals since May. The show tells the story of how film studios were forced into drastic action with the advent of ‘talkies’; movies that included recorded sound. When Monumental Studios turns the silent ‘The Duelling Cavalier’ into ‘The Dancing Cavalier’, a musical picture, in order to stay relevant, they are faced with many problems, not least the volatile relationship between their main stars; Don Lockwood and Lina Lamont. Famous for the 1952 MGM movie version starring Gene Kelly and Debbie Reynolds and hailed by critics as the ultimate feel-good show, Singin’ in the Rain brings the charm, romance, comedy and tinsel town glamour of one of the world’s best loved films. The show features a glorious score including Good Morning, Make ’em Laugh, Moses Supposes and the legendary Singin’ in the Rain. The show will be nostalgic not just for the audience, who may remember the film version, but also for many of the cast and production team who were involved the last time DAODS performed the show in 1999, also at the


Orchard Theatre. “It’s wonderful to be involved with the show again”, says Director David Maun. “Not only is it a fantastic show but also from a technical point of view it presents a number of exciting challenges, both with orchestrating a large cast around some very large pieces of set and also with actual rain on stage which poses unique questions both artistically and for our technical team.” Singin’ in the Rain follows directly from the Society’s April production, Made in Dagenham which was extremely well received. Society chairman Paul Farlie hopes the same will go for their current show. “We pride ourselves on the variety of shows we are able to produce and this year typifies that approach with a classic like Singin’ in the Rain coming straight after Made in Dagenham, which had its run in the West End just a few years ago. It’s important to us to maintain a variety of productions among both those at the Orchard Theatre and shows produced at our own smaller venue of Heathfields Hall.” This show will be the seventh from the local group in the last 12 months. The society is always looking for new talent, both on and off-stage, and anyone who is interested in getting involved should email Singin’ in the Rain is being performed from 4th – 7th October at the Orchard Theatre, Dartford. Tickets: 01322 220000 or

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If you divorce and have left your estate to your wife or husband whilst you were married by Will, that Will is now invalid and nothing will go to the former wife or husband. You should take steps to rewrite your Will so that your estate goes to a person that you want. Why do you need a Will? This is a question that everyone over 18 years of age should ask themselves. You might say “I don’t have enough to make a Will” or “my kids will get everything anyway, so what’s the point?” You should always make a Will for the following reasons: •if you die without a Will, there are certain rules which dictate how your money, property or possessions should be allocated. This may not be the way that you would have wished your money nd possessions to be distributed •unmarried partners and partners who have not registered a civil partnership cannot inherit from each other unless there is a Will, so the death of one partner may create serious financial problems for the remaining partner •if you have children, you will need to make a will so that arrangements for the children can be made if either one or both parents die •it may be possible to reduce the amount of tax payable on the inheritance if advice is taken in advance and a Will is made •if your circumstances have changed, it is important that you make a will to ensure that your money and possessions are distributed according to your wishes. For example, if you have separated and your ex-partner now lives with someone else, you may want to change your Will. If you are married or enter into a registered civil partnership, this will make any previous will you have made invalid. Marriage invalidates a Will if you have previously made one. For instance, if you have made a Will while single and left everything to a niece or nephew, that Will will be invalidated on marriage and a new spouse will inherit most of your estate.

Parents can designate who they want to look after their children if the parents die whilst their children are under the age of 18. The parents can appoint Guardians in their Will who will look after their children the way that they want them to be brought up otherwise Social Services might get involved. There is also the Residential Nil Band Rate. People should check their Wills to make sure that they do not have Nil Band Rate Discretionary Trusts in them. If a property is left in a Nil Band Rate Discretionary Trust then it will not qualify for the Residential Nil Band Rate and people will lose their entitlement to the IHT allowance which can accumulate over the next three years until it reaches £500,000 per person in 2020. If you want to make a Will then please contact SMN Willwriting Services on 01322 291379 or email Please also see our website at SMN Willwriting Services is a member of the IPW and is fully insured for PI purposes.

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Fox Estate Agents have won the British Property Award for Dartford. The team were mystery shopped, over a lengthy period, against a detailed set of twenty-five criteria. This gave a balanced overview of their customer service which was judged to be excellent. Chris with Lucy Alexander and Martel Maxwell from the BBC’s Homes Under the Hammer

Life Under The Stairs by Jane Stevenson NOT REMOTELY BOTHERED The TV remote broke recently: it had had a lot of use over the years and wasn’t always treated with kindness. Many a time it was sent skidding across the floor to whoever wanted it. Often it was jammed down the side of a chair. Occasionally it was found in the kitchen and once in the bathroom. I changed the batteries but to no avail. Oh well I can always change channels or search using the buttons on the side of the set or so I thought... except being a complete technophobe I couldn’t. As I’m the person in the house who watches most TV I should really learn how to use the thing. Youngest Offspring witheringly remarked that perhaps my life as I knew it was over. Good job he’s too tall to administer a swift clip round the ears. Added to the calamity my headphones are also broken, so no listening to anything via my laptop. My choice of DVDs is universally disliked by the family but I am allowed to watch them if I use headphones. Then I got to thinking it wasn’t really such a catastrophe after all. There is little I really want to watch nowadays. I’m not a fan of soaps, quizzes or celebrity cooking-whiledancing-on-an-island. I do enjoy Vintage TV purely because I’ve seen most of the classic rock bands live, and anyway, no one can see me play air guitar in my living room. I’ve also got a sneaking regard for Talking TV which shows old British films. I will put my hand up to the Horror Channel as well – I enjoy a good disaster movie featuring out of control asteroids, mutant sharks, tornadoes and the ilk. It was three days before I got round to replacing the remote, and then only because I was near a shop that sold them. In those three days I read, wrote, gardened, tried some new recipes, sorted out my old clothes and generally found other things to do. Since then, I often sit with the set off, maybe chatting online to friends across the globe, playing word games or just relaxing. I don’t miss the TV that much at all. Could I go without it all the time? Not sure, to be honest. I have my favourites and will watch reruns, mainly because there is little current programming that I do like. I choose not to have the paid for TV providers. I’ve seen programmes while at family or friends houses and the sheer number of adverts per hour puts me off. I’ve watched one item on catch up TV, but again I’m not that bothered. I do have Freeview which provides most of my viewing. If there were more quality programmes made, and programmes were let go at the end of their natural life –


Eastenders and Corrie spring to mind – I might take more of an interest. In the meantime, my Kindle is bursting at the seams with downloaded books, and I look forward to dark evenings, ovaltine and a terrific story before bed. SCREEN BREAK I heard a very interesting item on the Today programme this morning about having ‘screen free’ times for children during the day. As someone who has recently travelled around London, I’d like to suggest that we’d all benefit from screen free public areas. I used the HS1 from Ebbsfleet to St Pancras recently, and the silence was deafening. No one spoke or chatted, but most people were glued to their phones. This week I travelled from Dartford to Victoria and onwards via the Tube. Even with the school holidays in full swing, most people were using their phones, sadly even some very young children. On the Tube, I was surrounded by screens. Opposite a young woman was working on a laptop, while the man next to me was tweeting relentlessly. It all seems so inconsequential. Can we really not make a phone call and talk to a person. Does everything have to be texted, commented on, instagrammed, whatsapped etc. I walked from Paddington to my meeting via the Grand Union Canal. Although a wet, cold day, it was lovely to see how some of the boats are maintained and decorated. Not sure anyone in the coffee shops noticed – they were all staring at screens. I loathe going to a restaurant or bar where phones are in full view at the table and frequently checked. When I’m out with friends I like to chat, to hear their voices, their laughter and anecdotes. Last year, the world’s most prolific ‘tweeter’ racked up over 37 million tweets mainly searching for online gaming partners and new games. Enough is enough. I appreciate I am in the minority, and I do believe it is a age thing. I do have a mobile, a desktop and a laptop, an iPod and a Kindle, and see the benefit they bring. Yet I don’t feel the need to constantly check them, play on them or have them in full view. Such behaviour discourages conversation, debate and humour on the most personal level we have; that of live interaction with each other. The power of speech is amazing; vocal inflection nuance, language and tone all have the capacity to affect huge numbers of people. Think Martin Luther King, Barak Obama, Winston Churchill or even Bob Geldof’s impassioned plea for money during Live Aid. Texts and Twitter don’t come near. See you next month!

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National Autistic Society launches first UK wide Autism Hour The National Autistic Society’s (NAS) “Too Much Information” campaign launches its latest phase on 2nd October 2017. This campaign asks businesses to spend as little as one hour to make adjustments for people on the autistic spectrum. More than 1 in 100 people are on the autism spectrum which means that they may see, hear and feel the world in a different, often more intense way to other people. Autistic people often find social situations difficult and struggle to filter out the sounds, smells, sights and information they experience which means they feel overwhelmed by ‘too much information’ when out in public. Noise, lighting and crowds can all make it difficult for an autistic person to access public areas. 64% of autistic people told the National Autistic Society that they avoid going to shops because of their autism, and that shops and supermarkets are the most important places they want to become autism friendly. The National Autistic Society’s ‘Autism Hour’ is supported by shopping centre owners intu and will take place in 13 of their shopping centres across the UK including intu Trafford centre and intu Lakeside. Clarks and Toys ‘R’ Us are amongst shops and services that have already signed up, after previously hosting quiet hours in individual stores. The charity is calling on others to follow their lead and open up their businesses to autistic people. An Autism Hour may include quieter music, dimmed lights, less people and talking to members of staff about autism and the campaign. Dartford businesses who choose to join in this worthwhile campaign will receive an information pack and poster and be added to the National Autistic Society’s UK wide map for this campaign. This interactive map shows which businesses will be taking part and when they plan to hold their autism hour. To find our more information about the National Autistic Society’s Autism Hour, please visit: National Autistic Society Dartford and Gravesham are also available for help and advice. Please find us on Facebook as ‘NAS Dartford & Gravesham’, or contact Chairperson Mandy Garford Interested in advertising? Tel: 01322 507817

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experience and great family fun. Royal Caribbean, Carnival and Norwegian all have large ships featuring plenty of facilities for both adults and children. Royal Caribbean even have dodgems, ice rinks, skydiving and ziplines on their ships, so there’s never a dull moment. Cruising has long been associated with luxury and there are some stunning ships available to cater to your every whim. Silversea is an all-suite, all-inclusive, ultra-luxury cruise line that has smaller vessels that can visit some fascinating destinations. Meanwhile, Celebrity Cruises are described as offering ‘Modern Luxury’ and modern they certainly are. In 2018 they will launch their most futuristic ship to date, Celebrity Edge. But even with cruising’s association with luxury, it can also be a very economical way to take a holiday. P&O have some great value fares and also use the Pound as their

Cruising is an increasingly popular form of holiday travel. Allowing the traveller to visit a range of destinations in a single holiday whilst experiencing amazing facilities, cuisine and service. However, with such a wide range of cruise lines offering differing styles, it can be hard to know where to begin. Much like any other form of holiday, not all cruises are the same and choosing the right cruise line is almost as important as choosing which itinerary to take. There is no longer an average cruise passenger as all types of traveller are now seeing the benefits of this type of holiday. There are cruise lines that cater for families, some that are exceptionally good value, others provide the ultimate in luxury, and some that act as ocean based music festivals. They also make for great multi-generational holidays, allowing grandparents, parents and children all travel together. It allows each generation to have their own space and interests take care of, whilst providing a shared


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WWW.KENTCURRY.COM Tel: (01322) 225129 or (01322) 291216 on-board currency, ensuring there is no loss on exchange rates. Norwegian Cruise Line now offer their cruises as All-Inclusive and now include all drinks and gratuities. Their cruises remain very affordable whilst offering an amazing experience. There are also some fantastically good value cruises offered by Cruise & Maritime. With some itineraries departing from Tilbury, they have a range of cruises in 2017 and 2018 being offered on a buy 1 get 1 free basis. Cruising can also be a great option for those who either cannot fly, or would just prefer not to. With ports such as

Tilbury, Dover, Portsmouth and Southampton all within reach of Dartford, there are options to suit everyone. P&O offer a very British style of cruise out of Southampton, Fred Olsen have departures from Dover, and C&M have a some starting from Tilbury. Taking a cruise can be a great way to tick several destinations of your travel list in the space of a single holiday. If you’ve not given it a try before then maybe 2018 is the time to step on board and see just how good it can be. Tim Harden is the Manager of Harden Holidays, Dartford’s local travel agent.

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Wills LPAs Probate Trusts Home visits available for Will Instructions Fully insured - 2 million pounds PI Insurance Reasonable fees Member of IPW and regulated by Trading Standards Institute Website: www.smnwillwriting Email: susan.norris@ Tel: 01322 291379

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

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

• Misted, cracked or broken glass • Drafts, leaks & condensation • Sticking, loose or broken handles • Window/doors not opening, closing • Patio doors not running smoothly • Cat flap & letterbox fitting/replacement • Lock and key replacement

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Dartford Living 23

Dartford Living supports...Ride4Life - Valley to Paris

On Wednesday 20th September, 35 riders will be setting off bright and early from Darent Valley Hospital, ready to begin their 250 mile cycle challenge to Paris. The team, made up of courageous members of the public and Hospital staff, including Chief Executive Susan Acott, are supporting Valley Hospital Charity’s Cancer Fighting Fund. The first day is expected to be the toughest as the team cycle over 70 miles through hilly Kent to catch the ferry from Dover. After a nights rest in Calais they will experience the beautiful French countryside and stay in Abbeville and Beauvais, both steeped in history. On day 4, reminiscent of the Tour de France, they will cycle up the Champs-Élysées before reaching the Eiffel Tower where the celebrations begin! Lots of family and friends will be joining the riders for the evening festivities and to enjoy the following day in the French Capital before the Eurostar back to Ebbsfleet Int.

fundraising and training, and there is a real buzz of excitement as it is getting so close. I’m sure there will be tough moments, but it will all be worth it when the Eiffel Tower is in sight!” The event has been kindly supported by Dartford Living, Downton and Ali Associates, Cyclopark, Dartford Round Table, The Gym Dartford and The Priory Centre. For more information about Ride4Life and how you can take part next year please visit www.dvh.nhs. uk/ride4life or call 01322 428256.

Sally George, Head of Fundraising at the Hospital has organised the trip and has been getting to know the team over the last year: “The team training rides have been such good fun. Everyone has been working really hard with their


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MONEY ADVICE 100 days to Christmas, 10 ways to save Can you believe it? 16 September marks 100 days until Christmas Day! Christmas is great, but it can become costly – and it’s not worth getting into debt over, trust us! That’s why we want to share with you our top ten tips for saving money in the run-up to Christmas. Check it out and happy saving! 1) Plan You’ve got a maximum of 100 days until Christmas, which is plenty of times to get things organised. Firstly, set yourself a budget and know your limits. Don’t rely on December’s income alone, but plan ahead and work out how much you need to put aside each month. Once you’ve figured out your budget, stick to it! It’s a good idea to share your plan with your spouse/parent/friend so they can help to hold you accountable. 2) List Make a list of everything you NEED for Christmas – this will help you to avoid panic buying, as well as informing your budget. Start shopping early before the prices go up, and keep an eye out for sales, but be careful to stick to your list – don’t buy something just because it’s on sale! 3) Save Start saving as soon as you can. Why not try saving £1 per day? 100 days worth of pounds could buy quite a few presents! 4) Travel If you know you’re going to be travelling for Christmas, you can book your train tickets up to twelve weeks in advance when they may be cheaper. 5) Volunteer This isn’t so much a money saving tip, but a great way to give selflessly this Christmas by serving and uplifting somebody else. Why not volunteer at a Christmas event, in a soup kitchen or food bank, or visit an elderly person who may be alone over the holiday? 6) Make There are a lot of decorations you can make with just a few bits of paper, like snowflakes and lanterns. You can also make your own trinkets to hang on the tree out of salt dough, which is inedible and, unlike gingerbread ornaments, will last longer. Or why not make your own wreath with a coat hanger, a bit of ivy from the garden and some ribbon (there are ‘how to’ pages all over the internet)? Plus, these make

Website: Telephone: 0800 328 0006 for fun craft activities to do with the kids. 7) Give Search your local pound shops for stocking fillers, and buy your Christmas cards in bulk at charity shops – it’s the thought that counts! You could even get crafty and make or bake gifts for your loved ones, or upcycle old items to make a unique present. Get an empty chocolate box, give the plastic mold a good clean and fill it with melted chocolate or home made fudge for a low cost gift. If you know there’s someone who particularly wants a more expensive gift, ask family members, friends or colleagues to club together to pay for it. 8) Eat Buy your meat a month or so in advance when it’s cheaper and freeze it. Chicken is a less expensive alternative to turkey and will do the trick just right. Consider doing a ‘bring and share’ Christmas dinner, rather than you buying and cooking everything. Drinks-wise, spiced apple juice makes a cheap, delicious alternative to mulled wine. 9) Entertain Christmas party? Hold a clothes swap with your friends or colleagues and bag yourself a new outfit for free. To keep the family entertained, find out what’s going on in your local area or church, and try an amateur dramatic pantomime instead of a bigger one – the jokes will be just as bad! 10) Plan (again) Christmas comes round every year without fail, so it’s really worth starting to plan and prepare for next December as soon as possible. Decorations, stocking fillers, cards and more can be picked up for a discounted price in the January sales. Plus, £1 per day for 365 days will add up nicely! For more help to budget, save money and spend well, get yourself signed up for a CAP Money Course in your area via If you need support in dealing with debt visit, give CAP a call on 0800 328 0006 or pop in to the CAP Drop In at Dartford Community Church Bungalow, 171 Dartford Road, DA1 3EW (via side entrance in Broomhill Road) 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). All CAP’s services are given freely for everyone regardless of age, gender, faith or background.

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Dartford Living 25

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

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Dartford Property Report - September 2017 4,744 Dartford Landlords – Is This a Legal Tax Loop-Hole? In November 2015, George Osborne disclosed plans to restrain the buy-to-let (BTL) market, implying its growing attractiveness was leaving aspiring first time buyers contesting with landlords for the restricted number of properties on the market. One of things he brought in was that tax relief on BTL mortgages would be capped, starting in April 2017. Before April 2017, a private landlord could claim tax relief from their interest on their BTL mortgage at the rate they paid income tax – (i.e. 20% basic /40% higher rate and 45% additional rate). So, for example, let’s say we have a Dartford landlord, a high rate tax payer who has a BTL investment where the rent is £900 a month and the mortgage is £600 per month. In the tax year just gone (16/17), assuming no other costs or allowable items … • Annual rental income £10,800. • Taxable rental income would be £3600 after tax relief from mortgage relief • Meaning they would pay £1,440 in income tax on the rental income

And assuming no other changes ... the landlord would have income tax liability’s (at the time of writing May 2017) in the tax years of ... • • • •

(17/18) £1,800 (18/19) £2,160 (19/20) £2,520 (20/21) £2,880

Landlords who are higher rate tax payers are going to have be a lot smarter with their BTL investments and ensure they are maximising their rental properties full rental capability. However, there is another option for landlords. The Dartford landlords who own the 4,744 Rental properties in the town could set up a Limited Company and sell their property personally to that Limited Company In fact, looking at the Numbers from Companies House – many landlords are doing this. In the UK, there are 93,262 Buy To Let Limited Companies, and since the announcement in November 2015 – the numbers have seen a massive rise. • Q2 2015 / Q3 2015 – 4,193 Buy to Let Limited Companies Set Up

• Q4 2015 / Q1 2016 – 5,403 Buy to Let Limited Companies Set Up • Q2 2016 / Q3 2016 – 3,007 Buy to Let Limited Companies Set Up • Q4 2016 / Q1 2017 – 7,149 Buy to Let Limited Companies Set Up

So, by selling their buy to let investments to their own limited company, owned 100% by them, these landlords could then offset the costs of running their BTL’s as an ‘allowable expense’ - effectively writing off the cost of 100% of their mortgage outgoings, wear and tear and upkeep, letting agent’s fees etc. I am undeniably seeing more Dartford landlords approach me for my thoughts on setting up a BTL limited company, so should you make the change to a limited company? In fact, I have done some extensive research with companies house in the 15 months (1st January 2016 to 31st March 2017 and 67 Buy To Let Limited Companies have been set up in the DA postcode alone). Well if you are looking to hold your BTL investments for a long time it could be very favourable to take the shortterm pain of putting your BTL’s in a limited company for a long-term gain. You see, there are huge tax advantages to swapping property ownership into a limited company but there are some big costs that go with the privilege. Finally, if the tax liability is too high to swap to a limited company, some savvy buy to let investors are leaving their existing portfolios in their personal name whilst purchasing any new investment through a limited company? Just an idea (not advice!). It’s vital that landlords get the very best guidance and information from tax consultants with the right qualifications, experience and insurance. Whatever you do, always get the opinions from these tax consultants in writing and you shouldn’t hurry into making any hasty decisions. The modifications to BTL tax relief are being progressively eased in over the next three years so there is no need to be unnerved and rush into any decisions before finding out the specifics as they relate precisely to your personal situation, because with decent tax planning (from a tax consultant) and good rental / BTL portfolio management (which I can help you with) ... whatever you do - let’s keep you the right side of the line!

We are looking for caring and compassionate community carers

Gareth Johnson, Member of Parliament for Dartford, will be available to meet with constituents on the following dates: Bluewater, DA9 9ST (4.00 pm – 7.00 pm - Appointment required) Friday 8th September Friday 6th October Friday 3rd November Friday 8th December If you would like to meet Gareth at one of his regular appointment based surgeries in the future, please contact him at or telephone 020 7219 7047

· To work in Dartford and surrounding areas. · Are you able to support people to remain living in their own homes · We do ask you are able to work every other weekend. · Experience is not essential as full in house training is provided. · Drivers required

Please apply on: 01322 225513 or email

Due to our new room opening we are recruiting for a deputy room leader Must be level 3 qualified or above and have current experience and good knowledge of the EYFS To apply, please email your CV and a covering letter to

• We currently have childcare for 2, 3 and 4 year olds • Reduced fees for government funded children who are eligible for either 15 or 30 hours • Exciting forest school activities • Set over 8 acres which we use daily • For more information please visit our website

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

We’ve been growing great tasting organic veg of 30 years. It’s much more affordable than you may think and we would love for you to give us a try. There is no need to commit to a weekly delivery, boxes start from just £10.95 and delivery is free. To try us simply visit our website at call us on 01322 271600 or 01803 227227 and if we are out delivering please leave a message and we will get back to you. How does Riverford compare with other box schemes? We are one of the larger box schemes, which enables us to offer varied box contents, flexibility, good value and service. We grow the vegetables ourselves, giving our customers a real connection with the farm, which you are welcome to come and visit. All deliveries are by our local veg teams not couriers. As well as our original farm in Devon, we have regional farms across the country, so that vegetables can be grown and distributed more locally. How does Riverford compare with supermarkets? Our produce is fresher than almost all supermarket veg;

it comes straight from us to you, not via packers and distribution centres We can choose the varieties we grow for flavour not cosmetic perfection or handling properties We can tell you exactly where it comes from and you can come and see it growing. We give a consistently fair deal to growers and work with them over the long term We have looked after the environment since day one – by the way we grow, by minimising waste, minimising and recycling packaging, and paying close attention to every aspect of our carbon footprint. How local is Riverford? As Riverford has got bigger and more popular, it is also getting smaller and more local. Rather than grow any bigger from our original base, we have joined up with farmers in other parts of the country so that the vegetables can be grown close to where they are eaten. We have farms in Cambridgeshire serving the east of England, Yorkshire for the North and one in Hampshire for the South-Central region. If you are lucky enough to have a local farm shop that actually grows its own veg (a rarity) or a local box scheme that is both organic and grows locally, then you may get your organic vegetables more locally. Otherwise they are very unlikely to have travelled less distance or be fresher than ours.

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Nana’s Coronation Chicken Ingredients (serves 4 people): 4 chicken fillets, or turkey pieces

salt & pepper

1 chicken stock cube

juice of ½ a lemon

1 tbsp. oil, preferably rapeseed

2 tbsp. apricot jam, level

50g chopped white onion

430ml mayonnaise

1 dst. sp. mild curry powder, or curry paste

2-3 tbsp. double cream, lightly whipped

1 tsp. tomato puree, heaped

rice, enough for 4 people

100ml chicken stock

white grapes, optional

Method: 1. Firstly, fill a pan with water and a chicken stock cube and bring to the boil. Cut the chicken fillets into chunks, roughly 2cm² and add to the pan, cook for roughly 15-20 minutes or until cooked throughout. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside. Strain off some of the pan water into a measuring jug and leave the rest in the pan. 2. Next, in a large serving dish combine all the remaining ingredients (except the oil), including the chicken stock saved from earlier. Once combined, slowly add the oil and continue mixing. 3. Now, add the boiled chicken to the sauce and make sure the sauce is completely covering the chicken. 4. Bring the chicken stock back to the boil and cook some rice as instructed on the packaging. Serve and enjoy. Toms Top Tips: This recipe has been adapted to my family over the years; the original recipe came from a nun my Nana used to work with at St. Catherine’s Girls School. Back in the 60’s the recipe would have said to add some red wine to the sauce but personally I recommend adding fresh grapes to your rice with the meal and a lemon wedge to garnish.

YOU ARE ENOUGH When we are not enough, we try to fill the void inside by: • feeding emotions – not body • drinking and smoking • pursuing obsessions • seeking extremes Rapid Transformational Therapy (RTT) helps you to find the reason of the issue or unwanted behaviour. RTT is a short-term therapy - a particular hypnotherapy model targeting the source of the problem and giving you a new perspective. RTT provides immediate and lasting results, so you never want to go back.

Hypnotherapy and psychotherapy treatment for - Addictions - Anger - Anxiety - Confidence - Depression - Eating issues - Obsessions - Sleep issues - Stress and pains - Trauma effects

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Initial consultation (1hr) is free. Addictions are treatable in one hypnotherapy session (2hrs), followed by your daily listening to a personalised recording for 21 days.

Practice locations: Crown House, Home Gardens, Dartford DA1 1DZ 45 Central Street, London EC1V 8AB 184 Westcombe Hill, London SE3 7DH

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Dartford Living



BAV’S SPORTING COMMENT Eight-time Olympic gold medallist Usain Bolt, 30, is retiring from athletics having illuminated the sport like few others. Bolt could only manage bronze in his penultimate race at the World Championships in London - the men’s 100m - before pulling up injured just as he began to hit top speed in his final event, the 4x100m relay. It meant the 19-time global champion, recently described by Lord Coe as “a genius” akin to boxing legend Muhammad Ali, bowed out in unfamiliar fashion - helped off the track by his team-mates, barely able to stand upright. However, one championship is not going to change what Bolt has achieved. He has proven myself year in, year out, throughout his whole career. I am proud to have witnessed his reign.

Upcoming events in September include: 1: Football - 2018 World Cup qualifiers: Malta v England 2: Cricket - T20 Blast Finals Day, Edgbaston 3: Formula 1 - Italian Grand Prix, Monza 4: Football - 2018 World Cup qualifiers: England v Slovakia 7-11: Cricket - England v West Indies, third Test, Lord’s 16: Cricket - England v West Indies, Twenty20 international 17: Formula 1 - Singapore Grand Prix 17-24: Cycling - Road World Championships, Norway 23-30: Multi-sports - Invictus Games, Toronto 24: American football - NFL in London, Wembley Stadium. Ravens v Jaguars

Dartford Hockey Club are hosting a free ‘Hockey Fest’ on 2nd September at Dartford Science and Technology College from 10 – 12 for any girls (aged13+) or ladies interested in starting or returning to hockey. Dartford Hockey Club is a friendly ladies club who welcomes members of all abilities; new or returners to the game, social players or competitive ones! We have three teams and play home games at Dartford Science and Technology College. For further information email uk, visit our website or just turn up on the day!


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Speaking of this win “Firstly I would like to say a thank you to Andy for his work on the pitch before I took over. To be nominated is a privilege, but to actually win a trophy at National League level is fantastic, especially going up against larger clubs with bigger budgets. Winning this award is a great achievement. To be recognised by your peers, players and staff is one thing, but hearing the reaction from the fans, on the pitch improvements makes all the hours of hard work worth it. To everyone at the club and Jordans, I want to say a extended thank you for all your support.”

Dartford FC can confirm the signing of Toby Ajala, the 25 year old winger joins the Darts having spent last season at Gateshead and Torquay.






ADMISSION PRICES: Adult – £14.00 Concession (65+) – £7.00 Youth (13-17) – £5.00 Junior (5-12) – £2.00 Under 5s – FREE

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Dartford’s Groundsman comes third in the Groundsman of the Year awards Dartford FC would like to extend a huge congratulations to Charlie Kerr whom has claimed 3rd place at National League Level for Groundsman of the Year, awarded by the FA. A special thanks also goes towards Andy Gibbins and his team, whom left us in December but contributed to the renovations at the start of the season.

Toby Ajala signs

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After the four home games in August it is a bit quieter in September with Chippenham Town and Eastbourne Borough visiting Princes Park. Tickets are £14 for Adults, £7 for Concessions, £5 for Youth and £2 for Children. Why don’t you pop down and support your local team?

Dartford FC can confirm the signing of Alfie Pavey. The 21 year old striker returns to us after a previous loan spell in the 2nd half of last season and having been at Welling at the start of this season. Due to FA Regulations Alfie is unavailable for the game tomorrow night, but is available for Saturday’s game at home to Oxford. Tony Burman ”I would like to welcome Alfie back to the club, Alfie has successfully worked with us before and he now returns to the club where I hope he can show his full potential”

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There has been a bit of an injury crisis at Princes Park with Ronnie Vint, Tom Murphy, Andy Pugh and Duane Ofori-Acheampong all spending some time on the treatment table.

Alfie Pavey Signs | 01322 299990 Princes Park, Grassbanks, Dartford, Kent, DA1 1RT,

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The games have been coming thick and fast at the start of the new National League South season. After drawing the first three games against Hungerford Town, Havent and Waterlooville and Braintree, Dartford got back to winning ways against Concord Rangers with a 2-0. They followed this up with an emphatic 7-1 thumping of Oxford City. New signing Warren Mfula got a hat-trick in this game.


Dartford Living



GOK WAN TOUR - NAKED AND BARING ALL by Kate Gould But as you say, how do you cover someone’s life in 90 minutes? At the moment I’m trying to hit four buzz points. Firstly it needs to be more honest than I’ve ever been. Secondly it needs to show a side of my personality that I have never given out on screen before - which is “who is the real me” Thirdly it has to be inspiring - there is life after anorexia, the bullying and so on. And finally it has to be fun, it’s got to have all the humor in there, because you know, life is really funny. Every single day stupid and ridiculous things happen to us all and I think they are sometimes the most valuable anecdotes to give out to people because it’s the stuff that people can empathize with straight away. So Gok, this Autumn you are off round the country with your new show, Naked & Baring All. Without giving too much away, tell me a bit about what audiences can expect? I describe the Naked & Baring All Tour as the truth behind the truth – all the stuff I haven’t talked about in the past. The show will be full of surprises and will be quite a revelation! In 2009 I wrote my autobiography Through Thick And Thin. I put it down and walked away for nearly a decade. Then, when I was asked if I wanted to do the stage show, I picked it up and read it back and realized that there was a lot about my life that I had not revealed and I felt it was time!! Are you going to talk about your whole life or just specific parts of it? What will the structure be and will the audience have a chance to ask you questions? Myself and my director Owen Lewis who is brilliant, funny and actually quite hot, came up with the idea to use the different tools that I’ve used in my career as the basis for Naked & Baring All. So there will be lots about fashion, body shape, style, cooking, that kind of thing but there will be other surprises There is a lot to cover - you’ve done so much! How will you condense it all? If I did my whole life I’d be on stage for a week! We’re still devising it and as I work visually, at the moment I’ve got this massive spider graph with way too much stuff on it. Owen and I will pick stuff out that either makes him laugh, cry or wince and that’s the stuff we need.


So will there be any gossip in the show? Yes lots of gossip and lots of secrets but you’ll have to come along to find out! I have had a very colorful life – let’s put it that way! What do you hope audiences will take away from it? I hope audiences will have a lot of fun, and get a real sense of anything is possible in life. Tell me about How To Look Good Naked. You inspired thousands of people and helped them feel good about themselves in all sorts of ways. It really catapulted you to the big time and made you a household name. It was really successful, incredible, just a great show. We did six series and I loved it. We went out on a massive high as we were still getting great figures and if Channel 4 said let’s do some more I would make it again in a heartbeat. The show still regularly runs in the UK and overseas. Was it a career highlight? Of course it’s been one of my career highlights but I have been very lucky and worked on so many different and exciting projects - Gok’s Fashion Fix, Gok’s Style Secrets, Gok’s Clothes Roadshow and lots of others such as Gok Cooks Chinese and the documentaries. Originally you wanted to be an actor and went to Central School of Speech and Drama. How did you make the leap from acting to being a stylist and being on TV? I realized I wasn’t cut out to be a classical actor. . When

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I was training I wanted to do Shakespeare, Chekhov and Brecht and be out there performing at the Globe and the National, but over the years I realized it just wasn’t me! I have a skill at doing a different kind of performing on stage which is often centered around humour and cheekiness, which fits perfectly with panto and you see that on TV a bit. You settled in London – what jobs did you do before you landed How To Look Good Naked? I did lots of different jobs. I was a recruitment consultant, worked in restaurants, bars, lots of different things and then I fell into hair and make-up – which is a big part of the show so I won’t tell you now – you’ll have to come along and find out! Did being a stylist come naturally? I think taste comes naturally but styling is like any art form. It is entirely subjective. But you have to learn the technical side of styling - the relationship you have with PRs and designers, understanding how far you can push it with a client and understanding the logistics of building a business around it. Also, learning social media, your personal brand, accounts and how you do get repeat business, or a new client, all of that stuff you don’t get taught at college. I had taste, and I think I’ve got taste, but had to learn the other stuff as well. You’ve styled a huge number of people over the years, is there anyone you would like to style? When I was younger working as a stylist I always wanted to dress people. But I don’t really have those thoughts anymore. I really enjoy makeovers. They are the things that I get a lot of buzz out of, dressing real people with real bodies and real self-confidence issues. For me it’s far more empowering than dressing a celebrity as they can afford any of the clothes they want, they have a body a trainer has given them and they eat nothing but dust for months on end. So for me it’s not as fulfilling and I’d much rather be with Barbara from Bolton - it’s great because you get to meet real people. All the stuff that comes out of a makeover is just gold. A lot of them are terrified though as it’s a really intimidating thing. Most people I dress are worried and afraid but it’s my job to show them it’s for the best. It’s also my job to show them how to use these new tools and how they find the confidence with them. You’ve recently been to Graduate Fashion Week - do you get inspired by the next generation?

I love going to Graduate Fashion Week. The students are the best part of the fashion industry. They are the next generation of talent with their creativity. It’s amazing to be part of their ambitions. A lot of them come up and say how I’ve inspired them so it’s great from a mentoring point of view too. When you are surrounded by 1,000 fashion students just about to embark on the most exciting part of their career, I love being part of that. It makes me feel great and reminds me of where I’ve come from so it’s wonderful. Who were the people that inspired you and who are the people who’ve been most influential in your life? I’ve had a lot of mentors in my life. My agent Carol is amazing and taught me about business, about standing up for what I believe in and a lot about doing the jobs I don’t want to do. Also Linda Leeming who sadly passed away two years ago. She was a stylist, though originally a fashion PR back in the day, and was brilliant. She shaped my career. I worked for her as a make-up artist on a lot of her shoots and she taught me the ropes on styling. She was a great inspiration for me. But the biggest influencers have been the bullies. You know I thank every single one of them because had they not done all of that stuff and made me feel that way I would never have found the confidence I have now. It drove my success. Absolutely - my biggest inspiration has been my bullies. I credit them with everything I have achieved. With so much going on in your life with all the things you do and the projects you are involved in, how do you find time to relax? I hate rest, sleeping and days off! I’m not keen on holidays but I do try and have one night off a week to relax and I will run a bath, light some candles, put the TV on, then I will get a book - I’m quite a restless person and find it really difficult to relax. I’m really fortunate that I still love my job, it drives me nuts sometimes but I still love what I do. I also have hobbies, stuff that I’m really interested in though I’m not very good at just having a hobby because it always turns into something bigger. For instance, some people are quite happy buying a lump of clay and make an ashtray for their living room. I’m not happy with that as I’d want to create a vase to go into Tate Modern! I’m just one of those people who is very proactive and I’m very ambitious. And that keeps me very busy as well. There will be another project next week that I’ll start doing and set myself a ridiculous goal of getting it somewhere.

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Dartford Living


Professional Training from Elite Industry Staff Outstanding full-time training at Reynolds Performing Arts College in Dartford Fully funded* 3 year Performing Arts Course in Dance and Musical Theatre from Sept 2017

What else is happening at Reynolds Training Academy? Fully funded* courses in Beauty Therapy and Fitness Instruction at Level 2 & 3 & Sports Massage at Level 3 *Subject to Eligibility

For further details: Tel: 01322 275807 Email:


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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Wisdom Estates 76 Spital Street, Dartford, Kent DA1 2DT t: 01322 272 144 | e:

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25/02/2016 15:23

Local solicitors for all your personal and business needs Property conveyancing Family and divorce Employment law

Wills, trusts and probate Dispute resolution Company and commercial law

T: 01322 220 235

Dartford Office: 2 Banks Place, Market Place, Darford, DA1 1EX








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Historical Military Themed Tours for Clubs, Groups and Societies Legacy offers a range of military themed tours from a day trip to the scene of the Battle of Hastings, to bespoke tours to the CHOICES – an independent specialist domestic abuse service WWI and WWII battlegrounds of Providing: Support, Prevention, Education, Signposting, Advice & Training Belgium and France from as little Head Office in Dartford but working across North & West Kent as £39 per person.

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Gareth Johnson, Member of Parliament for Dartford, will be available to meet with constituents on the following dates:

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Telephone: 0208 311 5309 Mobile: Community outreach services and support groups07783 021508 Specialist support for LGBT community, male victims & young people Email: Preventative programmes in schools




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Local Entertainment Theatre Roundup by Liz Dyer

To start this month’s theatre round-up, let’s say a huge congratulations to all involved – on and off stage - in the Summer Youth Project’s production of Little Shop of Horrors, which I think we can all agree was pretty sensational. Everyone had worked incredibly hard, and it really showed. Well done everybody, and bring on next summer! First things first, though: the summer holidays may be coming to an end, but there’s plenty to look forward to from the new term… The Orchard is going back to school in style with a busy month that kicks off with the ever popular Hairspray (30th August to 9th September). Starring Matt Rixon, Norman Pace and Brenda Edwards, it’s a story with big hair, a big heart, and a big (and very topical) message about the importance of not judging people on how they look. Throw in some fantastic songs and a man in a frock, and you’ve got yourself a great evening.

Stone (25th to 30th September), starring The Bill’s Chris Ellison and Blue star Antony Costa. This chilling tale of murder and deceit comes from the Classic Thriller Theatre Company, who were last in Dartford for the equally unsettling Rehearsal for Murder. For anyone who fancies going behind the scenes, the Orchard has two opportunities this month - there’s a free open day on Sunday 3rd September, and the monthly Tea and Tour event on the 19th. Both offer a chance to take a backstage tour and see what goes on behind the curtain... Other local(ish) highlights include the Dusty Springfield musical Son of a Preacher Man, directed and choreographed by Craig Revel Horwood, which will be at the Churchill in Bromley from 5th to 9th September, and Legally Blonde (15th to 23rd September), starring Lucie Jones, who represented the UK at Eurovision 2017.

That’s followed by the return of David King’s international award-winning sensation Spirit of the Dance (11th to 16th September), which brings together Irish dance with Latin rhythms like tango, flamenco and salsa. Featuring a world class cast and dazzling costumes, this show is a must for dance fans.

Some big news: the Marlowe will play host for a month to the incredible War Horse, which launches its longawaited national tour in Canterbury on 15th September. If you missed it in London (or even if you didn’t), this is another chance to see this award-winning National Theatre production.

Or for something completely different, the Orchard will see out the month with Ruth Rendell’s A Judgement in

Finally, don’t forget to book your panto tickets – you won’t regret it! (Oh no you won’t, etc…)


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Fitness Is training at home as good as the gym? Many people struggle to get to the gym as regularly as they [think they] should, but is a traffic jam or train delay really stopping you from working out? We use these excuses, such as “I don’t have time” to reason with ourselves as to why we skipped a workout, but training at home can be just as effective as training at the gym, and can also save you hours. Think how much time you’d save if your hour’s workout was just that – an hour. Rather than 20 minutes to get to the gym and get started, and then another 20 minutes getting home. Plus the time wasted waiting for someone to finish with the machine you want to use, and the time spent chatting to other members instead of actually doing your workout. No wonder people don’t have time for the gym! Dependent on your goals and reasons for training, it’s more than likely that you can do everything you need to do at home or outdoors, with minimal equipment. Do you need a treadmill to walk or run? Or could you do that outside? Bike? The Rower and Cross-Trainer aren’t so easy to emulate, but there are alternative exercises you can do that may be just as, if not more beneficial anyway. There are many ways to increase your fitness, burn some calories, and get moving. You can easily get your cardio fix at home or outdoors, and the fresh air is much better for you than air-con anyway. If you’re using weights for building or maintaining a bit of strength, toning, or general health – you can achieve all of these with bodyweight or some basic equipment such as dumbbells, sandbags, kettlebells, resistance bands etc. If you’re aiming to get some serious strength however, then yes, unless you’re going to transform your garage into a heavy metal gym, you may need to train at a fully equipped gym, but if your goal isn’t abnormal size or strength, then a few bits of kit at home are more than adequate. You may be inexperienced and not know what you’re doing at home, but then most people don’t really know what they’re doing in the gym either! A few crunches on the mats after the 3 sets of 10 on each of the machines they were shown in their induction is about as daring as most people get. It’s worth investing either some money into a Trainer to show you what to do or having a Trainer come to you for your workouts, or at least invest some time into researching and finding out how to train at home and what you can do (although if you’re not a regular gym-bunny, the first option will be the better investment so you know you’re doing things right, and doing the right things).

You can buy some decent kit that will last a lifetime for the cost of a gym membership, or use the money you would have spent to fund the Personal Training. It’s easy to get drawn in by the gym’s plethora of equipment, but in reality you’ll only use a fraction of it, and what you do use, you’ll likely have to wait for. There’s also the fear/intimidation aspect of training in the gym. If you don’t really know what you’re doing, are a bit self-conscious or just plain don’t like the gym – then your membership (and money) is wasted. Just being a member won’t get you results – you have to turn up! Home training can also be a tricky one. It’s very easy to get distracted by other things you need to do and put off the workout to the point that you skip it. Motivating yourself to train at home can be very difficult and unless you’re someone who can do this, or you put other strategies in place (get a Trainer, train with a friend, schedule it in and stick to it…) then it may not be the option for you. The act of going to the gym can in itself put you in the right frame of mind for training. No other distractions and you can’t collapse on the sofa after a set and decide not to get up again! In summary, if you struggle to find time for the gym or you plain don’t like it, then home training may be the option for you. If you wouldn’t know where to start, get help. Hire a Personal Trainer and you’ll soon be in the swing of things and saving time not just travelling to and from the gym, but the time wasted in the gym by doing the wrong things too. If you want to gain huge amounts of muscle or deadlift triple bodyweight, enjoy the atmosphere/escape of the gym and the social aspect of it and get there regularly enough to warrant the membership costs, then find a gym that suits you and get to it! My aim here isn’t to show bias and convince you that one is better than the other but to show you that you have the option and you need to find which one works best for you. Gyms have always been the “go to” option for people who want to get fit so I want to help those of you who aren’t suited to this option. I’ve worked in many gyms and spoken to many trainees, and the number of gym memberships that go unused for whatever reason is extraordinary! If you’re one of these people, then there is an alternative. Either way, it’s always good to have a back-up plan for when the traffic blocks up the whole town and getting to the gym isn’t an option! If you’re interested in in-home Personal Training, nutrition and lifestyle changes go to for more information. See you there! Mark Broadbent

Dhiren’s Auto News September 2018 BMW Z4

This is the new BMW Z4 2018 BMW Z4 which has undergone a transformation and will actually switch back to a fabric roof. The interior will be more spacious than its predecessor (even though it’s still a two-seater) because it’s wider and the front and rear axles are set farther apart. At launch, there will be three versions of the new Z4: 181bhp and 248bhp 2.0-litre turbos, badged sDrive20i and sDrive30i, and a turbocharged 3.0-litre that will carry the M40i moniker and is rumoured to produce 355bhp. An even faster Z4 M model that uses the 425bhp twinturbo 3.0-litre unit from the M3 super-saloon could follow later, but not annouced yet. The new Z4 is made from a mix of high-strength steel, aluminium and magnesium, which helps make it lighter than its predecessor despite the increase in size. It will be available to buy in summer 2018 and expected to start from around £35,000.

In this month’s article we’ll bring you a new variant of a classic model, a brand new SUV model and a new sporty model for 2018.

It’s been two years since Citröen launched DS, its luxury sister brand. The all-new 7 Crossback is DS’s debut entry into the large SUV market. It will join the DS 3 small hatchback, 4 family hatchback, 5 executive car and 4 Crossback small SUV in the brand’s UK line-up. The 7 Crossback has a large, stylish front grille, wide air intakes and LED lights, which all help to give it an aggressive, sporty look. The 7 Crossback gets a tech-filled interior, with a 12.0in infotainment touchscreen and a customisable digital instrument display; currently, the Q5 is the only rival with the latter. DS will offer four trim levels in the UK: Bastille, Rivoli, Opera and Performance Line. It will be available with a choice of three petrol and two diesel engines and either an eight-speed automatic or a six-speed manual gearbox. It is targeting the premium end of the SUV market, an entry-level price of around £30,000 is likely, although not revealed. Order books will be open now, but cars won’t be delivered until early next year. 2017 Volkswagen Golf 1.0 TSI 85

DS 7 Crossback This will be the cheapest version of the VW Golf you can buy. The most obvious drawback would appear to be power – or, rather, the lack of it. You see, this entrylevel Golf makes do with a 1.0-litre engine that pumps out just 84bhp. Unsurprisingly, performance isn’t exactly brisk. There’s enough low-rev pull to scoot around town without working the engine too hard. The engine is also really smooth and quiet & steers sweetly and grips keenly. All come with the entry-level S trim with some of the simple options, however you can add more for by paying £410 as an option such as steering wheel button and a leather covering. Prices start from £17,765 and is available to buy now.


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Gardening Hints and Tips - September Protect fruit trees Now’s the time to apply grease bands around the trunks of fruit trees to prevent damage later on from wingless winter moths. Carefully rubbing off any loose bark will remove hiding places for other pests. To kill over-wintering pest eggs use Growing Success Winter Wash when all the leaves have dropped. Spray peaches and nectarines to help protect against peach leaf curl Finally, always pick up all fallen diseased leaves and destroy them. September tidy up September is a great time to make the most of your garden while the good weather lasts. Add extra supports to plants that have grown well during the summer, keep treating for pests and slugs – they don’t need to get any fatter! And it’s a great time to clean your paths and patios. Use path weed killers to clear pesky weeds and specialist patio cleaning tools and products to clear moss and green algae. Spring bedding Plug any gaps in the garden with spring bedding plants. Chose from wallflowers, bellis daisies, forget-me-not, winter-flowering pansies, violas, hardy primulas and polyanthus. And remember to add some spring-flowering bulbs too. Summer bedding For a splash of early summer colour next year, sow Californian poppies, annual poppies, godetia, larkspurs and a number of other hardy annuals now. Simply sow them where you want them to flower in soil that has been improved with compost or composted bark.

tree & shrub planting compost or other bulky soil improvers, and add a slow release fertiliser, such as bonemeal, or controlled-release fertiliser to the soil to improve root growth and fast establishment. Make sure all plants are well watered before and after planting. Autumn lawn care Liven up your lawn by removing the build up of dead grass, moss and other debris with a spring tine rake or powered scarifier. Then aerate the soil with a hollow-tine aerator or garden fork and add a lawn top dressing. Then apply a granular autumn lawn feed or, feed, weed and mosskiller. Finally re-seed any gaps with the correct lawn seed mix. Buy autumn planting bulbs You can’t beat spring-flowering bulbs for a splash of colour and now’s the time to plant them. Buy early to ensure the best choices from our extensive range – there’s something for everyone. To get the best from your bulbs, plant with compost, well-rotted manure or composted bark and a slow-release or controlled-release fertiliser and remember to label the planting position, so you know where they are. Composting Don’t throw away your spent bedding plants, kitchen waste and other plant material – turn them into valuable compost for improving your soil and mulching your beds and borders. Even those fallen tree leaves can be turned into leafmould. Making good compost and leafmould is easy with our wide range of compost bins, compost and leafmould accelerators, leaf rakes and collectors.

Autumn planting Autumn is nature’s natural time for planting. We have a wide range of hardy trees, shrubs, herbaceous perennials, roses and climbers in stock. Dig in plenty of compost, composted bark, Interested in advertising? Tel: 01322 507817

Dartford Living


Where to go locally... Mondays

...local events, clubs & groups

Parent & Toddler Groups (Term Time)

£2.00 per one 9:15am - 11:00am - A&J Toddlers - St Anselms Church Community Centre, Dartford. small snack for adult and child and 50p for any extra children or adults each. Tea/coffee biscuits, of session Contact children with juice. Toast 20p per slice Craft table and singing and dancing at end 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 n. informatio 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 Road London Hall Church e Greenhith Mary St years 4 to up children school pre 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 St Mary Greenhithe Church Hall, London Road Greenhithe. Contact 01322 382031 Child - £1 Non Walkers 9.30am-11am Toerags Toddler Group - Adult education centre, Dartford £3 per gs Greenhithe. Jeanne 01322 9.30am-11.30am Carer & Toddler Group, St Mary’s Church Hall, Stone Place Rd, dley@yah 380322 jeannehoa 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 Road London Hall, Church e Greenhith Mary St children. the for time snack healthy 382031 or see

Toddler Music & Rhyme Sessions Monday Friday Thursday Story Time Fleetdown - Tuesday Greenhithe - Thursday Longfield - Thursday Summerhouse - Tuesday Sutton-at-Hone -Monday. Temple Hill - Thursday Dartford


10:30am - 11am 2:15pm – 2:45pm 10:30pm -11:00am 10:30am -11am 2.15pm – 2.45pm 10:45am -11:15am 10:30am – 11am 2pm – 2:30pm 10.30am -11am

Come along and join in the fun! Term time only For more information please call 03000 41 31 31

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.


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.

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

THE GARDENING CLUB SUTTON AT HONE Monthly meetings, Visits to Gardens, Annual Garden Show and much more. For more information or to become a member please ring 01322 863556.

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.

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

JUST FOR GROWN UPS GROUP We are a small friendly group who meet at the Meeting Place in the Orchards Shopping Centre on the first Tuesday of the month. Join us any time between 11am and 1pm for a social chat, coffee and biscuits or a fun quiz. For more information contact


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



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:

DARTFORD U3A (UNIVERSITY OF THE THIRD AGE) 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.

The Dartford Stroke Group

This group meets Monday afternoons at the YMCA Roundhouse, Overy Street, Dartford for a chat in a relaxing atmosphere, chair-based excise sessions, stroke leaflets and magazines, informal workshops, special art or games sessions and outings. It is aimed at Stroke Survivors, their carers, family and friends. Please contact Theo Hodges on or phone/text Theo on 078 755 68296 for more details and current dates of our events and meetings

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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Dartford Living


Where to go locally... Mummy On The Mend


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

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.


A support group for parents affected by pre and post natal depression Mondays - 10-11.30am St Peters Church, Pickford Lane, Bexleyheath Kent DA7 4RW Wednesdays (starting 26th April) 9.30-11.30 Tree Estate community hall Tree Estate Dartford Kent DA1 2RG Fridays 12-2pm St Mary’s Church Hall Greenhithe - Mount’s road, Greenhithe Kent DA9 9ND 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

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 -

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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: Close to Bexleyheath Town Centre Description: We are a (non-profit making) friendly social group open to anyone over fifty. We enjoy socialising, making new friends and activities including Quizzes, Meals Out, Trips to the Theatre, Cinema, Coach Trips, Gentle Walks and Short Breaks Away. Admission: Subs £2.50 per week. Annual membership £6 If you would like to join us or require further information please telephone: 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


Tuesday Morning Yoga Class at Sutton Court, Sutton-AtHone The class is from 9.30am to 11am and is a mixed ability class - beginners are always welcome. More information is available at or please contact Lesley at or 07531 140646

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

Hop like it’s hot

A fun (different) circuit based workout with space hoppers that challenges core stabilty, balance and strength. It is suitable for all levels and abilities. Classes are held every Wednesday evening at the stone pavilion starting at 8:15 until 9:00 costing £5 per person.

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. Held in West Kingsdown on Tuesdays at 1.15 and Wednesdays at 12.12 ÂŁ6.95 per class one to one tuition also available for 2-7 year olds. 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

The Brent Playgroup meet Monday to Friday 9.15am to 12.15pm Term time only. For enquiries please contact: Mobile: 07989073866 Tel 01322 271738 (between 8 and 12:30) email: or call in at any time. Registered for Free for Two Children The Brent Methodist Church Hall PostCode DA1 1XF Interested advertising? Tel: 01322 507817 ininadvertising? 01322 507817 InterestedInterested in advertising? Tel: 01322 Tel: 507817 Dartford Living

11 15 55


Thick-rimmed glasses. Shrieking laughs. Getting naked in shop windows! But whatever you think you know about TV’s fashion guru Gok Wan, you haven’t heard the half of it. From his humble beginnings on a Leicester council estate, to becoming one of the country’s most recognised faces. Gok candidly unravels his life to reveal everything he has not yet dared to bare. No collar is left unturned in what might be the most honest, campest and naked stage show ever to mince the boards.

Dartford Living and The Orchard Theatre have teamed up to offer a pair of tickets to this show, To be in with a chance of winning this fantastic prize just answer the following question... WHAT WAS THE NAME OF THE TV SHOW GOK WAN FRONTED? A)How to look good naked B) Naked Truth C) How to look good clothed D) Clothes Show email your answer to This competition closes on 15th September. Good luck! 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. 6. Unless you advise otherwise we can use your email to send you promotional material from Dartford Living.

Advertisers Index

Directory of Local Businesses advertising in Dartford Living

ACCOUNTANTS, FINANCE & LEGAL Buss Murton .............................................................. 40 Downton Ali Associates..............................................59 GF + Co........................................................................41 BUILDERS, DECORATORS ROOFING, BATHROOMS, KITCHENS & WINDOWS

Affix Windows..............................................................30 Claremont Decorative Services..................................39 Nightingale Bathrooms................................................11 Steve Cook - Double Glazing.......................................23 CAKE MAKING Rock and Rise.......................................................41 CONVENIENCE STORE S3 ................................................................................22 COSMETIC, BEAUTY & HEALTH Dia Wipes................................................................7 COUNCIL Dartford Borough Council ...........................................31 EDUCATION Kip McGrath.. ...................................................13 ELECTRICIANS AES Electricians.. ....................................................4 ESTATE/ LETTING AGENTS GPS Lettings............................................................7 Fox Estates ..................................................................15 Virotti................................................................27 Wisdom Estates...........................................................39 FARM SHOP/ PICK YOUR OWN Stanhill Farm...............................................................33 FUNERAL SERVICES Stephen P Gay Funeral Services..............................22 GARAGES & VEHICLE SERVICES Orchard Garage...........................................................60 Shenley Road Garage...................................................42 HOTELS Campanile...................................................................4 JEWELLERY Bradleys..................................................................23 LAW Apex Law.......................................................................6 LOGISTICS/ REMOVALS FD TRANSPORT ...................................................42

NURSERY The Brent Playgroup.............................................5 MP Gareth Johnson....................................................2 MEDICAL HERE2CARE..........................................................29 Ifield Therepy......................................................33 MUSIC/DANCE & FITNESS Worried about your childs weight?.............................21 Dartford Bootcamps.....................................................30 Fairfield Leisure Centre...............................................36 Monkey Music............................................................49 Reynolds.....................................................38 Why Weight?...............................................................20 Vibe...............................................................28 OPTICIANS Linklater Opticians.. ...............................................40 PICTURE FRAMING Craft Frames.............................................................42 RESTURANT Kent Curry....................................................................19 SECURITY Excel Security......................... ..............................43 SPORTS Fairfield Leisure Centre................................................37 TRAVEL Travel Counsellors................................................29 WILL WRITING SMN Will Writing .....................................................22

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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

Dartford Ju Jitsu Club Mondays, Dartford Girls Grammar School, Shepherds Lane. 6.30-8.00 Juniors, 8.00-10.00 Seniors www.

LOCAL MP Gareth Johnson 020 7219 7047


LOCAL SPORTS CLUBS Bexley Rugby Club 01322 550142 or bexleyrfc/

Dartford Living Dartford Today and Tomorrow Dartford Remembered Dartford Gossip Dartford Living Community Group

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 Park- PRINCES PARK GOLF CLUB. Contact: 01322 299990 The Ashes Badminton Club Mondays, Dartford Technology College, Heath Lane. 7.30-9.30. Jacqui 07764 182854. Dartford Valley RFC darenthvalleyrfc/

Dartford Ladies Hockey Club Dawn Hall (Secretary) 07793 777250

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01322 271000

Motorbike MOT Just ÂŁ25!

Class IV MOT Just ÂŁ30! See our independent feedback at: and

128 Park Road, Dartford, DA1 1SZ

Dartford Living September Issue  

DL September '17 - Lower Thames Crossing, Autism Hour, DAODS Signin' in the rain and much more....

Dartford Living September Issue  

DL September '17 - Lower Thames Crossing, Autism Hour, DAODS Signin' in the rain and much more....